August 21, 2014

Keep Calm and Go To Paris, Part 3

After our adventure to the top of the Eiffel Tower, the Fam and I set off on Day 3 in Paris. We were excited to travel a bit out of the city. Beautiful Versailles awaited us!

Outside the Palace of Versailles

Because we had the Paris Museum Pass, we were able to "skip" the line… what they don't tell you is that everyone else was smart enough to buy this pass as well, so we still waited in a fairly long line to gain entrance (about 45 minutes). The line was shorter than it would have been for sure, but don't expect to just walk right in. This way, you won't be disappointed.

Of course, we found ways to entertain ourselves in line…

Pay no attention to those crazy people.

Upon clearing through security at the entrance, we made our way into the labyrinth of rooms in the palace. Be forewarned, Versailles was extremely crowded. As in nose-to-nose with the person next to you. This could vary based on when you visit, but at least you'll know the large crowds are possible. Because of this, we didn't enjoy this visit as much as we might have otherwise. We skipped quickly through most of the rooms. I did love the ceilings though! In fact, I waited several times just to get a picture of the magnificent artwork above us.

The gardens were much more relaxing than the inside tour. We wandered freely for an hour, enjoying the fresh air and magnificent flowers.

Versailles gardens

After the garden tour though, we were ready to eat lunch and head back to the city. Hopes were high that we would return in time to visit Notre Dame and climb to the top. There are several restaurants grouped together near the train station, so all you have to do is pick one. We chose a creperie, yum!

Lunch (and dessert!)
Even with a leisurely lunch and some shopping, we returned with plenty of time to climb the towers of Notre Dame. The hike up 387 stairs is not for everyone! Keep in mind that there is no elevator, so I don't suggest this for anyone not in good physical condition. If you're up for it though, the view at the top is 100% worth the wait and the climb.

We even heard the bells ring! It was pretty loud, but also way cool. I had a sudden, almost irresistible urge to watch Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame  (the video below is the bells ringing on the tower, it may take a moment to load).

We shopped our way back to the apartment… ok, we did that every night! But it's always fun to window shop, right? And maybe pick up a few souvenirs. And some treats to take back to our puppy, of course. And some croissants for breakfast the next morning.

This is important stuff, peeps.

A good night of rest was in order, because the next morning we were off to Giverny, home of Claude Monet. Stay tuned, my friends.

Until next time, happy travels!

Thanks for reading, everyone!
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