I left us at dinner in the last post. This became one of our favorite spots. The servers were nice, the food good, and it was close to home. The market street Rue Cler is just up the road a little and across the street.
After resting and a good dinner, we hurried off to the Eiffel Tower only a few blocks from our hotel. We had an 8 pm reservation to go to the top. Walking up the Champ de Mars, people were beginning to gather on blankets, awaiting the light show.
We were directed to the North Pillar.
The view from below.
We had to go through security, of course. We went to the top first, but didn’t stay long. I don’t even know if any of these images are actually from that view. I think these are all from the second level, where the cafes are located, and there is more room to walk around. The top was a little claustrophobic because it was so small and crowded, which had us hurrying back down once we were able to say we’d been and seen.
Our hotel is somewhere near the red dot, a couple of streets over from Napolean’s Tomb (Hotel des Invalides), the hard-to-see tall, domed building just above the dot.
Also over that way more to the left is Notre Dame, but I couldn’t tell you where, exactly. I saw it better once the lights came on later, but you can’t see it in any of my pics.
See the tiny people gathering on the Champ de Mars below us?
If one considers the view of the Champ de Mars as forward facing, when you walk around to the right side, you get this view, toward what I called ugly Paris, though it doesn’t look too bad from this shot.
Continuing the walk to the backward facing view, you see the Place du Trocadéro and modern downtown in the distance. We were never interested in seeing what modern downtown was like. I got a better shot of the Trocadéro lit up once the sun went down.
But first, I must take you to the last side, though this only gives the part of the view that includes the Arc de Triomphe, which I point out for you on the picture. If you click on these pictures, you can see a larger view.
The sun was finally beginning to set, and the lights began to come on around the city. You can see the Arc lit up in the middle of this picture.
And the better view of the Trocadéro, as I said.
This shows the view of where we walked along the Seine earlier in the day. While on the Tower, we followed a tour group for a little while because the guide had some interesting stories. He was an American who had come to live in Paris a couple of years ago. When asked by one of his following if he liked it, he indicated the view, “Just look. What’s not to like?”
It was all very lovely, but none of my pictures allow one to point out anything in particular because I don’t have a zoom. Next time I go, I’m bringing a proper camera. What I loved the most, though, was when the tower itself lit up, and then gave its sparkling light show.
The video shows a pan from the Trocadéro ending at Napolean’s Tomb. Again, I’m wishing I’d had a better camera with me.
As we walked back to the hotel, we kept looking back. I will never tire of this sight.
We couldn’t go back to the hotel without having dessert. We stopped at a different cafe, and again sat outside enjoying Paris at night. I had a dessert sample of chocolate cake, creme brulee, and strawberries with coffee – in a demitasse. R had red wine that was sweet and tasted heavenly.It was a truly wonderful first day in Paris.