One of the first trips we talked about taking when we arrived to Zurich, was a trip to Paris. Neither of us had ever been, and it's just one of those magnificent cities you can't miss. And living so close, we could not pass up this opportunity. We opted to go for a four day weekend, over Easter weekend, which also happened to be my birthday weekend too.
I really don't know how to recap all of our adventures, and I did a horrible job at narrowing down the 400 photos we took. So, here's more pictures than you'll ever care to see, but I just couldn't help myself.
It took us 8 very long hours to arrive in Paris by train, but once we unpacked at the hotel, we were revived and ready to embrace the city. Our first sight- Moulin Rouge. It was right down the street from our hotel, and the line to get in for the next show stretched down the street. And we were greeted with a glimmer of blue sky, take a good look, it didn't last long!
Our first sighting of the Eiffel Tower
When we got to the base of the tower, we found out that they were running two hours behind schedule b/c one of the lifts was broken. Rather than wainting in the cold, wind and rain for that time, we opted to climb up the 700+ stairs to the second floor, where the lift to the top was working properly. John is Super Dad, and carried Ella all the way up with a smile on his face!
My favorite tower pic. The lights came on as we were headed back down,
and the rain was starting to let up just a little.
One of multiple carousels that we found for Ella. We loved this one b/c it was at the base of the tower, and was a great end to a wonderful evening.
How she ended her very long, eventful day...
Started Saturday morning at the Louvre. We got there early to avoid the lines and the crowds, and we were able to rent a stroller from the museum. Because of this, we hopped on the elevator (while the rest of the crowd was on the stairs) and we ended up in a wing of the museum by ourselves. Who gets to tour part of the Louvre without anyone else around? Amazing.
On a stroll in the gardens in front of the museum
Arc de Triomphe
Ella is trying to smell the flowers
Double decker Carousel
One of the 'local' things I had read about was going to the oldest covered market in Paris. We didn't get there until just about closing time, but it was a neat market to see. The food stands looked great - wines, breads, cheeses. We grabbed some hummus and bread and had a little picnic for dinner. Then we headed out for our night stroll among through the sights of Paris.
The back of the Notre Dame
Ella spent that night 'flying' down the sidewalks, keeping herself and many passer-bys very entertained.
Along our walk, we stumbled upon this church. We thought is was gorgeous, and it was just tucked in a little neighborhood, not marked on any map. What amazed us was that in the day time we probably would have just walked right by it, but at night, the lighting was so dramatic, the church was a gorgeous sight.
Looking over the Seine
The Opera House. This was our last stop for the night. I thought it was so gorgeous, I asked John if we could come back here during the day to see the inside. It may have been my favorite building on the whole trip.
The next morning, Ella danced on the marble staircase of the Opera House
The Grand Hall in the Opera House
Enjoying the sights from the balcony. What surprised me about the Opera House, is that the actual auditorium, was much smaller than I would have thought. It's now on my 'bucket list' to see a performance in this theater, it is just breathtaking.
Entering the Luxembourg Gardens
One of my favorite shots on our trip
The Paris Pantheon
After looking at the Pantheon and the blue skies above it, we turned around and saw those daunting stormy clouds heading our way.
Which made it the perfect time to stop in Cafes Richard for a cafe au lait. We missed the hail storm and had a great afternoon coffee.
That night we took a boat ride along the Seine. Ella was thrilled she could see the 'Byfell' Tower again with the lights on. Sorry Mr. Eiffel, we have renamed your tower.
Walking along the Champs Elysees
I loved this windy statue because it's how I felt the entire time we were visiting Paris.
Pont Richard Bridge
Our last coffee stop in Paris. 'Small or Large?' asked the waiter. Umm, large, I suppose....
After spending almost 3 full days in Paris, I quickly came to the conclusion that I want to live there. I fell in love with this magical city. There is so much to see, and experience, you can only just skim the surface in a few days. I think to really experience the city, you need to plan on spending an extended period of time living there, talking with the locals, shopping at the markets, picnicing in the parks. I wouldn't be surprised if you find us living in the Montmarte district at some point in our crazy lives. Of course, you'll be more than welcome to visit!