Thursday, August 27, 2009

PARIS: LA DÉFENSE


Our last day in Paris began in La Défense, the business and financial district of Paris with its huge Arc de la Défense. We came back to Paris at midday to have lunch in a restaurant near Nôtre Dame we liked a lot.


Star sights of this day in Paris: 


  • La Défense 
  • Mosquée de Paris 
  • Rue Mouffetard 


La Tour Montparnasse



Our hotel in Paris was next to Montparnasse tower,a 200m high skycraper


La Défense



One colourful building in La Défense


The Arch de la Défense can be seen through the vegetation

This fountain, designed by Yaacov Agam, is one of the best and colourful fountains of Paris


Another view of Agam fountain in La Défense

The Arche is almost a perfect cube (width: 108m, height: 110m, depth: 112m) and it was inaugurated in July 1989, with grand military parades that marked the bicentennial of the French revolution. It completed the line of monuments that forms the Axe historique running through Paris together with Le Arche de Triomphe and Le Arche du Carrousel


Of course the Arch de la Défense isn't the Tower of Pisa but we had a good time taking this picture. Curiously, the Arche is placed so that it forms a secondary axe (axis) with the two highest buildings in Paris, the Tour Eiffel and the Tour Montparnasse

La Défense is like a town with hotels, shopping centers and skycrapers. Underneath this square there is another city with a huge shopping center, a metro station and a RER station


View of Le Arc de Triomphe from La Défense


The square in front of Le Grande Arch is quite wide and links most of the buildings of this district which has Le Grande Arch as a reference


Although the day was lovely, there isn't many people walking because we went to La Défense in a working day

Located just beyond the city limits, the Grande Arche de La Défense anchors the eastern end of the historic axis that stretches from the Louvre down the Champs-Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe

Important corporations headquartered at La Défense include Cegetel, Société Générale, Total, Aventis, Areva and Arcelor


From the top of this staircase we could enjoy good views of La Défense district and Les Champs Elysées



Arénes de Lutéce




After coming back from La Défense, we did a brief visit to this ancient amphitheater



Mosquée de Paris


And we visited also La Mosquée de Paris whose beauty really surprised us, especially its gardens

The minaret of this beautiful mosque

The inside garden of this mosque was really nice



Rue Mouffetard




And finally, we came back to the surroundings of La Ile de la Cité through La rue Mouffetard, which was an ancient roman way



You can see more pictures of the days I spent in Paris clicking on the links below:






Besides, in France I have visited the following beautiful places I strongly recommend:



Finally, other great cities I have already visited are:

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

PARIS: VERSAILLES

We began our seventh day with a visit to the incredibly huge Jardins du Palais de Versailles. We spent there four or five hours and we came back to Paris at 5 pm, where we had a lovely time in a ship-restaurant just in front of Nôtre Dame, in the Sena left bank. I strongly recommend this restaurant, called six-huit.

Star sights of this day in Paris:

  • Versailles
  • Le Quartier Latin
  • La Seine at night

Day 7

Versailles

Here we were about to enter the gardens of the Palais de Versailles

When I saw this overview of the gardens of the Palace of Versailles for the first time I became really astonished. I wouldn't have never imagined that this gardens would be so huge

This canal in the gardens of the Palace of Versailles is almost 2 kilometers long!

A view of the rear of the Palace of Versailles with the bassin d'Apollon in the foreground

Near the Neptuno fountain behind the Palace of Versailles


Inside the gardens of Versailles you can find little fountains to take a break

Or quiet squares were to sit down and to enjoy the silence

Here this really long canal begins


A view of the Palace of Versailles from the canal

At that moment we had already walked quite a lot since our arrival at the Palace of Versailles

An overview of the gardens of Versailles with the canal in the foreground and the palace in the background

While we walk along the gardens of Versailles, Google was taking photos for the Street Viewer


After eating something we came back to the surroundings of the Palace of Versailles

Flowers give a colourful look to this area of the gardens of Versailles


More flowers in this impressive gardens of Versailles

There are many sculptures throughout this really huge gardens


After this pleasing to the eye visit to these wonderful gardens of Versailles, we came back to Paris to enjoy a dinner in a boat anchored in front of Notre Dame


Le Quartier Latin

As soon as we arrived at Paris we walked a bit to buy some souvenirs in Le Quartier Latin


La Seine


The boat where we had a good time beside Nôtre Dame and where we enjoyed a delicious crepe

Fantastic views of Nôtre Dame and La Seine from our table


We asked to the waiter whether he could take us a photo


A night view of La Seine

Le Pont Neuf at night

La Seine at night with La Tour Eiffel lit in the background

You can see more pictures of the days I spent in Paris clicking on the links below:




Besides, in France I have visited the following beautiful places I strongly recommend:



Finally, other great cities I have already visited are:


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

PARIS: JARDIN DU LUXEMBOURG AND LA VILLETTE


We began the sixth day with a visit to the lovely Jardin du Luxembourg and, afterwards, we went to Le Parc de la Villette. Finally, at night, we enjoyed a fascinating Sena cruise. For me, one of the best experiences I lived in Paris.


Star sights of this day in Paris:
  • Saint Sulpice
  • Jardin du Luxembourg
  • Parc de la Villette
  • Seine Cruise

Day 6

Saint-Sulpice


L'église de Saint Sulpice. I knew about this church after reading The Da Vinci Code



Inside L'église de Saint Sulpice there is the famous Gnomon


Jardin du Luxembourg



Le Jardin de Luxembourg is a really beautiful park. I really like it, especially Le Palais de Luxembourg, which is inside the park

An image of this palace through some flowers

In front of the palace there is a pond where children play with sailing boats

Another picture of this palace. This park is a suitable place for spending a sunny morning with children or for walking


And we could see La Tour Eiffel from Le Jardin du Luxembourg :)

There is a lot of sculptures throughout the Jardin du Luxembourg


La Fontaine de Médicis also inside the park is a quiet place to take a break


Taking a break before going to Le Parc de la Villette


Parc de la Villette

We have already arrived at Le Parc de la Villette

and the day was really lovely :)

And there is a canal inside this park

Here La Géode. Inside this sphere there is an IMAX cinema

Here the science museum is reflected by La Géode

I like a lot aeronautics, so I could't help appearing in a photo with the vulcain engine of the rocket Ariane



There is big green area to have a rest after visiting this park and the science museum


Seine Cruise

And this day I did one of the activities I liked the most in Paris: A Seine river cruise. I really enjoy this cruise and I realized that Paris at night is incredibly beautiful


The Eiffel tower from the Seine


The Alexander III bridge at night from the seine

Before going to our hotel, we ate something in the Latin Quarter. A really lively neighborhood of Paris, especially at night



You can see more pictures of the days I spent in Paris clicking on the links below:



Besides, in France I have visited the following beautiful places I strongly recommend:


Finally, other great cities I have already visited are: