Paris to Caen


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Europe » France » Lower Normandy » Caen
July 8th 2017
Published: July 8th 2017
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First stop is to sort out our tickets for the train to Caen. Much quicker and easier than we thought after fighting the internet earlier. Then off to visit the Catacombs. This time we had prepaid, fast track tickets which only involved a 30 minute wait rather than 4 hours.

The Catacombs are the underground ossuary of Paris and has the remains of more than 6,000,000 people artfully arranged in layers of fibulars and skulls. This was founded in 1774 after a series of cave-ins and remains from cemeteries were transferred between 1786 and 1788. More were transferred later. This has been a tourist attraction since 1874.

From here, we headed off to see Notre Dame. This is a beautiful gothic cathedral. Again a queue to get in but it moved quickly. During the French Revolution many treasures of the Cathedral were either stolen or destroyed. During WWII there was more damage and some of the windows now support a geometric pattern.

Andy decided to climb the tower and look for Quasimodo. I decided I had had enough of towers for now so left him to it. He said there were lots of stairs and a great view.

From here we wandered through the Latin Quarter and found a nice restaurant where for €10 each we could gave a 3 course meal. It certainly beat having ready made sandwiches from the shop.

We walked down to the Pantheon. Originally a church but now a mausoleum for the remains of distinguished French citizens. The web said it was open to 6:30. What this really meant it was closed to new visitors at 5:45.

Time to get the metro back to Mairie Saint-Ouen to collect out bags from the hotel and catch our train to Caen. The metro was very crowded with hot, sweaty, smelly bodies.

Made it back to the station where we needed to get the train to Caen. The signage is not that clear as to which platform we needed. Found someone to help point us in the right direction and made it on with 10 minutes to spare. Uneventful trip apart from Andy leaping off at each stop to take photos. Arrived Caen at 10:20 and found a tram to take us into the centre then only a short walk to the hotel.


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