France
Paris 04 Ancien - Quartier Louvre

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  • Day87

    Perfect Paris day

    October 24, 2021 in France ⋅ ⛅ 8 °C

    Today was cold but cloudless, just sparkling. A week ago I looked at the weather predictions for Paris and it looked like a week of rain…I don’t know why they bother to do the 10 day forecasts as they are always inaccurate, if not totally wrong! Anyway, we leisurely set off, had fresh OJ at the supermarket nearby where you can get your own juice from a machine that does it while you press the button. Then a cafe for coffee and croissants, and we were ready to face the world.

    Amr wanted to visit the French resistance memorial at Mont-Valérien (with Hartley in mind) …so we had a bit of an adventure finding our way there as it’s outside the main centre…we got a train on the line towards Versailles. It was a nice suburban area, and we climbed a hill (that is the Mont part) and from the park at the top it was worth the trip just for the view! The Eiffel Tower, Sacré Coeur all in the distance, a huge panorama. There is an American memorial and cemetery there, mainly for WWI, and then went round to the French memorial which is in the fortress and is for the internees and resistance fighters who were executed there by the Nazis. Found you need to have a guided tour to actually go inside, and none available today, but we were content to walk round the outside.

    Got a direct train back to Gare St Lazare and walked back via La Madeleine which is again surrounded with scaffolding (don’t know why - last time it was beautifully cleaned and gorgeous…anyway we did go inside, lit a candle for Ira and listened to a choir practising…and I knew it was familiar, something I had sung in ChorusOz - and we found that there was a concert of Brahms German Requiem today at 4 pm, entrée libre. So we went and had a patisserie - a quiche actually, and then went to our favourite cafe for a chocolate and Amr had a glass of wine, then went back, via a look into Galeries Lafayette, to the Madeleine for the concert. It turned out to be excerpts from the Requiem, not a performance of the whole work, and was with an organ rather than orchestra, which with acoustics made it harder to hear the singing clearly, but beautiful nevertheless.

    Then we started back to the hotel as Omnia was arriving..landed about 5, and we aimed to be back by 7 as she had to get through passport control and get the train etc…so we walked through the Tuileries and along, past a Tour St Jacques on Rue de Rivoli down near Hôtel de Ville, all about the pilgrimages and may go back and have a tour of that as we feel rather bonded with st Jacques!

    Then Omnia arrived, lovely to reunite after such a long enforced interval. We all walked to Bastille and had dinner at a brasserie there, just lovely. Now off to bed…Louvre tomorrow and dinner at Bofinger.
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    Ira Kowalski

    Lovely photo of both of you.

    10/24/21Reply
    Ira Kowalski

    All of a sudden I have a hankering for French Onion Soup. Yum!

    10/24/21Reply
    Ira Kowalski

    I had forgotten about the cupolas which flood the church with light. And thank you for lighting candle, in particularly in such a beuatiful church.

    10/24/21Reply
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  • Day88

    Another busy Paris day

    October 25, 2021 in France ⋅ ⛅ 11 °C

    Now 10.45, very late to try and write and remember all that we did. But Amr has a busy schedule for us, and it has been fab. After yesterday’s perfect weather we woke to rain…as predicted, and also as predicted it stopped by 9.30 and cleared up this afternoon and the sun even peeped out…

    Today was Louvre day. We were booked in at 11.30, nice and leisurely after breakfast, and with e tickets no problem getting in…quite a crowd gathering and queues etc, but maybe they didn’t have tickets. But the Louvre is always a challenge, it gets so complicated finding a specific area, and not getting lost, and even finding the sortie when you finally want to escape!! But we had several hours of fun, looking at the wonderful exhibits, and it was quite challenging with mask wearing obligatoire. After 3 or 4 hours it is enough…

    We went out and had a coffee break (we had a light lunch in the museum) at our coffee shop next to the opera, went to the Apple Store (of course) to get cables for charging Apple watches, went to a watch shop on rue Royale to get a new watch of Amr’s have it’s strap adjusted to fit his wrist…then we walked a bit and got the metro back…except there was a problem and we all had to get out at Châtelet…so we opted to surface rather than fight the crowds in the very complicated area under Châtelet and ended up walking back to our hotel near Gare de Lyon - so good exercise for us all…in fact in total we have had almost a camino day!

