The Four Major Sites
The Louvre: Wow, the building itself is just incredible. The sheer size of the most famous museum in the world is worth seeing. However, even if you are not an art nut, strolling around the once fortress for even an hour is worth it as the inside is spectacular. Supposedly the best times to go is after 3 on Wednesday’s and Fridays. We showed up Wednesday afternoon and the lines were outrageous (it was also 55 and cloudy). We ended up going smack in the middle of the day on Saturday (was 80 and sunny) and waited maybe five minutes. There is an entrance (Porte de Liones) that is supposed to have a shorter wait but it was not open when we went. Finding the Mona Lisa (which was my mission) is actually very easy to do as long as you go in the right wing (Dennon wing). Other than that, I made sure I hit the major pieces in that wing and with an hour and half our Louvre visit was over.
|The Louvre's most famed piece, The Mona Lisa.
|The building itself was incredible, including the ceilings.
|Having a little fun while walking around.
Notre Dame: The longest line of the weekend was to climb the towers of the Notre Dame. The towers open at 10AM so they say to go a little early, so we showed up at 9:40 (we wanted to go around 9:30) and the line was not terrible but we still waited about 80 minutes. They only let 20 people up at a time however they are not consistent on when they let people up. The wait is definitely worth it (at least for 80 minutes) as the views are some of the best if not the best we had in Paris and we came up close and personal with Quasimodo’s buddies.
|Right after our climb in front of the Notre Dame.
|The gargoyle's view.
Arc di Triomphe: See my first post on Paris but climbing is also a must. I had a friend who lived in Paris who told me that it is much better to climb this than the Eiffel Tower as the view is better and line is shorter. She could not have been more right, the view was spectacular and there was only a ten minute wait. We had no intention of climbing the Eiffel Tower in Paris but when we walked by the line it seemed like it was very very long.
|The center of Paris.
|Overlooking the Champs-Elysees from the top of the Arc.
Effiel Tower: See post on the picnic in the park.
|Paris's most famed sight.