We had intended to head to Versailles as early as possible, but opted for a full night sleep instead. Since Versailles is about an hour outside of Paris, we didn’t make it there until after 10am. We purchased an additional RER ticket (for €3,35) to get there as it is outside the three zones that our metro pass covered. When we got there, there was a huge line to buy passes. Luckily there was no line to buy the museum pass, which is what we had intended to do. We purchased our two-day museum passes for €38 (~$49) each, which covered entrance to the palace at Versailles. However we did still have to pay €8,50 to get into the gardens.
The palace was incredibly crowded. Based on what we had read online we picked the worst possible times/day to go (Tuesday mid-day), but did it anyways. It was very difficult to walk through with all the people, but was still very impressive and we were glad we went.
Palace At Versailles
After finally escaping the crowds indoors we headed out into the gardens, a lot of which seemed to be under construction. Some of the statues were neat, but it was cloudy out and we decided to head back to Paris after walking through just a little more than half of the gardens. We were glad we went, but felt that the gardens at Luxembourg were just as pretty and much closer to central Paris.
Gardens at Versailles
We grabbed a ham and cheese sandwich in the gardens, and ate lunch with this view before heading back.
Our Lunch View In The Gardens At Versailles
We probably could have spent a lot longer at the gardens, but wanted to head back and try to see either the Musee d’Orsay or the Pantheon while we still had time on our museum pass. Our Wednesday schedule was pretty full, so we wanted to fit as much into Tuesday as we could. We made it to the Musee d’Orsay around 5pm and didn’t have much time to look around. I mainly wanted to see Van Gogh’s exhibit so we headed straight there. I enjoyed stopping in, but I’m not a huge art fan, so I don’t feel like I personally missed much by not spending a lot of time there.
After the Musee d’Orsay we headed towards the Pantheon figuring we’d at least make sure to go see the outside. We also wanted to eat dinner at a restaurant near there that my friend’s sister had recommended, called Polidor. They’ve been open since 1845!
I had the beef bourguignon and it was pretty good. This place was cash only – so no credit card points, and they sit you at a table with other people. They had a single bottle of wine on the menu that was €12000 but luckily my meal was only €13 – further proof that it is possible to dine at reasonable prices in Paris. We also stopped and bought macaroons to try and another dessert pastry at a shop on the way back to the hotel. I didn’t catch what the second pastry was called, but chocolate was involved and it was amazing. It was right down the street from Polidor near the Pantheon and was called Boulangerie Luxembourg on Rue Monsieur le prince. The owner was very friendly and I highly recommend it!
We headed back to the hotel after dessert as we had a big day planned Wednesday starting with Notre Dame early in the morning and ending with a visit to the Louvre until 9:45pm!