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In the heart of the Bois de Boulogne, is the elegant, romantic, and calm Parc de Bagatelle Paris. It’s bucolic Paris at its best. Roses of all kinds, butterflies, peacocks, both wild and manicured gardens, and the resident cats are all part of the experience as you stroll the pathway through Parc de Bagatelle.
And what on earth is a “bagatelle?” Bagatelle is from the Italian word “bagatella” meaning trifle or folly. And does the Parc de Bagatelle Paris contain a folly or two? From false ruins to a foolish bet, I concur that the park is aptly named!
1. Parc de Bagatelle Paris: A Simple Bet
Unbelievably, the Parc de Bagatelle all came to be because of a bet between Marie Antoinette and the Comte d’Artois (King Louis XVI’s brother). The Comte d’Artois was building a château on his newly acquired land in the middle of the Bois de Boulogne. Could it be done in three months?
Marie Antoinette’s brother-in-law won the bet. The château was built in 64 days with about 900 men working around the clock.
Is this the only trifle to be found in the Parc de Bagatelle Paris? Don’t miss the false ruins, pagodas, grottoes, and waterfalls.
2. Peacock Paradise In Parc de Bagatelle Paris
The roaming peacocks in the Parc de Bagatelle are quite something to behold. Not at all shy, the peacocks fan out their spectacular tail feathers for all to see.
I’m not sure if I’ve only been to the Parc de Bagatelle during mating season, or if the male peacocks put on this display for female visitors as well. But both times I’ve been, the male peacocks are all too eager to spread their glorious tail feathers with their unique set of eyespots for everyone to admire.
When their train of feathers is spread out like a fan, don’t be surprised to see the males shake it up and rattle those feathers in a mating dance, turning in circles.
3. Gorgeous Blooms At Parc de Bagatelle Paris
It’s probably not a huge surprise that the Parc de Bagatelle in Paris is full of spectacular blooms and botanical gardens. But, there are reportedly 10 000 rose plants and 1200 varieties of roses. That is somewhat impressive. Non?
Every June, the International Competition for new Roses takes place in the Classic Rose Garden. Established in 1907, this renowned Rose Competition at Parc de Bagatelle Paris assesses new varieties of roses.
Be sure to visit both rose gardens. There is the Classic Rose Garden and also the Landscape Rose garden which seems to grow a bit wilder. Both are stunning.
With soaring ancient trees, and fields of daffodils, tulips, and irises, anyone who enjoys colourful seasonal blooms will enjoy a stroll through Parc de Bagatelle Paris.
4. The False Ruins At Parc de Bagatelle Paris
I guess the Comte d’Artois needed some ruins to complete the authenticity of this estate. He was clearly pulling out all the stops in this bet.
There’s not much left of Les Fausses Ruines (the False Ruins of Parc de Bagatelle) but who doesn’t love a stroll under a Gothic arch in the woods? At one point, there was a bell tower with arrows but that is long gone. As you walk through the archway, know that you are strolling right over what once was the icehouse of the Comte d’Artois.
5. Silence In Paris At Parc De Bagatelle
I kid you not. If you are needing to get away from the traffic, sirens, and demonstrations in Paris, head to the Parc de Bagatelle Paris for a reset. You won’t believe you are still in Paris, except for the glimpse of the skyline every now and then.
Get lost in the reflections and the variety of gardens in Parc de Bagatelle Paris..
Note the birdlife and butterflies and thank Marie Antoinette and the Comte d’Artois for their foolish bet that still lives on today.
Who Designed The Parc de Bagatelle As We See It Today?
Jean Claude Nicolas Forestier, the renowned landscape architect, designed the park in 1905. It had fallen into disrepair and Claude Forestier turned his vision into reality with a variety of floral displays, water features and architectural marvels.
Practicalities: Parc de Bagatelle Paris
How To Get To Parc de Bagatelle Paris:
Parc de Bagatelle Address: 43 Rte de Sevres à Neuilly 75016 Paris (in the Bois de Boulogne)
By Métro: Pont de Neuilly, Line 1 and then take Bus #93 or #43. Get off at the stop Place-de-Bagatelle or Bagatelle Pré-Catalan.
Note: You have to pay again when you take the bus, even though the stop is at the Metro station.
Closest Velib Station: 28001; If you choose to bike to the entrance of Parc de Bagetelle Paris, you must lock and leave your bike by the entrance.
Entry & Hours: Parc de Bagatelle
April 1 – September 30: €2.50
October 1- March 31: Free
May – September 30: 9:30 – 8 pm
October 1 – 30: 9:30 – 6:30
October 31 – February 28: 9:30 – 5pm
See all the hours here.
And.. there are lovely clean bathrooms and a kiosk selling snacks and coffee!
I hope you love the Parc de Bagatelle Paris as much as I do.
Until next time,
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