1. THE LOUVRE MUSEUM: AN ENDLESS EXPLORATION
Former residence of the kings of France; constantly enlarged and transformed since the twelfth century, this palace became a museum more than two centuries ago. It is one of the largest in the world.There are collections of ancient Egypt, Greek and Roman antiquity, paintings and sculptures from the Middle Ages to the nineteenth century: 35,000 works in total, including “The Mona Lisa” by Leonardo da Vinci “The Venus of Milo”, “The Marriage of Cana” of Veronese and a thousand other wonders …Since 1989 with a main access by the famous Pyramid of glass (erected in the center of the Cour Napoléon), this exciting universe was enriched in 2012 by a department on the arts of Islam.
2. LA MADELEINE: A CHURCH, A DISTRICT
The Church of the Madeleine, Paris
With no bell and bell tower, but with monumental bronze doors and a corinthian column surround, the Madeleine church looks like a Greek temple! And for good reason: built between 1764 and 1842, it had a time vocation to become a pantheon to the glory of the Napoleonic armies.Inside, one admires sculptures, paintings, a superb mosaic of neo-Byzantine style and one benefits from classical concerts of high quality.
Located in the Haussmannian Paris, between Concorde and the Opera Garnier, the church gave its name to the square and surrounding area, studded with luxurious shops and haunts of gourmets.
3. OPERA OF PARIS: IN THE SCENES OF THE GARNIER PALACE
Paris National Opera
In 1861, at the request of Napoleon III, Charles Garnier began the construction of a new Opera House. The building, inaugurated in 1875, is characterized by an exuberant blend of pomp, baroque and eclecticism. It remains a symbol of the luxury and pleasures of Paris of the Second Empire.Guided by a speaker, we immerse ourselves behind the scenes, from wonder to wonder. Rich decoration and debauchery of paintings and sculptures – including the famous “Pythonisse” -, delight this visit of one hour and a half: Rotunda of the Subscribers, Grand Staircase, the auditorium, the living rooms and the fireplaces …
4. MONTMARTRE: THE BASILICA OF THE SACRE COEUR AND ITS VILLAGE
Basilica of the Sacré Coeur, Paris
Consecrated in 1919, after forty years of work, the basilica of the Sacred Heart throne of all its whiteness at the top of the hill Montmartre. To reach it, there is the choice between the funicular or several flights of steps. At the top of the hill, the view from the forecourt is worth every effort. A few steps away, the Place du Tertre and the adjoining lanes abound with attractions and delicacies. And to make a complete tour of the “village”, nothing like the Petit Train de Montmartre. Its circuit from the Place Blanche takes you from the Moulin Rouge to Halle Saint-Pierre, through the bullring of Montmartre, the vineyards and cabaret of the Agile Lapin …
5. Moulin Rouge
Born in Montmartre in 1889, the famous cabaret that inspired a film no less famous, perpetuates the enchantment with its magazine “Féérie”: 80 artists, including 60 Doris Girls recruited worldwide. They are dressed in costumes adorned with feathers, rhinestones and sequins from the best Parisian workshops. Combined with shimmering scenery and exceptional numbers, the mix is magical and spectators take full eyes.
Several dinner-revue packages combine French gastronomy and show in a Belle Epoque room with authentic murals, with Morris columns and original posters. We admire the famous artists who have performed on this mythical scene: Mistinguett, Edith Piaf, Jean Gabin, Frank Sinatra, Liza Minnelli …
The famous Moulin Rouge cabaret show
6. THE CHAMPS-ELYSÉES: WALKING ON THE MOST BEAUTIFUL AVENUE IN THE WORLD
Champs Elysees Avenue, Paris
The most beautiful avenue in the world is 1,910 meters long and 70 meters wide. Created from 1670, it connects the squares of the Concorde and Etoile and it fits into an incredible prospect starting at the Louvre to finish at the Arc de la Defense.
Bordered by alleys and gardens in its lower part, the avenue is then established, until the Arc de Triomphe, luxury shops, showrooms, cinemas and coffee shops.
Celebration of France National Day in the Champs Elysees and the Arc of Triumph
The Champs-Elysées are a place of celebration. They saw the return of the ashes of Napoleon I in 1840, the jubilation of the Liberation of Paris in 1944, the victory of the World Cup of football in 1998 and, each year, the parade of 14-July and the arrival of the Tour de France!
7. EIFFEL TOWER: 10 100 TONNES OF LEGEND
Ready for the big climb? Built for the Universal Exhibition of 1889, the Eiffel Tower, also known as “iron lady”, overhangs Paris from its height of 325 meters. Now everyone has to choose between 1,665 steps … or one of the lifts!
On the 1st and 2nd floors, shops and restaurants are stopovers before climbing to the 3rd floor for a breathtaking view.
For the more curious, the guided tour “The scenes of the Eiffel Tower” (on reservation) reveals the engine room, an old bunker under the Champ-de-Mars or the roof of the restaurant Jules Verne ( currently under renovation ) …
View of the Champs de Mars Park, Paris
8. NOTRE DAME DE PARIS: THE MAGIC HEART OF THE CITY
Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral
Kilometer zero. On the forecourt of the Notre-Dame cathedral, a bronze star figures the center of Paris, from which one calculates the distances with the other cities of France. Set between the two arms of the Seine, in the middle of the Ile de la Cité, Notre-Dame is the geographical but also historical heart of Paris.
Built from 1163 to 1345, it bears witness to the magnificence of Gothic architecture. It took two centuries to build it. Lovers of monuments continue to admire its beauties: carved lace portals, rosettes 13 meters in diameter, statues of saints, gargoyles and monumental bells at its summit. Both towers are 69 meters high and reserve a splendid view to the brave. It is also possible to descend to the archaeological crypt of the forecourt, where excavations have revealed fascinating Gallo-Roman and medieval remains.
9. THE SAINTE CHAPELLE: ITS COLORS AND ITS LIGHTS
The Sainte Chapelle, Paris
Steps away from Notre Dame Cathedral, Sainte-Chapelle offers a moment of grace. Jewel of Gothic art, it was built in the twelfth century at the request of King Saint-Louis, in the heart of the Palace of the City on the island of the same name. Originally planned to house the crown of thorns of Christ – preserved today in Notre-Dame – the Sainte-Chapelle is adorned with a unique set of fifteen stained glass windows and a large rose, ie 600 m² of stained glass windows that surround the lower and royal chapels of the building with an incredible halo of colors and lights.
Sainte Chapelle, Paris
10. THE CONCIERGERIE: PALACE AND PRISON OF KINGS
The Conciergerie, Paris
This palace built on the banks of the Seine was first a royal residence, the first of the capital, when Clovis settled there in the sixth century.
Residence and seat of power of the kings of France until the fourteenth century, the palace is gradually converted into state prison. It will be that of Queen Marie-Antoinette in 1793. The name “Conciergerie” refers to a high character responsible for ensuring order, the concierge. During a free or guided visit, you discover temporary exhibitions and a reconstruction of the jails of the French Revolution.