Paris

amber eiffle tower day.jpgParis was an absolutely gorgeous city and definitely different then Barcelona. It felt older and almost regal with every building washing in a white facade and looking like they could all be housing royals. We had a full four days here and I enjoyed each one and meeting such nice people along the way! The first day we checked out the Eiffel Tower, did a little shopping, and I ate the most amazing French Onion soup ever with baguette on the bottom. The next day we woke up early and went to the Louvre! Thankfully we bought out tickets online before hand so we barely had to wait before we got into the museum! The Egyptian exhibit was huge and very impressive, i also saw a few other statues which were very interesting, but the jewel of the Louvre is definitely the Mona Lisa. This painting by Leonardo Da Vinci is extremely famous for such a small painting. It was until after this visit I actually researched why the Mona Lisa was so famous and discovered that the techniques used to paint it were of Da Vinci’s own creation, her smile is supposed to be an optical illusion so the viewer has to guess how she may be feeling and it appears different to everyone, that it has been rumored to hold secrets and codes, and finally the fact that it is worth over 700 million dollars. I also saw other less famous works of Da Vinci and a version of The Last Supper directly across from the Mona Lisa (not done by Da Vinci) which was breathtaking.

After the Louvre we walked to the Love Lock bridge where couples place locks and through the keys into the water! Then we made our way to the famous church Notre Dame, being an avid Hunchback of Notre Dame fan I was extremely excited to see the church! the outside was just like it looked in the movie and the inside was absolutely beautiful, lined with chandeliers and tall arches. Climbing to the top of the bell tower was definitely my favorite part. I totally felt like I was in the Disney movie; I got to be super close to the gargoyles, actually hear the bells of Notre Dame ring, then proceeded to see the bells, and the view was spectacular!

 Next we climbed almost all the way to the top of the Eiffel Tower! The view from there beat even the view from Notre Dame and was beautiful!That night we ate and an amazing fondue restaurant called Le Refuge des Fondus and it was spectacular! You get to pick between cheese fondue or hot water to boil potatoes and cook meat in. The cheese fondue was amazing! I had to be helped to hop over the table to get to my bench seat and the funniest part of this restaurant is that they serve wine in baby bottles!! I would definitely recommend it if you ever visit Paris!

The next day we spent a lot of time at the palace of Versailles. The front of the palace was soooo impressive and huge covered in gold and white.

The inside was even more elaborate and everything from the chairs to the curtains were extremely elegant. My favorite room was definitely the Hall of Mirrors where King Luis held balls. Mirrors were very expensive in this time and an entire side of this long room is covered in them. Facing each mirror is a large window leading to the outside gardens, each window in reflected in its perspective mirrors causing the entire room to look as if it is filled with windows and the exuberant amount of chandeliers hanging from the ceiling illuminated the entire space. The gardens were also magnificent, especially the Neptune Fountain!

Hall of Mirrors

 

Louis IV Daughters apartments, I love how the sun light shines through the doors!

 

 

 

 

 

After the palace we made our way to Arc de Triomphe and Laduree’s famous Macaron Shop! The macaron’s here were delicious with flavors ranging from classic chocolate and vanilla, to salted caramel, Marie Antoinette’s Tea Time, and rose petal (which apparently tasted exactly how a rose smells, to my surprise with all of these exciting choices, my favorite was the simple vanilla!).

Our last day in Paris I started out the day with getting an amazing fresh baguette and brie cheese and even tried escargot! Then we headed to the catacombs of Paris. The line was long, but definitely worth it! It was so creepy, but very interesting at the same time. The catacombs were created by Louis IV when there were public health issues having all the bodies in above ground cemeteries, so they began burying people underground. Now there are at least 6 million bodies within the carefully organized skulls creating the many tunnels of the catacombs. There are warnings written in french above the doors and tunnels are gated off to keep you on the right path. There is also a black line that was drawn when the catacombs where created to help you find your way out. The tunnels were damp and I am not sure how much I liked how the makers of the catacombs arranged the skulls and bones into patterns as you walk through the tunnels.

Black line to find your way out
Warning above the door

Finally we ended our trip by seeing  the Eiffel Tower light up and the sparkle at night! Once it gets dark it sparkles for five minutes every hour on the hour and it was beautiful! Definitely a magnificent way to end my spring break!!

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