21.05.2015 - 25.06.2015 17 °C
After the Somme we headed for Paris. We had a tip from a website that a particular park area had free parking so we headed that way and found a great spot right next to the park near the zoo. We arrived late but decided we might wander into the city and just look around a little anyway, partly to see how far a walk it was and partly just to feel like we were in Paris.
The rain decided to kick in and it seemed we were a solid 40 minute walk from the centre so we turned back and not to be daunted took advantage of a break in the weather to picnic in our park before dashing back to the van once the rain started up again.
The next morning we bought a bunch of metro tickets and headed in to find the tourist office before having lunch on the sidewalk – the rain preventing us from finding a nice park – before heading for the Orangerie.
Though we’d both been to Paris before neither Matt nor I had ever actually made it into this little impressionist gallery. It was lovely. By far the highlights though were the eight Monet’s painted especially for the space. They were beautiful scenes of the lily pond in his garden. You could stare at them for hours and never get restless.
The weather seemed to have cleared a bit and we decided to chance it and head over to the Eiffel tower for a picnic as planned. We were rewarded for our faith with a lovely sunny evening so we drank wine, ate cheese and enjoyed the sight and each others company.
After a lazy morning in the park and a breakfast of croissants with camembert and raspberry jam (amazing!) we headed into town to check out the Musee d’Orsey. We wandered around the many masterpieces and talked about our favourites (often Monet and for me at least Pizarro). Several hours later we headed back to the van for a quiet glass of wine.
The next day was a big one. We headed in to visit Notre Dame, always beautiful and a little awe inspiring. Then into the Latin Quarter and St Germain to wander the small and beautiful streets and soak in the Paris feel. We spotted some brilliant deals at some restaurants and adjusted our plans to picnic and decided to come back here for dinner instead.
We headed over to Luxembourg gardens for lunch and decided to split one of our bottles of wine, as we wouldn’t be needing it for dinner that night after all. After a thoroughly enjoyable lunch we wandered the gardens a little before walking up to Mont Martre.
Sacre Couer was as beautiful as ever and the view of Paris was lovely. We strolled around the square full of portrait artists, sorely tempted to get ours done and found a gorgeous little square with a wall overlooking a rather overgrown block and some very Parisian apartments. We set ourselves up on the wall and shared our second bottle of wine. It was gorgeous and fun and felt very Parisian.
Once we’d finished our wine we caught the metro to the Arc de Triomphe and walked the length of the Champs Elysee on our way back to the latin quarter. We strolled across Pont Neuf and settled in for a lovely dinner looking up at a gorgeous old church and watching the world walk by on the pedestrian street.
We crossed Pont Neuf one more time, looking at the lit up Eiffel Tower in the distance and headed home.