Wheelchair Accessibility Review of Versailles Palace
Wheelchair Access at Paris Versailles Palace – The Versailles Palace is the most magnificent palace in Europe and worth a trip if you are in Paris for 4 days or longer. If you are staying less than 4 days, there are great attractions in Paris that are quicker and easier to see. Wheelchair access at Paris Versailles Palace is at least partly possible in all three of the buildings: the palace, the Grand Trianon, and the Petit Trianon. The French Gardens and English Gardens are step-free, relatively flat, and have a firm surface which make visits possible for wheelchair users.
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Because of the long distances in the gardens and the cobblestones in front of Versailles Palace, we give Versailles a 3 Star Sage Accessibility Rating instead of 4 stars.
If you will only be visiting the palace, you can probably do it in a half day counting the time it takes to get there from the center of Paris. My favorite part of Versailles is the gardens, and visiting the palace and the gardens will actually take the whole day. We spent 5 hours on our wheelchair accessible visit to Versailles.
The wheelchair accessible entrance to Versailles Palace is found just past the main gate on the left hand side of the courtyard. There are about 200 meters of cobblestones between the front gate and the building entrance. If you are arriving by taxi or car, you can tell the guard at the gate that you are disabled and your taxi or car can pass through the gate and drop you off at the entrance of the building. If there is a line to get into the building, get the attention of a staff member. They will escort you to a door with a ramp and you can bypass the line. After you get into the building, you will need to cross the courtyard to enter another building where the audioguides are located.
The approach to the Versailles Palace is over some medium cobblestones. They are a little bumpy but should not present a big problem for wheelchair visitors to Versailles.
The map on the left shows the route from the front gate to the elevator. The map on the right shows the location of Entrance A which is the disabled accessible entrance to Versailles.
The picture on the left shows the sidewalk that wheelchair users will take. If there is a line, find a staff member who can escort you to the front. The accessible entrance is shown on the right.
In the courtyard there is an accessible bathroom. On crowded days you may need to wait in line.
The interior of the Versailles Palace is wheelchair accessible via ramps and an elevator. When you enter the building, be sure to pick up an audioguide and a map. Your visit will start on the ground floor where you visit several rooms full of portraits. When you get to the last room on the ground floor with the staircase, a staff member will escort you down a private hall to an elevator which brings you to the upper floor. The upper floor is step-free.
After you cross the courtyard, you will go into the building and down the wheelchair ramp shown below:
Rental wheelchairs are available at Versailles Palace. They must stay inside the palace and can not be taken into the gardens. Pick up an audioguide before starting your visit. If you are a wheelchair user, bring your own headphones to plug into the audioguide so your hands are free to push your wheelchair.
The normal tour route goes up the flight of stairs shown of the left. Wheelchair access to the Versailles Palace upper floor is provided by an elevator.
When you finish the tour, locate a staff member to escort you to the elevator.
After you finish your tour of the Palace, you definitely should try to visit the gardens and the two builidings in the back of the property, the Grand Trianon and the Petit Trianon. The gardens are absolutely enormous and involve long distances. Allow for at least 2 hours for a wheelchair accessible visit to Versailles gardens. The Grand Trianon and Petit Trianon are over a mile away from the Palace. Disabled tourists can use the mini-train or rent an electric buggy to make the visit easier.
The gardens are very large. The picture on the left was taken from the start of the Grand Canal looking back at the palace. That’s only about one quarter of the total length of the garden.
The map on the left shows the 1.9 km route from Versailles Palace to Grand Trianon. The map on the right shows the 250 meter route from the Versailles palace wheelchair accessible exit to the mini-train which goes to both of the Trianon buildings.
The pictures below show the ticket line for the mini-train. The window on the right provides “prioritaire” for disabled guests so head to that window.
There are steps at the back of the palace but you can go around them. There is space on the mini-train for a wheelchair. It is about 1 meter off the ground and staff will need to lift a wheelchair user onto it.
The Grand Trianon has a ramp at the entrance and is step-free throughout. Visiting the Petit Trianon requires a staff member letting you into the wheelchair accessible entrance. The ground floor is accessible but there is no elevator to the upper floor. The English Garden behind the Petit Trianon is a completely different style than the French Gardens found in the rest of the estate. The French Gardens are laid out in geometric lines while the English Gardens look more natural. Don’t miss the English Garden and the Queen’s Hamlet – it was our favorite part of Versailles.
The Grand Trianon building shown on the left has cobblestones covering the courtyard in front of it. There is a wheelchair accessible ramp to enter the Grand Trianon.
To enter the Petit Trianon in a wheelchair, you will bypass the line shown in the picture on the left. Locate a staff member who will let you through the green gate shown on the right.
A staircase leads to the upper floor of the Petit Trianon and there is no elevator.
The most accessible route from the Petit Trianon to the Queen’s Hamlet is along the right side of the English Garden shown in the map on the left. The route is 550 meters long. The paths in the garden are made of firm crushed rock and are easy for wheelchair users to roll over.
Some areas of the English garden are not as accessible. A map showing which parts are inaccessible is provide to our Accessible Paris Holiday clients.
Check availability of accessible tours in Versailles
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