And I thought the Biltmore was big!

Trip Start Apr 01, 2009
Trip End Jul 13, 2009

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Flag of France  , Île-de-France,
Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Today, I woke up to a cold and overcast Parisian morning. I spent a good part of the morning chatting with my British bunk mate, Alex, about the best sites to see for the gloomy day. Alex was headed to the Muse D'Orsey in hopes a staying dry, but I opted to take a chance on the weather and head to the Palace of Versailles.

The train from Paris to Versailles is roughly 45 minutes. When I arrived in the small town of Versailles around 3pm, the sun was just starting to poke out from the clouds. I made the short 10 minute hike from the train station to the entrance of the Palace, stopping along to way to take advantage of the better exchange rates in the smaller city. The Palace is undergoing quite a bit of exterior restoration, but still, the Palace is stunning from the exterior. The exterior is lined with beautifully carved statues and enough gold trim to make any king smile! After gazing at the Palace facade, I slowly made my way up to the Palace gates. I was shocked to see that the ticket line stretched roughly 300 yards, but was thrilled because I had purchased my ticket at the train station when I first arrived!

Upon entering the Palace, you are met with a series of brightly colored rooms that display the paintings of all the nobility that once called Versailles home. As you snake your way through the small rooms, up a flight of stairs and through a statue lined corridor, you enter the famous Hall of Mirrors. I then strolled through some of the side rooms, which included the Kings sleeping quarters, Marie Antoinette's bed room and the King's receiving area. I then walked through the Hall of Battles and then through the lush Palace gardens. I was so impressed with the Palace that I walked through the entire Palace for a second time!

After leaving the Palace, I made a quick stop for a phone call home and then hoped on the train back to Paris. I got off the train at the Eiffel Tower station to snap some photos of the Tower at sunset. I then walked through the beautiful Eiffel Tower Park and gazed at some of the massive apartments that line the Park's edge. I stumbled across a small corner cafe with an amazing view of the Tower, so I sat down down for a few glasses of French Chardonnay and sampled the famous and very cliche French dish, escargot, which was actually very good! At around 9:45 pm, I headed back to the Eiffel Tower for the hourly light show. See the video. After admiring the Tower twinkle for about 10 minutes, I decided to make my way back to the hostel for a good nights sleep!
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jcharwell on

Re: Friday Morning 4/10/09
Yo! The entries are dated. See below the title. It is pretty small. I'm in San Sebastian now and will get a post up ASAP, but first i'm off to a cafe for some cafe leche and tapas! Love you!

joslinmom on

Good Friday
Josh, How wonderful to wake up this beutiful morning at thebeach with a great cup of coffeee to readh your nest journal entry. Its like reading a really good book with your son. acutlly in it. We love your photos. You now look like the world traveler. If your weekend travels allwo you should take in an EAster service at one of the cathedrals. I bet it will be lovely. Keep your postings coming. We love them and you. Mom

joslinmom on

Re: Friday Morning 4/10/09
Hey, Just saw your message to Dad. Have a great day today. Mom

cdavis on

Bordeaux great again!
Josh, I keep losing my massages to you. i am going to try again. The Europeans are going to invite you to join the tribe. it is wonderful that you are so naturally friendly. It is wonderful to hear about your new friends meeting at the laundry and then being invited to dinner and tour.We love hearing from you.
Love Rere and Poppi

cdavis on

San Sebastia'n and the Basque
Josh, I do hope that you will be able to go to Camino de Santiago-we were there with Po and G.
Guernica (Gernika) is so close -hope you can see this TOWN OF TRAGEDY where the Germans bombed to devastation in 1937 and Picasso painted his powerful and famous 'Guernica'.--26 foot wide all in black and white.I think that it now hangs in museum in Madrid.
Let us know what we can bring to you in Italy.We will make tour and more museum reservations when we see you in Venice.
I hear that San S is elegant.
Much love,RR

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