Accidental Tourist

The good, the bad & les magnifiques of travel plans gone awry

Pauline Garrett experienced all three in quick succession during her visit to Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte in France — and made some friends along the way

15 December 2019 - 00:00 By Pauline Garrett

Alighting from the train that had brought me from Paris to Melun on a glorious early-spring day, I looked about eagerly for the small bus that takes visitors onward to the 17th-century Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte, nestled within the Fontainebleau forest.

A quick scan of the timetable told me that this bus only runs on Wednesdays and weekends, so I was waiting in vain on a Thursday, the final day of my trip. I contemplated returning to Paris on the next train, but strolled over to the taxi rank with some trepidation, to be informed that the fare to the Chateau was €18 [around R300 at the time ] one-way. I pressed on, since I was so close, and was duly dropped at the ornamental gates of the palace...

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