Visit Louis XIV’s France

The Palace of Versailles, photo by fesek/Flickr

Also known as the “Sun King”, Louis XIV is considered the longest reigning king in Europe. He reigned for 72 years and 110 days. He is one of the most important and best-known kings and personalities in French history. During his reign the country was the leading power in Europe. Several wonderful buildings relate to his name. If you would like to visit some of the spectacular buildings relating to Louis XIV, read on to find out which are these historic buildings. Choosing the Palace of Versaille, the Louvre Museum or the so called Les Invalides, will surely make a great day out for you and your family. Find out more about the famous king and visit wonderful sites at the same time!

The Palace of Versaille

Originally it served as a hunting lodge of King Louis XIII, but later it became the residence of Louis XIV who transformed it into his spectacular residential palace. He used to be ostentatious and is famous for this characteristic. Louis XIV ordered the construction of the breathtaking Grand Apartment before moving to the palace. It included the spectacular Hall of Mirrors. The government of the country and the court were both moved to the Palace of Versaille in 1689 and remained there until 1789, the date of the French Revolution. Louis XIV also ordered the design of the picturesque gardens which took about 40 years to complete. Later, in the 19th century King Louis Philippe transformed the palace into France’s Museum of History. The Palace of Versaille can be visited from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 to 18:30. The prices of the tickets vary depending on season: from April to October the entry to every site is €20 and from November to March is €16. (September 2012)

The Palace of Versailles, photo by fesek/Flickr

The Louvre Museum

One of the world’s most famous museums, the building of the Louvre was once the royal palace of the monarch. The building has a fascinating history. It was built originally as a fortress by Philippe Auguste with the purpose to protect the capital city from the Anglo-Normans. Later, the fortress became Louis XIV’s royal palace and remained until moving to the Versailles Palace. He ordered the construction of several sections. After moving to the Versaille Palce, the Louvre Palace became an art gallery. Today, the Louvre is one of the world’s best-known museums and best-known landmarks and attractions of Paris. It contains a huge number of about 35.000 works from all around the world. It is open daily except Tuesdays, from 9:00 to 18:00 and the price of the ticket is €10. (September 2012)

The Louvre Museum, photo by simo0082/Flickr

Les Invalides

It was constructed under the order of Louis XIV and served as a home for soldiers and a hospital. The building was named “Institution Nationale des Invalides” and was completed in 1676. The most important date in the history of the building was the 15th of December 1840 when the body of Napoleon I was brought to the hospital. His tomb can be found here. Les Invalides contains several buildings and can be found in Paris. There are offered numerous different types of tours at Les Invalides. It can be visited daily from 10:00 to 17:00. The ticket costs €8.50 for adults and €6.50 for groups and veterans. (September 2012)

Les Invalides, photo by ell brown/Flickr


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