Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Lovely Paris

Back home in Basel after my weekend in Paris. Sometimes I still feel like I have to pinch myself in my arm. Feel so very lucky to be able to get a weekend like this in Paris with C (yet another weekend). The high speed train from Basel makes it so easy and convenient. A swooshing three hours and you are there. We left Basel at 10 am Saturday morning and arrived smack in the middle of Paris at 1:30 in the afternoon. After checking in at our hotel around 2 pm we had the rest of the afternoon to enjoy the city. 

We stayed in the same neighborhood as we did last time (not far from the majestic and impressive Notre Dame). Paris greeted us with sunny skies and and quite a fair amount of summer heat.

We have enjoyed Paris by water and by foot. We have taken in some of the highlights, enjoyed culture, eaten well and not so well. We even managed to meet up with good friends from Stockholm for a drink. I happened to see on FB or Instagram that my friend J was here for the weekend just about as we were to leave. So we managed to get in touch and meet up for drinks just like that on Saturday evening. How cool is not that?

A great way to see and take in the city if you want to give your feet some rest is to hop on the Batobus that has 8 different stops around the city. You get to see and enjoy other views of Paris from the water front. Some of the major sights can easily be seen and reached from a long the Seine river. You buy tickets before you get on for one, two or more days and then you can just hop on and off as much as you like. It is not a guided tour but a great way to get around.

A long the Seine the city is always alive. On the water there are popular dinner cruises, tourist boats, people that live on house boats, large boats that use the river as a means for transporting goods of all kinds. A long the shores of the river people are strolling, having a picknick, studying, going for a run, or just hanging out with friends.

Got to show C around. He got to enjoy some of Paris this time and not just go back and forth between the hotel and the office in the suburbs. We have walked, walked and walked some more. One of the best ways to see and take in Paris is by walking. It is a city that has many different sides and very much to offer. A multicultural city that is great for people watching. There is so much to just observe. You see all kinds of people and all kinds of style. It is elegant, romantic, crowded, touristy, genuine, big, buzzing and vibrant. It offers a great mix and becomes very much what you decide to make out of it.

Bustling and busy. On our way to the Arc de Triomphe. A warm and sticky Saturday with thunder lingering in the air. Saturday was hot but then Sunday was really cool. I had forgotten to pack a jacket so I had to borrow one of C's sweaters. On the other hand the cooler weather made it perfect for walking long distances.

Arc de Triomphe is all it's greatness. You can get to the top and enjoy the views of the city. However to do so as with so many other things in Paris you have to be prepared to stand in a long line for quite a while. We skipped the top and enjoyed it by walking around it instead. 

The Eiffel tower in the afternoon haze. It is so much more impressive by close encounter as you are directly below it. There was a long line for the stairs as well this time compared to when I was here on a chilly March midweek day. 

Sunday afternoon C had to prepare a presentation so I decided to make a visit on my own to the Maison Europeenne de la Photographic (very long name but a great museum). They had some nice exhibitions going on and it was nice to doge the tourist crowds and long lines.  I got my self a little piece of genuine Paris.

Lovely Creperies. The most delicious scent hangs in the air as you pass by.

I keep falling in love with the narrow Parisian streets. The old old stone sidewalks that have gotten uneven with time and the old buildings that have gotten kind of crooked and tilt in various angles. The balconies lined with pretty flowers and the old beautiful street lights.

My morning view from our hotel room. We even had a little ledge of a balcony to step out on. What a thrill to wake up to this and get to greet the city good morning with this view. Paris stretched out in all it's splendor by my feet.

These picture are just so much Paris to me. The mopeds used by so many to be able to get around and avoid getting stuck in traffic. Pretty and old buildings with classical French balconies and flowers. Roof top terraces. It is a big city but small in other aspects. Living is expensive and living quarters and small many times. Both hotels we have stayed at have had very tiny rooms. You have to be able to squeeze into small spaces in Paris. Small elevators, small showers, small hotel rooms where there is just enough space for you, a bed and your luggage.

We have eaten well and not so well. Saturday I had made reservations which we decided to cancel as we wanted to meet up with our friends instead. We ended up at a place that the hotel had recommendations for. It did not turn out so great. Sunday we enjoyed a delicious dinner at the seafood restaurant we went to last time. Sundays can be a bit tricky as many places are closed. We wanted to make sure we did get something really nice after the kind of disaster dinner Saturday. I had this salmon tartar as a starter and C got the oysters. I actually discovered this time that I like oysters. 

I love that Paris even if it is a big city has many green and shady parks to relax and enjoy. The Jardin du Luxenburg is a wonderful place.

A perfect spot to relax and escape the busy pace and hectic street life. A cool shady place, a spa for your senses.

Paris is full of small and pretty shops to get lost in or just to take in as you pass by.

I don't quite know what these hens are but I thought they looked cute and funny.

A small piece of ordinary Paris every day life.

