Arc de Triomphe photo by Lesli Latt
I’m not sure how it happened, but it has been almost four months since we went to Paris, and I’m still overwhelmed by the awesomeness of the experience. I’ve been to Paris a handful of times before, but every time offers a whole host of new things I want to capture—and this translates into A LOT of photos.
My other challenge has been in choosing how much to share. I’m the type of person that takes notes along the way because I want to remember and share everything. I want my friend, whose birthday the trip celebrated, to have a detailed record as well.
Lesli in front of Cartier on the Champs Elysee
But I realize that the majority of people who are going to come to the blog don’t need everything, or even want it. So now I will endeavor to offer you the highlights (which really doesn’t narrow it down much!).
Of the 3 cities we visited – London, Paris and Rome – Paris was my favorite. It seemed to have the best combination of old world charm and modern comforts. It is a city that runs smoothly without obliterating or being inconvenienced by its history.
My goal was to show Lesli as much of Paris as she could see in 3 days, and still have time to sleep. So we started with a quick walk around our hotel’s neighborhood. We stayed at the Tilsitt Etoile, very close to the Arc de Triomphe and one end of the Champs Elysee. Then we napped and prepped for our dinner cruise on the Seine.
This served the dual purposes of seeing an overview of the city while getting a taste of the culture through food, drink and music. This is a must for any short stay in Paris. There are a number of companies that offer cruises with varying levels of comfort. We chose Bateaux Parisiens , and loved it!
Here’s where it took us :
Click here for the interactive Cruise Map and it’ll tell you all about each of the places!
Here we are enjoying the cruise. The photo of me was taken by the onboard photographer as a souvenir photo. I almost didn’t get it, but Lesli talked me into it. Thanks, Lesli!
Below are some of the photos we took during the cruise– see if you can match them up with the map. (See? Interactive and educational, aren’t we?)
And here’s a video to give you a taste of the magic!
Afterwards, inspired by the sights and sounds, and full of great food and plenty of wine, we hung around to take photos of the Eiffel Tower at night. Pretty good for our first day in Paris!
PARIS ~ DAY 2
The next day we took a hop-on hop-off bus tour with the goal of hopping off at the Louvre. The great thing about the bus is that they have running commentary so you know what you’re looking at, and a map to follow along. Still, I could hardly remember, (and surprisingly, didn’t take notes!) so I did a lot of research when I got home to identify all the buildings I photographed.
Please enjoy a little sampling of: The Eiffel Tower, Les Invalides, Le Grand Palais, Eglise de la Madeleine, Paris Opera, and The Louvre!
I did further research after looking at our Louvre photos and video. And I’ll tell ya why: the magic of art is that it evokes memories and emotions, it refers to something else, and that something is different for each person.
Just as much of modern art and pop culture refers back to the classics, when one’s first exposure is through pop culture, it works the other way too. Lesli and I have always enjoyed each other’s pop culture references, but in order to honor the real artists and intent behind the works we captured on film, I did hours of research on the Louvre’s website and elsewhere. (I also noticed that I’ve photographed many of the same things each time I’ve been to the Louvre. I’m sure it would make for a great psychoanalytical study, but I’ll save that for another day.)
Ultimately, though that’s what travel ought to do – reflect ourselves back to us and then push us beyond what we know to discover more. And the world is full of so much more!
Here are some of the Louvre’s greatest hits, as chosen by we 2 chicks:
Louvre's Greatest Hits
–Phedre et Hippolyte by Baron Pierre-Narcisse Guerin
–Adoration of the Magi by Bernardino Luini (or our name: Mohawk baby Jesus)
–Mona Lisa by Da Vinci
–The Young Martyr by Paul Delaroche
–The Nativity by Fra Diamante
–Penitent Saint Jerome in Ecstasy attributed to Luca Signorelli (or our name: Super Jesus flying high)
– I went kinda Joss Whedon and thought this guy was holding a little pet demon, but actually, he’s Portrait of a Man with a Statuette by Agnolo Bronzino.
–Winged Victory of Samothrace (AKA Nike of Samothrace)
–The Sisters of the Artist by Theodore Chasseriau
The rest of the stuff we loved can be seen in our video, below. Don’t hate us because we’re pretending to be shallow! And you can search the Louvre online
for any I missed.
Then we left the Louvre in time to catch the last visit by the hop-on-hop-off bus.
Louvre Courtyard from inside the Pyramid - photo by Malayna
It was bright, so I donned the only sunglasses I had with me – my SPY sunglasses!
Cool sunglasses, and cooler (spy) sunglasses!
Here’s a sampling of some of the photos I took with said spy sunglasses. See the earpiece? I’m like a secret service agent or something!
Paris captured by spy sunglasses
Wait til you see what I got on the following day!
Check back for Paris, Part Deux!