Wednesday, April 09, 2008

France, Paris

Paris Sightseeing & Travel Tips
By Jacy G

Eiffel Tower at sunriseThe main difference Paris offers to the other major capitals of the world is, I think, their buildings and architecture have been carefully restricted and therefore one can generally always see the sky wherever you may be. Paris has all the bustle of any capital but less frenetic than London for instance. There is always time to chill which in my opinion the French do very well. The French also appreciate beauty and generally that is reflected in their women who take care of themselves and their appearance - much to the great pleasure of the men, no doubt.

If you are an art lover, take a trip to Le Louvre. The much debated pyramid to some is an eyesore, to others a careful fusion between the old and the contemporary but a discussion point none the less. Once inside Le Louvre, you can marvel at the numerous works of art including the famed Mona Lisa which is surprisingly small in size. I was very surprised by this when I saw it. Something talked about so much being so very small. It’s quite ironic really. Quirks aside, Le Louvre is well worth a visit. I personally can't spend hours looking at a single piece of art so I whipped round the entire exhibition in less than a day. If you like taking things at a more leisurely pace, you may need to make a few visits to satiate yourself.

Arc de TriompheIf you are of a religious disposition and also appreciate art, then the Sacre Coeur is the place to go. You need to be quite fit of course if you are walking as there is a mighty climb to reach it. Once there, allow yourself to be inspired by the amazingly beautiful ceiling fresco's. As beautiful as any sky on a clear sunny day. The blue of the sky is incredible. When I paint, I never manage to get colours quite as vibrant on my palette. Still, being a house of God, one might expect something a little more magnificent. C'est la vie. There is of course Notre Dame of religious interest as well - which is not nearly as pretty - more eerie if you ask me - possibly scary. Still it's worth a visit just to see the gargoyles and the story telling artwork inside its walls. Those too are a bit scary - dark and sombre - but that probably has more to do with the dim lighting.

If you are in the mood for love or history, what better way to spend an afternoon by floating down the River Seine. Relax, sit back and enjoy the views. The guided tours are very informative and another great way to see the capital.

Anyway, those are my favourite places in Paris but following closely behind are the Arch de Triumph, the Catacombs, Montmartre, the Latin Quarter and Le Tour Eiffel (the Eiffel Tower). Notably, the Eiffel Tower was originally a temporary structure but has survived incredibly well considering its humble beginnings.

About The Author
Jacy G is a great fan of France and all things French. For accommodation deals visit Cheap Hotels France.

Pictures
Eiffel Tower at sunrise (Tristan Nitot)
Arc de Triomphe (Cezary Piwowarski)

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