Thursday, May 28, 2009

Paris and More Paris

I can't stop raving about how picturesque some parts of the city are. We started the day off with a visit to Ile de la Cite ("cradle of the city") where Paris was born. On this tiny island, we got a chance to see Cathedrale du Notre Dame. There is so much history behind this epitome of French Gothic architecture; construction took nearly 200 years to finish, and the cathedral itself is over 650 years old. To be walking around and inside an icon centuries old was indeed interesting. The interior is ornate with stained-glass windows, mosaic work on some of the ceiling, and of course, artwork.

Nothing beats the walk around the cathedral (each entrance to the building looks different) and across Pont Neuf - the oldest standing bridge across the Seine. On the left bank are street-side artists, booksellers, caricaturists, vendors, all in the backdrop of the Notre Dame.

After grabbing a bite to eat, we headed towards the Tour Eiffel. We decided not to see it from the top today as the weather was a bit cloudy - and rain was on the charts for the evening; we figured that the best view would be when it's sunny out - so we'll try back tomorrow. Instead, we used the time to take a cruise up the Seine river. The boat ride offered some of the most beautiful views of Notre Dame, Tour Eiffel, Assemblee Nationale, Musee du Louvre, and Musee D'Orsay. After about an hour, we got off a the Tour Eiffel and had a chance to click some snaps around it. Bang opposite the Tour Eiffel is Ecole Militaire, which is a military training house. We ate dinner (pommes frites and vegetable sandwich on a French baguette) near Tour Eiffel in a cutesy cafe and headed back to the hotel for some much-needed rest for the feet.

It was a heavenly day altogether. Looking forward to a visit to Musee du Louvre and Tour Eiffel tomorrow. Au Revoir!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bonjour Paris!

The trip is on full swing now. I was thinking that London will be nothing new to me, as I've stayed there for about 2 months when I was on a business trip. Yet, I had a great time there. It was all about sightseeing with the family - and meeting up good ol' friends. There was a lot of catch up to do - and as expected - not enough time for it! Luckily, I was able to plan it well so that while my family was doing a lot of the touristy stuff, I was able to kick back with a coffee at Costa with close friends.

Right now, we're in Paris. The city is absolutely beautiful. Very European, even more so than London, I think. Cathedrals, museums, squares, the Seine, Eiffel, Arc de Triomphe - there's so much history and culture to soak in. There's so much to see and do - but nothing beats lazing around at a quaint roadside cafe - sipping on coffee and gorging on a delicious Pain au Chocolat. Pastries here taste like they have tasted never before - and the smell of a patisserie is so inviting that one has to relinquish!
I'm planning to visit the Notre Dame and Tour Eiffel tomorrow. More posts coming soon, so stay tuned! :-)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Travel Bug

Indeed, the travel bug has bit me, yet again!

London and Paris await this time around. Though, I've stayed in London for about two months just a short while back, I'm excited to meet friends this time around. There's a lot of catching-up to do with old ones, and meeting-up with those I've been friendly with at work. Should be exciting, and lot of fun. Definitely looking forward to it!

Paris - well, there's too much to see and not much time! I can't wait to see all the gorgeous cathedrals/palaces, eat at the quaint road-side cafes, and most of all, meet Mona Lisa over at the Louvre. I've studied Art History back in college, so the trip to the Art Galleries should be interesting. Also eager to take the cruise up the Seine river to catch the picturesque view of Tour Eiffel and Cahedrale Notre Dame de Paris.

Stay tuned for travel reviews and pictures!