Paris – A Tales of Two Churches   23 comments

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Most of the cities we visited were well furnished with wonderful ornate churches. Paris most famous two deserved a post of their own I thought.

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On our first evening, still full of first day on holiday enthusiasm we went out for a post-meal stroll. No particular direction in mind but before we know it we came upon the Ile de la Cite. We wandered across the Pont Neuf and then along the banks of the river to the majestic Notre-Dame

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We were lucky and caught the setting sun perfectly. It transforms Notre-Dame (and most of the buildings around) from their white daytime look into an evening gown of pure gold

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I think it was this evening stroll that sealed the deal for me on that first day as to what a wonderous city this is. Golden churches, a beautiful river with walks along the banks, cosy restaurants and tall buildings. Life was pretty damn good at this point

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The setting sun over the river was a grand finale to our first day

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We came back for another look at Notre Dame on our last day to see it in its day outfit. The colour difference is pretty amazing

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We had thought about going in for look and maybe climbing the towers but were put off by the long queue

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Instead we headed off to find the second of the city’s landmark churches. Via the Tour Saint Jacques

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And the Pompidou Centre. Home to modern art its an odd-looking place. I’d thought about having a look around but they wanted serious cash or even £3 just to see the view from the roof terrace. It’s renowned as a piece of modern architecture but it looks like something a child would build if they didn’t have enough Lego to finish. I thought it looked dated and shabby so we didn’t dally and moved on

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The Basilica de Sacre Coeur at Montmartre is everything you expect. Striking, unique, stunning, beautiful and busy! Most packed place we went to after the Eiffel Tower

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It’s very geared to tourists and the surrounding streets are a bit tacky if you ask me

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It doesn’t detract from the beauty of the building or the views from the terraces. If you click on the panorama below you can see a larger version

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A close up view of the Pompidou Centre. It gets uglier every time I look at this photo

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A bank of cloud passed over while we were up here so we didn’t see it at its gleaming best. We did want to go inside for look and climb the dome but the queues were long and the afternoon was drawing to a close

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We did escape the crowds in a lovely park around the back with view of the rear of the church (minus people in shot)

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Capped off with an excellent view of the Stade de France for you stadium fans out there

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To close the post a few photos from around the vicinity of Notre Dame as I had no better place to put them in a blog post and I like them

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Not bad having these views just round the corner from your temporary home.

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23 responses to “Paris – A Tales of Two Churches

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  1. Quite amazing. Splendid photos, very impressive all together.

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    Brenda-Dawn Linney
  2. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing:)

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  3. The area round the Sacre Couer and Place de Terte are touristy and a bit tacky but just a short distance away you get away from that and we’ve quite liked wandering round the Butte when we’ve been in Paris.

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    • The park at Buttes and the Canal St Martin was on my list of things to do but we never had time. We actually managed to embrace the tackiness as it were and had a good giggle at the dreadful souvenirs. Our favourite in Paris was an Eiffel Tower shaped Toothbrush!

      I need a long stay in Paris as we did in the other cities we visited. All the places we visited deserved at least a week

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      • Canal St Martin – We stayed in an apartment in a real Parisian block literally round the corner from the canal quite a few years ago. Another favourite area. Weekend evenings there were groups of young people sitting on the banks having picnics- no tension or trouble at all. And I was able to see the Hotel du Nord (featured in the Marcel Carné film)

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  4. Not a fan of the P.C. either. I remember the same guy that walked across the World Trade Centre Towers when they were still standing did the Notre Dame Towers via a high wire first as a practice run.

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    Blue Sky Scotland
  5. Beautiful captures of Notre Dame glowing golden in the sunset!

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    • We were lucky to catch it at the right time on our first evening just by chance. We weren’t even specifically heading for Notre Dame or to see the sunset. We were just wandering about aimlessly 🙂

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  6. Love the lighting on the Notre Dame pictures!

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  7. Always loved them both, but know what you mean about ‘tacky’ around Sacre Couer!

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    • When I go back I’ll head for the Sacre Coeur in the evening when I’d hope it was a bit quieter. Notre Dame wasn’t too bad in the evening.

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      • Watch out for con artists and pickpockets. When we were last up there the scam was “sign my petition” if you fell for it the accomplice was in your pockets while your hands were occupied.

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        • I was ready for all that this summer and had the kids well drilled to be vigilant and to spot all the scams. In the end there was never any point where I thought “Oh hang on a minute” although the the street sellers were a real nuisance especially in Rome. Probably the most used phrase of the trip was “No, I don’t want a Selfie Stick!!” 🙂

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  8. An ‘aimless wander’ quite often rewards with memorable moments and I do love the extra pics, especially the one with the moon.

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    • Most of our city days were spent just wandering with no particular purpose and it rewarded us with some fabulous sights (and the occasional dead end!). I nearly deleted that one with the moon, glad I didn’t now! 🙂

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  9. What an amazing contrast in the colour of the stone!
    I’m slightly disappointed that nobody has done the obvious and made some sort of reference to Quasimodo; well, not until now anyway. 😀
    I think you’re being a bit harsh about the Pompidou Centre – I’m sure it will look fine when it’s finished.
    Loving all of the views of the Seine – and I’m also glad that you didn’t remove the photo with the moon, that’s excellent.

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    • You see Notre Dame in the evening and can’t believe its natural colour is grey-white. No Quasimdo jokes as I’m careful not to include many photos of me!
      The more I look at photos the more I think the Pompidou Centre is an ugly monstrosity. It was shabby as well
      If you like the river views, you’ll enjoy the final Paris post

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