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#About the City of Paris

The beauty of Paris is exciting from the first second. In Paris, it is not picturesque like Amsterdam, or restraint like London. If those are quiet city capitals, Paris is the one that stops your heart from beating and takes your breath away. Admirers of Paris have said that even 77 years will not be enough time to soak in its beauty.

The big cathedrals, the fantastic squares, the spectacular streets and the magical gardens, the impressive palaces, the elegant houses, the shopping displays and the warm cafes - everything here lets you know that you have arrived to Paris, the most beautiful and seductive cities in the world.

#Must See
Want to see the most popular destinations? - Click on the tag "Must see in Paris".

#With Children
Family Vacation? - Click on the tag "Attractions for Children in Paris".

Unforgettable meal? - Click on the tag "Must eat in Paris".

In most European countries service fees are already included in the check, so it is customary to give a 2 euro tip, regardless of the price of the check itself.

#Paris Country Code

For public transportation - Buy an free pass for the duration of your trip. The weekly pass Navigo is excellent for a week in the city, and there are longer times available as well. Traveling for less days? -Check the RATP card.
Supermarket - the Monoprix chain is cheap and reliable, it is economical, and the French do a lot of their grocery shopping there.
Museums – many museums have free entrances on the first Sunday of every month. Include the Luvre, d'Orsay, Versailles, Cluny, Orangerie, Rodan, and more. Children under the age of 18 enter museum for free. Students and seniors also have discounts.
Picnics - a wonderful way to save money and eat. Buy fresh are the local markets and eat in the surrounding parks.
Renting an apartment - in Paris staying an apartments saves a considerate amount of money.
Free Wi-fi - Not all over the city, but there are a lot of hotspots spread around. Map: www.paris.fr/wifi

You will be able to find a lot of good things at Primark. If you are looking for really cheap, then the chain TATI is the place, and if offers a big variety of clothing from the East and from third world countries. You need a lot of patience to find good things here and for the long lines, to be like the French, bring your own bags, so when you talk around people won't know you shopped at TATI's.
See below a link for shopping recommendations in Paris.

#Clubs and entertainment
A good club is the Point Ephemere. Another is a techno club, the Rex Club, the underground Social Club, and the electronic music club Le Nouveau Casina.
Tickets for sporting events and concerts can be found at www.fnac.fr

#Electric Outlets
The required type are Type C or Type E. Type F will only work here if there is a third hole in the outlet.

#A Taste of the Upcoming Trip? - Here's a video That Will Show you the City in All its Beauty:


#A Bit From the Local Kitchen:

Galeries Lafayette
Galeries Lafayette
#About the Complex

Galerie Lafayette is one of the famous and impressive department stores in France. Many visitors come to this complex to see the 9 stories, rounded and designed. On each floor you will find fashion sections and different luxury restaurants, and fast food chains as well. Be sure to notice the dome at the top of the building.

Home appliances, furniture, cosmetics, jewelry and clothing -in the Galeries Lafayette complex you will find designers and big named-brands.

On the 6th floor of the building you will find restaurants from where you can look over the beautiful Parisian landscape. Prices in the store are usually high, but walking around is always free. It is fun to walk around and see the fashion and the designs.

A Closer Look at the Galeries Lafayette:




A Visit:



Muse du Louvre
Louvre Museum
#About the Museum

Paris's large and luxurious museum, the Louvre Museum (Musée du Louvre) is also one of the largest in the world. It is located on the right side of the first district of Paris, in what used to be a palace.

The Louvre was founded by King Philippe Auguste in 1190 as a fortified palace on the western border of Paris, as part of the defense of the city against Viking attacks. In the years following the construction of the fortress, when Paris expanded beyond the western boundaries set by the king, the palace was used as a line of defense for the storage of the royal treasury. Thus, in 1546, under the reign of François I, architect Pierre Lecco began to transform the fortress into a luxurious royal palace.

The idea of making the Louvre a museum rose during the time of Louis 15th. After the French Revolution, it was decided that the place should open to the masses so that they could enjoy the national masterpieces, and the museum opened in 1793 with an exhibition of 537 paintings.

In the years that followed, the museum was called the "Napoleon Museum" and not by chance. The collection of works expanded greatly during Napoleon's reign, mainly because of the loot he had collected during his wars. The current shape of the Louvre is a huge structure with two arms - the northern Risheleigh side and the southern Dennon side that surrounds Napoleon's courtyard in the center, it exists since 1874.

