Jardin des Tuileries
Very pleasant and relaxing walk.
There is a health ”app” that provides a number of measurements. On Saturday, we discovered it took 21,845 steps, 13.5 km and 25 floors to walk from our apartment to the Champs d’Elysees, climb the Arc de Triomphe, tour the Louvre and head back around 6:00 PM. It explained our fatigue at the end of the day!!
Debra visited the Champs d’Elysees many years ago and she opined that it has lost much of it’s earlier charm. Along the Boulevard there are numerous high end stores selling global brands, some restaurants, including McDonalds, and it was quite similar to many of the exclusive streets in cities around the world, (Barcelona, Shanghai, London, New York, etc.) Adding to the “commoness” was a giant Ferris Wheel which distracted from the more enjoyable aesthetics areas. The tree lined promenade park along the route was well maintained and a key feature.
The Arc de Triomphe is a very impressive structure which took 30 years to build(1806-1836). It was commissioned by Napoleon who died before it’s completion. It is now primarily a war memorial that has been updated to include inscriptions for key participants in WW1 and WW2 and contains the French tomb of
Debra insisted we rent this Lamborghini while in Paris. We managed to get a parking spot in front of the Louis Vuitton Store on the Champs d’Elysee and went in to buy a few gifts for our family and friends!!!!
the unknown soldier. We climbed the 284 steps up to the viewing platform which provided a very panoramic view of the city.
Off to the Louvre to finish the day. Debra had bought a museum pass at the airport when we arrived which was a smart decision as it allowed us to “jump the queue” at the Louvre as well as the Arc de Triomphe. You still have to wait in line to get into the facilities but at least we didn’t have to suffer through the long line ups for ticket sales. The Louvre, formally the official Royal Palace which King Louis X14 moved to Versailles, has since been expanded and is enormous. We downloaded an ”app” which was difficult to use and somewhat confusing so it would have been better to use the Audio Guide provided by the Louvre. For perspective, someone calculated that if you spent 30 seconds on each exhibit, it would take 8 months to see every piece. The crowds were huge, particularly to see the famous Mona Lisa. We went there in the late afternoon which is supposed to be a quieter time and only saw a small fraction of the exhibits. We
Arc de Triomphe
An impressive structure but difficult to get a picture without the crowds
may go back as our Museum pass is good for 6 days.
Most people are surprised at the size of the Mona Lisa which is relatively small compared to many other Renaissance paintings. It’s difficult to determine what has made the painting so famous. There is a lot mystery and intrigue of the Masterpiece and it does include some new techniques used by Leonardo Da Vinci such as the change of expression in her eyes and smile when looking from different angles. Xray technology has revealed the initials LV have been painted into her eyes which could represent the artists name?
A full day today and a reflection of the amount of interesting and educational things to do and see in Paris.
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