Trip To Paris France - Day 2
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Day 2: Musée du Louvre, Bastille and Eiffel Tower?
Making the excuse of being on vacation, jet lag and a tiring day, we took the liberty to get up late on day 2. The first thing we wanted to explore was home of “Mona Lisa”, Louvre museum in the morning, then the most spectacular tower, Eiffel tower in the evening before heading off to our pre-booked night bar tour.
The museum opens at 9:00 a.m., and it was already almost 10:30 by the time we left our hotel room and reached there by 11:15 a.m. We had too little time and lots to cover.
This museum was originally built as a fortress, which was then centuries later used to display royal collection and today to display more of recent years, including Pyramide du Louvre which also acts as the main entrance to the museum.
Pyramide du Louvre
I started from the bottom of the museum and worked my way up. Louvre covers all kinds of art.
Walls and walls of paintings:
Painting as big as a theatre screen:
To famous and comparatively small, Monalisa:
King Napoleon crowning his queen.
It was very difficult to leave the museum with so much more to see. We had to literally drag ourselves out. Especially me. If you are an art enthusiast, you need to keep a whole day or two just to cover this museum.
We still had to visit the most spectacular monument that represents Paris and we had not seen it in yet. So we hurried back to the hotel, grabbed a quick bite and were on the subway to Champ de Mars — Tour Eiffel station. We reached the tower around 5:45 p.m.
The idea was to go to the top of the tower before the sunset and stay there until after the sunset and the city lighted up. Even though it was a good plan, we missed one little detail: Ticket queue. Although it was mid September, Paris was buzzing with tourist.
You can go to the top either by walking up the stairs or by elevator. After spending the whole day walking around Louvre, we (read I) did not want to climb around 704 stairs (Level 2. The top: only elevator can access third level). In both cases there was a long queue. We stood in the queue for about half an hour. Seeing no progress, we decided to come back the next day.
We had some time till 8:00 p.m. until our next walking tour. We decided to cover Arc de Triomphe. Instead of taking the subway, we decided to walk. Because I had downloaded the local map of Paris, it was very easy to navigate. It was not a short walk unfortunately. The Eiffel tower looked beautiful from across River Seine.
Large flights of stairs are constructed just across the river facing Eiffel tower. Watching the sun set behind the Eiffel across the river is the most beautiful experience one could have. But, we missed it and opted to cover Arc de Triomphe. Was it worth it, I am not sure.
Walking on the streets, we observed that the whole city had just one tone of colour: Off White.
Streets of Paris
Arc de Triomphe
Walking for almost an hour and a half, we reached Arc de Triomphe, representing and honoring all those who fought and died for France. Much like India Gate in New Delhi.
Crossing the road is an impossible task and don’t even try it. It took us some time to figure out how to get to the center: Through an underground passage way. Like all tourist attractions, seeing this arc up close had a fee. Since we were on time crunch, we decided to skip visiting this place up close, take the subway and directly go to our walk tour, starting at Bastille station.
Barhop Walk Tour, Nightlife of Paris
We wanted to experience the nightlife of Paris, the young crowd and energy, thus enrolling into barhop walk tour. We were the first ones to join the walk tour and within half an hour around 7- 8 more people joined us.
Not only did we experience what we wanted, but also discovered more: we were not that young. We were the only couple in the group and we were the only people above 25! Oh man did we feel old! This tour takes the group through different kinds of bars/night club (spending an hour at each bar) around Bastille along with a free shot at every bar when we buy a drink. However, we gave our free drinks to others because we didn’t want to drink, especially when we were on our own.
The night and streets were buzzing with activity even at 12:00 a.m.
Barhop Walk Tour in Paris
Nonetheless we were having a good time until it was 12:00. We didn’t have our dinner, we were tired and not ashamed to say a bit sleepy. When we were on our way to the fifth bar we saw an Indian restaurant. The fifth bar that we entered was very crowded. There was no place to stand. Seeing the restaurant, my husband and I had the same thought. The crowded bar just gave us the right push. We just came out of there, excused ourselves from the guide and the group and straight headed for the Indian Restaurant (Unfortunately, I cannot recall the name of the place). We had awesome Biryani and Boondi Raitha, spent the hour there, enjoying the bliss of comfort food.
We came back to the nightclub and informed the guide that we would be leaving, tipped her and bid farewell to the group, came back to the hotel room and crashed!
Hope you enjoyed another day of walking tour in Paris. The beauty of the city fills you with enough energy to walk all day long.
The tour does not end here. More to come soon.
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Guest Post By Akhila