After the Loire Valley a few of us took the train to Paris. This was my second visit to Paris and I promised myself that this visit would be low key, staying away from tourist traps, but in a big busy city things don’t always work out as planned. Also, I was warned to pack light but I did not take heed. With no escalators or elevators in the Paris subway stations, lugging a full suitcase, carry-on and purse was not ideal. C’est la vie!
We rented a place in the Batignolles neighbourhood for 3 days. On arrival we freshened up and headed out to meet some friends at the Arc de Triomphe. I did not wait in line for the tickets to climb the monument but I did explore the structure’s beautiful battle reliefs and the walls of engraved names of those who died fighting for Napoleon.
The next stop was the Eifel Tower. We rode the elevator to the top and enjoyed the beautiful view of the sun setting over the city of Paris. For dinner we had a group of ten people so our options were very limited. We made the mistake of eating at Le Champ de Mars. The food and the service was terrible. Avoid at all costs if you enjoy good food.
One of my two favourite visits was the Musée du l’Orangerie, which houses Monet’s Water Lilies’ collection. The other was to the Musée Rodin. I wish we had planned to spend more time there because the gardens were so beautiful. The breadth and quality of his work was overwhelming. During my short visit I kept wondering how was it humanly possible to create all those beautiful masterpieces in only one lifetime? Truly amazing.
Surprisingly I did not do any shopping while in Paris. The most tempting spot was the Passage du Grand Cerf, a little alleyway with small shops, at 145 Rue St-Denis. Check out this blog for write ups and links to the shops.
Last but not least is the food. I have two recommendations. The first is Les Cocottes, where I enjoyed the best dessert I have probably ever had. Cherries smothered in a pistachio and almond sauce, wrapped in a phyllo pasty shell. The second, funny enough, is an Italian restaurant that we chanced upon for lunch one day. Ristorante Italiano 0039 had great pizzas, great service and the best cappuccino I had in my entire visit to France. You can read my review here.
That’s it for Paris, goodnight.