Ile de France

Immediately after we purchased our car, we very seldom spent a full weekend inside Paris. Instead, we roamed the whole of the Ile de France region in search of interesting places to visit.

And the whole region is full of such places. There are numerous former castle domains all around Paris, from Sceaux or Saint Cloud to Rambouillet and of Course Versailles.

There are also large forests like the one around Fontainebleau and valleys dotted with ponds along the Loing or Essone rivers. Even in the most densely urbanized areas, you can sometimes find interesting places such as the lake of Creteil or the Bois de Vincennes.
Vallée de la Marne

Vallée de la Marne

The Marne is one of the tributaries of the Seine, located in the South East of the Ile de France. 

The banks of the Marne near Paris were very popular at the beginning of the 20th century,  with the...

Versailles

Versailles

Versailles was at start only a village and royal hunting place. The king Louis XIV then decided that the royal court should leave the Louvre in Paris and ordered a palace to be built there. 

At its...

Fontainebleau

Fontainebleau

Fontainebleau was one of the royal cities surrounding Paris. As Rambouillet, it also had a large forest nearby. 

The forest comes to the borders of the town and some areas have a peculiar...

Vaux le Vicomte

Vaux le Vicomte

This château dates back from the 17th century and was built for Nicolas Fouquet, who was then superintendant of finances of Louis XIV. It was one of the first projects that saw the collaboration of...

Brie

Brie

The Brie region is located on the eastern part of the Ile de France.

We pay frequent visits to this area, since we now live in a small town East of Paris. This region has several interesting...

Courances

Courances

Courances is a small town located west of the Fontainebleau forest, not far from Milly la Forêt.

Not far from the town is a very nice castle located in the middle of remarkable gardens.

They both have...

Essonne

Essonne

The Essonne is a french river and also one of the large départements of Ile de France. It contains several former territories: the Hurepoix, the Gâtinais, a large part of the Beauce plains and small...

Créteil lake

Créteil lake

A large lake in the middle of a heavily built area, it is home to some waterfowl that can be approached easily.

Provins

Provins

Located in the departement of Seine et Marne, Provins is listed on the Unesco list of world heritage sites. It was once a very important town that hosted the largest fairs of the area and was under...

Rambouillet

Rambouillet

Rambouillet is one of the former royal properties that surround Paris. It has a nice castle, built in 1375 and constantly modified since then.

The area surrounding the town was originally devoted to...