Sunday, May 10, 2009

Our Wonderful Vacation in Paris!

We had planned our vacation to Cabo San Lucas months ago but when the H1N1 outbreak in Mexico became serious we had to change our plans in a hurry. So, if one cannot go to a relaxing tropical resort to soak up the sun where should one go? Paris, France, of course! So, swap the chilaquiles for the croissants and the margaritas for the Côte du Rhône! There is no bad time to go to Paris but May is probably one of the best months to visit the City of Lights. The weather is usually great, the city is in bloom and the summer crowds are not there yet. We have both been to Paris many, many times and could afford to forego the touristy places in favor of soaking up the local flavor and beauty of the city. We treated ourselves to walks in the beautiful Parisian parks, visited small un-crowded museums, attended classical music concerts in centuries old cathedrals, enjoyed great food and great wine. We had a car at our disposal and took a few day trips as well, one of which was to Bruges, Belgium, which neither of us had seen before. We also took a 3-hour drive to the Abbey of Mont Saint Michel, built on a "rock" about half a mile off the coast of Normandy, which at high tide is surrounded by water. We also took a drive to the countryside and visited Compiegne, Raray and Chantilly castles. All in all even though it was not the “lay by the pool, do nothing” vacation we had originally planned, you won’t hear any complaints from either one of us. If you have read this far, you'd probably like to see some pictures now so here they are:

The beautiful lilac was in bloom everywhere!

The castle of Raray, now a golf resort.

A tree-lined path at the Chateau de Raray.

A charming road in the town of Raray.

Fields of yellow flowers, so yellow our eyes hurt, were too
numerous to count along our drive in the countryside!

The gorgeous Chantilly Castle.

A spectacular staircase inside Chantilly.

The quaint city of Bruges, Belgium.

Bruges is known as the "Venice of the North."

A very interesting sculpture in Bruges.

The sweet horse and delightful tour guide that took us
on our carriage ride through Bruges.

The Abbey of Mont Saint Michel.

The day was so gorgeous and the sky was so blue!

Although Mont Saint Michel has been in use since the year 708 AD,
the current Abbey was built in the 14th Century.

We loved the angles and curves inside the ancient Abbey!

The City of Paris as seen from Montmartre (at Sacre Coeur.)

Sacre Coeur Cathedral against the cloudy sky.

The stunning Sainte-Chappelle, a chapel in the heart of Paris,
which was finished in 1238.

We were thrilled to attend a concert here by "Les Solistes Francais,"
a small string ensemble with the most incredibly beautiful sound.

Of course we had to see the Eiffel Tower at night!

Our last view of the City of Lights for this trip, but we'll be back!

No comments:

Post a Comment