Paris, Mon Amour…

I had a luck to be in different countries in this big world, on different continents. Every country, every city was beautiful in its own way. Every place gave the treasures of time, history, culture, people. Every mountain, every park, every beach, every corner in the streets keeps memories of thousands of people and mine as well. But this place always calls me back. This is France!
Long time passed since I last visited Paris, always wanted to find words to describe the magic of that place, but in vain. Today I will try to share with you my feelings, that I had luck to have more than once.
Paris is the place where you want to go again and again, as every time you have new places to discover. Time is never enough to see all the beauty of this amazing city.
The most famous thing in Paris is Eiffel Tower, that everyone wants to go first. This is a huge iron lattice tower, which is seen almost from every corner in Paris. It is opened in March 31, 1889 and has 301m height. In the daylight this can seem as just a big bunch of metal, but it is all covered with lights and at night all these lights starting to shine and the metal Tower becomes magical. You can go up to the top using special elevators (of course, after a long line), but when you’re on the top, you can see all the city like in a hand. That is a breathtaking view!
Not very far from the Eiffel Tower there is the Arc de Triomphe. It stands in the center of the Place Charles de Gaulle, at the western end of the Champs-Elysees. The Arc de Triomphe honors those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and the Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all French victories and generals inscribed on its inner and outer surfaces. Six reliefs sculled on the facades of the Arc are representing important moments of the French Revolution and of the Napoleonic era. The great arcades are decorated with allegorical figures representing characters in Roman mythology. And the ceiling is covered with 21 sculpted roses.
Another must see place near Eiffel Tower is Trocadero, which is also called site of the Palais de Chaillot. The hill of the Trocadero is the hill of Chaillot, a former village. This is one of the main view points to admire with Eiffel Tower, or as locals call it Tour Eiffel. The is also has nice garden in the area of Place du Trocadero, full of fountains, that may refresh the hot days. People use to sit on the grass near those fountains and spend the time. Actually this is normal in Paris, so you can see people siting, laying on the grass in every garden or park of Paris.
Paris is a quite big city, but you can cross it by walk, passing all the historical and touristic places, which are all around of the city. You will never be lost here, as after every 5 minute of walk you will reach one of the metro stations of Paris. Yes, the metro is quite complicated here, lot of lines, lot of connections, but if you look careful once, you will understand what to do, where to go to reach the needed place. 
One of the top monuments that people go first is Notre Damme de Paris (“Our lady of Paris”). People heard about it from the novel by Victor Hugo or from the famous musicale or even from cartoons & movies. But it’s even more mysterious place that I could imagine. Maybe this was the affect from all above mentioned sources, but when I entered first time to this medieval Catholic Cathedral with French Gothic architecture, I was standing with open mouth and looking around. From the outside there are many small manually crafted statues placed on the walls to serve columns support and water spouts. Among these are famous gargoyles and chimeras, that might look really scary. Inside the cathedral there are 10 huge bells and numerous organs installed inside the building. It’s also decorated with beautiful Rose Windows.
I remember, once someone told me there is a wonderful sunset view near the Notre Damme, but I couldn’t see that yet. Hope one day I can go back and enjoy that view…
Not very far from Notre Damme, around the France’s oldest University La Sorbonne, there is one of the famous places in Paris called Latin quarter. The area gets its name from the Latin language, which was once widely spoken in and around the University since Latin was the language of learning in the Middle ages in Europe, This place is the heart of students, but also is full of cheap and cheerful cafes, bars and shops. 
In the same Latin quarter there is another important building in Paris, Pantheon. Initially it was built as a church dedicated to St. Genevieve (the patron saint of Paris) and to house containing her relics, but during the time it was changed and now it’s functioning as a mausoleum containing the remains of distinguished French citizens such as Victor Hugo, Pierre and Marie Curie, Emile Zola, Jean-Jacques Rousseau and much more well known people.. Note that there is an admission fee, the entrance cost is 7 for adults, 4,50 for ages 18-25 and free for children under 17. More information here.
On the other side of the Seine, not very far from the Place de la Concorde, you can see one of the most well known Opera houses in the world, Opera National de Paris, that is also called Palais Garnier. This is one of the historical places of Paris, with unique architecture and mythical interior. You can enter the building as a visitor, to discover all the secret spaces of the Palais Garnier. But here also you should note the entrance fee. All information related tours, prices and exceptional closure dates can be found here.
Walk, walk, walk in Paris and never get tired. Even is you feel some tire on your feet after long day, take a seat in one of the cutest street cafes, take a wine and cheese or just a coffee and just relax, watch to the streets, people, buildings, feel the atmosphere and you’ll see how you’re energized again. This is just incredible..
Paris is always a good idea… always!

To be continued..
More useful information about what to do in Paris can be found here: http://www.parismustsee.com/

Read more about Museums of Paris and Loire Valley Castles by following the links.


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