I Love Paris, I really do. Its wide boulevards, its streets, the coffee shops, baguettes, you name it. Paris feels like home even if I don’t always understand the language. We went to Paris last spring and it was very nice. We visited Versailles and several other sites that are mostly for tourists. Including the Eiffel tower. And even if it’s touristic, it’s still nice. I think that I have a special capability remembering the nice parts and forgetting the boring once. Pretty usefull.
Paris has several world heritage sites, the Banks is one of them. The others are Notre Dame and Versilles. We actually did not get into to the Notre Dame the last time, but I’ve been there before. You can read about the other sites separately.
“The Seine is a river and an important commercial waterway within the Paris Basin in the north of France. It rises at Source-Seine, 30 kilometres northwest of Dijon in northeastern France in the Langres plateau, flowing through Paris and into the English Channel at Le Havre. There are 37 bridges within Paris and dozens more spanning the river outside the city. Examples in Paris include the Pont Louis-Philippe and Pont Neuf, the latter of which dates back to 1607.” [wikipedia]
We chose Paris for our spring destination last year. We went there to celebrate spring, Jany’s birthday and our anniversary. Well, we celebrate the anniversary every month, so it’s pretty easy to pick a date close to it. Paris is about food, fashion, art, architecture. It’s grande and it’s worth visiting. How about the food? The day we arrived we went out for lunch and found this perfect place. We could sit outside, by a square, watching people and being happy. We had this wonderful beef tartare and champagne, just like that.
Another day we walked by a seafood place and ordered a huge seafood plateau. People walking by starred, so did we. The oysters, shrimps, crabs and lobster were just wonderful. I love Paris! One more day and more food, we ate a cozy fondue-place, we had crépes at another place and visited nice cafes as well with great pastries and better coffee. Last but not least, if you haven’t walked with a baguette under your arm, you have to do it here. We did.
We wanted to visit Centre Pompidou, by the new Matisse exibition caused long lines, so we skipped it, another time. This time we walked around town, enjoying street art, small shops and Little Prince. One of my favourite books is “Little Prince” by the French author Antoine d’Saint Exupery. I have it in several languages and I’ve read it many times. And I found a bookstore full of Little Prince. So I now also have it in Swahili.
Paris is a large city, but it’s a city for walking. We walked everywhere. We passed Notre Dame several times, we walked past the Louvre. We did’t visit it this time. I’ve been there before and you need several days just for the Louvre.
And then we walked to the Eiffel Tower. It took some time and my legs protested a bit, but it was so worth it. The tower was lighted up and sparkling. We watched it and smiled and rested a while and then we started to walk again. We crossed the river Seine once again and we walked to Triumph Arch and Champ Elysees. It was really beautiful in the evening lights. And we walked again. Paris is one of the places that never sleeps. This street is a perfect example. It did not sleep. It was late at night and we visited several stores and a café. And finally we walked to our hotel. I’m not sure about the distance that day, butit was far. Was I tired the next day? Maybe, but it had to wait until I got home.
The next day it was time for Sacre Coeur and Moulin Rouge and even more walking. We transported us across the river again, but this time we took the metro to get there faster. Maybe I was tired. By the Sacre Coeur there were many artists, painters and musicians. There were many people in the stairs outside the church enjoying the sun and the marvelous view of the city. There was a guy playing violine like a crazy and another climbing a lamp pole with a football showing his acrobatic skills. There were many cameras, many sun glasses and many smiles. I love Paris!
From Sacre Coeur we walked down to Moulin Rouge. It was nice and red in the spring sun. The area is not as cozy and innocent, as the rest of town. There were many adult-only shops. There were also many theathres, some probably with shows for the grown-up audience as well. But the area is charming as well and it’s worth visiting as well. It’s a part of Paris.
On the UNESCO’s site you can read: “From the Louvre to the Eiffel Tower, from the Place de la Concorde to the Grand and Petit Palais, the evolution of Paris and its history can be seen from the River Seine. The Cathedral of Notre-Dame and the Sainte Chapelle are architectural masterpieces while Haussmann’s wide squares and boulevards influenced late 19th- and 20th-century town planning the world over.”
I agree with the description. The architecture is great, Notre Dame is beathtaking and the Eiffel Tower is a modern monument like no others. But are these the world heritage? Maybe naming it “Banks of Seine” makes this too narrow? Paris, like many other cities that has a river in the middle is turned away from the river. The river is only a geographic landmark, that makes it a little bit hard to get across if you don’t find a bridge or have a boat. It’s too bad, because the river is beautiful if you just stop and look.
The river Seine has some small book and art shops and artists around it, but that’s it. And they’re all closed on a chilly day.
This became a world heritage in 1991. Link to the site: Paris, banks of Seine.
Initially this site got only two globes, as the river, but as I went back to look at the description I realized it could as well mean the entire city, so that’s why I’m changing it to five.