Late night arrival into Paris and the customary view of Tour d'Eiffel!
Paris Travel Blog› entry 11 of 19 › view all entries
How can someone arrive in Paris and not be excited? It is...erm... Paris after all! The city of lights, the city of bridges, the city of l'amour, the city of fashion, the city of food, the city of museums and the city with *that tower*? Well, I guess you can overlook all this if you're tired, or you're just a bit scared you'll be overwhelmed. I was sadly guilty of both feelings that night.
My arrival into Montparnasse gave me a taster of what to expect - Paris is crowded! And noisy. And lots of life which is always a good thing. I caught my connecting pink line 4 to Porte D'Orleans and my hotel was right above the Metro stop. Very convenient. I'll get to the hotel later, but I got in, I was feeling a bit muggy with the heat and general exhaustion and all, but decided to put all that aside, have a quick change of clothes and go run out for a late touristy moment (late? Well it was about 1030pm when I checked into the hotel).
And what better tourist attraction to see than.... take a guess!
It's really all that you see in the movies. I don't recall a lot from when I saw the Eiffel Tower when I was a 9yo, but to say that it's a technical marvel is un understatement. It has this distinct knack of appearing like a grey plain "good for nothing" tower in the morning, but come night and bright lights, it just lights itself up and is responsible for the iconic X factor of Paris. Think back at how many photos and picture postcards and honeymoon/romance travel pcitures we've seen that have the Eiffel Tower in the backdrop? A lot. Think of how many of these don't have Eiffel Tower in their background - very few! The one thing I started to notice about the Metro here is that it does go overground quite a bit, and the Metro to the Tower is really nice as it goes on a bridge above, and one can see all the landmarks that have made Paris, Paris - the roadside cafes, the people, the tiny and symmetrical roads, etc.
Anyway, I walked up to the Eiffel Tower. You don't have to ask for directions, LOL... just follow the swarms of people walking that way. Yes, even at 1050pm at night. The tower is looks incredibly big and I already started thinking "so what's it like going on top?"! But for now, I had to make do with photos on the base, which turned out very good. The weather was great and I was really liking the atmosphere but seeing as it was late and it was my first night in a big city, I wanted to go back to the hotel soon enough. I left around 1130pm, reached my hotel by 1215am and went to bed. The hotel room (which my friend reserved) is tiny but clean and value for money that you'd get in Paris.
My only thought that night - this is the first time I'm spending this much time in a big European city that isn't London.