Paris 11 Ancien - Quartier Luxembourg

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  • Day54

    Eights Weeks Without a Selfie

    October 13, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Eight Weeks Without a Single Selfie - Oct 13th 2017

    On our final full day in Paris the sun broke through in full force to give the city a temporary return to summer. Gone were the winter hats, scarfs and coats that had been everywhere for the past couple of weeks and back out came the short skirts and sun hats. It was a perfect way to end our stay in this amazing place.

    Maggie and I took the opportunity to continue our recreation of the walk of Adele and Simon. We had begun this the previous day but exhaustion had overcome us before the task was complete.

    We set off to resume our walk at the famous Notre Dame Cathedral, however we did make one important detour on the way there. The Musee Nationale Du Moyen Age (Museum of the Middle Ages) is situated on the Rue D'Ecoles (Street of Schools), just a block away from our hotel. We had walked past it many time over the past couple of days and thought that it deserved a proper visit.

    We decided to pay the 9 Euro entry fee (no seniors concession here) and see what was inside. We certainly were not disappointed. The collection included an amazing array of artefacts and art works from the 6th to the 16th centuries. The building itself was worth the visit. It certainly was a fascinating insight into the creativity and skills of the people who lived in that period.

    Our walk then continued past Notre Dame and along the I'sle De La Cite to the Louvre. Although tourists had been conspicuously absent from most of Paris at this time of the year, we discovered just where most of them seemed to have congregated. I had forgotten what a thousand simultaneous selfies actually sounded like, but this is exactly what was happening. Wherever we looked there were people posing in front of every possible vantage point. Stand on one leg, look to one side, hold the selfie stick high, smile, click. It made me nauseous.
    I still cannot understand the selfie mentality at all. It always strikes me as a type of "technological tagging". It is obviously not sufficient to just visit some place, but you must prove you have been there by standing right in front of it, taking a selfie and then immediately share it to something like facebook or twitter. Surely if you know you have been there, why do you feel a need to prove it to the rest of the world ? I just do not get it. I am proud to say that we have now been travelling for 8 weeks and still have not taken a single selfie. Not one. Nor do I ever intend to. My own memories are what are most important to me.

    By the middle of the afternoon, the sun was actually quite hot and we took refuge by the fountain in The Tuileries. The council provides hundreds of free green chairs to relax on and we were glad to take two of these and spend some time dozing in the dappled sunshine.
    We are now back at the hotel, our bags are packed and we are almost ready to bid a final au revoir to France. But we will definitely be back in 2019.
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    Dennis Dawson

    More signs of the Camino

    Dennis Dawson

    Early eyeglasses from the 16th century. The mark on the page was where the book had been closed with the glasses inside.

    Dennis Dawson

    The absolutely exquisite "Rose of Avignon"

    Dennis Dawson

    Sacre Coeur catches the first rays of the rising sun.

  • Day13

    Paris - The City of Love

    September 2, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    This morning we caught the high speed (Grand Vitesse) train to Paris. It is an amazing feeling silently flying along at 300 kph on a French train. While we flew along the tracks we could see the magnificent rolling Burgundy countryside passing by outside. This is one of our favourite regions of France.

    I remember being fascinated as a child watching Dr Who for the first time. It was beyond my belief that the inside of the Tardis could be so much larger than the outside. Some fifty years later I had my own personal experience with an Inverse Tardis. I had carefully chosen our hotel using the Internet and the pictures of the rooms certainly looked large and luxurious. After a week of Internet starvation on the MS Andante we could not wait to explore the massive rooms we had booked in Paris and enjoy the benefits of unlimited high speed Internet access.

    The Villa des Princes was certainly located in a lovely part of Paris. The left bank is the home of the Latin Quarter, The Sorbonne University, the Musee D'Orsay and many other wonderful old buildings. After our high speed train trip from Basel to Paris Gare de Lyon we stumbled out through the crowds to the taxi stand and proceeded to do battle with the hundreds of others who were also waiting to grab a taxi. Some are obviously more experienced at this form of mortal combat so it took some time before we managed to pile our bags and ourselves into a vehicle and start moving. It took a good while longer for the driver to push his way through the impenetrable tangle of other taxis (all the while with the meter running) and finally emerge into the haphazard street network that makes Paris so bewildering for first time visitors.

    From the outside our hotel looked great. The concierge was even expecting us. "We have a lift" he proudly explained as if it was a brand new invention. We were directed around the corner and found the object he was so excited about. It was about the same size as a bar fridge. Maggie took one look in it and took off up the 3 flights of stairs to our room. I was left with all the luggage. I put one leg into the tiny lift and tried to pull in a suitcase after me. The door wouldn't shut. I squashed my face into the wall and pulled the case tightly against me. I pressed the button, hoping that the damned thing would not trap me inside. The door finally shut and the contraption slowly ground its way upwards. It was not pleasant, but sometime later I fell out onto the third floor landing. I had to repeat the process another two times before we were all reunited again.

    The room itself was good, or at least it would have been perfect if we had both been pygmies about 3 foot tall. It was quite a challenge to get both us and our luggage inside at the same time, but it was clean, the bed was comfortable, the bathroom was excellent and the air conditioning actually worked well. It was our home for three nights.

