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Review: Paris


Paris, France

Springtime in Paris

  • By SilverTraveller jenny

    2 reviews

  • May 2011
  • Partner

36 people found this review helpful

What a wonderful city to visit. Before leaving home, we'd already bought tickets online for l'Open bus tours around the main tourist sites, and we're glad we did as these open-top buses were frequent, comfortable and stopped at all the places we wanted to visit, over 4 separate routes. First stop, the Arc de Triomphe, and my legs were sorely tried by the 250 or so steps to climb to the top, but it was so worth the effort. Magnificent views to all points of the compass along tree-lined avenues (including of course the Champs Elysees) set out according to the plan of Paris's main architect, Haussman. Seeing the cheerful youngsters and tourists it was hard to imagine the wartime occupation of this great city, but easier to envisage the allies marching from the Arc in victory. Hopping on and off the buses became second nature, and our next stop was the Eiffel Tower. Although there was a queue for tickets, this soon dwindled, and after the ubiquitous bag searches we found ourselves going up the first stage of the lift. Many people stop at that level, feeling it a bit hairy to go higher, and admittedly the views were good. However, after a 45 year gap since my only previous visit to Paris I wasn't going to stop there, so off we set in the higher lift right to the top. Brilliant! (if you have a head for heights of course).

Notre Dame Cathedral figured on our tours, naturally, but although the building is magnificent it doesn't hold a candle to the nearby Sainte Chapelle, which not only has some surprising architectural features (chapels on 2 levels and gold-leafed vaulting) but also the most stunning full height stained glass windows I've ever seen. Having seen the crowds around the Louvre Museum, we resolved to visit it at opening time, which paid off as we easily saw the Mona Lisa, Winged Victory, Venus de Milo, several Michaelangelo sculptures and much much more, and all before the main Japanese tours started their day. From there it's just a short stroll through the Tuileries garden to the Orangerie, where we were able to see several large Monet waterlilly canvasses at very close quarters. Our bus ticket included access to the Batobuses – medium sized river boats with the same hop-on-hop-off facility. It made a pleasant change from the hustle and bustle of city traffic. For us Springtime in Paris was total sunshine in Paris. Even if it had been wet I think the City would have thoroughly enchanted us.

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Other Members' Thoughts - 1 Comment(s)

  • Sly
    about 8 years ago
    Test to see if I have to click on the Comments link first. Once posted