I have a love/hate relationship with Versailles. Love because, well, it’s Versailles: grand and gilded rooms, beautiful and vast gardens, the works. And hate because, well, tourists. And lots of them.
Even when planned well, Versailles can still be a bit soul-crushing, and I questioned whether I wanted to subject myself to that gauntlet this time around. I was leaning toward “no,” when a thought occurred to me: the gardens, in autumn. Wouldn’t they be spectacular? And while Paris is a place I hope to return to often throughout my life, who knows the next time I’ll be here in the fall?
And so, was the visit worth it? The answer was, yes, yes, a thousand times yes – the gardens were absolutely spectacular. The leaves were fully in the process of turning during my visit, and the colors were just gorgeous. I especially loved all the little groves and side gardens: walking down what felt like a secret pathway, and finding myself surrounded by rows and rows of perfectly manicured trees, all in the vividest shades of yellow, orange, and red.
Sometimes I fear I overuse this word, but Versailles in autumn was truly magical. While the tourist crush was as present as ever, wandering around in the gardens, surrounded by gorgeous colors, I hardly minded it. I’m very glad I made the trip.