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Chasing a Dream - Part I "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference" - Robert Frost

Deux days in Paris

FRANCE | Monday, 15 February 2016 | Views [338]

Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower

Ah Paris, la Cité d’Amour; ironic we should end up here on Valentine's Day, and it was unplanned too! We were met with a little rain, but it still managed to feel warm after the frigid temperatures we left in Iceland. The B&B we booked, Villa Montabord, surpassed expectations; located on a quiet private street in a historic building, it was full of charm, and the hosts Isabelle and Gerome welcomed us like family. Because the room we had booked was not yet ready, they offered us another, larger room, for the same price. Tastefully decorated with both modern and antique furniture and spacious bathrooms, each of the units are named after their children. After dropping our bags we immediately set out to explore.

A few blocks from the B&B was the metro line #13, which runs right through the main tourist area; so we hopped aboard to Champs Elysees, then walked along the Seine river enjoying the sights and sounds of this vibrant city. What strikes me most about this place is the architectural grandiose; the beautifully elaborate carvings, statues, and wrought works found on so many of the buildings. I had been to Paris before, nearly 15 years ago, but had not visited Notre Dame, so for this trip it was a must. It was beautifully lit-up at night and we were lucky to be visiting during Mass, which made it feel more like a living building than an object d’art. We took rest at a cozy cafe across the river, where we enjoyed Chocolat Chaud and Crepes for dinner, it is Paris after all.

With only two days in Paris, we trimmed our itinerary down to the essentials; Notre Dame, Montmartre, Sacre Coeur, Champs Elysees, and Eiffel Tower (sorry not enough time to do the Louvre justice). With Notre Dame crossed off the list, we got up early the next morning, had a delicious breakfast made by Isabelle, then set off on foot to get the best views of the city. It was an enjoyable 20 minute uphill walk to Montmartre and was just as charming for me the second time around. Most of the shops were still just opening, so we visited Sacre Coeur first, then spent hours taking pictures and wandering around. In the afternoon we took the metro to Tuileries, then strolled along the Champs Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe. After refueling at one of the cafes along the avenue, we headed south to the Eiffel Tower. To burn off those buttery croissants, we opted to take the stairs over the elevator (the line was shorter too). The trek up was actually much easier than it looked and we were surprised to find ourselves at the first landing, and only slightly out of breath. It was a mostly sunny day and the views from the top were spectacular. Many pictures later, we took the elevator down and made our way back to our B&B, exhausted, but feeling like we made the best of our short time here.

It's on to Belgium next, Au revoir!

 

Tags: paris

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