To Paris and Back in 24 Hours

Scott and I spent this Saturday in Paris, France! We took a USO tour where we left at 0400 on Saturday and returned at 0430 on Sunday. We had someone watch Damien since the tour was not recommended for children. Due to some miscommunication with the drivers, it took us 7.5 hours to get to Paris when it only should have taken around 5 which then cut some of our time in other areas short. There were lots of tourists and the lines for everything were very long so we just saw everything from the outside. The people were nice and the food was amazing. A diet of breads and pastries? Yes, please! Overall, the trip was awesome!

We stopped for breakfast on the way and it was delicious. We shared a muffin, croissant, brotchen (hard roll), and fresh fruit. A traditional French breakfast is a croissant with jam, a brotchen (hard roll) with butter, orange juice, and coffee.

Our first stop on the tour was the Eiffel Tower. Sometimes when you see a monument in real life, it tends to be smaller than what you pictured in your mind. Not in this case–the Eiffel Tower is HUGE. It was built in 1889 and is around 1,000 feet tall. We only had enough time here for a couple of photos.

The Eiffel Tower!
Sarah at the Eiffel Tower
Scott with the Eiffel Tower
You can see people walking up the stairs inside one of its legs.
From the underside of the Eiffel Tower. You can see where some of the elevators go up and down.

Next, we were back on the bus for a bus tour of the city. Scott and I were sitting at the back of the bus so we weren’t able to see the buildings at the time that the tour guide was talking about them. These next photos were taken from the bus.

Les Invalides–home of Napoleon’s Tomb
Musee de l’Armee (Army Museum)
The backside of “The Thinker”
They were setting up TONS of bleachers for the Tour de France.
The Louvre–This tour was too short to go inside 🙁 The museum contains 35,000+ works of art.
I don’t know what these buildings are…but they look important.

Next, we headed over to the Arc of Triomphe area for some shopping and lunch. The arch is to honor those who died in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars.

Sarah at the Arc de Triomphe
Scott at the Arc de Triomphe
Two of my favorite things–sandwiches and desserts for lunch!

After lunch, we bus’d over to the Notre Dame de Paris for some more free time to wonder.

Outside the front of the Notre Dame
Sarah at the Notre Dame
You can see people standing on the balcony next to the famous gargoyles. We didn’t want to wait in the long lines to get up top.
Trying a Nutella and banana crepe! Yum!
Sarah with the Notre Dame
Side view of the Notre Dame
A “love locks” bridge. Couples write their names on a padlock and then lock it on the bridge as a symbol of their undying love.
Scott looking at all the old locks.
Buildings around the Seine River. Lots of little shops with what I’m assuming are apartments and hotels above.
The streets and buildings have lots of character.
There were tons of little food places in which people sat outside to enjoy the beautiful weather and people-watch.
Fontaine Saint-Michel
Buildings along the Seine River
More buildings across the Seine River
Just liked this photo
The Castle Conciergerie

After a couple hours of walking around, it was time for dinner. We got to choose an item from each course. There was also a “cheese” course, but we needed to save room for dessert!

I order “shrimp cocktail” for a starter…I didn’t care for it.
Scott enjoying his French Onion Soup
Scott had the chicken and I had the turkey for the main course. Both were very good–very flavorful. Scott is taking advantage of the all-you-can-drink wine.
I chose the apple tart for dessert!

After dinner, we took a boat cruise along the Seine River. The weather was PERFECT!

Sarah and Scott with the Eiffel Tower on the boat cruise.
The Palais Bourbon — for the French National Assembly
I think this is the Institute of France
Apparently the French love to spend their Saturday nights hanging out along the Seine River waving to the passengers on the boats. There were people up and down both sides for the whole hour-long cruise.
The sun setting on the buildings of Paris
Musee d’Orsay
Pont Alexandre III Bridge
The front/center of the Pont Alexandre III Bridge
Scott with the Eiffel Tower at night
Sarah with the Eiffel Tower at night
This picture is going in the Paris picture frame I bought on the trip 🙂

The boat cruise was the end of our journey in Paris. I really enjoyed it. We took the bus back to Germany which goes surprisingly fast when you’re sleeping.

We picked up Damien the next morning and he was pretty docile the rest of the day. In fact, he fell asleep at the grocery store lol. The person who watched Damien has two young boys, one of which is only a few months younger than Damien. Apparently, they kept each other riled up the whole time.

My sleepy boys

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