Spring time in Paris
Trip Start Apr 03, 2009
15Trip End Apr 14, 2009
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Sacre Coeur Basilique.
Helene had lots to show us in this part of town, one of her favorite areas.
The Vigne de Montmartre is a small vineyard bursting with colorful flowers and rows of budding grape vines.Au Lapin Agile (The Agile Rabbit), a famous restaurant where many French writers congregated to share their musings and probably a drink or two.Place du Tertre, we lunch on a light meal and bask in the sunlight, which Helen is sure we brought along with us since the weather was cold and rainy just a week ago.
To walk off lunch, we head down to another bustling shopping area that reminds us of the Alley in the Garment District of Los Angeles. Helene is familiar with L.A. because she lived there for several months while working for a travel company. She said she fondly remembers the beaches of Santa Monica and the excitement of downtown L.A., as well as the beauty of San Diego.
Just down the steep hill is Pigalle, Paris' version of the Red Light District. Moulin Rouge Theatre, home of the original French Can-Can dancers.
Back on the Metro, we made our way to the Catacombs, a series of underground tunnels beneath old Paris, which house bones of the many citizens who lived and died for centuries.
She quickly whipped out her itinerary and led us in the direction of Le Marais, known as the gay area of Paris. It is lovely and stylish, with wide streets, high-end shops and quaint restaurants. Place des Vosges, a park dedicated to Louis XIII. There, we sat on the lawn among young adults enjoying the afternoon sun. the Bastille, an enormous monument erected to symbolize the beginning of the French revolution. Opera Garnier, a large modern building the focal point of a busy roundabout.
As if that wasn't enough to see for the day, we boarded the Metro once again en route to the Petit Palais, the Grand Palais and the Palais de l'Elysee, where President Nicolais Sarkosi works when he's in town. We walked to the gate of the Ministere de l'Agriculture (Ministry of Agriculture), then past the Theatre Marigny and the lovely gardens. Champs Elysees, a high-energy area featuring designer stores reminiscent of New York's Times Square. In the distance, a view of the Arc de Triomphe, an astounding monument which is a must-see for any trip to France.
After a little snack at a local cafe, we said farewell to Helene. She was a fantastic tour guide and we hated to see her go, but we get the feeling that we will see her again during our (or her) travels.