We're living a charmed existence - our first day on tour is Paris was picture perfect. Late summer warm weather, clear blue skies, and a city with so much beauty it's indescribable.
First stop in the morning was Notre Dam. I took lots of photos, but none do its scale and grandeur justice. Nobody investes a couple centuries to build things properly anymore. Every time you take a fresh look at the place, you notice more details. Outside and in, it's majestic. I really like the side gardens too.
We then walked through Ile Saint Louis- a beautiful area where you literally want to linger and visit every shop and restaurant. Luscious, tantalising displays from macaroons to shoes, to you-name-it. Yes, we'll visit the big Paris tourist attractions, but it's walking the streets that I most enjoy. It becomes clear that one week won't be enough time in Paris.
We walked a bit of the Left Bank, stopped at a boulangerie for a baguette and ate in the park. We then wandered back to our apartment in Arrondissement 2 to meet Bennett and his friend Hubert who drove over to Paris from Maastricht. It's one-night stay for Hubert, but Bennett is joining us for the rest of the week.
The boys had someone to meet, so Peter and I took the Metro to the Eiffel Tower. It is something to behold. We didn't have a booking to go to the top, and the queue was hours long. We tried it for a while, but my knees can't take standing in one spot that long. We sat in the park to gaze, and Peter took a nap - not a bad spot for it!
We eventually walked over to Rue Cler, a quaint traditional shopping street for Arr 7. No cars, it's filled with cheese, fruit, fish and chocolate shops. We ate dinner at a sidewalk cafe that was jumping with locals. Peter had the raw beef, and I had penne with truffle sauce. There were street performners doing flips, and generally, it was first-class people-watching.
After dinner, the evening was so perfect, we strolled back to the Eiffel Tower, and I think it's at it's best at night. The lights really show off that even after 100+ years, it's still a beautiful structure. It was the perfect end to a great day.