My family and I are flying to Paris and arriving on Saturday, July 12th around 8:45am. The check-in time for the apartment in Paris is not until 3pm, so I am considering a tour of Versailles prior to checking in. I do not want to rent a car, but will need a safe place to keep our luggage while we tour Versailles. Is there a recommended private tour guide (or just private transport) that can pick us up at the airport and take us to Versailles, then take us to the apartment at 3pm?
I have flown into CDG arriving early morning and have been to Versailles. Versailles deserves a good bit of walking as well as several hours of time. It is highly likely that the fatigue factor will severely limit your enjoyment of Versailles. Also, with the time factor of clearing customs and getting to Versailles, lines to get in (high season and weekend both), I would reconsider.
I agree with Nancy. I love Versailles but on a Saturday, it requires a good night's sleep and stamina to enjoy it. When you go, I highly recommend renting bikes down by the Grand Canal and riding all over the grounds, it's a fun way to see everything.
Can you see if the Apartment Agency (I assume you are booking through an agency) will allow you to store your bags with them until you check in. I know the company we used had that courtesy. I agree that Versailles, after a long flight, is a bit daunting and you really do want to wait for a full, post-rested day. As an alternative, you could take a tour on the on-off buses and get the lay of the land, so after a good night's sleep you are oriented.
Thank you for the feedback everyone.
We booked our apartment through AirBnB, so there's really no apartment service in this case. It's possible the apartment owner may not have a guest checking out the day we arrive, so we may be able to arrange check-in earlier than expected. That would be ideal. But if we're unable to do that, what can we do in (or around) Paris for a few hours with our luggage? Perhaps we should arrange a private sightseeing tour around Paris until it's time to check in?
Stash your junk in a train station and go wander around on your own. Study first and you won't need a guide. Or don't study and just get lost for a few hours and stumble onto the good stuff that's not in the guidebooks.
Ed's idea gets my vote. It will likely be after 11:00am when you get into Paris and by the time you store your baggage and buy some metro tickets you'll be thinking about lunch. Or after you get rid of the bags and presuming you have taken the RER to Gare du Nord, take the No. 42 bus from behind the station and go see the Eiffel Tower. Take the same bus back to the Gare, pick up your luggage and Oh! Look! It's 3:15 !