Paris Journals

Beguiling Paris

A June 2004 trip to Paris by akakd

Musée du Louvre Photo, More Photos
Quote: "Paris is an air, a scent, & a state of mind."--James Cameron. Paris is indeed charming, enchanting, & romantic. Paris bewitches the senses, seducing you. Here I'll include info from three recent trips to Paris, giving a more complete picture of the main sites of Paris.

Beguiling Paris

Overview

Quote:
It's difficult, at best, to pinpoint one Parisian experience over another. Still, who can resist the Eiffel Tower with all its strength and beauty? Shortly after dusk, when the lights have just been turned on, the Tower is set in light and motion, with several thousand lights twinkling against the night sky. Do take the time to marvel at this spectacular scene because it doesn't last long and the twinkling lights are turned off to reveal the Tower in lit silence.

Quick Tips:

Best Way To Get Around:

Atala Hotel

Hotel | "Hotel Atala"

Atala Hotel Photo,
Quote:
Since it was our Anniversary, we selected a suite on the top floor of the Hotel Atala w/ views of Montmarte & the Sacre Couer from our balcony & views of the Eiffel Tower from the bath. The Hotel Atala is rated w/ 4 Stars. It has a restaurant & bar. It''s located just steps away from the Champs Elysees & the Arc d'' Triomphe.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Atala Hotel
10 RUE CHATEAUBRIAND
Paris, France
33 1 45620162

Altona

Hotel | "Hotel Altona"

Quote:
Looking for cheap accommodations in Paris near Gare du Nord and Sacré Coeur? Just steps away from Barbés-Rochechouart Metro Station and very close to Gare du Nord is Hotel Altona.

Rooms were average size and a bit worn; simple, but functional. Our room had a television and a bathroom with a toilet, sink, and shower.

The location is good for metro availability, especially if continuing by train from Paris to other destinations. Hotel Altona is a two-star accommodation.

Hotel Altona, 166 rue du Faubourg, Poissonniére, 75010, Paris, France; Phone: 33-1-48786824; Fax: 33-1-49950717; E-mail: reservation@hotelaltona.com; Website: www.hotelaltona.com>

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on August 19, 2004

Altona
166, rue du Fbg Poissonniére
Paris, France
01-48-78-68-24

Angelina

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
After the rather intense Louvre, enjoy a nice, leisurely lunch at the luxurious Angelina restaurant. Founded in 1903, the Angelina is sure to delight the senses. The Quiche Lorraine is scrumptous. The French pastries in the attached tea & pastry shop are delicious. If you're there on a cool, Autumn day--try the unbelievably rich hot cocoa w/ thick, rich whipped cream!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Angelina
226 rue de Rivoli
Paris, France 75001
01 42 60 82 00

Vesuvio Cafe

Restaurant

Quote:
The Vesuvio Cafe, w/ sidewalk seating as well as indoor seating, had good food & great desserts. It's located right on the Champs-Elysees, in full view of the Arc d' Triomphe. Try the chocolate mousse or chocolate crepes for dessert. Yum!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Vesuvio Cafe
144 Avenue des Champs-Elysees
Paris, France
01 43 59 68 69

Musée du Louvre

Attraction | "The Louvre"

Musée du Louvre Photo,
Quote:
When one thinks of Paris, the Eiffel Tower & the Louvre come to mind. The one word that accurately describes the Louvre is "Large". The Louvre is Paris' largest building, the largest palace in Europe, the largest museum in the western hemisphere, & probably the most recognized symbol of art in all the world. I've included here some of the most famous art pieces.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Musée du Louvre
99, rue de Rivoli
Paris, France 75001
+33 (1) 40 20 51 51

Musee Rodin

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Musee Rodin Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
Musee Rodin, in the elegant 18th century Hotel Biron, & surrounding grounds hold all the major works of France's most famous sculptor, Auguste Rodin. Rodin once rented a studio here. When all tenants were evicted in 1910, Rodin offered to donate all his works of art to make Hotel Biron an art museum, provided he be permitted to spend his last years here. He died 7 years later, in 1917. Come see his wondrous, though oft times controversial, works of art--both inside the Hotel Biron & in the lovely gardens surrounding it.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Musee Rodin
77, Rue De Varenne
Paris 75007
+33 (1) 44 18 61 10

Arc de Triomphe

Attraction

Arc de Triomphe Photo,
Quote:
Arc de Triomphe is the world's largest triumphal arch & an internationally recognized symbol of France. This was commissioned in 1806 by Napoleon in honor of his Grande Armee. It was completed in 1836, 21 years after the defeat of said army. The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier rests beneath the arch. Climb steps to the top for sweeping views of Paris below. Also, marvel at 12 lanes of traffic surrounding the Arc de Triomphe. It's no small wonder there aren't more collisions. (Be sure to enter the area via underground tunnels rather than risk your life crossing the traffic.)

