Monday, October 21, 2013


We walked and walked in Paris which is the best was to see the city.  On afternoon we walked the length of the Champs Elysees from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde and back.  The most expensive shopping street in the world was jammed packed with people, mostly tourists.

We really didn't do the night scene in Paris as we were usually beat from a long day, but one evening we climbed to the to of the Arc de Triomphe to watch the sunset and to take in the views.  It was a great choice over the Eiffel Tower as there was not a line.  The lines at the Eiffel Tower were very long and of course you can't see the tower from the tower. We spent an hour on the top of the arch watching the sun go down,the lights coming on across the city with the ever entertaining traffic in the roundabout below.

We climbed the hill to Sacre Coeur, on the highest point in Paris to take in the views and to see the beautiful cathedral.  The Sacre Coure Basilica was designed by Paul Abadie, with construction beginning in 1875 and completed in 1914.  As we walked around inside we sat down to take in the beauty of the interior, with huge mosaics on the walls and ceiling.  As we sat in one of the pews, a mass was celebrated so we stayed and listened to the mass which was in French.. With no photos allowed inside,so I took one from the Internet.

We also had to pay a visit to the Louvre as it is a must see for everyone who comes to Paris.  To be honest Cathie and I are not into the kind of art that is in the Louvre, but the pass we had covered the admission price and we got to bypass the line.  It was a good thing because the line was very long.  The place was packed.  Hansjorg and Silke went one way and we went the other.  Everyone who goes to the Louvre has to see the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo.  So we went and this is what we saw.

Not a very pleasant experience to view the masterpieces of the world, so Cathie and I went to the cafe and drank beer and wine...........much better.

Next on the agenda was a day trip to  Two metro rides and a train and in an hour we were there.  With our Paris Pass the line was short and fast.  There is a very informative and not long winded audio guide that goes with the tour.  The interior of the place is beautiful with the Hall of Mirrors and the Kings Bedchamber, but what I thought was really amazing was the shear size of the palace and the gardens. The palace and gardens sit on 19,262 acres, which is larger than the Island of Manhattan. There are more than 200,000 trees and each year 210,000 flowers are planted.  There are 50 fountains and it is 3.5 miles around the Grand Canal.  In other words this place is huge.

From Wikipedia:

When the chateau was built, Versailles was a country village; today, however, it is a wealthy suburb of Paris, some 20 kilometers southwest of the French capital. The court of Versailles was the centre of political power in France from 1682, when Louis XIV moved from Paris, until the royal family was forced to return to the capital in October 1789 after the beginning of the French Revolution. Versailles is therefore famous not only as a building, but as a symbol of the system of absolute monarchy of the Ancien Regime.

Now for some photos:

THE GARDNER (he's got a long way to go)

As I write this we are in Germany at Hansjorg and Silke's home, so I'm a little behind on the blog.  I will post one more time about Paris in a day or two.  We are staying busy and there's not too much time for the computer, which is a good thing.

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