    After jamming our luggage into the room, we headed off on a short walk to the nearby Luxembourg Gardens. It was a perfect way to begin our short sojourn in Paris.
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  • Day3

    Luxembourg Gardens, Paris

    September 1, 2018 in France ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Next stop was the famous Luxembourg Gardens. We entered the gardens from the side gate and, to be honest, were not that impressed to start off with. The pathways were dusty gravel and you obviously cannot sit or walk on the grass here. I was surprised at the number of Parisians sunning themselves in the midday sun on the many chairs scattered on the pathways.

    Once we made our way to the main part of the gardens we could see what the appeal was. The flowers in bloom surrounding the green lawns scattered with white marble and stone statues against the backdrop of the majestic Luxembourg Palace, and pond filled with toy sailing boats, was very picturesque.

    It was a lovely place to rest our weary feet and enjoy some refreshments while admiring the view and enjoying some people watching. We cannot get over how hot it is here so the break was very welcome.
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    Jenny Kelly

    Everywhere there’s beauty! Love the pleached trees.

  • Day3

    Montparnasse Tower

    August 22, 2017 in France ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    We had the choice of paying 17 Euro to go up the tower to experience the view or else spend about 24 Euro in the restaurant where we enjoyed a Cheese selection, a Vanilla and bourbon Mille Foile and a glass of wine (or a Mojito) and still got the most amazing view of the Eiffel Tower – I think you can guess what we ended up doing?Read more

  • Day8

    Jardin du Luxumbourg, Velib bikes

    June 5, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Pat woke up feeling largely recovered so in the morning we walked to the nearby Jardin du Luxembourg. Being Wit Monday which is a holiday for some people, the park was full of Parisians and visitors enjoying a beautiful sunny morning in a beautiful place.
    We decided to head to the Pompidou Centre by using the very good public bike system, Velib. Once you register (€1.70 for a day) you can use the bikes for free for 30 minutes at a time. There are Velib stations every few hundred metres throughout the city.
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    Rod Horan

    Pat must be enjoying the Velibs after that bike of his.

    Pat and Tracey Esler


    Jillian Pattinson

    Velib sounds great.

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  • Day6

    Pantheon & Jardin de Luxembourg gardens

    September 26, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    When in doubt get "un vélo"!! Ons het wraggies die hele Parys plat gefiets, die fietslaan en motorbestuurders is almal baie bedagsaam teenoor die fietsryers so mens voel eintlik heel veilig, plek plek moet jy die busse trotseer want jy deel 'n baan, maar ons wrap dit.Ons het al langs die Seine rivier gery teen 'n paar moewiese bulte op tot by die Franse weergawe van die Panthéon, ons het al te lekker saam die studente daar gesit op die bankies. Daarna is ons na die pragtige tuine waar honderde Parysenaars en hulle honde stap, tennis speel en net die sonskyn geniet. Die Engelse sê "well kept" die tuine is rêrig so mooi en lyk perfek geplant.

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  • Day4

    Luxembourg Garden, Paris, France

    June 24, 2018 in France ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    I was looking forward to this but it was a disappointment. With the exception of Monet's garden, the gardens in Paris seem to be trees with gravel everywhere. On occasion there are patches of grass but these are roped off so no one can walk on them. Everyone sits around these patches in chairs looking at them and relaxing.Read more

  • Day22

    Vive la France !

