10.31.2011

Pepe Le Paris

We arrived in the most romantic stinky city in the world by train. It was our first of five train journeys and was uneventful as we snoozed the whole time.

After checking into our hotel in Paris, we climbed a MILLION stairs to go to the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur or Sacred Heart Church. It's the highest point in Paris and interestingly enough, overlooks the Moulin Rouge and sex-district. The view of Paris was pretty remarkable. 


Our teeny, tiny Paris Hotel.
We were huffing and puffing at this point.


Our next stop was the Arch de Triumph. We had to walk underground to actually get to the arch because it's surrounded by non-stop traffic. Upon arriving at the Arch, it actually seemed like we were in China because there were Asians everywhere. I remember reading not to long ago that Asians are the #1 tourist group right now. That is not a lie.




At this point, we decided to make our way to the Eiffel Tower because we had a 9:30 reservation and didn't want to risk being late. Getting around Paris was a little more confusing than London. The underground system there is not as organized, and of course every sign is in French. 

At one point, we thought we were right around the corner from the tower and I just happened to glance backwards and saw it over my left shoulder. 

There were a lot of things I didn't enjoy about Paris like all the trash EVERYWHERE in the city, the smells (body odor, urine, etc), and the people in general weren't as friendly. BUT, the Eiffel Tower is with out a doubt amazing. It was much bigger than I expected it to be and when they turn the lights on, it glows gold and bronze. 



Ugly fence...
I so wish I would have taken a picture of the line to get tickets for the tower. OMGOSH, the longest line ever. I would have never stood in it if we hadn't already had a reservation. 
Bryan and I were able to go straight to the second floor. The 360 degree view of Paris was magnifique! We totally saw a couple get engaged. I kind of wonder if that happens like every hour there...? The elevator to the top level seemed to go forever. Once there, you are "caged" in but still outside and it was scaring me. 
I loved it and hated it at the same time, so we didn't hang around too long. One sweet thing about the top level is they tell you how far other countries are from the tower. New York was 5849 km away.



City of Lights
Day 2 in Paris started early. We wanted to make good time before leaving for Rome that night. Our first stop was the Louvre Museum. The outside is massive and is a piece of art in itself. We did the touristy thing and took a lot of pictures of the Louvre Pyramids and statues. 

So we go to get in line to enter the museum and we see a sign reading: Closed on Tuesdays. It's Tuesday. Seriously?! Really?! Yes, they definitely make sure to put that sign in English. 
I was majorly bummed. I really like art and I was pumped to see the Mona Lisa. Oh well, live and learn. Or just be really mad at the French...they don't care, they hate us anyways :) Since we had perfectly good tickets that were good for a year, we decided to give them away to some friendly Asians.
This picture is only posted because I didn't get any INSIDE. But the design is pretty good.


Since we had a lot of time to kill, we went to the Church of Notre Dame and then got a bite to eat. This activity always puts me in a better mood. The church was good and the food was better. We shared French Onion Soup (how appropriate) and a tuna sandwich on a baguette. Only their version of a tuna sandwich is different, but still delicious. I also got a crepe with nutella. YUM city. 
Notre Dame.



After eating, it was time to go to the train station. Our trip to Rome was long so we got a couchette. This is a non-private sleeping car on a train. There are three beds (bunk-bed style) on one side and three on the other. I was a little concerned about sleeping with strangers...I mean just saying it sounds wrong. Mostly, I was really worried our car-mates would stink. I know that is so shallow. We got really fortunate though and only had 2 other people in our car instead of 4. And they were Americans, thus they practice the habit of using deodorant. 
Overall the ride was good. We slept decent and the time passed quickly. 
Apologies for the awkward/seductive pose, but here is a glimpse of the train. We slept on the top beds.
Bryan and I have decided that Paris was our least favorite city. I think that anyone who goes to Europe should go there because the Eiffel Tower was definitely awesome and so iconic. But after seeing that and the Arche de Triumph, we weren't super impressed.


Up next: Roma!

2 comments:

thefierycrash said...

ahhh! i thought i told you the louvre was closed on tuesdays!!! that happened to my boyfriend, as well. so sad because there are so many awesome things there. i also thought paris was pretty stinky but a wonderful city. hope you got to walk down les champs elysees!

ashley said...

Lindsay,

You probably did warn me but I totally forgot!!! So bummed. Oh well, if that's the only thing we messed up...I'll take it!