    Because we also walked, after a short respite and dressing up, to our dinner tonight at Bofinger. It is a wonderful restaurant that we have been to before, totally booked and buzzing on a Monday night, near Bastille. Wonderful meal, fun neighbours as you are all crowded together and can’t help hearing their conversation and seeing their dinner choices. It specialises in food from Alsace, but lots of other choices…I had kidneys, Amr had choucroute of seafood and Omnia had a pike dish…all very happy. It is a busy life! Tomorrow is the Musée d’Orsay I think…
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    Olivia Sertori

    Such a great photo of you all!

    10/25/21Reply
    Ira Kowalski

    Absolutely! A great photo of the three of you.

    10/26/21Reply
    Hartley Cook

    Are you sure Amr didn’t get the round metal thing between the straps as well?!

    10/26/21Reply
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  • Day91

    Another cloudless day in Paris

    October 28, 2021 in France ⋅ 🌙 16 °C

    This can’t continue…it has been a beautiful day again. We had our last museum day - the Musée des arts décoratifs. Got there early - found our tickets were for 11 o’clock, so we again wandered to Concorde and relaxed in the sun till it was time. The museum had a special exhibit on Cartier and Islamic art. That was so lovely - with so many exhibits showing the influence of the Islamic geometric designs which was so prevalent in the early 20th century, and the beautiful jewellery….there was also a history of photography exhibit which wasn’t too exciting, and the permanent exhibits were also not fabulous - some good art nouveau furniture, but the Art Deco section was closed.

    After that we had a “light” refreshment in a cafe, but it is never as light as you hope! We wanted to save ourselves for tonight’s dinner at La Coupole - a beautiful art deco restaurant where we went with Michael and family, and Omnia, in 2015! (Where James says he still vividly remembers that I had snails!).

    After lunch we did more walking, along rue St Honoré, (popped into the Jaeger le Coultre store to see their reverso exhibition), up the Champs Elysées, round the étoile (the Arc de Triomphe is surrounded by cranes at the moment) to Ave Foch and admired the magnificent apartment buildings and wide boulevards. Beautiful. And though there are always many people walking round those places, there is still a conspicuous lack of tourists - asians, Americans and arabs. All of Paris seems to have had a cleaning during the lockdown - many had already been spruced up, but now the stone buildings are gleaming, and the gold trim everywhere is almost too bright and shiny! But it all looks good. Dinner report later.

    Well now time for the dinner report…and maybe we had the best night of the trip!! We went by bus - we discovered a bus from here to Montparnasse, which works perfectly…slight panic as Amr (the efficient one) thought the booking was for 8 and found it was for 7.30…so we raced out the door, ran for a bus which had just come (running across a red man pedestrian light) and got there just about on time. Wonderful large space, art deco and a real vibe. We had a crazy waiter which was a bonus…first he said to Amr you are stressed and gave him a shoulder massage!! So that was a good start…he kept joking all night - in a good way - and recommended an Alsace Pinot, said it was better than what Amr had been going to order (and cheaper) and it was delicious. It is a large restaurant and it totally filled up. We had a Dutch (Dutch and Italian actually) couple next to us who we had a chat to, but when they left their table was very quickly filled…the streamlining of these restaurants is amazing to watch…and Amr had commented that one section was empty, when on the dot of 9 o’clock 60 young and gorgeous people all trooped in for some celebration- probably birthday as they were all much the same age…buzzing and buzzing…we saw them light a sparkler effect on an artificial cake to sing joyeux anniversaire for someone at a nearby table…then before we knew it, they did it to us, and sang it in English! Quite crazy! And our waiter took photos, and did one as a selfie, which just gets the top of his bald head, but it shows the room and vibe a bit.

    The food was superb. I had an entrée of 6 snails, so I could show James another photo of it in the same restaurant, Omnia had onion soup and Amr had a Guinea fowl and pistachio pâté. For mains Amr had kidneys in mustard sauce with spinach - delicious and what I would normally have ordered, but these days I only want small amounts and enjoyed having tastings of his! Omnia had a great seafood dish and I had a cheesy ravioli dish..yum. We got 2 desserts - Omnia chose profiteroles as she was looking for the perfect one, and I had a pavlova with chestnut cream and mandarins…both wonderful. Hard to relate the true feel of the night, but it was one of the best!
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    Denise Allen

    All my favourites, snails, profiteroles and I’m a little partial to ravioli. a

    10/28/21Reply
    Olivia Sertori

    I love this photo! And the waiter sounds very funny

    10/28/21Reply
    Carolyn Anderson

    Snails in Paris - sigh!!!!!

