Paris in Detail
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Look up Maps for walking directions. Take public transport between places which are further away from each other. This is just shy of 8km if you walk the whole way. I skipped a couple of places I'd planned to visit because of their hours/my schedule.
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PlaceWhy go?Hours if relevantPrice if relevantNotes
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Quai d'AnjouOnce home to Voltaire (#2), Cezanne, and the Three Mountains Press, edited by Ezra Pound, which published Hemingway's works (#29)
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Memorial des martyrs de la DeportationHolocaust memorial with 200k pebbles for each deported French citizen. Near the exit, see the sign ‘pardonne. N’oublie pas.’ – forgive, don’t forget.10am-7pm in the summerTake the stairs up, go through the iron gate & cross the road to the Notre Dame
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Notre Dame CathedralOriginally a Roman temple to Jupiter, a cathedral was ordered in 1163. Gothic architecture was believed to have started here. Joan of Arc was tried for heresy here. During the revolution it became a ‘Temple of Reason,’ which is ironic because the revolutionaries thought the King of Judah was related to French aristocracy and decapitated him. Post revolution, Napoleon was crowned here. It fell into disrepair & was a donkey stable till Victor Hugo came along. The gargoyles on the roof were part of the reconstruction work done post this. 8-6:45 (little longer on Sat-Sun). Free English tour at 2:15pm Wed-Thu/2:30pm weekends. See Jesus' crown of thorns on the first Friday of each month at 3pm.8.50EU to climb up, free to visit the church If you climb to the top, note the 13 ton bell – it takes 8 people to ring it
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Saint ChapelleOriginally built to host Jesus' crown of thorns (yes, really). The crown's now at Notre Dame, but the stained glass windows are still worth seeing9:30am-6pm in the summer8.50EUI was a little behind on time so I skipped it this time
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Shakespeare & CompanyMost famous for printing Ulysess, considered too risque by the Brits & Americans. All other stories I've heard seem to be more myth than fact. There's a nice library overlooking the Seine on the 2nd floor. It's a great bookstore to go to (note this one isn't the original which is close by and which shut down). 10 to 11, high teas on Sundays
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Pont NeufThe oldest bridge in Paris, originally the city center when it was built in 1607
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Pont des ArtsFamous for lovers' locks today, originally famous for being the first iron bridge in Paris. By the way, officials now remove the locks, because too many weigh down the bridge and are a very real safety hazard.
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Les Deux MargotsPicasso & Hemingway used to hang out at this fancy cafe (not together). From the Surrealists to the Existentialists, everyone who's anyone has been here.7:30am-1:30amHot chocolate costs 13EU. Enough said.
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Saint Germain of Pres ChurchThe oldest church in Paris (present one's from the 11th century), built to hold holy relics looted from Jerusalem. Ironically, the revolutionaries plundered it on their way to Bastille and re-looted a lot. They killed 186 priests when they stormed it the second time. Rene Descartes' heart is buried here.Mon-Sat 7-8:45, Sun 9-8.
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Cafe de FloreOne of the oldest & most prestigious coffee houses in Paris, it's hosted many French greats in the years following the war, like it's rival, Les Deux Margots.7am-2amLemonage costs 9EU.
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Le Bon MarcheThe oldest department store in Paris, created by Eiffel, who also built... guess what? :) Expect to find the exotic, the exorbitant, the over-the-top.10-8 Mon-Sat (till 9 on a couple of days)Hahaha. Fortunately entry's free.
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InvalidesHospital & retirement home for veterans in 1670, it still serves the same purpose. The Eglise du Dome inspired the US Capitol. If you'd like to see Napoleon's tomb and a lot about military history, visit the museum as well.Museum open 10-6 in the summerMuseum costs 9.5EUMy plan was to check out the courtyards and visit the museum depending on what time I got there. Decided to skip it.
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Champ de MarsNamed for the Roman god of war it used to be a military training camp. The revolutionaries created quite a bloodbath in a civillian massacre here, and it was countered with a wall of peace with the word 'peace' in 32 languages. Completely unrelated note, it was the first place to launch a hydrogen balloon in 1780.
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Eiffel TowerEveryone probably knows it was built on the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution, to represent the spirit of the Industrial Rev. Here are some things I find interesting: Guy de Maupassant and several other French artists protested its being built, calling it an eyesore. Its creator had a fear of heights. The French knocked out the elevator when the Nazis stormed Paris, so they couldn't enjoy the view.Most took the stairs. Hitler never went to the top. The Germans went on to hang the Nazi flag from the top. When the Allies liberated France, they were allowed to go to the top for free.9:30am-11pm in the summer15EU to the top; 9EU to the 2nd level; 5EU if you climb up
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