Disneyland Paris 2000 Rally
Updated: Friday, 13 April 2007

FOUTAINEBLEAU - Saturday, 21st October 2000

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Foutainebleau, surrounded by its great hunting forest,  is a royal palace. It looked and was  very impressive as we entered the gate (033) and walked across the great three-sided courtyard, the Cour du Cheval-Blanc, towards the curving horseshoe staircase (040) that faced us at the far end.

On 20 April 1814 Napoleon walked down that staircase to bid an emotional farewell to his Old Guard before being taken off to exile on Elba -- hence the alternative name for this courtyard, La Cour des Adieux. Fountebleau was Napoleon's favourite palace.

 

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We arrived at the chateau at 11 am, only to find that it wouldn't be opened to visitors until 1 pm due to lack of staff. Should we give it a miss or wait the 2 hours, we asked ourselves. We decided to wait and set off to explore the grounds and surroundings.
034 is an impressive arch.

035 and 036 gave us a foretaste of the art we were to see inside.

The colour of the autumn leaves contrasted  gloriously with the colours of the buildings (037).

We made a brief excursion into the town although there were few customers for this ornate ride (038)  Outside the theatre there was some more interesting statues (039)

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041 was taken from the horseshoe staircase on which Napoleon stood.

Flash photography was not permitted inside so I experimented with the "no Flash" setting on the camera. Although some pictures are better than others, I was pleasantly surprised with the results achieved by prolonging the exposure. I now know why one often see the Japanese with one-leg tripods - I must get one!

042, 043 & 044 were taken in the Ballroom on the first floor. The minstrels gallery can be seen in 043. Note too, the splendid ceiling.

045 is another ceiling, in one of the bedrooms.

Unfortunately 046 is a bit fuzzy, but I include it because it is of the throne room which Napoleon converted from a former bedroom.

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BARBIZON
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The long single street is popular with the Japanese.

After Fountainbleau we visited Barbizon, a delightful village on the edge of the forest, and made famous by the 19th painters - Théodore Rousseau, Millet and Diaz de la Peña among them - who came to be known as the Brbizon School. They went there to paint landscapes in the open air, direct from nature, thus foreshadowing the Impressionists.

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One of the many art Galleries.


   

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