Fontainebleau
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Our most recommended Fontainebleau Day Trips

Fontainebleau & Vaux-le-Vicomte Châteaux Day Tour from Paris

1. Fontainebleau & Vaux-le-Vicomte Châteaux Day Tour from Paris

This full-day trip from Paris takes you to the Vaux-le-Vicomte and Fontainebleau châteaux for guided tours of the castles and a chance to explore their gardens. Set off from Paris at 09:15 on the hour-long drive to Vaux-le-Vicomte, the château that inspired King Louis XIV to build his Versailles Palace. A masterpiece of mid-17th century classical architecture, the château and its grounds were created by 3 talented artists working for Nicolas Fouquet, a rich, high-ranking French official and Louis XIV's Superintendent of Finance. The 3 artists were the painter and decorator Charles Le Brun, the architect Louis Le Vau, and the landscape gardener André Le Nôtre. With an audio guide you’ll explore Nicolas Fouquet's private apartments, the state rooms, and the château's great kitchens and vaulted cellars. Enjoy a stroll through the stunning French-style formal gardens on the estate’s 86-acre grounds, featuring sculpted bushes, lakes, and multicolored flower beds. If you like you can eat lunch on the lawn or in the Vaux-le-Vicomte restaurant. You’ll leave Vaux-le-Vicomte at 13:30 for the second part of the tour, heading to the heart of the forest of Fontainebleau. Fontainebleau is the only royal château to have been continuously inhabited for 7 centuries. Dating back to the 12th century, it was one of the residences of French rulers from Francis I to Napoleon III. During your audio-guided visit, you’ll explore the richly furnished château, admiring its unique collections and key pieces such as the throne of Napoleon I and the famous horseshoe-shaped staircase. You’ll also see the spacious private apartments. After the tour, you’ll have time to explore the vast grounds surrounding the château, as well as its 3 lovely gardens. Departure from Fontainebleau is scheduled for 17:00, with arrival back in central Paris at around 18:15.

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From Paris: Chateau de Fontainebleau & Vaux-Le-Vicomte Tour

2. From Paris: Chateau de Fontainebleau & Vaux-Le-Vicomte Tour

Discover two of the most beautiful and historically interesting castles in the Paris region on this small group day trip. You’ll visit the lovely Chateau and gardens of Vaux-le-Vicomte, where the “jardin à la francaise” was born and then explore the regal splendor of Chateau de Fontainebleau where more than seven centuries of kings and emperors lived and created history.  Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte, with its deluxe 17th century decor and outstanding French Gardens is enchanting. It is so beautiful that it directly inspired the Sun King to build the Palace of Versailles, in order to rival it. You’ll learn about the captivating history of the estate and its past owners, wander through the perfectly ordered French Gardens and enjoy free time to explore the inside of the Chateau. Chateau de Fontainebleau is unparalleled in its extravagant architecture and links to important events in French History. With more than 1,500 rooms inside, it is a sumptuous palace and according to Napoleon Bonaparte "The true home of kings, the house of ages". It was home to three dynasties of Kings, a Pope and two French Emperors and as such is truly unique among the castles in Europe. You’ll explore its majestic halls, extravagantly gilded rooms, beautifully decorated Chapel and learn its fascinating history.

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What people are saying about Fontainebleau

Such a nice day outside of the city!

My mother and I took this tour because we like gardens and chateaus. Ha! This was our first planned tour in Paris and we were impressed with everything. The meeting point was excellent and easy to find. The gentleman was very knowledgeable on all aspects of the chateaus we visited. We were just about the only people at the Vaux-Le-Vicomte chateau and preferred this tour versus the other. They have golf carts where you can drive around the gardens. We were lucky enough that we ran into our guide during a break and he offered to drive the cart for just myself and my mother. It was such a treat to have a driver and guide! Right place right time :-) We then had a stop for lunch, which was not included, but there were plenty of restaurants in the area to enjoy an hour break. Fontainebleau was beautiful, but so massive that we didn't get to spend too much time in the gardens like we have hoped. We truly enjoyed everything!

Well organized very interesting tour. Highly recommend it.

Be aware of audioguide. Descriptions are very lengthy. Pace your tour of Fontainebleau castle (very beautiful and huge) according to the tour departure time so you will make it. We had very good and knowledgeable guide.

Perfectly organized trip

I had this trip on 16th of September. An excellent trip. Very good guide speaking fluent English. Enough time to see the palaces. Highly recommend the trip and the agency. Thank you for the pleasure!!!

Excellent 1-day tour by the competent and knowledgeable guide JB!

Very interesting and well organised tour. The guide JB is a well experienced and very pleasant professional who is truly gifted to be in this industry. A splendid day all in all.

Sympathischer Guide, genügend Zeit für die Besichtigungen (gutes timing), angenehme Fahrt