Sightseeing in Paris: Rodin Museum, Orsay Museum and Eiffel Tower
Paris Travel Blog› entry 12 of 19 › view all entries
My first morning in Paris! Well, my first in about 25 years that is.... the city sure smells and sounds the same so far. Got up around 7am to a noisy street outside, the typical Underground rush and all the stop-and-go b'fast joints up and selling away. I'm so far not very pleased with the breakfast offered in France, it's a bit too less for my appetite. But in any case, I picked up a raspberry flavoured loaf and olive bread (well kind of looked like olive on a small pizza base), enough to fill me up for the next few hours. Left the hotel by about 9am, and first stop of the day was Musée Rodin. I do remember reading various travel books and sites talking about the rush for Paris museums and I was thinking "yeah right, how big can it be?" until I saw the queue outside, and this was at 915a, with a good 15 mins to go! I bought my 4 day Museum pass here which I would say is totally worth it.
The Musée Rodin, or the Musée National Auguste Rodin houses the work of sculptor Rodin who developed most of his work in the later part of the 19th century. At first, his work was considered, erm.
Next stop was Hotel Des Invalides or coloquially better known as Napoleon's Tomb. At first sight, this place is like a big cathedral (well the tomb area is), and you're thinking "is that it?". That's one thing I realised about Paris, it's deceptive! The entrances to the attractions aren't in grand locations, you don't see the whole thing as you enter sometimes, not to mention most attractions have 2-3 entrances so depending on where you enter, you sometimes just don't realise the enormity of the place. Anyway, the tomb by itself is non-descript although I liked how they've kept it in the basement and you have a very colourful walk around the tomb.
Anyway, back to this museum, it was originally built in the late 17th century to house invalid and crippled soldiers. Today, it's a vast museum of all sorts of knick-knacks from war and royalty. You have the armours, the jewellry, the dresses, the portraits, the guns and rifles, the swords, and surprisingly my favourite bit was the hi-tech Charles de Gaulle section and the whole voice recognition thing... very fancy! I thoroughly enjoyed it, not to mention had a nice break.
Musée D'Orsay was a railway station once upon a time, and has now been converted into floors of arts, portraits and furniture. Yep, what they call as the Belle Epoque section. One can find paintings by van Gogh, Monet, Degas and Renoir. I really liked this place but again, found it quite disorganised. I think my problem by now is that my feet were killing me, especially my left ankle, and I badly needed a break.
Now, the next stop of the night was... well Eiffel Tower. OK, so I'm not going to say anything new that people haven't said already - yes, that it looks ugly by day but lights up during the night and has become synonymous with Paris. The stairs were closed so we had to settle with the lift all the way. And even though this is a cliched thing, by God it's amazing! The whole of Paris looks so symmetric and so nice. I'm a little skeptical of seeing these "big towns" from the top, especially after my disappointing experience with the London Eye. Same goes with Bruges for that matter.
Final stop of the night was crossing the road to the Trocadéro for some Kodak moment shots. The place was nice but other than pictures, it's really crowded and you can't make much of this place, just shoot and go home!
Dinner that night was the usual place, I had a veg pizza with potatoes and some wine.