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Visit Versailles by Bike

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06/01/20

Day Trip to Versailles by Bike

Grande Perspective - Versailles
Grande Perspective – Versailles

Versailles by bike is a fun way to spend a day out of Paris, combining sightseeing and some exercise. Visit Versailles Palace and kilometers and kilometers of trails laid out for French monarchs from the comfort of your bike!

By bike, Versailles Gardens and forest are wonderful to explore. In this post, we tell you how to plan a Paris day trip to Versailles by bike, with a Versailles bike tour or on your own. Don’t worry if you don’t have your own bicycle for visiting Versailles, we also tell you how to get one!

Versailles Palace and Estate in a Nutshell

Château de Versailles is one of the most famous castles near Paris, built in the 17th century as a hunting lodge for King Louis XIII. It was King Louis XIV, his son, who moved with his family and the royal court to Versailles and he undertook major works to transform it in a jewel of French Baroque Architecture and the most beautiful palace in the world.

Versailles was the seat of royal power in France and home to three French Kings: King Louis XIV, King Louis XV, and King Louis XVI. With the Gardens and the Palaces of Trianon, the Versailles Estate spreads over 800 hectares!

The Gardens of Versailles were considered as important as the Palace, that’s why King Louis XIV entrusted André Le Notre, a reputed landscape designer, with the design of the Gardens. Versailles Gardens feature 200,000 trees, 50 fountains, and a 5.57km canal. Believe me, you will want to explore these wonderful gardens as much as you can!

Why a Versailles Bike Tour is a Good Idea

The Versailles Estate was built with traveling by horseback in mind so the spread-out grounds are much more manageable on two wheels. A 30-minute hike on foot is cut down to five by bike, allowing the visitor to see much more and without wondering where the next bench is.

Versailles by bike is easy! The  Versailles Estate is totally flat so you don’t need to be an experienced biker or super fit to enjoy a Versailles bike tour.

How to Visit Versailles by Bike

Join a Guided Versailles Bike Tour

A Versailles by bike day tour from Paris always comes with bike rental, a knowledgeable guide, and skip-the-line access to Versailles Palace, Trianon Palaces, and the Queen Hamlet. After arriving at Versailles train station, the group usually heads to the market to buy the food for the picnic later on the grass. The tour finishes at Versailles Palace, where you will get an audio guide and you can tour the Palace at your own pace as much as you want. Train tickets Paris – Versailles are also included in the price of the tour.

Versailles guided tours are a good idea. The guides know a lot of stories and anecdotes about the Palace and its guests and you can ask them as many questions as you want so the visit is more interactive. Also, they know when is the best time to visit each building to avoid crowds for a more pleasant visit.

This Versailles bike tour is consistently rated 5 stars and has excellent reviews. Forget about logistics and tickets and just have fun!

Independent Versailles Bicycle Tour

If you have your own bicycles you can skip these lines and jump into the next chapter.

For some, the best bike tour Versailles has to offer will be an independent tour on his own path and doing what he wants. People who need to rent a bicycle have two options: renting a bicycle in Versailles or in Paris. We recommend Versailles.

Versailles Bike Rental

In Versailles, it is possible to rent bikes for adults, children, and tandem bicycles in different places of the park.

The bike hire points are Little Venice (by the canal), Saint Antoine Gate, and the Queen’s Gate. Little Venice hire point is always open whilst the other two points only open on weekends and holidays. Opening times are from 10 am to 5 pm or 6.45 pm depending on the season.

On weekends we recommend renting your bike at the Queen’s Gate because it is the closest point to Versailles Rive Droite train station (850 m, 11-minute walk).

Of course, on weekends there’s also the possibility of taking a bike at one point and relate it to another

Rental prices are €18 per half-day (4 hours), €20 per day (8 hours).

Click here for all the ways to go from Paris to Versailles

Paris Bike Rental

If you prefer renting a bicycle in Paris, you can rent classic or e-bikes with bikesbooking.com. You can also search on google the closest bike rental point to your hotel.

