I'd never been to Europe, let alone Paris, in the summer before. Paris is a magical place, and under the summer sun the city sparkled. I felt I was discovering a whole new city.
In winter these gardens near the Louvre have a mystery all their own, with the fountains playing amongst bare trees, and the occasional chair pulled to catch the watery sunlight. In summer, I found the place awash with green. The statues felt almost alive under the heat of the sun, and the colours of the marble against the green is spectacular.
|The Louvre seen from the Tuileries|
Take A River Cruise
Some years ago, I took a Seine river cruise one afternoon in the late autumn. Dusk fell as the boat toured the Seine – a magical way to see the city. This time, I took same cruise – only the light didn't start to fail until around 9.30! Under a clear sky the city skyline glowed under the caress of the setting sun, and at 10pm the Eiffel tower erupted in a sparkle of light.
The is the heart of Paris. Now it was awash with blooms, from Notre Dame to the side streets. Make sure to visit the flower markets – the smell alone is worth the visit. Then take a short stroll to the Sainte Chapelle. Once home to the Crown of Thorns, this chapel is a medieval wonder of stained glass. Visit early in the morning to avoid the crowds, or else at sunset when the chapel is said to be at its most spectacular.
|Inside one of the many arcades|
I walked and walked that first day, ever encouraged by side streets calling me to explore. I cam e across a small market (never to be found again), or simply delighted in window shopping.When I finally reached my hotel, I had worn out the sole of my shoes - a good excuse to go shopping in Paris!
The Simple Pleasures
Paris is for people watching, and in summer simply sit outside in a cafe, and watch the world go by. The whole world does indeed pass by. Oh, and maybe try a cake or two. Plus a glass of local wine.