#Masterpieces in the Louvre

The Louvre currently has a quarter of a million works of art. Along with famous works, such as the Mona Lisa, or the Madonna and the Child of Leonardo da Vinci, you will also find less known art here. In any case, this is an unforgettable experience for every art lover.

For example, Venus from Milos, is perhaps the most famous Greek sculpture in the world. It was found by a local fisherman on the Greek island of Milos, in 1820, when it was split into two separate parts. The Turks, who ruled the island at the time, confiscated the finds, but the French ambassador who was in Istanbul made France buy them and since then it has been in the Louvre.

This is also the story of another mythical statue from Ancient Greece - the statue of Nike, facing against the wind. The statue presents the goddess of victory, Nike, standing against the wind, with her wing. She has no hands and no head, but she is beautiful and many come to the Louvre to see her.

Another famous statue here is the statue of the sitting clerk, an ancient Egyptian statue commemorating the ancient-new profession that was born with the invention of writing - the profession of the clerk, the secretary, who sits and writes diligently.

And there are also the giant Lamassu statues, which guarded the throne room in the palace of the Assyrian king Sargon II. On the ancient stone on which the Hammurabi laws are written, the most comprehensive collection of laws published in antiquity.

#About the Theft of the Mona Lisa

In August 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre Museum in Paris. The thief, a museum employee named Vincenzo Peruggia, hid the little painting under his coat and casually left the museum. The Paris police searched for the thief in vain, they offered money to any informants and interrogated anyone who could have known anything, but found nothing. For two years the thief had hidden the painting that would now become the most famous work in history, in a box under his bed.

When he returned to Italy, two years later, Peruggia offered to sell the painting to the Uffizi Museum in the city of Florence. Minutes later, the local police received a phone call that made it the detective hero of the time. The Mona Lisa was found!

The thief at first said, "I acted on impulse." He then changed his version and said that he wanted to return it to Italy, from where Napoleon stole it. In the trial he said this again and again, and the judges eased his sentence, despite the unimpressive historical knowledge he was discovered with. It is ironic that after a short prison sentence, Peruggia the "patriot" returned to France and died just a few years later.

#About the Mona Lisa

The most famous painting in the world is, oddly enough, one of the most modest and small paintings that exist.

The painting is called "Mona Lisa" or "La Gioconda" and it is located in the Louvre Museum in Paris. The painter is a Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci, and he painting for a very long time, in the 16th century.

This portrait is revolutionary, because it changed the way of painting portraits, completely accurate copies. If until then they used to paint mostly in profile, it was a frontal painting that completely changed the picture, literally. All the portraits followed his way and were frontal.

The gentle brush strokes and the blurring of the corners of the lady's mouth give Mona Lisa a mysterious and intriguing smile that fascinated generations of art lovers and made this painting known all over the world.

In addition, Leonardo used various techniques such as delicate games of light and shade in the Mona Lisa. The difference between the portrait, the background and the special perspective, increased realism in the painting. But the real genius in the painting is the use of the method he developed called Sfumato. In the Sfumato method, the artist creates a gradual and careful transition from color to color or shade to shade, so that the sub-colors cannot be distinguished. Today in the digital age it is obvious, but during the Renaissance it was an innovative invention, implemented in Mona Lisa and added great depth to the painting.

The Mona Lisa is undoubtedly the most famous painting in the world. Hundreds of copies and fakes have survived over the years. Experts say it is the most copied painting in the world.

But unlike all copies and fakes, a recent painting stands out with a truly exciting story. This is the same lady called "Mona Lisa" painted by Leonardo about a decade before the famous painting. The lady is younger, the scenery is different, the colors are lighter, but the poses and faces are the same. Even the marble pillars cut from the renowned Mona Lisa are painted.

#The Museum's Architecture

The big and luxurious Louvre Museum of Paris is also one of the largest in the world. The place born in the 12th century as a fortified palace on the western border of Paris was initially designed to protect the city from Viking attacks. The Vikings often attacked in the Middle Ages and conquered cities throughout Europe.

The current shape of the Louvre is a huge structure with two arms - the northern Risheleigh side and the southern Dennon side that surrounds Napoleon's courtyard in the center, it exists since 1874.
In 1983, Francois Mitterrand, the French president, proposed the "Grand Louvre" plan to renew and renovate the museum. The Chinese-American architect Leoh Ming Pei, who won the project, offered the Glass Pyramid as the main entrance in the center of Napoleon's courtyard and three small pyramids next to it.

