Travel Diary: La Belle Paris

First of all, it might seem crazy to you, but I was NOT excited to visit Paris. Of all the stops on this journey, this one was not high on my list. It seemed wrong to be passing through and not stop, but that’s about the extent of it…

I was wrong.

I’m not much for big cities, they usually leave me feeling cold, tired, and overwhelmed… but, Paris, you have my heart and I’m sorry I doubted you.

Let me back up a bit…

We walked onto the platform into the largest train station I have ever seen (train stations still freak me out… awesome to get you places, but totally freak me out… I like uber…) and didn’t know where to look – everywhere all at once and at nothing in particular. There are beautiful buildings, bridges, and landmarks in EVERY direction.

Since the train spat us out directly underneath the Musee du Louvre, we started there… (we actually visited the Louvre the following morning, but I have lumped all photos together… and ummm, yeah, the largest museum in the world is, well, Large. Gigantic. Impossible to cope with in one day… but amazing. Truly amazing.)

Musee du Louvre

 

Venus de Milo

 

The Louvre is home to collections from around the world.

 

Mona Lisa… JJ calls her “Mona,” and loved this room of the museum. Wherever you stand in her gallery, it is as if she is looking directly at you (even from behind the bullet-proof glass!)

 

Models…

Then a walk along the Jardin des Tuileries (we ate supper at an awesome cafe along the garden!) toward Place de la Concorde for a view of the Avenue de Champs Elysees and the the Arc de Triomphe… our Uber driver took us for a spin around the Arc de Triomphe traffic circle twice just for hubby… 14 roads converge on the Place de l’Etoile with buses, motorbikes, scooters, and cars zooming around (remember… always at break-neck speed!) – it is a NUT SHOW!!

Jardin des Tuileries – Place de la Concorde in the background.

 

Avenue de Champs-Elysees

 

Arc de Triomphe… I wish you could hear the noise of the cars… and see the 14 converging roads all around!!

 

…on we walked across the Pont Alexander III

Pont Alexander III

 

…and along the River Seine to the base of the Eiffel Tower where we embarked on a river cruise to see the sights of Paris by boat!

 

Eiffel Tower

 

Notre Dame Cathedral – view from the Rue de Seine

Before visiting Paris, there is not a chance I would have been able to string all of that together, but these are real places… almost mythical to me before now!!

After a further Big Bus Hop-on-Hop-off Tour of Paris (excellent commentary with interesting facts and crazy stories from an open-air roof-top seat!), several more delicious cafe excursions, and the realization that there are SO MANY sites around Paris we still want to see, we are looking forward to coming back to Paris some day. Next time, Paris, we will be ready for you… my list is long!!

J’aime Paris!

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