Culture Vultures

Paris Travel Blog

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Outisde the Louvre

Our first full day in Paris and rainclouds loomed so we set off well prepared with umbrella in hand. Our first stop was straight across the road to the railway station ticketing office to book our France/ Italy train journey. After a few false starts we located the sales office though only with the assistance of a lovely ticket officer who spoke little English but understood the universal signs of frustration. All sorted - we headed for our first proper tourist stop - Musee D'Orsay. We have quickly learned that being lost in Paris is not unwelcome so a few extra twists in our journey allowed us to soak in a number of additional sights - Opera Garnier, wandering past Musee Du Louvre. It was amazing to wander past buildings and monuments that took our breath away and to know that there are countless examples of these throughout the entire city.

Kath with her €7.50 coffee
After reaching Musee D'Orsay, we decided that the long queue would require some additional energy so we searched for our first Parisian Coffee. Knowing that we were after a "touristy" coffee with milk we finally found a place to suit and ordered our coffee with milk only to have accidentally ordered the soup bowl trough of coffee. This came to around $30 AUD for 2 coffees. Mmmm starting to rethink my 3+ a day habit on the European leg of the tour.

Musee D'Orsay did not disappoint with an impressive collection of Cezanne, Van Gough, Renoir, Picasso, Monet, Manet etc. Also some very impressive sculpture collections. The building itself was also noteworthy, being a former Train Station and even one time hotel.

OK so very happy with our first major attraction but daunted by the advice that this was a small Museum when compared to the massive Musee Du Louvre which we were planning to tackle on Monday.

Gargoyle on watch at Notre Dame
  

Our next stop after a baguette on the run was the Notre Dame - a stunning Cathedral known as being the heart of Paris relative to which all distances to Paris are measured. The Cathedral featured French Gothic Architecture complete with Gargoyles! We queued to climb to the top of the Cathedral and were rewarded by a spectacular view over Paris. Well worth the 387 steps.

Homeward bound we reached our hotel just in time to get changed to prepare for dinner with Sofiane and Gaëlle and also to prepare for taking on the public trasport system in Paris (easy peasy). Sofiane is moving to Sydney in early September and will be commencing at Avanade Sydney in early October. Sofiane and Gail were gracious hosts assisting us with navigating a few tricky elements of the menu - this allowed us to dine with dignity! We offered a few Sydney/ Australia tips so that we could feel a little helpful in return! After a delicious dinner we finished with a nightcap, farewelled them both, then retired for a well earned nights sleep.

emmaaway says:
You know they charge you more to sit outside 'to people watch'? Its the french way of life! I do hope the weather improves for you both.. Em X
Posted on: Aug 01, 2007
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Outisde the Louvre
Outisde the Louvre
Kath with her €7.50 coffee
Kath with her €7.50 coffee
Gargoyle on watch at Notre Dame
Gargoyle on watch at Notre Dame
Louvre
Louvre
Musee DOrsay
Musee D'Orsay
Exhibit within Musee DOrsay
Exhibit within Musee D'Orsay
Notre Dame
Notre Dame
Notre Dame 10m stained glass window
Notre Dame 10m stained glass window
Out and about in Paris at night
Out and about in Paris at night
Gaëlle and Sofiane
Gaëlle and Sofiane
Paris
photo by: Sweetski