Winter in Paris

I should start by mentioning that I had never been to Paris before. Is that weird? I guess I found it to be a little too “on the beaten path” to wander there with my dirty off-road boots, and I had other destinations to conquer.

Great, now I’m making footwear metaphors. But, my boots really were dirty. Literally, still caked in African dust.

With a five day layover between Nairobi and Toronto, I found myself at the drizzly end of a Parisian winter. I’ve seen in photos and movies that Paris has the potential to become a snowy winter wonderland, but as my “travelling weather luck” would have it–it rained.

It continued to rain off and on for the rest of my five day visit, but I decided that I wasn’t going to let a little pluie stop me.

With a limited amount of time, I wanted to pack my sightseeing in to about two days so I could spend the rest of my time relaxing and (let’s be honest) stuffing myself with saliva-inducing French food. I picked up a 2 day Paris Pass that would give me access to all the main attractions, as well as transportation around the city.

I spent the next two days visiting the following locations (and more):

 

Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame was definitely my favourite attraction in Paris. It wasn’t as overrated as the Eiffel Tower and provided the best view of the city.

I completely underestimated the effect that 387 steps would have on my legs and lungs, so by the time I got to the top, I was huffing, puffing and swaying around on my newly jellied limbs. But, as soon as my eyes focused on the view, it was all worth it.

The biting wind stung my cheeks as I photographed the urban landscape in front of me, panning from side to side, taking one shot after another. Eventually I lowered the camera and simply wandered around the Cathedral roof.

I could see all of Paris.

 

The Louvre

By the time I reached the Louvre, I was tired, hungry and slightly impatient.

I made it to the Mona Lisa in record time, scowled at the crowd and pondered the fame of the painting.

I probably spent more time discovering new perspectives of the exterior pyramids than actually viewing art inside of the museum.

 

Eiffel Tower

I repeat. Overrated.

 

Arc De Triomphe

I didn’t climb the monument, but I did stop to admire it. Admittedly, I think I prefer the design of the Arc De Triomf in Barcelona, but I can respect the significance of the tomb. I hopped back on the Paris Hop-On Hop-Off bus and continued on my way.

 

Père Lachaise Cemetery

As visiting Jim Morrison’s grave was my main objective in coming to Paris in the first place, I wasn’t going to miss out on exploring the rest of the cemetery. From Oscar Wilde to Balzac’s grave, I spent a solid two hours in Père Lachaise and enjoyed every moment.

 

Here are a few extra photos of winter in Paris:

Paris Pass provided me with a 2 day pass.
All thoughts and opinions are my own. 


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8 Responses to “Winter in Paris”

  1. eileen ludwig
    March 1, 2013 at 5:56 pm #

    Love Paris when I spent 5 weeks there in the 80s – the first days I wandered to Eiffel tower but did not go up until the last day. I liked it for being able to see all of Paris. Tears filled my eyes to see all of the places I had been and remembering all the fun I had while there. I loved the architecture. Very nice photos and a reminder of my treasured days in that beautiful city. I think of going back but a friend reminds me – it will never be the same – the people and circumstances are different
    eileen ludwig recently posted..Delightful Solo Valentine Day

    • Seattle
      March 1, 2013 at 8:24 pm #

      That’s a great story. I haven’t spent five weeks in Paris, but I have been through the same feeling in other places. And, I totally get what your friend meant, it’s hard to re-create trips like that.

  2. Prince Bhatia
    March 3, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

    I must say all the pics are very beautiful especially the very first one,I am wondering from where you clicked that photo. In the Arc De Triomphe photo, you are looking quite similar to Drew Barrymore. Can you please tell me, why Paris is the only popular city of France.

  3. Amanda
    March 7, 2013 at 7:56 pm #

    Nice collection of shots!

    Paris is one of those places that I’ve been dying to visit for years, but somehow just haven’t made it there yet. Hopefully I’ll finally cross it off my list this summer, though!
    Amanda recently posted..Of Sailboats and Sharks: A Day with Raggamuffin Tours

  4. Elle-Rose Williams
    March 20, 2013 at 6:59 am #

    There are some seriously lovely photos in this post 🙂 I love Paris! I know what you mean about it being quite touristy and not off the beaten track – but sometimes you have to explore those places too – after all there is a reason they’re so popular as locations! I love Paris – especially in Christmas and winter time.

  5. Natalia | Always Trekking
    March 31, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    Beautiful pictures! I’m amazed you haven’t been to Paris previously, but I agree with the mentality. There are places I won’t go to as they are too touristy as well.
    Natalia | Always Trekking recently posted..Climbing Mount Kinabalu in One Day – Sabah, Malaysia

    • Seattle
      April 1, 2013 at 10:26 am #

      Thanks! I think now that I’ve been, I wouldn’t mind going back to give it another try–touristy or not.

  6. Danielle
    April 7, 2013 at 8:20 pm #

    I honestly wish I would have liked Paris. The Eiffel Tower was my favorite, it had a great view and I got an AMAZING butt and leg workout from walking up it :b The view from the Arc de Triomphe was beautiful as we saw it the night we arrived and the stairs were’t too bad! Overall, Paris disappointed me and the ONLY reasons I’d go back would be to see Versailles, go inside the Lourve and eat a panini and my favorite panini stand in the world 🙂 Also, I have a lock on that bridge!!!! That was another favorite part of that trip. I think if we would have stayed longer than 3 nights then we might have liked it but unfortunately we didn’t.

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