    July 14, 2018 in France ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    Unser letzter Tag in Paris nach unserer 3 - wöchigen Tour quer durch Frankreich beginnt schon sehr früh. Sichtlich müde und fußlahm von unserem gestrigen Marsch durch die Stadt, sitzen wir 8.23 Uhr im Auto auf dem Weg zu unserem Startbahnhof. 3 Minuten zu spät, was Uli schon wieder so lange und langsam macht? ;-) Unzählige Brote werden geschmiert, Käse, Wurst, alles was der Kühlschrank noch her gibt und jeder Rucksack mit Wasserflaschen versorgt. Vor uns liegt ein uuuunendlich langer Tag. An Frankreichs größtem Feiertag wagen wir 7 uns in das Auge des Partyhurrikans mitten in Paris. Schon um 10.45 Uhr startet die große Militärparade. Geplant staunen wir dort bis 12.30 Uhr - und dann? Schlagen wir uns die Zeit um die Ohren in dieser Großstadt, bis dann um 23 Uhr das große Feuerwerk am Eiffelturm unsere Tour de France beendet, e Viola! Naja, nicht ganz - noch zurück in unsere Unterkunft und am nächsten Tag nach Hause. Dass unser Nachhauseweg in der Nacht zu einem der größeren Abenteuer in diesem Urlaub wird, ahnt am Morgen noch keiner.
    Beim Einsteigen in unseren Zug sind schnelle Füße gefragt, vor allem für Uli! Der steht noch am Kartenverkauf während wir schon in der Zugtür stehen. Ja, nein, ja, nein? In letzter Minute sprintet Uli in die Tür des 1. Waggons. Auf meinen Ruf " Alle rein!" reagieren die Kinder augenblicklich. Perfekt! Nein! Entsetzt sehe ich noch einen auf dem Bahnsteig springen, Amon! In letzter Sekunde noch ein Sprung in Tür 5, Unglaublich! Der Tag fängt gut an.
    Mit müden Füssen aber hoch motiviert erreichen wir nach längerem Fußmarsch gegen 9.30 Uhr den Louvre mit Blick auf den Park Tuileries, die Verlängerung der prächtigen Champs Elysee, um von hier die Flugparade des französischen Militärs bestmöglich zu sehen. Super Platz und mehr als ausreichend Zeit. Wir breiten unsere große Decke vor dem Louvre aus, neidische Blicke sind auf uns gerichtet, und ca 1 h später wird der Himmel über Paris bunt bemalt - Blau, Weiß, Rot, - Bravo!!!! Rot, blau, weiß, rot? Eigenartig. Mir fällt es auf, aber ich hinterfrage nicht. Meine Füße schmerzen und ich bin müde. Lara stellt die merkwürdige Anordnung als einzige in Frage. Die Antwort liefert die Presse nur kurze Zeit später. Wir sind Zeugnis einer ganz neuen Farbkombination der Flagge der Grande Nation! Das Talent dieses farbgenialen Piloten würde Carlotta ( und Vincent und alle....) wohl aber eher als "Mösö'r fökö'r bezeichnen;-) Wir bestaunen anschließend die Parade, die kleinere Version, eigentlich das Ende der Militärparade. Bis zur Champs Elysee sind es ca 4 km zu Fuß ;-( Noch ca 10 Stunden bis zum großen Feuerwerk ;-( Normalerweise breche ich solche Unternehmen bei einem solchen Aufwand tendenziell ab. 10 Stunden mit 5 müden Kindern bei 30 Grad in Paris! Doch das steht diesmal nicht zur Frage. Alle möchten das angekündigte grandioseste aller grandiosen Feuerwerke sehen und so mit Vollgas in die nächsten 10 Stunden. Ich feiere mich für meine Decke!( Und auch das Luftbett, das nahezu die Hälfte des Urlaubs im Einsatz war und dadurch noch mehr Streit verhindert hat!)
    Wir spazieren durch die Straßen von Sant - Germain, versorgen uns im Supermarkt mit Leckereien - und dekorieren den Park Jardin de Luxembourg mit unserer farbenfrohen Decke :-) Schon wieder die Größte;-) Fast 4 h sitzen, essen, quatschen, schlafen, streiten wir im Park auf unserer Decke. Und schauen das Spiel um den 3. Platz der Fußball WM. Die Füße enstpannen sich, die Heimatlosigkeit macht trotzdem müde. Der nächste Ortswechsel führt uns zu Burgerking und H&M. Mit neuer französischer "Designerkleidung " im Gepäck gilt es die nächsten 4 h zu meistern. Und nach einer weiteren Stunde in der Metro erscheint er prächtig und aufrecht vor uns - der Eiffelturm, das Wahrzeichen Paris' und das perfekte Finale für unsere Reise!
    Der Platz Champs de Mars, direkt vor dem Eiffelturm ist schon besetzt, 3 h vor dem Feuerwerk! Wir ergattern unmittelbar dahinter ein in nächstbester Lage gutes Fleckchen, und - breiten unsere Decke auf staubigem Boden aus. Blockiert, Reserviert! In den nächsten 2 Stunden fällt es uns schwer, die müden Augen offen zu halten. Es wird wieder gespielt, gequatscht, gegessen, getrunken - nicht geschlafen! Wir müssen die Ränder unseres Deckenlandes bewachen. Ich habe auf unserer Reise Frankreich und seine Franzosen wirklich lieb gewonnen, aber mein sicherer Deckenplatz unter 90.000 Menschen ist mir noch lieber! Vincent nörgelt kaum, außer das zu ignorierende Teenagernörgeln. Hier zu später Stunde kommt ein leidendes " Mum, ich bin gerade einfach nur überfordert! Kennst du das?" Ich kenne das leider nur zu gut ! Einen kurzen Moment denke ich, das Warten auf das Feuerwerk doch abzukürzen und das ganze Zuhause am TV zu schauen. Die wunderschönen Melodien und Lieder des Orchesters in den letzten 1,5 h vor dem Feuerwerk lassen die Zeit dann doch vergehen.
    Der Countdown läuft! Diese unendlichen Stunden sind jetzt ganz schnell vorbei. Unser Sicherheitsdeckenland verkleinert sich, die Marseillaise wird von 90.000 Menschen sehr bewegend gesungen - wir fühlen uns fast als Franzosen - und dieses mächtige Eisengerüst vor uns strahlt 30 Minuten lang in den schönsten Farben. Feuerwerk und Musik in perfekter Harmonie. Die schmerzenden Beine und Füße, die Streitigkeiten, oft der Müdigkeit geschuldet, sind vergessen. Für jeden von uns überleuchtet dieses Feuerwerk jetzt alle Nervmomente des Tages, der letzten Tage, absolut umwerfend und nicht zu beschreiben.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Paris 11 Ancien - Quartier Luxembourg, Section du Luxembourg