Last month we spent a magical weekend in Paris. By day we criss-crossed the city, visiting the sights Paris is justly famous for, and dropping into churches, museums and parks. By night we enjoyed good food and wine, sitting out in street bars and cafés as the city bustled around us, enjoying good company late into the night.
We visited the beautiful collection of Impressionist paintings housed in the Musée d’Orsay, Monet’s famous panoramic Water Lilies in the Musée de l’Orangerie and spent a couple of happy hours just wondering through the Musée du Louvre, particularly enjoying the wonderful Italian statue collection and some of the famous French paintings by David, Delacroix and Gericault.
We climbed to Montmartre by way of Pigalle and the Moulin Rouge, then enjoyed a great café lunch on a quiet back street before ascending to the dome of Sacré Cœur for stunning views across the whole of Paris.
We strolled along the banks of the Seine, crossing bridges and watching boats ply their way up and down the river. We wandered the islands, getting numerous different views of Notre Dame, the Conciergerie and Saint-Chapelle.
We had fresh croissants and espresso for breakfast and negotiated our way through the Metro system, only experiencing one break-down and one suspicious smoke event. We strolled through the gardens of Luxembourg and the Tuilleries as the first signs of spring crept through the city.
We watched, enthralled, as the traffic surged and foamed around the Arc du Triomphe, having already ascended it for the spectacular views from the west side of the city. We watched the Eiffel Tower light up as dusk fell and ate ice cream besides the fountains of the Trocadero. We visited Sartre and Baudelaire’s graves in Montparnasse ceremony and walked past the Royal Observatory where Cassini carried out his detailed observations of Saturn's rings.
It was a truly brilliant few days and here are just a few photographic highlights with many more available on Flickr.
Notre Dame. f/8, 17mm, 1/200s, ISO 100.
The stained-glass in Saint-Chapelle on our first afternoon. f/4, 17mm, 1/25s, ISO 800.
Notre Dame, just two minutes from our hotel. f/11, 17mm, 1/160s, ISO 100.
A café lunch in Montmartre. f/7.1, 31mm, 1/160s, ISO 100.
La Louvre. f/7,1, 22mm, 1/125s, ISO 100.
Psyche Revived By Cupid's Kiss in the Louvre. f/4, 40mm, 1/200s, ISO 800.
Satre's Headstone in Montparnasse Cemetery. f/4, 40mm, 1/1250s, ISO 200.
Eiffel Tower at sunset. f/8, 40mm, 1/200s, ISO 400.
Cafe Noir. f/4, 22mm, 1/15s, ISO 100.
Seine at Sunset. f/8, 17mm, 1/800s, ISO 400
Pont Neuf. f/7.1, 17mm, 1/320s, ISO 400.
Eiffel Tower. f/7.1, 17mm, 1/500s, ISO 400.
The view from Sacre Coeur. f/6.3, 17mm, 1/200s, ISO 100.
Shakespeare & Co. the American bookshop. f/8, 30mm, 1/20s, ISO 100.
Sacre Coeur on a lazy afternoon. f/11, 17mm, 1/80s, ISO 100.
Montmartre. f/7.1, 17mm, 1/50s, ISO 100.
The Eiffel Tower from the Arc du Triomphe. f/8, 40mm, 1/200s, ISO 100.
L'Arc du Triomphe. f/5.6, 17mm, 1/250s, ISO 100.
Birdboxes in the Flower Market. f/4, 29mm, 1/250s, ISO 800.
Winged Victory of Samothrace in the Louvre. f/4, 26mm, 1/30s, ISO 800.
Looking down the Seine. f/9, 17mm, 1/160s, ISO 100.
Fountain in the Tuilleries. f/9, 17mm, 1/160s, ISO 100.