The castle of Saint-Germain-en-Laye is a very interesting sight on the map of France. Even if it is not such attractive and luxurious as some of the palaces in Paris, nevertheless deserves a special mention.
Saint-Germain-en-Laye is located twenty kilometers from Paris and was a stop of the royal court on the way to Versailles in the past. This castle was built earlier than the famous residence of French kings. Today under the roof of newly renovated architectural monument is National Museum of archaeological finds.
The museum’s exposition is very interesting for lovers of history, so visiting this palace is more than a pleasant event.
For example, the section, devoted to the Stone Age, offers visitors a collection of ancient rock paintings and carvings, numerous tools and ornaments of our ancestors. The collected artifacts allow visitors to see all phases of ancient and modern history of the French state. A part of the exhibition is devoted to Franks, Celts and Romans.
There is an exposition on the legendary battle of Alesia in 52 BC between troops of the Gallic tribal leader Vercingetorix and the army of Roman Empire, led by Julius Caesar. The victory of the Romans in the battle marked the complete conquest of Gaul and ending of the Gallic War.
In Saint-Germain-en-Leye palace there is a hall of comparative archaeology with exhibits, relating to different cultures and civilizations.
But, this place attracts tourists not only for its interesting museum. Saint-Germain-en-Laye is a wonderful town for nice walks. Thus, the original terrace stretches from the museum at a distance of two miles. It was created by Mr. Le Notre – the legendary master of landscape, who had also worked on decoration of Versailles. You can always take a walk through the forest of Saint-Germain.
To get here from Paris you can by train RER (line 1) to the end station St-German-en-Laye.