Click here to read the Paris by Bike Quick Guide

Unfortunately, Velib bikes are not available in Versailles.

Getting your Versailles Tickets

Versailles Palace France

There are different tickets to visit all the Versailles State, the Versailles Palace, or the Trianons. The table below resumes the most popular Versailles tickets. Take the time to study this table, what is included, and what is not on each ticket.

Compare the best Versailles Tickets

TICKETSKIP THE LINEPALACE (+ Audio Guide)TRIANON  (+ Queen’s Hamlet)GARDEN SHOWSPRICE
Palace of Versailles NOYESNONOView
Skip the line Versailles Palace & GardensYESYESNOOption to do an add-on to see the showsView
Skip the line Versailles PassYESYESYESOption to do an add-on to see one of these showsView
Marie-Antoinette’s Hamlet and TrianonYESNOYESNOView

Remember that from April to October, Versailles proposes different shows in the gardens that we recommend!

TIP: Are you thinking about buying the Paris Museum Pass for 2, 4, or 6 days? The Paris Museum Pass includes skip-the-line access to Château de Versailles and Trianon!

Paris – Versailles by Bike and by Train

train station in Paris

To travel from Paris to Versailles you are going to take a Transilien train from Paris Gare Saint Lazare (Paris 8) to Paris Rive Droite train station. This is a 35 min ride and you don’t need to book train tickets in advance.

In the Parisian Region, your bike travels for free but subject to certain conditions:

  • From Monday to Friday you need to travel out of peak traffic hours before 06.30, between 9.30 and 16.30, and after 19.30
  • No time restrictions on Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays
  • If trains are crowded, do not board with your bicycle.
  • In the train, on platforms, and in stations, you must walk your bicycle. For safety reasons, don’t take escalators.
SNCF Trains for bikes
Norbert fixing the bikes on the train
Bike hooks on trains
Bike hooks on train

Look for the train wagons with the bike logo. These wagons are adapted for bikes, with special hooks to fix bikes
When traveling on a Transilien train, you are responsible for transporting, handling, and watching over your bicycle.

From Versailles Rive Droite train station to the Queen’s Gate there’s only a 5-minute bike ride.

Palace of Versailles Bike Tour – Suggested Itinerary

Versailles Bike Itinerary Map
Suggested Versailles Bike Itinerary Map on Google Maps

Click here to view the Google Map

IMPORTANT: Bikes are not allowed inside the Palace’s French Gardens and inside the Estate of Trianon.

We recommend starting your Palace of Versailles bike tour at the Queen’s Gate (2) at 10 am, earlier if you come to Versailles with your own bike. Explore the park and forest between points (2) (11) and (10) and then head to the bike racks at La Petite Venise (3) to park your bikes and visit the Palace’s French Gardens on foot (4).

Take your bike and after admiring the Apollo’s fountain (5) look for a nice place for a picnic on the by the Grand Canal (6) or a light meal at the restaurant La Petite Venise (you can book here)

Grand Canal - Versailles
Lunch break by the Grand Canal

Do the tour of the canal stopping for some pictures at La Lanterne (7), and the Royal Star (8). Then it’s time to visit the Grand Trianon (9), Petit Trianon (10), and the Queen’s Hamlet (11), which open at 12 pm.

Leave the Versailles Palace for late afternoon, when there are lesser crowds. The entrance is at Place d’Armes (12). We suggest a 2-hour visit, from 3.30 pm to 5.30 pm.

Versailles Forest

Versailles Bike Tips, Do’s & Don’ts

Bikes are not allowed inside the Palace’s French Gardens and inside the Estate of Trianon.

Where to park your bike in Versailles? Bike racks are available in different spots throughout the Estate of Versailles: in front of the Place d’Armes, next to the Queen’s Gate in the Park, near the Grand Trianon, near the Petit Trianon, and near La Flottille restaurant and the Petite Venise.

You can have your bike near you on the grass when having your picnic by the canal.

We also parked our bike in one of the car parks near the French Gardens.

Bring lots of water, wear comfortable clothes and cover your head.

Click here to find more side-trips from Paris

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