Tag Archives: pictures

The Catacombs

26 Jul

skull and bones

There’s nothing more ghoulish then spending an afternoon with the dead. Somehow, Paris has turned its previous residents into tourist attractions, like the Père Lachaise Cemetery and the Catacombs. It’s creepy, but also fascinating. Continue reading

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The Eiffel Tower

12 Jul

eiffel tower

It sounds kind of crazy, but I didn’t visit Paris’ iconic Eiffel Tower until my last week in France. Or at least, I didn’t go up it. It’s hard to miss Gustave Eiffel’s masterpiece: you can see the tower from all sorts of random places within Paris. I had an excellent view on my train ride into the city every morning. But every time I went past the Champs de Mars and looked at the long, winding queue, I said, “nah, let’s leave it for next week” up until there was no putting it off.

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Père Lachaise Cemetary

7 Jun

pere lachaise entrance

On Thursday, my French class went on one of our “cultural field trips”. Previous ones have included cheese tasting and a tour of the area around the school, so this was a step up. Père Lachaise is Paris’s largest cemetery and some of the biggest and brightest personalities of the past two hundred years are buried there.

The cemetery is so famous and so many people wish to be buried there that some creative rules have been put into place on the question of space. You have to be French, died in France, or died for France to be buried there without an extravagant fee, and even then buying a plot in perpetuity is very, very, expensive. Entire families are often buried on one plot, going down as far as five levels. It’s kind of wild.

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The Towers of Notre Dame

27 May

gargoyles eiffel

I went over to the Notre Dame with a friend on Sunday. Her time in Paris is winding down, so we’re hitting all those tourist sites that she hasn’t been to yet. Yesterday, I finally went up to the bell towers at the cathedral to see some of those gargoyles and church bells up close.

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Old Town

10 May

Stortorget SquareStortorget Square.

Gamla stan is universally recognized as the original site for Stockholm, dating back to the 13th century. Many of the buildings date back to the Renaissance and even the Medieval period (which was 1100s-1500s for Sweden), making it really freaking cool looking.

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Paris in Spring

26 Apr

I had a good day yesterday after my test. I grabbed a sandwich from my favorite boulangerie and headed over to the river after class. I wandered along the Seine before settling down at a little park across from the Notre Dame. Basically, I want you all to see this so you can be jealous of my glamourous life.

This was my view every time I looked up from my book. Speaking of, I highly recommend Robin Hobb’s Rain Wild series. It’s really engrossing and now I need to track down book 3 from one of the English bookstores here.

P1070278

After the jump, a view from along the Seine.

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Musée d’Orsay

12 Apr

I wandered past Solferino yesterday and had the vague desire to do something productive with my time after class, so I went into the Musée d’Orsay on a whim. It’s a pretty impressive building over on the left bank of the river and I’ve never been. (I know, I know. That’s what happens when you live long term someplace, you put off all the touristy things.) Thanks to my handy residence stamp, I got in free of charge. I’m really, really liking the “free entrance to museums for people under 26” thing.

The Musée d’Orsay is actually an old railway station that was retrofitted to hold some of France’s best impressionist and post-impressionist art. For those of us who fell asleep during art history, this means it’s got a lot of Monet, Degas, Renior, Cezanne, Van Gogh, and a bunch of others who you might have heard of. It’s also got a lot of French sculptures. The building itself is stunningly beautiful, in a way that makes you wish Grand Central or Penn could be. I’ll grant you Grand Central has that awesome hall that shows up in movies, but let’s get real: no one stares at the ceilings of the LIRR waiting room in awe.

The museum is pretty strict about their “no photography” rule which does add to the experience a little, since you’re not agonizing over every photo and can actually appreciate the art. Instead, I wandered around writing down the names of paintings that I liked. In no particular order, here’s what I enjoyed. (Images blatantly stolen from around the internet.)

L’Enigme by Gustave Dorél'enigme dore Continue reading