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Arc de Triomphe
Place Charles-de-gaulle
Paris, France 75008
+33 (1) 55 37 73 77

Musée de l'Orangerie

Attraction | "Musee de l'Orangerie"

Musée de l'Orangerie Photo,
Quote:
The Orangerie is a very small museum of Impressionist paintings, including wonderful Renoirs & two huge, circular rooms completely covered w/ Monet's Nympheas (ie; Water Lilies). No flash photography is allowed, but the rooms are rather brightly lit. A must see for Monet & Renoir lovers.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Musée de l'Orangerie
Jardin des Tuileries
Paris, France 75001
+33 1 42 97 48 16

Palace of Versailles (Chateau de Versailles) Photo,
Quote:
The main attraction of Versailles is the Chateau de Versailles. This palace, along w/ its beautiful gardens, is one of the most fascinating and historic sights in Europe. Allow plenty of time to stroll through the expansive gardens, as well as to visit the Queen's Cottage & Village.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Palace of Versailles (Chateau de Versailles)
20 Km Sw Of Paris
Versailles, France
01 30 83 78 00

Cathédrale Notre-Dame

Attraction | "Notre Dame"

Cathédrale Notre-Dame Photo,
Quote:
The Cathedral of Notre Dame, on the banks of the Seine, is a Gothic treasure. The first stone was laid in 1163 & building continued for 150 years! Restoration work began in 1992. We were thrilled to finally see it without scaffolding! Notre Dame was also a spiritual & emotional experience. Having lit a candle for my ailing 95 year old Grandmother, the experience became even more moving when a group of worshippers surrounded us, lighting candles from "hers", & singing hymns. With the acoustics of the Cathedral, the singing filled the room, & in some small way--filled a void in us.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Cathédrale Notre-Dame
6, place du Parvis-de-Notre-Dame
Paris, France 75004
+33 (1) 42 34 56 10

Jardin des Tuileries

Attraction | "Tuileries"

Jardin des Tuileries Photo,
Quote:
Who can resist a stroll in the Tuileries, one of the largest & best known parks in Paris?!? Located between the Louvre & Place de la Concorde, the Tuileries are a great place to relax. (Remember to stop in at the Angelina Restaurant, located off the Tuileries on Rue de Rivoli.)

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Jardin des Tuileries
Rue De Rivoli
Paris, France 75001

Les Invalides/L'Hôtel National des Invalides

Attraction | "Dome des Invalides/Napoleon's Tomb"

Les Invalides/L'Hôtel National des Invalides Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
Hotel des Invalides, home for disabled soldiers, also houses Napoleon's massive tomb. The tomb is so huge, you could fit a small army inside. The golden dome over Napoleon's tomb can be seen from miles away. The Dome des Invalides was built between 1675-1706 in French classical style. The dome is striking against a deep blue sky.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Les Invalides/L'Hôtel National des Invalides
Esplanade Des Invalides
Paris, France 75007
+33 1 44 42 37 70

Basilica du Sacre Coeur

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Sacre Coeur - Montmartre"

Basilica du Sacre Coeur Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
Montmartre, Paris' highest hill, has a funicular running from Place Saint-Pierre to the Sacre-Coeur to save you a hike up the hill. Montmartre is one of Paris' most popular sights. In addition to the Sacre-Coeur itself, plan to visit the old village square, Place du Tertre, surrounded by cafes & artists displaying (& selling) their wares. Houses from the 18th century surround the square. The Sacre-Coeur is a Romanesque/Byzantine style church, likened to a "wedding-cake". Plan to stay past dusk to see the Sacre-Coeur lit by gaslight.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Basilica du Sacre Coeur
35, Rue Du Chevalier-de-la-barre Rue De La Bonne
Paris, France 75018
+33 (1) 53 41 89 00

Eiffel Tower

Attraction

Eiffel Tower Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
The Eiffel Tower was built for the 1889 World's Fair, held to celebrate the French Revolution's Centennial. Shock waves of dismay were said to reverberate around Paris when the Eiffel Tower was constructed, calling it "useless" and "monstrous". Slated to meet the wrecking ball in 1909, it was spared for use as a communications tower by the French army. It never ceases to amaze, whether from the ground looking up it's massive torso or from the top overlooking Grand Paree. For great photographs, see the Eiffel Tower from Le Palais de Chaillot, near Trocadero Metro stop. Also,don't miss seeing it at night, especially just past dusk when it's set to twinkle for a few moments. Awesome!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Eiffel Tower
Champ De Mars
Paris 75007

Sainte-Sulpice Church

Attraction | "St. Sulpice of Da Vinci Code fame"

Sainte-Sulpice Church Photo,
Quote:
St. Sulpice, of Da Vinci Code fame, is a rather simple, unadorned cathedral; dark and moody. It was definitely not on my list my first two visits to Paris. Not until I read the Da Vinci Code did I desire to see it. Of interest is what Dan Brown calls the Rose Line: "Embedded in the gray granite floor, a thin polished strip of brass glistened in the stone...The Rose Line. 'It' crossed the entire width of the church, finally reaching the corner of the north transept, where it arrived at the base of a most unexpected structure. A colossal Egyptian obelisk. Here, the glistening Rose Line took a ninety-degree vertical turn & continued directly up the face of the obelisk itself, ascending thirty-thr...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on August 19, 2004

Sainte-Sulpice Church
The Left Bank
Paris, France

Musee d'Orsay

Attraction | "Musee d'Orsay"

Musee d'Orsay Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
On the banks of the Seine opposite the Tuileries, the Musée d'Orsay is located in a former railway station built for the Paris Exhibition of 1900. The structure itself is a huge glass and metal construction topped by a glass dome. The focus of the main hall is a massive, ornamental clock. The museum opened its doors in 1986 and displays art from 1848-1916, including (my favorite) an impressive exhibit of Impressionist art. From Renoir to Van Gogh to Monet, Manet, Degas, Gauguin, Cézanne, Seurat, Whistler, Matisse, Toulouse-Lautrec...they're all here, in their glory! Allow plenty of time to explore and bring your camera! Photos without flash and video are still allowed.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 19, 2004

Musee d'Orsay
62, Rue De Lille
Paris, France 75343
+33 (1) 4049-4994