Dreamt of being in the City of Love....
That was October of 2014; I and Tushar were in Warsaw, Poland those days for work. We travelled to Paris for the first time. There was so much excitement as well as little fear of the unknown place. But we were all set to fulfill our dream to get a glimpse of this City of Love!
It took couple of hours to reach our destination, the Beauvais airport, France. Though the airport stands little far from Paris, but well connected transport buses makes it easy to get to Paris in couple hours. As our bus was nearing to Paris, the one and only thing that was filling our whole view, was none other than the grand Eiffel tower. Yes, this Iron giant really amuses the whole world with its proud stance; we were no exceptions at all.
But this enchanting city offers many other surprises besides Eiffel tower. It is also known for its hot fashion & high standard lifestyle, famous museums to large public gardens, culture, revolution, art, food, etc…Capital of Fashion, City of Light are some other well known names of Paris.
With this huge itinerary, it was difficult what to choose and what to miss. We planned for only 3 days, and initially we thought it would be far enough to cover. But it turned out very wrong, with this amount of time it was only possible to get really a small glimpse of it.
The Eiffel experience..
We reached our hotel in the noon, with some delay finding the address. And to add to it, we had our appointment at 5:15 in the evening at the Eiffel tower. Yes, we pre-booked it to avoid an hour long queues. We rushed from the hotel into Metro and local train to reach the 5th Avenue Anatole, the address of this giant. We were running like anything, and who can stop the time from ticking. As we approached closer, Eiffel stood tall like a huge mountain in front of us, welcoming us; like it was expecting us. We reached sharp at 5:15 on the ticket window, and got our precious access to this beautiful creation of “Gustave Eiffel”. We entered the lift that took us to the second floor where we had to change to another smaller lift which then heads to the summit. As the lift started crawling up, the view started to change completely. It was both fearful and cheerful at the same time. The lift moved up parallel to the inclined face of the tower, making it more thrilling experience. You can clearly see the full view of the city around only if you get out from the shock that you are actually on Eiffel! As we reached to the top, we had to find our way through the rush of people. And we did manage to find place on every corner of the tower to get our pictures making those lifetime memories! We enjoyed an hour long Eiffel experience!!
When we had enough of Eiffel, we got down and started walking towards the Seine River nearby. We bought an amazing ferry ride through this beautiful river which passes through many significant attractions on its way. With an online commentary and amusing music creates a mesmerizing picture on the background rich of history, culture, and nature. In the end of the journey you can buy photo prints of the great moments you spend on the ride! What an idea! Though a bit expensive for an average traveler like us! But it’s once in a lifetime of course!
We finished our first day with hopes that we still have two more days to come back here once again!
The Louvre, Tuileries, local shopping, Seine to be seen again..
Next morning we woke up late because of travel hangoverJ, but certainly no time waste to afford. We got out having our breakfast on the way to next destination which was the world’s largest art museum, of course The Louvre.
While we were walking towards it, we found little shops where we satisfied our shopping lust, bought souvenirs and gifts for family and friends.
Today Louvre is a public museum which was once the residence palace of the French kings. It is very large, so much that we got badly tired walking more than half day and still seeing only some ten percent of all epochs of human history.
It is very well preserved and maintained museum. The well known picture of the mystic Mona Lisa reigns here.
We had a full group of tourist ahead of us, which was not leaving a small bit of place for us to get a look closer at the picture. But we were not going to leave that place empty handsJ, we kept patience and made our way to victory, that was photo time
As we left the museum buying some creative stuff in the marketplace inside, we saw a small local bazaar of plenty of varieties of dry fruits and local food. We did not spend very long here, and we started our way to visit Tuileries Garden; a large public park nearby and had some fun and rest in local’s way.
Notre Dame & nearby..
That morning we started our sightseeing early; and quickly reached to the neared bus stop to again get under the mighty Tower. We opened our tourist guide map, and started searching for the short routes; like a pro traveler! After sometime of walk, we arrived at this great church, a well known cathedral, “Notre Dame”.
One of the best-known churches in the world is also a true masterpiece of French Gothic architecture. The outside will take your breath away with its ornate facade but mainly with the beautiful stained glass windows; telling us different biblical stories alongside it’s elegant decorative purpose.
What took our sight away after we came out back, was a man with lot of sparrow around him. Yes, sparrows onto him. Many people were also around there taking pictures of him and selfie with the sparrows.
He gave us a small piece of cake to offer to the sparrows, at a cost of one euro that did the trick, and the sparrows started coming on to us to eat from our hand touching us, not fearing us!!! Just like they are our petsJ And what shook me was the Sparrows touch, which we are never used to it. Since childhood we have seen and experienced the Sparrows always avoid human touch, and in worst if it happens then other sparrows attack the one in fault. Here it was completely opposite; they were touching, mixing with humans like anything.
Before we went again to Seine for a ferry ride we spent some time over the Alexandre bridge on the way, admiring it’s beauty holding many statues depicting arts, science, commerce, & Industry. It could be an example of friendship between France & Russia in those times. It was also the last stop of our sightseeing, and we had to go back to our hotel; next morning we had flight early leaving to Zurich
I felt Paris is not just a city; it is a Culture in its own! We said a tearful good bye to this lovely city; with a promise to come back
सौ. रश्मीता तुषार जाधव
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