    10/28/21Reply
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  • Day92

    Finally some rain, and the opera!

    October 29, 2021 in France ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

    Even later tonight - it’s about 11.25 as we have just come back from the opera!! But to briefly remember the day - first we set off walking along a viaduct walkway (viaduct des arts or something) we see from our hotel window…and we find it goes all the way to bois de Vincennes one way (the end of the 1 metro line) and to Bastille at the other end…so we walked along it - very pretty with gardens and trees, at about the height of about 5 storeys up. And such an easy way to get to Bastille, prettier and shorter. Had a wander through the Marais and then got a metro to get to Galeries Lafayette for a bit of leisurely shopping. Home for a bit of downtime before heading off for an early pre opera dinner near the Bastille opera.

    What a thrill to go to the Paris opera for the first time, and to see Rigoletto! A bit of a kerfuffle at the beginning as Amr’s phone had a barcode but no numbers of seats and we found that we had needed to print them out…(unusual these days - and we couldn’t have on our travels anyway)..but the helpful man printed them for us and we were fine. The building is modern and not all that attractive from the outside, but really good inside I thought..sort of modern art deco style - squares and straight lines. And the opera was wonderful of course. Didn’t know the singers but loved them - especially Gilda (Nadine Sierra if anyone has heard of her), and Rigoletto was Ludovic Tézier…another fabulous day.
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    Hartley Cook

    Love the viaduct. There are some fascinating artisanal shops underneath near the Bastille.

    10/29/21Reply
    Rosie Marzouk

    Yes, we discovered that as we walked back along the road

    10/30/21Reply
     
  • Day86

    Back to Paris

    October 23, 2021 in France ⋅ 🌙 9 °C

    This will be short as it’s 9.50 pm and I feel spaced as didn’t sleep well last night…prob because alarm set for 6, and I read and finished a book - usually reading sends me to sleep, but this time I got all hyped…anyway, didn’t feel too fussed as we sat for 4 hours on a TGV hurtling back to Paris from Bayonne. It was crowded, the usual fight to get bags in the luggage racks, children running round and babies objecting…Saturday, and everyone going to Paris. Actually many got off at Bordeaux, but then many more boarded and filled in all the gaps.

    We thought it was going to be colder, but it was a pleasant, not uncomfortably cold, and sunny. But the main thing that was striking since we were here about 2 months ago - it is crowded, vibrant and like the Paris we knew. Last week in august was so quiet, almost spooky - and maybe it was partly the covid effect, but Parisians famously leave Paris in August, so that may have been part of it, and there were very few visible tourists then. But now so different - we hear English spoken everywhere, the Americans are coming back, and the English, and some Asians…(didn’t see other Australians)…it was back to fighting not to bump into people walking along the street.

    So once checked into our hotel near the Gare de Lyon, we marched out and walked up through the Ile St Louis where Amr had booked a restaurant for tonight. Looked great, and we went on looked into Samaritaine and Galeries Lafayette, Amr bought some Mariage Frères tea, and we generally had fun. Stopped for a mint tea/coffee at our favourite place near l’Opera (where Omnia and we took Cami and James for dinner in 2015)…and then walked back to the restaurant. Quite a lot of walking I think…just checked my Apple Watch and we walked about 15 kms! Just keeping the legs ready and well.

    Had a fab dinner at Les Fous de l’Ile, French food done really well…I had butternut and chestnut soup and calf’s liver and Amr had mackerel marinated in milk followed by octopus with beans. And a Sancerre Pinot…beside us were 2 gay guys, who brought their little dog (a Nico type I think..I.e. breed, not behaviour - so often people here bring their little dogs to restaurants, and they seem to know how to behave! You wouldn’t know they are there…I had one cuddled up next to me while having my tea…(not Rogers or Normans!)…we chatted to the guys and the waitress who had recently been working in NZ, but didn’t go to Oz in case she couldn’t get out…anyway, a good day, and am now crashing…
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    Paul Farrell

    Some super snaps there!

    10/23/21Reply
    Cathy Sertori

    Beautiful sunset 🌅 shots!

    10/23/21Reply
    Hartley Cook

    Looks lovely.

    10/23/21Reply
    Hartley Cook

    What happened to the Hotel Esmerelda?

