Wednesday, October 16, 2013


What a way to travel, the Eurostar from London to Paris is the only way to go.  For $66 each,  and with speeds up to 190 MPH we arrive in the middle of Paris after only 2.5 hours.


This is a short video to show just how fast the train goes.

The train arrives at Gare du Nord just half a mile for our apartment.  We were somewhat disappointed in the apartment as the photos on the web do not tell the whole story.  Yes, we knew it would be old, but it is also run down and tacky.  The beds are comfortable and it meets our needs.  There is no way to change locations at this point, so we overlook the defects and enjoy the fact that we are in Paris.  Later in the evening, Hansjorg and Silke arrive and all is good.

Hansjorg has bought a 6 day Paris Pass of each of us, which will allow us to visit 60 museums, ride public transport and see a whole bunch of other attractions at no charge. Of course we much return at least 10 times to see everything.  At some places, like the Louvre you get to bypass the lines with this pass, which is really good because the lines are long. But first we take a bus tour of the city to get the lay of the land.


The weather has been cold but the rain has held off for the time being.   To warm up we climbed the 422 steps to the top of Norte Dame.  Although our admission was free with the Paris Pass, bypassing the line was not.  We waited about 1 hour in line, but great views from the top made the wait worth it.


We walked around the center of the city taking in the sights and taking way too many photographs. On several bridges over the Seine people have placed locks to show their love for someone.  They write their name and their lovers name on the lock and lock it in place.  There are thousands of locks on some of the bridges.


We have now got our Paris routine down.  In the morning around 7, Hansjorg and I go to the local bakery to buy fresh, still warm, croissants and a baguette for breakfast.  With coffee it is a proper Paris breakfast.  Around 9, we head out for our day.  We've been riding the Metro which is the best way to get around and once you get the hang of it, very easy.  There is a Metro stop two blocks from our apartment.

Around 1 in the afternoon we take a break for a light lunch in a cafe, soup and baguette sandwich. Then around 5 we return to the apartment for happy hour and a short rest. Then around 7:30 we head out for dinner as that is the normal time for dinner in France. Dinner is a long affair most times.  In France, once you are seated in a restaurant or cafe, that table is yours for as long as you like.  There is no rushing you to leave and the bill is only presented when you ask, "L'addition, s'il vous plait".  Some people, especially Americans, think that they are being ignored by the waiter when they don't keep coming by the table asking how you meal is.  They leave you alone to enjoy the meal that the restaurant takes pride in serving.  If this is not to you liking, there are plenty of MacDonald's and Starbucks around.

The day ends back in the apartment around 9:30 where we pretty much crash after a long, busy and fun day.

This is just a report on our first full day in Paris, so there is much more to come.


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