The Louvre pyramid is made of metal frames and glass panels. It serves as the main entrance to the museum. The pyramid and the underground lobby solved the difficulty of including the large number of visitors to the museum every day. What is so special about this structure is that the visitors enter through the pyramid, from which they descend into the spacious lobby and then ascend to the main buildings of the museum.

A Closer Look:


A visit:



Maison de Victor Hugo
Victor Hugo's House
#About Victor Hugo's House

There is no one who has not heard the name Victor Hugo, the author of "Les Miserables," "Hunchback of Notre Dame" and more.

The historic house of Hugo (Maison de Victor Hugo), which is 280 square meters, located on the second floor of the Rohan-Jemna Hotel, now serves as a museum. It is located in the Place de Vouz No. 6 in the fourth district of Paris. Hugo rented the apartment for 16 years from 1832-1848. Today the museum is preserved and managed by the city of Paris.

During his stay at this apartment, he hosted many of the greatest French writers of his time. In February 1843 in his apartment he celebrated his daughter's wedding, Leopoldine, and in September marked her tragic death.

In the office of this apartment he wrote some of his famous works, for example a large part of "Les Miserables" was written there. In 1841 he was elected a member of the French Academy.

After he left the apartment in 1848, the building went through renovations that make it hard to accurately reconstruct the original frame of the building, for example the disappearance of the corridors and balconies overlooking the square. The museum and exhibition were made possible thanks to the contribution of the author and Hugo's good friend, Paul Maurice, who enabled the Paris municipality in 1902 to purchase the building. The museum was inaugurated on the 30th June 1903.

#Victor Hugo's Culture

Victor Hugo was a French poet, writer, playwright and politician. He is considered the greatest poet of France and is best known for his famous books: "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" and "Les Miserables."

Already at the age of 14 Hugo decided he wanted to be a poet, and when he was only 10 he was awarded a scholarship for his first book of poems. He used to write day after day for years and revolutionized French poetry. He led a group of writers and poets who created a new style - Romanticism.

In 1830, Hugo's play "Hernani" was performed in Paris, which was one of the first romantic plays. Paris was very angry after this play and a lot of heated arguments broke out in the theater among the spectators of the show. These arguments were part of a long tradition of disagreements about artistic taste in the French theater.

In 1831 Hugo published the renowned novel "The Hunchback of Notre Dame." The purpose of the novel was to present the beauty of Notre Dame Cathedral to the general public, after its destruction by the masses during the French Revolution. The novel was a success in France and led to the beginning of a proper preservation process for the cathedral. The book has been translated into many languages and has gained great success around the world.

Hugo made sure that his stories instigate hope in the hearts of the poor and suffering, and to assure them a beautiful and just life.

In 1838, his play "Roi Bella" was performed for the first time in the Renaissance Theater in Paris, a romantic drama that takes place in Spain in the 17th century.

Victor Hugo died in Paris in the year 1855 and was buried in his funeral in the Pantheon, where all the great builders of France are buried.

#What is in Hugo's Apartment?

In 1902, as part of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Victor Hugo, his house was opened as a museum.

In the first floors of the building is the Rohan-Jemna Hotel and on the third floor you will find the same house where Victor Hugo lived with his wife and four children, in the years 1832-1848. Hugo's apartment had been restored to the smallest and most accurate detail.

The visit is especially interesting for those who want to know the man, see how and where he worked and of course under what conditions he lived.

Beyond a glimpse into the intimate rooms of the writer, in which he wrote some his great works, such as Les Miserables, there is an exhibition that presents his life and some of his famous manuscripts. The apartment contains original collections that he collected, paintings he looked at and the authentic furniture he used. Victor Hugo's home presents an exhibition of his life, accompanied by a selection of his writings and drawings. All the rooms have been renovated and restored and offer an authentic view of his work.

A Closer Look:



Muse dith Piaf
Edith Piaf Museum
#About the Museum Dedicated to the Music Legend from France

On Crespin du Gast Street in Paris you will find an emotional spot for music lovers. At house number 5 is the Edith Piaf Museum (Musée Édith Piaf).

The meseum is located inside a normal apartment, the same one Edith lived in when she was 18 years old. It was founded by her fans, and for many years did not charge for entry.

