I started off my morning with a mini panic attack because I realized I would need to take the metro to the TGV station at 6:00AM the next morning. Before coming to Paris, I thought my excitement would always be greater than any fears I had about suddenly throwing myself into a strange new culture, but in this moment that was proven wrong. Anne helpfully drove me to the closest metro station so that I could see where it was and buy tickets. Once I got back and stopped freaking out, I realized the only way to reassure myself was to go ahead and use the metro. I picked the Eiffel Tower as my destination and set off. (All the following photos were taken with my phone)
It turned out to be a lot easier than I thought it would be. I soon got off at the station and headed in the direction I thought the Eiffel Tower was in. Pretty soon I realized I was wrong, but I kept going anyways.
I ended up on the Left Bank of the Seine, and started following it. Immediately as I went down to the bank, there was this awesome floating greenhouse/garden that followed along the river for quite a while.
I walked along the Seine until I passed the Pont des Invalides and then arrived at the famous Pont Alexandre III, the most ornate bridge in Paris. (This is where I started taking panoramas with my phone and they get a bit funky…)
I then wandered across the bridge to the other bank…
From across the water I saw this giant domed building which turned out to be the Alexandre III Grand Palais. I need to get inside it somehow, but it’s super fancy.
Across the street is the Musee des Beaux-Arts de la Ville de Paris, which I will have to visit again.
I kept on walking through a park, which was of course beautiful. These flowers made me think of a painting, as does everything else in Paris!
I then realized I was probably close to the Louvre, so I looked it up on my phone (Yay apps! They have been awesome so far) and started heading in that direction. I came across the great Egyptian Luxor Obelisque in the Place de la Concorde, which is in front of the entrance to the Tuileries Gardens that lead up to the Louvre.
And of course the amazing Fontaines de la Concorde. Coming from the City of Fountains, this kind of puts Kansas City to shame…
I then headed into the Tuileries Gardens, which has lots of beautiful sculptures that each have a unique personality!
I also made my first purchase in Paris… Banana Sorbet shaped like a rose!
Then it was time to finally see the Louvre!
The museum was closed today, and I actually did not intend to go in anyways, so I just kept wandering around.
By this point I was pretty tired (I don’t even know how many miles I walked or for how many hours) so I figured I should get something to eat. I exited the Louvre through the side and crossed the street, seeing this metro immediately.
Being a super huge Art Nouveau enthusiast, I was really happy to stumble upon this metro station on my first full day in Paris. I kept wandering down the street, which is pretty much all touristy shops. I stopped to get a panini and then kept walking, trying to find a place to rest and eat it.
This church had caught my eye earlier, so I decided to head down to it and eat in the shade on its steps. Once I had eaten enough, I retraced my steps all the way back to the original metro station I came from and headed back to my new Parisian home. Of course, once I got out of the metro I got lost for a little bit, but I eventually found my way back.
Tomorrow I have to get up at 5AM to leave at 6AM to make sure I get to my 7:37AM TGV train to Avignon. I’m still a little nervous, but after all of my exploring today the excitement is definitely back. I still have to pack, so I’m going to do that and then go to sleep. Bon nuit!