(If you’re interested, you can find the part I of the visit here.)
The next day we decided to see the famous museum and landmark of Louvre. It was pretty chilly in Paris but since we were walking a lot, we didn’t feel that cold. After being scammed in Barcelona (read about my Barcelona post here) with dancing puppets, I was more than aware of being careful and not giving in to con artists. We witnessed this in front of Louvre. A group of gypsy girls shoved a paper and pen to our faces. The paper said that it was for the deaf and blind and had names, signatures and donated amounts by people in a list. The girls were making gestures, smiling and giving us thumbs up (all while pretending to be deaf). It took few seconds to realize that it was a scam. They tried to make me pay by showing my name I had almost completed writing on the list, but we we walked away.
The pyramid structures in the museum premises were beautiful. This whole place looked so European. Had only the weather been warmer, we could relax for hours on one of those nearby parks and admire the beauty. The trees still had lovely autumn colors. Luckily the entrance for Louvre museum was free for EU residents along with EU citizens, so I didn’t have to pay. The museum was grand. We were in an art lover’s haven. There were so many excellent artworks and sculptures ranging from Medieval Spanish to Italian to Egyptian to Indian to see. The main attraction was of course the world-famous painting of Mona Lisa by Leonardo Da Vinchi. We spent about half a day seeing the pieces. Although my feet was beginning to ache, I was fascinated by the museum.
By the time we were outside of the museum, it was already dark. We grabbed some ice-cream (delicious!) and made our way to see Arc de Triomphe. To my utter delight, there was a beautiful and BIG Christmas market along the main street leading to Triomphe. Oh what a joy! 😀 I love Christmas decorations and lights and the festive mood. It reminds me of how I used to watch Home Alone movies with my little sister while in Nepal and dream of faraway cold Christmas lands (Finland, the snow and the reindeer sleigh..). I was experiencing it all for real now. Traveling to new places brings me immense pleasures.
The Christmas market was very crowded but I really liked walking along the cute little shops. The market was filled with all kinds of shops ranging from winter clothes to souvenirs to food stalls and attractions for kids. We didn’t buy anything, but we ate roasted chestnuts and I loved the smoked flavor! Too bad I didn’t take any food pictures. After spending some time exploring the market, we decided to head back home. I was really enjoying Paris, also known as the city of lights. When more could the title make more sense than in Christmas?
We walked along the Seine river and could see the iconic Eiffel tower from a distance. I especially loved walking along the river bank. I had just watched the movie “Midnight in Paris” a few weeks before going to Paris, and walking on the streets of Paris in the evening made me feel like in the movie. We were walking closer and closer to the tower and we made it there just in time to catch the light display of Eiffel hour, which was obviously, spectacular! We took a few pictures and navigated our way to the nearest metro station with the map.
A warm bath before bed was a great way to end my memorable day at Paris.
[Click here for part 3]