    10/23/21Reply
     
  • Day89

    Musée d’Orsay and more

    October 26, 2021 in France ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

    First I have to say how good it is to spend time with Omnia. This is the first time she has been let loose after all the lockdown time the UK had, and she was basically on her own…so it is extra good that we can all enjoy out time here together. We have quite often met her here, so we know what we all enjoy. She spent the lockdown keeping fit, and could probably outwalk us!

    Today was partly cloudy, cool and lovely. We got the metro into the Louvre stop and walked leisurely over the bridge to the musée and again had no trouble with queues with our online tickets. Much more relaxing than the Louvre as it is easier to get around and not get lost. Enjoyed the wonderful art and lasted till about 2.30 when we exited and went to a nearby brasserie for a light lunch and a sit down!

    Then we headed over to the shopping area…spent time in UniQlo …I wasn’t tempted, too crowded and nothing I couldn’t live without, and it is so stifling in masks…had a drink at our usual cafe - they know us now, and we don’t need to show out Oz covid certificate! Now getting ready to set off to dinner at Chez Denise, one of our very favourite places!

    Well, just back from Chez Denise, and it never lets us down…it was wonderful…can’t describe adequately the vibe and fun people have there. The food is wonderful - and abundant! We know to order one entrée and one main to share (and even then Amr has to eat more than 50% of it!)…the waiters are funny and relaxed and it is noisy…you get a litre of wine (red or white) and pay for how much you drink. You can get proper labelled bottles etc, but the house wine is good and quaffable so that’s what we do. Omnia had a leek entrée and a salmon main which was excellent, and Amr and I shared half a chicken and some mash that rivals Paul’s. We started with the chef’s terrine. And we all shared a crème caramel…it is another place where you are close to your neighbours and chat about the food and whatever comes up. It is always full..the table near us that is empty was booked for 9pm. We were amazed watching people demolish their enormous plates of food!! We always come there and I think we always will when in Paris! Now off to bed.
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    Denise Allen

    Fabulous photos as always

    10/26/21Reply
    Samantha Gillett

    So french..🇫🇷

    10/26/21Reply
    Samantha Gillett

    A lovely photo of the TWO of you, thanks to Omnia. 💕

    10/26/21Reply
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  • Day44

    Ile de la Cite

    May 4 in France ⋅ ☁️ 59 °F

    We had an exhausting day today - the adrenaline couldn’t hold the jet lag back any longer. But what a beautiful city Paris is!

    We’ve mastered the metro and are getting around pretty easily. (Adam would be proud). We headed to Ile de La Cite (a small island) and saw Notre Dame (the outside as it’s still being repaired from the fire in 2019), St Chapelle Cathedral, The Conciergerie (prison where Marie Antoinette was held), the Luxembourg Palace & gardens and finished it up with Musee d’Orsay. (Impressionist museum built in an old train station). It was a full day seeing places I’ve only seen on TV or in the movies. Crazy.

    Paris’s public water is some of the best in the world. It is natural spring water that is piped in everywhere. We saw a documentary on it at home. Jordan found one of the fountains. Have to say, it DID taste better!

    We went back to fall asleep early at 8:00 but we’re so messed up our bodies won’t let us fall asleep (probably because in our heads it’s only noon). Oh well, I’m sure we’ll adjust eventually!
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    Cheryl Grantom

    So cool! Being a tourist in big cities can be exhausting for sure. very surreal feeling to see things in person that you never imagined you would see. Glad you are getting to experience it.

    5/4/22Reply
    Christie Mitchell

    Yep definitely.

    5/5/22Reply
    Julie Burdette

    Oh man, that is beautiful.

    5/4/22Reply
    Christie Mitchell

    It was!!!

    5/5/22Reply
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  • Day5

    Paris

    June 20 in France ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Galleries Lafayette .. such a beautiful shopping building ! No €€€ spent here ! Mastered the Met 🚊 spent the day wandering all the little streets. Weather a bit like home ! Warm amd sunny one minute then raining the next ! Almost need a pair of jeans and long sleeve top - which I don’t have !Read more

    Petty Sofianos

    Mmmmm, eating lots, walking lots, sight seeing much, you are in your element 💕💕💕

    Sue Grayson

    YUM!!!

    Sue Grayson

    🙀 my kind of meal!!

