It was a sunny day today so I walked around the oldest part of Paris. Originally the city was located on an island in the middle of the river Seine where the Notre Dame cathedral stands. I began the day exploring the area north of the river and north of the Louvre.
I went to the “garden” of a palace built in the 1630s. It’s known as the Palais Royal. I put the word garden in quotation marks because formal French gardens are nothing like what we would call a garden. Often, as in this case, there’s no grass, just sand, and long rows of trees that are kept rigidly pruned. This garden is surrounded by buildings with an arcade of columns dating from the mid-1600s. Today very expensive shops are in those buildings on the ground floor. Here are a few shots of what I saw.
I walked across the courtyard of the Louvre and down to Ile de la Cité, the island where Notre Dame is located.
There’s a flower market there. The headquarters of the French police and court system are there too, as well as a lovely small church called Sainte Chapelle.
It’s quite a large island and has parks at either end as well as an ancient hospital and several blocks of houses. And of course a giant cathedral and thousands of tourists!
On the other side of the river I wandered into some of the streets which have never been modernized. This is the way all of Paris was until the late 1800s (although not so well painted). Again, pictures tell the story better than I can.
I’m tired tonight. In the past week I’ve walked about 36 miles! Incredible, even to me and I”m the one who did it! I may not be any skinnier but I’ll bet I’m shorter!
This is the end of my tour of Paris. Tomorrow I’m taking a train to Antwerp, Belgium where I’ll be for the next two weeks. Probably I won’t write on the blog tomorrow but if I do I’ll email you.
New things to discover and new things to “show and tell” coming soon!