Saturday, August 22, 2009

PARIS: LE GRAND LOUVRE

After enjoying fantastic views of Paris from La Tour Eiffel, Le Sacré Coeur and Le Arch de Triomphe, our third day in Paris would begin with a visit to Les Tuilleries and Le Louvre. I also was eager to walk along the rues of La Ile de la Cité and to enjoy a close view of Nôtre Dame and a night view of La Place Vendome.


Star sights of this day in Paris:

  • Les Tuilleries
  • Le Grand Louvre
  • Centre Pompidou
  • Île de la Cité and Nôtre Dame
  • Sainte Chapelle and La Palais de Justice
  • Conciergerie
  • Hôtel de Ville (City Hall)
  • Rue de Rivoli
  • Palais Royal
  • Place Vendome at night


Day 3

Les Tuilleries

From Les Tuilleries, there is a interesting view of L'Obélisque of La Place de la Concorde and L'Arc de Triomphe. All these people went to Le Louvre


In the background, L'Arc du Carroussel and Le Louvre. The day was a bit cloudy in Paris, so it was a good day to visit Le Louvre


Through L'Arc du Carroussel appears La Pyramide du Louvre, the main entrance to the museum


Le Grand Louvre


Searching for a good photo of La Pyramide du Louvre



When I saw the Louvre from this point for the first time I became pretty impressed: it's really beautiful and its façades have an special charm

The Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel was built between 1806 and 1808 by Napoleon following the model of the Arc of Constantine in Rome


An overall view of la Cour Napoleon with the pyramid in the middle

An imposing view of La Pyramide du Louvre in La Cour Napoléon


The Denon wing, where La Mona Lisa waits for her fans inside Le Louvre



Under the Pyramid there is the main entrance to  Le Louvre, always crowded and impregnate with sunlight


I really liked this sensual sculpture of Antonio Canova


La Venus de Milo, one of the most amazing treasures inside Le Louvre


The Winged Victory of Samothrace. The Victory — “Nike” in Greek — is shown as if she were just alighting on the prow of the ship to which she is bringing divine favor


The surroundings of La Mona Lisa are always really crowded


Eventually I managed to get closer this wonderful painting


On the left is the painting The Raft of the Medusa. This painting explains how in 1816, the frigate “Medusa” sank because of the incompetence of a captain who had obtained his post through political relations. Due to a shortage of lifeboats, 149 people piled onto a raft that drifted for twelve days. Only fifteen survived the ensuing slaughter, madness, and cannibalism


July 28. Liberty Leading the People: In July 1830, three days of riots known as “Les Trois Glorieuses” led to the downfall of Charles X and the enthronement of Louis-Philip, despite a vain attempt by the people of Paris to re-establish the Republic on 28 July, the day celebrated here. The belltowers of Notre-Dame situate the scene behind the huge barricade, already piled with corpses. Striding over the top, Phrygian bonnet on her head and rifle in hand, the allegorical figure of the Republic waves the tricolor flag and urges the people to follow her


Here you can see one of the two large marble sculptures representing horses restrained by grooms which were commissioned in 1739 for the horse pond in the gardens of the Château de Marly. In 1743, the king chose the models exhibited in the Louvre courtyard; the marble sculptures were installed at Marly in 1745. In 1749, they were moved to Paris on the initiative of the painter David, and placed on high pedestals at the bottom of the Champs-Elysées


The Code of Hammurabi (Codex Hammurabi) is a well-preserved ancient law code, created ca. 1790 BC (middle chronology) in ancient Babylon. It was enacted by the sixth Babylonian king, Hammurabi

La Pyramide Inversée (The Inverted Pyramid) is a skylight constructed in an underground shopping mall in front of the Louvre Museum in Paris. It may be thought of as a smaller sibling of the more famous Louvre Pyramid proper, yet turned upside down: its upturned base is easily overlooked from outside


Centre Pompidou


The Centre Pompidou is an original building where all of the functional structural elements of the building were colour-coded: green pipes are plumbing, blue ducts are for climate control, electrical wires are encased in yellow, and circulation elements and devices for safety are red



Here you can see better some of the colour-coded functional structural elements of the Centre Pompidou in Paris


Inside Le Centre Pompidou there is a Cinema, a huge Library, restaurants and, of course, the Musée National d'Art Moderne which is the largest museum for modern art in Europe

Probably, one of the most colourful fountains in Paris is Stravinsky Fountain



Île de la Cité and Nôtre Dame
After having lunch near Le Centre Pompidou, we went to La Ile de la Cité, the more ancient area of Paris. And one of the most beautiful buildings in this island is, obviously, Nôtre Dame


Sainte Chapelle and Le Palais de Justice


The only building which can be considered as beautiful as Notre Dame is La Sainte Chapelle. This gothic chapelle is considered as the most beautiful gothic building and is located inside the enclosure of Le Palais de Justice. Le Palais de Justice is the only building of La Ile de la Cité which still keeps its original function


Hôtel de Ville



L'Hôtel de Ville de Paris (City hall) is a really decorated building, so it seems a monument instead of a city hall. Its location is privileged. Near The Seine and the islands of La Ile de la Cité and La Ile de Sant Louis



Conciergerie



La Conciergérie, next to La Seine, was a prison during the French Revolution



The Paris beach is a curious use of a little part of the right bank of The Seine. Here everyone can enjoy the sunlight and get tanned with a great view of La Ile de la Cité


Surroundings of Le Louvre
Claude Perrault’s Colonnade is the easternmost façade of the Palais du Louvre in Paris. It has been celebrated as the foremost masterpiece of French Architectural Classicism since its construction, mostly between 1667 and 1670. For centuries, Perrault’s Colonnade has provided a model for many grand edifices in Europe and America like, for instance, the Metropolitan Museum in New York City


Located at the center of Paris, by the Seine and in front of the Perrault’s Colonnade, this former parish of the kings of France is generally regarded as the Church of the Louvre. Founded in the 7th century, it was rebuilt many times over several centuries, revealing several mixtures of style, Roman, Gothic, Renaissance. The most striking exterior feature is the porch, with a rose window, and a balustrade above which encircles the whole church


Rue de Rivoli is one of the most glamorous streets in Paris. In this picture, on the left was Le Louvre and, on the right, was Le Palais Royal


Palais Royal


One of the most wonderful features of Paris is that it has a lot of fabulous Palaces really integrated with the other more usual buildings. An example of this feature is Le Palais Royal, separated from Le Louvre by la Rue de Rivoli and with a majestic garden at the rear of the Palace

This image of the rear garden of Le Palais Royal shows how beautiful it is. An extraordinary environment to walk


Place Vendôme

When I saw this square, I became fascinated. La Place Vendôme was originally built to house the embassies of foreign countries. Now, with the imposing Napoleon column in the center, it's one of the more glamorous places in Paris with the Ritz Hotel and the most famous jewellery shops

The symmetry of La Place Vendôme makes this square really beautiful and it has such an elegant style that it captivated me

Here can be seen the Ritz Hotel with its entrance




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:

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