Day 3 – 27th:
The first problem we encountered in Paris was the one of finding the correct line to buy the Carte Orange – the metro card. After some asking and pointing we found the correct one an bought the tiny tickets (2x4cm). Day 5 we found out that we were supposed to have a card (with picture) in order to have a valid ticket.. This essential piece of info was forgotten by the man selling us the tickets.
Our hostel in Paris was the Friends’ hostel just next to the metro station Berbès-Rochechouart a few minutes away from Sacre coeur. The first night we couldn’t get a room together so I slept in a different room than Geir, Cate and Nina (Juha and Tom booked room at a seperately from us four).
After leaving our bags we went out to see the city. At the Berbès-Roche station I almost got my wallet stolen. It was completely my fault – I had it in my backpocket. Luckily I sensed the pickpocketing before the wallet had left my backpocket.
After this somewhat shocking experience we headed for Sacre Coeur, only 5 minutes to walk from our hostel.
Sacre Coeur by night
Two sentences about Sacre Coeur:
Situated on top of Montmartre, the Sacre Coeur basilica is located on the highest point of Paris. It’s building of the Paul Abadie designed basilica started in 1875 but the last tavertine stone wasn’t laid until 1914 due to a “quarrel” about it’s daring design.
From left: Me, Juha, Geir and Tom
After enjoying the view we took the cable cars down from Montmartre (it’s not far down, like two minutes to walk – but it was free with our Carte Orange ticket …) and headed for Moulin Rouge! We wanted to go, but with the cheapest ticket going for more than 70€ we soon figured out that it wasn’t going to happen. Instead we took the metro to the Eiffel tower.
Left: Sparkling every hour at night! Right: Cool car!
There we saw the marvelous sparkling show that is every hour and tried to get a coffee before going home. Once again it was very expensive (seems to be like that around great landmarks), so we skipped it and left for the hostel.
Day 4 – 28th:
A new and beautiful day in Paris makes you smile, even though you didn’t sleep much because of intense heat in your room. I got up at 8h30 and everyone went to buy baguettes. Breakfast in front of Sacre Coeur. We skipped visiting the Sacre Coeur dome (you can get up to roof level) because the crypt (also included in the ticket) was closed.
Dead sad from the fact that we didn’t go to the Sacre Coeur crypt, we took metro line 2 Cimitère du Père-Lachaise, a graveyard with famous people. We actually spent more than two hours walking around in the graveyard seeing the grave of Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf, Oscar Wilde and Chopin himself. I started to feel a bit off myself. A running nose and a heavy head – hoping it isn’t something serious.
Tired of the dead?
Tom’s precious Welsh Dragon eating lunch in front of Notre Dame
We took the metro back to the center and ate our lunch in front of Notre dame (We always eat in front of great landmarks). After lunch we entered Notre dame, a beautiful church! Cate then went back to the hostel to rest, the others tried to find coffee, but again it was extremely expensive. But we wouldn’t give in this time and we succeeded – Quick gave us coffee!
We had a fast “been there done that” visit to Centre Pompidou. Tom didn’t like it – at all:
“There’s only one thing I have to say about that, quel bordel!”
(Quel bordel = what a mess)
Centre Pompidou. Known for having it’s piping on the outside
We didn’t go to the exhibition, which I think was a mistake, looking back on it – maybe next time. We bought dinner at the Les Halles shopping mall. Cate and Juha made a delicious dinner. I went to bed early to get rid of my cold, my head was heavier than ever.
More vacation stuff in a later post!