Saturday, September 25, 2010

Architecture and History

Paris 12 September 2010

Well today we decided to go back to the café up the hill for breakfast again. This time Iain had the “vitality breakfast” with me of brioche, jam and a bowl of coffee. Phoenix decided to join Levi in Croque Monsieur and salad. It was all Yum!!!

We also went back to Sacre Cour to get a coin out of the machine for Phoenix (they have tourist coins with pictures of churches on them in machines 2 euros each, great for the kids to collect). Levi and I waited outside watching the lady with the piano accordion dance about under here umbrella and flowers. I have a photo of this that I will upload soon. She was very entertaining.

After Sacre Cour we headed back down the hill towards our apartment to catch a train to Notre Dame and Sainte Chapelle, but Iain saw a dress in a shop window that he wanted me to try on. So of course as the obedient wife I am I went in and tried it on and came out with the dress and a leather jacket…I am very lucky my husband likes me to look good. (LOL) so we had to stop at the apartment to drop off my new purchases and the many souvenirs we purchased in Montmartre (who knew I was misspelling this?) as well.

Eventually we ended up eating lunch at the apartment then hopping on the train to Barbes Rochechouart to change lines to Cite the metro station on the island in the middle of the river. Cite station opens above ground to a pet market and the hop on drop off hire bicycles. We walked about 250m to find Notre Dame with a short stop to pick up a coffee and little something for my new niece Pepper.

Notre Dame is more beautiful in the flesh than it is on paper. The architecture of the building so intricate and wonderful. The interior is lovely with all the different saints statues like Joan of Arc and the centre piece shows the life of Jesus in carvings. You can probably use this as “story telling” time for the kids. Brush up on your bible stories first (although you should know these anyway). The church has free entry for everyone and you can spend all day in there if you like and take photos without the flash.

When we had our fill of Notre Dame we walked along the River Seine to the other end of the island to Sainte Chapelle. Sainte Chapelle is 8 euros each for adults, free entry for children. The chapel is located inside the Castle walls and is being renovated until 2013. They are renovating small parts at a time so you really don’t miss out on seeing its spectacular architecture and lead lighting. The chapel was built by King Henry IX for his wife. There is a statue inside dedicated to Saint Louis. The lead lighting here is the most amazing I have seen so far. It is wonderful sight, even the children were impressed, they also like climbing the stairs in the dome.

This was a good way to end our “paid “ sightseeing in Paris, we went back to the apartment for dinner and starting packing our bags for our flight the next night.

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