The 2 weeks we spent in Paris at the end of this past year were full of food, love and lots and lots of walking! This was my second visit but the first with Mike and it’s safe to say I fell in love with Paris all over again. Here are some highlights from the sightseeing part of our trip.
Mike is a Marine Engineer so we had to visit the National Maritime Musuem. Close to the Eiffel Tower, there is heaps of fascinating history here about ships and lots of model pieces to peek at.
The National Museum of the Middle Ages was founded in 1843 and is housed in two incredible Paris monuments- The northern thermal baths of Lutetia and the Hotel de Cluny built in the late 15th century. We were blown away by the collections inside which included The Lady and the Unicorn, a series of six tapestries woven in wool and silk that are considered one of the greatest works of art in the Middle Ages in Europe. This place is a must visit.
The terrace at the top of the Arc de Triomphe has some of the best views of Paris, especially at night. We really appreciated having our Paris Museum Pass which let us cut to the front of the incredibly long line at night and climb the 284 or so steps to the top. Make sure to check out the views from all the angles- the photo below is Paris’ most famous street, the Champs Élysées.
The archaeological crypt of Notre Dame, located right in front of Notre Dame (and slightly overlooked, we think) houses some foundations-literally- of Paris. I love seeing this kind of stuff-medieval ruins! We liked the historical information which dated right back to the beginning of how Paris became Paris!
The Sainte Chapelle is an exquisite chapel to photograph and admire. Again, our Paris Musuem Passes were super helpful, as the line snaked around the block and our passes gave us front door access immediately. While a portion of the chapel is currently being restored it’s still gorgeous to look at.
The Louvre Musuem can be so incredibly overwhelming we almost didn’t go. Again, our Musuem passes sweetened the deal as we skipped the lines and went right in. 3 1/2 hours is just about my limit for musuems so we grabbed a map and marked what we couldn’t miss. This makes it easier to see what you really want and not wander around, unless that’s what you want to do which is fine too.
Our Museum Pass also gave us a free entry to a cruise along the Seine river. Mike kindly sat outside so I could photograph away, which I think he regretted a bit as the wind picked up, but he’s a champ and shivered through it almost till the end. So touristy but one of my favorite things we did.
We visited the Eiffel Tower a few times during our stay. We also had champagne and watched the sun set from the top, but I’m saving that for another post….
Other favorites were the Salvador Dali museum & the Paris sewers.
Have you visited any of these attractions before? Any favorites to add to the list?
*We had Museum Passes courtesy of the folks over at The Paris Pass who kindly gave us the best Christmas presents ever- The Paris Pass.