30 Nov

About a week ago, I went over to Montmarte for the first time. Montmarte is a neighborhood in the north of Paris, historically known as an artist’s hangout and where all the cool clubs are located. The who’s who list of famous residents includes such luminaries as Vincent van Gogh, Edward Degas, Pablo Picasso, Langston Hughes, and Claude Monet.

abbessesThe art nouveau metro station entrance at Abbesses.

Basically, I went over for two reasons: I wanted to see the church and maybe look for some yarn. (Shut up, it’s a big fabric and garment district today.) It’s actually not a bad trip from my language class – I just stay on Line 12 until I hit Abbesses.

Montmarte is a tourist heavy section of Paris, even when the weather is crummy. I guess everyone wants to see the historic Moulin Rouge and La Boheme? I dunno, since Ewan McGregor isn’t hanging around angsting over his lady love, I was more interested in finding a bakery to grab some lunch.

The main tourist attraction is the Basilica Sacre-Coeur, or the Sacred Heart. It sits at the top of the hill and I can see it every day I go into Paris by train. It’s probably my new favorite church. Well, modern church, anyways. It was built in the 1800s by the artists, I think? So it’s pretty. So very pretty.

spaceoutsacre coeur

The stained glass windows inside are some of the nicest modern ones that I’ve ever seen, but unfortunately they ask that visitors refrain from taking photos, so you’re SOL. I guess this means you all just have to come to France and see them yourselves? Or google images, we could do that.

Arteglass Vitroartesacre coeur


Both photos are from Paco Barranco, who’s got some great stuff over on Flickr.

On days when the weather is nicer, you can usually see most of Paris. Obviously, my luck being the way it is, it was greyish and cloudy.

hello gray paris

I didn’t end up doing much else, just wandering around the Basilica and eating my mediocre quiche on a park bench. I did find a yarn store, but I passed on buying more since I still have a decent stash. As of right now, anyways. I like Montmarte, but I’d suggest going with a friend or at night, when all the clubs are open.


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