Métro: Pont de Neuilly (line 1)
Address: Château de Bagatelle 75016 Paris
Hours: Tuesday-Friday from 9:30 am to 8:00 pm (summer season)
Closed on Monday and holidays
Cost: 5.50 euros during high season, free the rest of the year.
It was about time that I mentioned this little oasis. Well not so little since it is about 25 hectares big. I went during Spring time to see all the tulips in full bloom for free but unfortunately during high season, you have to pay a fee (5.50 euros per adult).
“C'est une bagatelle!” It's a French expression which means “it's nothing” (as in financially). It takes its name after this park. It came about from a bet between Marie-Antoinette and her brother-in-law the count of Artois, future Charles X. The property cost about 4 millions and buildings were edified in 64 days in 1777. So as the French know best how to use their ironic sense of humor the expression stayed. A Bagatelle stands for not much or without significance.
Mostly spared during the French Revolution, it was sold in 1830 to a British Lord, Lord Seymour who added the fountains and waterfalls then bought back by the city of Paris in 1905. The city of Paris designed the rose garden where you can admire a collection of over 9000 varieties of the fragrant flowers. And you always feel young compared to the 140 years old trees! You can also mingle with the peacocks. They're everywhere, even in the high branches which took me by surprise. Try the mating season (around June) for a colorful show.
Click HERE to download the map of the park as well as a calendar of what is in bloom each month.