Fresh markes of every kind can be found here. Love that! Seafood, cheese, meat, bread, flowers, you name it.

I have enjoyed my weekend in Paris a lot. Always nice to get back home though. This week is busy and a little hectic in a way. C will not be back until late Wednesday evening and we are having the joy of friends coming to visit us from Sweden Wednesday afternoon. So I will pick them up and show the around in Basel when they arrive. We are then heading up for the Alps for the weekend for some hiking and mountain biking.


Miss Marie said...

Wow, vad mycket ni hann med! Imponerande! Vad fint ni bodde, harligt med en liten fransk balkong! Paris ar verkligen en stad som man upptacker nya saker i hela tiden. Jag bodde dar ett ar men hann anda bara med en brakdel av vad som finns att uppleva! Lyxigt for er att ha det sa nara Basel!

nilsandsofia said...

Ah vad harligt med en helg i paris! Det var SA lange sedan jag var dar och jag har dessutom bara varit en gang sa jag skulle vilja aka tillbaks. Harliga, fina foton som vanligt pa din blogg. Alskar vad ni gjrot med altanen ocksa. Maste prova baka de dar hamburgerbroden for de man koper i affaren ar for trakiga!


Annika said...

SÅ ljuvligt.
Jag måste titta på dina bilder igen.
OCh igen, och igen.
Jag vill också åka till Paris. Vara där, gå omkring, kolla folk, äta gott, se alla sevärdheter.
Underbart att du bara bor tre timmar bort.

Desiree said...

Marie, ja det är så sant. Man kan åka till Paris många gånger, det finns alltid något nytt att upptäcka. Så visst känns det fantastiskt lyxigt för mig att kunna hänga med så här ibland. Även om hotellet inte var jättelyxigt vi bodde på så var ju denna utsikten vi hade från vår lilla lilla franska balkong dessto lyxigare.

Millan, du måste helt klart tillbaka. Jag hade varit där för 20 år sedan med mina föräldrar och nog behövde jag komma tillbaka och få uppleva staden igen. När man kommer tillbaka och är vuxen upplever man staden på ett helt nytt sätt. Paris får man också återkomma till och ta i portioner för det finns så mycket att ta in och se och göra. Men en härlig stad! Väl värt att resa dit.

Annika, du skulle säkert gilla stan mycket Annika. Det är en stad man gärna sätter sig ner på ett café och bara kollar in folk. Man har de stora berömda kulturenheterna men sedan har man också allt som händer på gatorna.

Liz said...

Vad roligt att fa ta del av dina fina bilder fran Paris! En stad som jag aldrig har besokt, men ser fram emot att en dag fa uppleva. For som jag forstar det ar det en stad man inte bara besoker utan man verkligen kan uppleva med alla sinnen, inte minst genom smaklokarna..

Vad mycket ni hann med och vilket perfekt vader anda det varkar ha varit, inte for hett och varmt utan lagom att strosa runt och turista i. Harligt!

Roligt med Sverige besok ocksa i dagarna och utflykt till bergen i helgen, de inlaggen ser jag fram emot! Vart har ni tankt att aka denna gang??

Desiree said...

Liz, du har helt klart något att se fram emot. Det är en underbar stad med mycket att både se och göra. Paris som NY är en stad som är pefekt att bara strosa runt i, sätta sig på en bar/fik och kolla in folk. Det var rätt varmt på lördagen men även om det blev lite tråkigare väder med lite regn och mulet så var det otroligt skönt då man skulle gå långa sträckor.
Jag ser väldigt mycket fram emot att få se alperna på sommaren. Denna gång åker vi inte så långt från Interlaken men till Lauterbrunnen och Murren. Vi ska bo i Murren vilket ska bli jättekul då de inte har någon biltrafik där utan man tar linbanan till den lilla staden som du säkert känner till.

Katarina Söderberg said...

Åh vad mycket ni hann med.Jag ska läsa lite bättre sedan då jag har dator. Kram

Suzesan said...

OJ vad mysigt. Glad för din skull. Oj vad jag längtar tillbaka till Paris. LÄNGESEN NU. För länge.

Tar ju evigheter om man ska se ALLT.

TRE timmar dit. Oj så fort. Det är ju okey.

Sett Triumfbågen. Vi gick dit ungefär där du tog bilden. Sen var vi trötta. Men vi tänkte lägga en blomma på- okände soldatens grav- som finns ....under den...någonstans där. Nån sa att det betyder tur. Men allt som såg nära ut var så långt bort för den är ju så stor.

Skulle hela vägen tillbaka den -avenyn-...och sen åt vi på ett stlle där och sen var vi vid Lido och skulle titta på bilderna. Dörrvaktmästarn log och sa goddag och adjö på franska.VÅRA kläder. Jensoch vanligt och alla andra hade ja sån där tjusig utstyrsl. Minns det där Goddag och Adjö. Men snällt.