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  • Day1

    Paris mit Lili

    April 14 in France ⋅ 🌧 13 °C

    Als ich nach Flügen gesucht habe, war der von Westjet mit ab Paris mit Abstand der günstigste. Damit auch kein Stress aufkommt und nichts schiefgehen kann, habe ich mich dazu entschlossen, in Paris eine Nacht zu bleiben. Als Lili das mitbekommen hat, kam sie auf die Idee auch nach Paris zu kommen. So ist sie Mittwoch Abend schon mit Zug nach Paris gefahren und ich dann Donnerstag Morgen ab Hamburg per Flugzeug.
    Nach anfänglichen Internetproblemen haben wir uns in Paris dann zusammentelefoniert😅
    Als erstes wollten wir zum Louvre, da gab es für den Vormittag allerdings keine Tickets mehr, daher sind wir dann erstmal zur Seine spaziert. Dort am Ufer haben wir uns ein Crêpe geholt. Dann ging es weiter zur Notre Dame. Die Türme sind ja zum Glück unversehrt geblieben. An den Seiten konnte man auf Infotafeln den Wiederaufbau nachverfolgen, das war sehr interessant. Danach sind wir dann am Ufer entlang wieder Richtung Westen geschlendert. Für uns der erste richtige Sommertag dieses Jahr: bei 22 Grad und strahlendem Sonnenschein ☀️
    Nach einer kleinen Stärkung auf dem Vorplatz von Louvre sind wir dann endlich reingegangen (schlauerweise über den nördlichen Eingang, der normalerweise für Gruppen reserviert ist, wo wir überhaupt nicht anstehen mussten). Dort haben wir uns einige Ausstellungen herausgesucht, die uns interessiert haben, alles wäre uns zu anstrengend gewesen. Für die Mona Lisa musste man extra anstehen, das haben wir uns dann gespart. Zwischendurch waren wir mal draußen in der Gartenanlage Sonne tanken.
    Gegen Abend haben wir uns dann etwas bei der Patisserie geholt und am Ufer der Insel gegessen. Hammer lecker 😋
    Danach ging es dann per Metro und Tram zur Jugendherberge und dort auch direkt zu Bett: totmüde und mit schmerzenden Füßen, so viel bin ich lange nicht mehr gelaufen - aber daran werde ich mich wohl gewöhnen müssen…

    Freitag morgen nach dem typischen Jugendherbergenfrühstück sind wir dann direkt los nach Montmartre, um uns Sacre Cœur anzuschauen. Von dort hatten wir einen super Blick über Paris, wieder bei strahlendem Sonnenschein. Wir haben sogar einen Teil des Karfreitag-gottesdienstes mitbekommen. Dann zu Fuß zum Gare du Nord, dort hieß es dann wieder Abschiednehmen.
    Ich werde dich vermissen Lili❤️
    Ab in den Zug zum Flughafen und das erste mal den Kontinent verlassen…
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    Lili Paulsen

    Ich dich auch! War die beste Entscheidung🥰

    4/16/22Reply
     
  • Day43

    Paris!

    May 3 in France ⋅ ⛅ 66 °F

    We started at the airport in Costa Rica on May 2nd at 11:00am and touched down in Paris on May 3rd at 5:00pm. Taking out the 8 hr time change, we traveled 22 hrs to get here. It was definitely tiring, but also so exciting.

    We’re staying in our first official hostel - no private room this time. 8 bed dorm bunks with privacy screens - actually very nice set up. Some won’t allow me to stay, if it’s a “party hostel” — no one over 35 yrs old. But many do.

    So we arrived, took the metro to the hostel, dropped everything and headed to where else but the Eiffel Tower for the first night! So amazing! Can’t wait to see all the history and sites. It doesn’t get dark here until 9:00 so lots of time to explore every day.
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    Julie Burdette

    So amazing!!!

    5/3/22Reply
    Christie Mitchell

    It’s a gorgeous city … well, it’s a big city with some gorgeous parts

    5/4/22Reply
    ilima Brainard

    Great picture of you and Jordan!! Niether of you look jet lagged at all....how do you do that? and I feel like I've seen the Eiffel Tower with how good your pictures are. Can't wait to see more of your adventure in a new continent!!

    5/4/22Reply
    Christie Mitchell

    We’re definitely jet lagged! Feeling it today for sure.

    5/4/22Reply
    Donna McGovert

    Bet you slept well when you finally were able to😴Gorgeous!!I didn’t know that about the light’s twinkling🤷‍♀️Don’t remember that from 1984😂

    5/5/22Reply
     

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Paris 04 Ancien - Quartier Louvre

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