Travel – a Smartguy in Paris Part 2

May 13, 2016
Morne Steyn in Paris

Paris is always a good idea • Audrey Hepburn

Day 5 – Friday

Tour Eiffel. The 4th day in Paris was to be spent exploring one of the most iconic structures in France (and the world!). An object of discord, desire and fascination, the Eiffel Tower never fails to impress.

The Eiffel TowerDSC_0840The Eiffel Tower was built by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 Exposition Universelle (The World’s Fair), which was to celebrate the 100th year anniversary of the French Revolution. Its construction in 2 years, 2 months and 5 days was a veritable technical and architectural achievement. “Utopia achieved”, a symbol of technological prowess, at the end of the 19th Century it was a demonstration of French engineering personified by Gustave Eiffel, and a defining moment of the industrial era. It was met with tremendous success and upon seeing the tower up close Lee immediately fell in love! So much so, that Lee and Cherie would return later in the week to climb the stunning structure.

Beautiful Ladies, beautiful sight • Cherie & ChristelleEiffelEiffelDSC_0988Stroll as the Parisians doDSC_0931Mini-meDSC_0920Lee, Morne & little JovanDSC_0951

La Seine and French crêpes. Next up was a leisurely stroll down the banks of the beautiful river Seine. The river Seine flows right through the heart of Paris bordering 10 of the 20 arrondisements. There are 37 bridges within Paris and dozens more spanning the river outside the city. Examples in Paris include the Pont Louis-Philippe and Pont Neuf, the latter of which dates back to 1607.

The breathtaking river SeineSeineseineThere are 37 bridges along the river Seine in Paris and dozens more spanning the river outside the cityseineA Smartguy (with his Smartgirl) on a bridge a la Parisseine

The Norwegians call them pannekake, the Germans pfannkuchen. The Danish call them pandekager and in Afrikaans we call them pannekoek, but in France they are called crêpes and they are simply delicious! A crêpe is a type of very thin pancake, usually made from wheat flour or buckwheat flour. Crêpes are served with a variety of fillings, from the simplest with only sugar to the more elaborate chocolate Nutella fillings. Definitely a Smartguy favourite. Yum!

Delicious crêpesDSC_0891 crepes

Le Perchoir. The day ended with a couple of drinks at the enormously popular rooftop bar Le Perchoir in Menilmontant. Opened on a huge rooftop with a 360 degree view of the capital, you’ll find a vast space surrounding a striking bar, comfortable sofas strewn with cushions, colourful plants and scented herbs planted in pots around the seats or hung from railings. Watching the sunset over the Sacré-Coeur, glass in hand, under garlands of coloured lights, really is something special. We love a good rooftop bar!

Le Perchoir DSC_1024 Stunning Rooftop views from atop Le PerchoirDSC_1027 DSC_1034 DSC_1035 Cherie enjoying the viewDSC_1039 DSC_1040 DSC_1041

Day 6 – Saturday

Champs-Élysées. Frequently described as ‘the world’s most beautiful avenue’, the Avenue des Champs-Élysées was a Paris must-see for Lee and Cherie. Tourists and Parisians can be spotted strolling at any time of day or night along this iconic two-kilometre stretch between the Place de la Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe. Like the Eiffel Tower, the avenue is a symbol of Paris. It is lined with restaurants (Hard Rock Café, l’Atelier Renault, Ledoyen etc.), luxury boutiques (Louis Vuitton, Mont-Blanc, Guerlain, Ferrari etc.), flagship stores (Banana Republic, Abercrombie, Sephora etc.) and nightclubs. It is also the setting each year for major events such as the Bastille Day military parade, the arrival of the Tour de France and the Christmas lights. Finally, the Avenue des Champs-Elysées has some of the top museums in Paris: the Grand Palais, the Petit Palais, the Palais de la Découverte and the Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton.

Champs-ÉlyséesChamps-ÉlyséesChamps-ÉlyséesWhat is a avenue without a magnifique Ferrari?Champs-Élysées The world’s most beautiful avenueDSC_1083 DSC_1090 DSC_1091The iconic French fashion house Louis VuittonDSC_1095

The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most famous monuments in Paris. It stands in the centre of the Place Charles de Gaulle at the western end of the Champs-Élysées. The Arc de Triomphe honours those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and the Napoleonic Wars. It was commissioned in 1806 after the victory at Austerlitz by Emperor Napoleon at the peak of his fortunes.

Lee and Morne & The Arc de Triomphe DSC_1074

Day 7 – Sunday

Mairie Easter egg hunt. On Sunday it was time for the very sweetest of treats! The annual Mairie de Paris (city council of Paris) Easter Egg hunt. Pâques (Easter) is very much a family holiday in France. Since 1886, the 3-day weekend is a public holiday; most shops & supermarkets are closed both Easter Sunday & Monday. Egg Hunts are always one of the Parisians’ favorite parts of Easter. The French love hiding special chocolate Easter eggs and treats on the grounds of Châteaux around Paris. Morne took Lee, Cherie and his family to enjoy the special egg hunt at the nearest Châteaux, with this particular Châteaux having almost 30 000 Easter eggs hidden on the grounds. Fun AND delicious!

Little Jovan enjoying the Egg huntParis Easter Egg hunt DSC_1132

Stay tuned for A Smartguy in Paris Part 3

*Sources Wikipedia

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