This was our first time to visit Paris, and after being there a few days, I realized just how big the city it is! When I was trying to decide where to stay, research kept pointing me to Le Marais, so I chose an apartment there. Le Marais was a nice neighborhood with lots of restaurants, bakeries, etc., however, it was quite a ways from many of the sites we wanted to see. I learned my lesson that from now on I will map and measure off distance from our apartment to sites! So from our apartment in Le Marais the first morning, we set off with the Notre Dame as our first destination to beat the crowds. I loved this cool door in our neighborhood! It took us about 15 minutes of fast walking to reach the Hotel de Ville and Notre Dame.
Hotel de Ville (City Hall) is a beautiful building just before you reach the River Seine and Notre Dame. Our stylish Denise waiting to cross… Doesn’t she look Parisian? The sound of a violin drew us to the bridge first – what a lovely addition!
Time to see the Notre Dame! The crowds weren’t bad and the line moved quickly.
They were preparing for mass, and Monica and Denise stayed for the service, while Wally and I went outside to see more of the exterior.
As I was preparing this blog, seven months after our trip (it’s taken a while!), we were horrified to hear the Notre Dame Cathedral was on fire. We watched the news, sickened, as the spire toppled, and the firemen fought to save the cathedral. We were relieved they saved most of artifacts and the majority of the cathedral, and it will be interesting to see what arises from the ashes of this most famous landmark. I’m so glad we were able to see it and appreciate it in all its glory! Here were two photos that were circulating on Facebook the day of the fire that were so moving. I’m sorry I don’t know who the photographers are, but they captured the horror of the day.
So back to our September day… While the girls were still inside, I spied this couple on the bridge next to the cathedral.
Re-grouped, we wandered along the river until we came to the royal chapel, The Saint-Chappelle, famous for its stained glass. We decided against going inside as we were starving at this point, so will have to save that for another visit. http://www.sainte-chapelle.fr/en/
Just across the way, a busy restaurant drew our attention. Brasserie Les Deux Palais was the perfect lunch find! Hmmm… what to drink… and eat… https://www.brasserielesdeuxpalais.fr/en/
Heaven in Paris! My mouth is watering now just remembering…Time to find the Eiffel Tower! We decided to check out the public metro system and it was easy.
Without a clear destination in mind, we wandered through the park and out the back of the park. I had read about the fabulous Art Deco buildings of Paris, and here was an amazing one! Gorgeous!
Feet hurting and tired, we decided to Uber back to the apartment to rest a while. Then it was back out to see the Eiffel Tower and Paris at night…We had a great Uber driver that stopped in traffic to get our picture at the Arc de Triomphe and a view from the bridge.
Much more to come!