Paris : A Glimpse

Paris - Prefecture de Police
12th-14th July 2011. Written by Xin Li.
Paris, France.

Romance, fashion, history, culture, architecture, art and (how can we forget?) food all converged in cosmopolitan Paris, the epicenter of romantic Europe. Paris has lots of charm, so much so that it attracted millions and not billions of tourists every year…each of them seeking that romantic charm.


Place de la Sorbonne
Due to a silly, careless mistake, I have wiped out a bulk of my Paris photos so I shall post a summary about Paris instead.


Paris - Invalides
Riding into Gare du Nord after 2-3 hours’ worth of back-breaking ride on the Eurostar, I was finally relieved that I could get off the train. From there we took the RER to Luxembourg and check in at our hotel before starting our exploration of the city.


Paris - Arc de Triomphe
Unlike Amsterdam and London, the city of Paris has a more formal approach to city planning (evident in the boulevards that cuts across the city itself). Grand buildings and wide-boulevards adds a sense of monumentality that exerts a kind of intimidating aura as you attempt to walk around the city.


Paris, France
Turn into one of those many narrow streets and you will find yourself in another environment. Tightly packed row houses and small little gardens is a another kind of world compared to the grand, empire-style boulevards. These small neighborhoods provide a kind of respite from all that excessive grandeur.


Paris - Notre Dame
VISIT
Despite its notorious reputation for being a touristy city, Paris does have pockets of quaint neighborhoods are sanctuaries from that tourist hustle and bustle that you will find around the famed Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and Louvre Museum.


Paris - Notre Dame
Areas around churches like the Eglise St.Sulpice area more quiet (and there is a Laduree along Rue Bonaparte) without any disturbance from those Eiffel Tower souvenir peddlers.
If you are planning to visit the Eiffel Tower in July, it is highly recommended that you get a reservation as all entrances (including the stairs) were fully packed.


Paris - Notre Dame
Similarly, the Louvre Museum has a long queue that stretches to the other internal courtyard. The Notre Dame is no different. Hence, for these places you must get there early (for Notre Dame as it is a single queue entry) and get a pass or ticket beforehand if you visiting the Louvre.


Paris - Notre Dame
There is Paris Museum Pass (35 EUR for 2 Days) which is pretty good for value as it covers most of the major museums in Paris including the Versailles and Villa Savoye (for architecture fans). However, the time limits could be a negative point as it also means you had to cover many museums within 1-2 days.


Paris - Cafe
ANNOYANCESParis is not very safe as you might have read on travel blogs or guidebooks but as long as you did the necessary precautions, you should be fine. Don’t leave your wallets around. Don’t flaunt your wealth etc. The pickpockets here seemed to work in groups, one will distract (might be asking for donation or some friendship band thing) while another observe for loose wallets etc. We also witnessed a motorcyclist snatching a streetwalker’s bag on the street.


Paris - Avenue des Champs Elysees
GETTING AROUNDIt is easy to get around Paris. The bus is highly recommended as you get to see the city while traveling. Some travel near the Seine River offering excellent views of the city’s riverfront scenery. There is also the Metro and RER which might be a bit more unsafe, but convenient nonetheless.


Paris, France
You could get a Paris Visite Pass which provides unlimited travel on the RER, bus and metro for a certain time frame. The Paris Visite Pass covers either zones 1-5 or zones 1-3. Most of the major landmarks in Paris are within Zones 1-3 except those in the suburbs like the Versailles.

Paris - Avenue des Champs Elysees
BASTILLE DAYIf you are planning to travel to Paris in July, do take note that 14th of July is Bastille Day in France. Champs de Elysses is decked with French flags and public buses flies a tiny tri-colour on their side mirrors as Paris celebrates the storming of the Bastille on the same day in 1789 and commermorates the Fete de la Federation in 1790.


Paris - Arc de Triomphe

1 comments:

 

the moose & snowman

the soft toy. the soft toy.

makan corner

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