ANGERS –> VERSAILLES: Over-the-top Flower Power


The fireplace in Marie Antoinette’s bedroom features a statue of Marie herself. Vanity? Or just plain awesomeness?

When asked the question of who I would choose to have dinner with, alive or dead, I would now probably have to say Marie Antoinette. After walking around her gardens and being inside her beyond over-the-top bedroom, I can’t think of anyone whose brain I’d like to pick more. I’m beginning to think that amidst the pink and gold palace walls of Versailles lived either a crazy delusional lunatic, or the smartest woman of the eighteenth century. 

The palace of Versailles is about twenty to thirty minutes outside of Paris. I went expecting to see some big fountains and a lot of flowers, and maybe even a chance to eat some cake. See what I did there?

The palace exceeded any and all expectations I had and I found myself wishing I could stay there for another whole day. 

Versailles is exquisite. Yes, it is excessive and way over the top. However, just knowing the simple fact that Marie Antoinette planned out every golden-arched gate and floral wallpaper down to the pastel pink marbled ceilings all by herself and for herself is the ultimate form of French Revolution era girl power. In a time when women weren’t usually so openly sassy, Marie Antoinette had the nerve to dismiss the fact that she had a country to run. Instead, she retreated to her pink and gold palace, teaching us all that whenever you’re stressed, the best thing to do is ignore the problem and wait it out inside your private castle.

The entire palace has been kept up beautifully, and the gardens themselves deserve a whole day of anyone’s time. In the gardens, people are able to rent golf carts, boats or kayaks, and there is also the too-good-to-be-true opportunity to ride ponies outside of Marie’s private estate. There is ice cream sold, but it only comes in two colors: pink or white. The whole thing is obnoxiously girly and amusing.

Aside from going in all of the many impressive rooms of the palace, such as the bedrooms, the dining room, or the famous hall of mirrors, there is an Angelina. Angelina is a very popular café, which is known for its decadent African hot chocolate. It definitely lives up to its ‘best hot chocolate in the world’ title.

If I could describe Versailles in one word, it would be entertaining. It’s almost as if the entire time you’re trying to decide whether Marie Antoinette is in on the joke or not. Did she know how sassy she was being by covering the walls AND the ceiling with completely non-matching but equally appalling floral motifs? We will never know.

We can be sure, however, that no other place in the country better encapsulates everything the notorious bourgeois French stand for.