A Travellerspoint blog

Paris 4

Paris, September 21st

overcast 22 °C

We went to Versailles Chateau today. We had to get a Metro and a RER train to get there. It was far away from Paris so it took us over an hour to get there. There were so many people and we had to queue for quite a while to go through security check.
The rooms were decorated beautifully with enormous paintings and chandeliers. The paintings on the ceiling were so detailed and elaborated. All of the doors were layered with gold. There were so many tourists in the rooms trying to take photos. It was not very enjoyable. Also the tour groups stop right in the doorways and a few times I found myself in a Brazilian tour group.

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We went into the garden which was huge. It is separated into individual garden rooms. All of the gardens are very neat with hedging, fountains and statues. My mum loves gardens so we spent a long time wondering in the gardens. However we could only cover a quarter of it. We went home exhausted.

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Posted by pdover 23:44 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

Paris 3

Paris, September 20th

semi-overcast 21 °C

Today we caught the Big Bus (hop-on hop-off) to Notre Dame. We wanted to go in but the line was so long and you couldn't even use our Paris Pass to express the queue. Nearby Notre Dame is Sainte-Chapelle another beautiful chapel.

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The Sainte-Chapelle is a gothic style chapel and has a lot of detailed stained glass windows. It was amazing how much time they put in to restore the chapel.

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After Sainte-Chapelle we went to Musee D’orsay. We went through the statue park and saw a couple of paintings but I was really tired so my mum and I went upstairs to look at the Van Gogh while the boys stayed down a bit longer. When my mum and I finished looking at Van Gogh I had a little snooze on the bench.

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Then we went on the Big Bus loop. On the tour you saw all the main attractions and more. It took about 2 and ½ hours.

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Posted by pdover 13:56 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

Paris 2

Paris, September 19th

semi-overcast 26 °C

Even though it was our first day today we jumped right in by going to a lot of the main attractions. First off in the morning we went by train to the Louvre. It was so good that we got the Paris pass that morning or we would have been queuing for hours! We went in to the big glass pyramid and got some baguettes and a tart from Paul the bakery. We went to see the Mona Lisa which was really, really crowded. We had to do some pushing and shoving to get to the front. The Louvre has lots of famous painting most of them were hard to find and pretty small. I think if you're a painter you should just paint small ones that are hard to find because they're the ones that become famous. Some of the paintings were very rude not covering up things that need to be covered up. They weren't just paintings though, there were also a large range of statues, pottery, glass, furniture and tapestries. The tapestries were so large and detailed it looked like it would've taken 10 people 10 years to make.

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Next we went to the Eiffel tower. The Eiffel tower is really huge! When you went up the Eiffel tower you can see the whole city.

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After that went on a river cruise down the Seine it was very good way to see the city. As you went by the bridges you could see everybody "locking their love" with padlocks covering the bridges. You saw all the main attractions of Paris. The cruise went for about an hour.

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Posted by pdover 15:01 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

Barcelona to Paris

Barcelona to Paris, September 18th

semi-overcast 24 °C

Today we got to go on the TGV train. It was very long it took almost 7 hours! The train did not go TGV (train grand vitesse = very fast train), until we had well entered France, past Nimes. It was a bit annoying. We arrived at Gare Lyon, which is a huge station. It even has a really well known fancy restaurant inside it called ‘Le Train Bleu’ (The Blue Train).

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We had a very exciting entry into Paris. We got off at Champs-Élysées – Clemenceau station to see the aftermath of a car crash and a lot of road rage. Just before we got into Paris there had been a thunder storm and there was lots of flooding. A kind police man helped us get our luggage over the flooding. Most policemen would just watch us wheeling it through.

After we settled in to our Paris apartment we went to the supermarket nearby called Monoprix. Monoprix is a bakery, pharmacy, clothing shop, supermarket everything all in one! After we bought a truck load of food, really fancy cheeses, juices, fruit, vegetables and all sorts of things. Mum made us a lovely home-made dinner. I am very happy that my first meal in Paris was home-made by my own mum.

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Posted by pdover 14:44 Archived in France Tagged paris Comments (0)

Barcelona 3

Barcelona, September 17th

semi-overcast 26 °C

We got up early this morning to go to mass at La Sagrada Familia chapel (the free and non touristy place underneath). At the chapel we lit some beautiful candles for my grandparents and also saw Gaudi's grave. No photographs allowed here.

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After the chapel we went to the monumental area of Park Guell. You got to see some more Gaudi statues, structures and the art work he created. His works are very colourful and detailed and inspired by nature.

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Then we went on the hop on hop off bus to go back to the apartment. We got some tapas for lunch. The tapas were very small but also quite expensive! After lunch we caught the bus all around the beach areas, through the La Barceloneta area and got off at the start of La Rambla, near the port area. La Rambla is approximately 1km walking street with junky souvenir shops, florists and ice cream parlours. Just off La Rambla there is a big market call ‘Mercat de Sant Josep’ or La Boqueria . It is funny because they call a market a Mercat! At the market we got some fruit ices and my dad got some really fancy ‘jamon’ (pronounced ‘ham on’!). The end of La Rambla is a 5min walk to the apartment.

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After a short nap we went to Casa Batlló, another one of Gaudi's great creations. It was especially cool because my dad got me a Video-guide. You use the Video guide like a camera but instead of the present world you see the past and it also had detailed audio to go with it. You see the old furniture and if the skylights were inspired by turtles they could turn into turtles as you look at them through the guide. The house was amazing it had beautiful stained glass, elegant stair rails and everything had a meaning or use. In the middle of the house there is a giant light well spreading light around the house. At the top it was cobalt and at the bottom white so all the rooms had the same amount of light. We stayed till nine to see the "magic night". The magic night had live jazz music, a sound and light show projected on one of the walls and a small dinner buffet. I got a crepe with Nutella and vanilla ice-cream. It was really good. We left around 10pm and walked the short distance to our apartment.

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Posted by pdover 12:50 Archived in Spain Tagged barcelona Comments (0)

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