Oui, Oui, Paris

Trip Start May 17, 2011
Trip End Jun 01, 2011

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Where I stayed
Residence De Palais

Flag of France  , Île-de-France,
Monday, May 30, 2011

Our morning went well with checking out of our hotel and getting to the train station to board a train bound for Paris.  The train station was very modern, not like the others we have been seeing the last two weeks.  The halls were lined with shops and restaurants.  It was more like an airport though.  We had to check into a certain area.  Our baggage was scanned as were we.  Our passports were stamped and then we had to wait in a lounge area until our train was ready for boarding.  The train was a high speed train going up to as much as 100 miles per hour.

The initial part of the journey was in the dark as we were in a tunnel going under water, which is referred to as the chunnel.  Eventually we saw the light of day.  Through the countryside we once again saw farms growing crops and raising cows.  Everything was green with bushes and trees.  The view did not alter until we reached the city of Paris.

We then made our way to the Residence De Palais where we are staying.  It's right on the ring around Luxembourg Park so the setting is very nice.  In the park there are playgrounds, paths for running or walking, sitting areas throughout the park although there is a large sitting area around the fountain in the center, tennis courts and  courts for playing a game similar to bocce. At this court there are even coat racks and hangers for the men and woman to hang jackets, sweaters, coats, and even suitcoats for those who come too dressed from work.  For some it appeared this was serious business not a game.

Once we were settled it was time to venture out again.  I forgot to mention, when we stepped off the train the temperature here must have been at least 80 degrees.  Quite a change from what we have been used to. Our first stop was the Arc De Triomphe.  The size of the monument overwhelms you and the architecture is very ornate.  It is located in the middle of a large roundabout with cars and motorcycles going everywhere around it. The monument is located at one end of the Champs Elysees.

From there we moved on to Tracadero Square where we could get the best view of the Eiffel Tower. It certainly is a reknowned landmark for Paris. The steel framework and shape is eye catching. We took many pictures and stood there for a long time gazing at it and decided we needed to come back after dark so we could see it illuminated. 

We walked many of the streets in this area including Kleber Avenue.  Like in other areas the streets are lined with shops, restaurants,cafes, and taverns.  In our wonderings we happened upon an Italian restaurant where we decided to get pizza and an antipasto salad.  They were not similar to what we are used to at home but they were very good. After dinner we continued exploring other areas and streets such as Avenue Des Champs , De La Grande and Du Pt. Kennedy.

At this point we returned to see the Eiffel Tower after dark.  It's probably more impressive that during the day.  The area was just as crowded with tourists as during the day

We caught a subway back to our hotel.  When it arrived we could hear loud music and once the doors opened we could see why.  There were two musicians playing an accordian.  It was even amplified.  After a couple of songs he walked through the subway car asking for donations. Then they hopped off and got on another subway car to repeat the process.

We arrived back at our hotel after midnight.  It was an active and full itinerary for one day.

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