Fontainebleau is the second most beautiful castle near Paris after Versailles. The Fontainebleau forest is great for hiking.
You come to Paris for a minimum of three days. Visit Fontainebleau Forest and Fontainebleau Castle, a Unesco world heritage monument, fifty kilometers from Paris. Locate Fontainebleau on Paris map.
The simplest way to visit Fontainebleau is a tour from Paris.
See also the tour from Paris with visits of Fontainebleau and Vaux le Vicomte, another castle near Paris (not in winter).
As a hunting forest, Fontainebleau has had the favor of the Kings of France since the 16th century. They had there one of their greatest castles.
Francois I (picture), the King who bought Mona Lisa, built most of the magnificent Renaissance Castle in the early 16th century. The castle was also a favorite of Emperor Napoleon who resigned there in 1814 (picture). You can see below Napoleon's throne room.
One of the largest French forests with its 25000 hectares, the Fontainebleau Forest, 50 km south of Paris by the A6 freeway, is a favorite of Parisian alpinists, who train there on weekends. Its many rocky hills (picture) make the perfect training ground before going to the Alps in the summer.
With its many beautiful trails, the Fontainebleau Forest is also much appreciated by hikers and horse riders.
Fontainebleau forest map (pdf).
By car, take the A6 freeway in Paris. You will then be able to best discover and enjoy the Fontainebleau Forest.
You can take the train at Paris Gare de Lyon: 40 minutes ride to Fontainebleau Avon train station, 15' shuttle to Fontainebleau Castle. France map.
Check Fontainebleau Paris train schedule.
Fontainebleau Castle web site
Fontainebleau tourist office
Vaux le Vicomte Castle web site
We also recommend Chateaux de la Loire