Postcards from Paris

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Do you ever think about the history of a place? The many secrets and hidden gems. The people from the past, each of them with their own thoughts and stories. This happens to me all the time. I find it interesting to dig deeper and to find a connection with a place.

Paris is one of those places that looks like a postcard. So many neighborhoods. So many perspectives. So many angles. It’s a dream. Imagine a hot summer night along the Seine, sipping a glass of wine and the perfect setting of the Eiffel Tower in the background. Let your mind wander into the present, the future and maybe even the past. Take it all in. What does the city look like at this very moment in time? What will it look like in 50 years from now? But most important… what did it look like in the past century?

Le Tour Eiffel

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The Eiffel Tower was intended as a temporary monument for the World’s Fair but it became the symbol of France. It was built between 1887 and 1889 and named after the engineer Gustave Eiffel.

You can see the Eiffel Tower from almost everywhere in the city so I think it’s pretty obvious that I’ve been taking too many pictures of this monument.

I never made it to the top (because of the long queues) but it must be a breathtaking view. I would recommend to buy your tickets in advance.

Construction of the Eiffel Tower – July 1888 (source: wikimedia commons)

Basilique du Sacré-Coeur

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The basilica was built between 1875 and 1914 and it’s a nice piece of Roman architecture. A long time ago (long before we were even born), this place was a sacred site for Druids and a place where Romans used to worship their Gods.

You will have to climb some steep stairs to reach it, as it was built on a hill. I was basically dead when I arrived there but the view was so worth it. Try to get there at sunset to have the most romantic view over the wonderful city of Paris.

The Dome of the basilica is accessible by stairs and it offers a great view over the entire city (even better than the stairs I mentioned before).

 

Basilique du Sacré-Coeur (source: wikimedia commons)

 

Le Jardin du Luxembourg

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The Garden of Luxembourg is the first French Garden with an influence of Italian Baroque. It was originally owned by the Duke of Luxembourg but purchased by Marie de Medici when she moved from Florence to Paris, back in 1611.

 

Jardin du Luxembourg by Christophe Civeton – 1829 (source: wikimedia commons)

It’s a beautiful garden with several statues and fountains. The best time to visit is Spring or Summer when the castle is surrounded by flowers. It looks like a real postcard.

 

 

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Le Jardin du Luxembourg – 1904 (source: wikimedia commons)

 

L’Arc de Triomphe

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The Arch is located at the Avenue des Champs-Elysées and was built between 1806 and 1836. It was built in honor of those who fought for France during the Napoleonic Wars. On the inside are the names of the generals.

You can go all the way to the top to have one of the best views over the city.

 

L’arc de Triomphe – 1860s – Photograph by Edouard Baldus (source: the Metropolitan Museum of Art – wikimedia commons)

 

Place du Trocadéro

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Are you looking for a stunning view? An Eiffel Tower postcard kind of view? Go to Place du Trocadéro. It’s easy to travel by metro and I would suggest to stop here and not at the Eiffel Tower itself (and you won’t have to walk that long). The view is so much better from up here.

 

Le Notre Dame

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The cathedral is one of the famous monuments in Paris. It’s over 800 years old, took 200 years to build, and based on a small island, l’île de la Cité. This Island is the historical heart of the city and it’s the place where the history of Paris began. The Notre Dame had an eventful history over the centuries.

You can go all the way to the top where you can see the spire of Notre Dame. The interior of the cathedral shows its true beauty. You can also visit the crypt.

Oh, just so you know, the hunchback of the Notre Dame doesn’t actually live there. Just saying.

 

Le Notre Dame by L.P. – ca. 1865-1895 (source: Cornell University Library – wikimedia commons)

 

Le Louvre

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The Louvre is the biggest museum in the world and a small part of the collection is not open to the public. The most famous piece of art is the Mona Lisa.

This building has not always been a museum. Back in the Middle Ages, it was built as a fortress and it turned into a royal palace. After the French Monarchy moved to the palais of Versailles, back in 1793, the Louvre museum was born.

Le Palais du Louvre by J.L.C. – before 1908 (source: Wikimedia Commons)

What are your plans for this summer? Thinking about a trip to Paris and creating some postcard memories?

 

14 comments on “Postcards from Paris”

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