The museum, whose background music consists of Piaf's voice, is a sort of temple to the singer. It has an impressive collection of photos, shoes, bags, and gloves that belonged to the diva, alongside her famous black dress, and endless fan letters written to her throughout her lifetime. These letters are full of love, that filled people's hearts with warmth and love in very tough times.
Pre Lachaise Cemetery
Père Lachaise Cemetery
#About the Most Famous Cemetery in the Entire World

The Pere Lachaise Cemetery is probably the most known cemetery in the world. As you walk through it, it sometimes seems as if you are in a history book. There is a sort of representation here of almost everyone who has succeeded in making an impact on French culture in recent centuries, with an emphasis on the Parisians among them.

In Pere Lachaise you can see quite a few magnificent tombstones that look like little churches. Because of the custom of Catholics to bury several dead in the same place, most of the graves are family graves where many members of a family are buried for generations.

The cemetery was established in 1804 when the land at the time was outside of Paris, it was purchased by the municipality and turned into a cemetery. This was initiated by the French Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte. Despite the interesting initiative, no one was eager to bury his relatives in a cemetery so far away from the city and only a few did. The cemetery's administration did not give up and conducted a campaign to promote the sale of the graves in Pere Lachaise. They moved a few authors of the period to the new cemetery, including the famous playwright Moliere. Even then celebrities attracted a lot of attention and the campaign succeeded! - Many began to bury their loved ones next to the dead celebrities of Pere Lachaise and the place became a staggering success. Today there are over 300,000 people buried there. By the way, anyone interested in visiting the graves of famous people that he admires, can buy a map of the cemetery at the main entrance and navigate around it.

Among the famous people buried in Pere Lachaise is the composer Frederic Chopin, the early filmmaker Georges Melies, the brilliant British playwright Oscar Wilde and the most important French singer Edith Piaf. All these people were buried alongside the graves of singers such as Gilbert Baku and Yves Montand, who is buried along with Simone Siniora, his wife and an actress. The most famous and adored grave amongst the young people there is the grave of the American rock idol of the 1960's, the head of the band "The Doors" Jim Morrison, who died in Paris and was buried in Père Lachaise. There is a fenced plot within the boundaries of the cemetery, separated from the rest of the tombs, which serves as a Jewish cemetery. The Rothschild family and other famous Jews are buried there.

The name of the cemetery comes from the name of Father Francois de la Séz, the confessor of King Louis the 14th.

#About Jim Morrison's Grave

One of the most famous graves in the Pere Lachaise Cemetery, is the grave of the renowned singer Jim Morrison, the star of "The Doors" band. His grave receives the most visits. Morrison died in 1971 from a drug overdose at the age of 27. Morrison was one of the most admired rock stars and wrote most of the band's songs. Today he is considered a poet no less than a musician. By the way, it is interesting that he studied film at the university. In any case, he was a star and idol of the youth in his lifetime, but he gained most his fame after his death and youth from all over the world rushed to Père Lachaise, to visit his grave.

The sight of groups of young people lighting candles and placing flowers is pretty common here, however some cases of vandalism have been seen here several times - the tomb was vandalized with graffiti and much of the vegetation around it was destroyed. The fans often left a lot of dirt and grime around the grave, so the cemetery management decided to place a guard near the grave, which helped to moderate the behavior.

#About Oscar Wilde's Grave

The story about the grave of Oscar Wilde, the Irish poet and playwright, is sad and maybe a little funny.

Wilde died in France in 1900 and was originally buried in a small and not particularly impressive cemetery near Paris. In 1909, an obsessed fan was determined to bury him in a place worthy of his status and passed Wilde's remains to the famous Pere Lachaise cemetery.

An American sculptor named Jacob Epstein took upon himself the project of designing Wilde's tomb. The construction of the sculpture took about three years, at the end Epstein reveal ed his work - a statue of a man with precise anatomical details in an Egyptian style. Yes, the statue was completely naked, including the private areas. It was a little ironic, because Wilde, an admired Englishman and cultural hero, fell from his high status, into prison and humiliation, after being discovered being a homosexual - a serious offense in England of those days. When he left prison, poor and lonely, he moved to Paris, where he eventually died. It was not until after his death that history did him a favor that he won the iconic status of one of the greatest playwrights of all time.

In any case, the cemetery management decided to cover the sculpture's private area with a fig leaf specially designed for it. One night an anonymous fan decided to remove the leaf, but to his dismay he removed the "relevant" part of the statue along with the leaf. To this day you can find the emasculated statue...

In recent years, a two-meter high glass partition has been placed around the tomb to prevent visitors from continuing their habit of kissing the grave with lips smeared with lipstick. However, soon the glass was also stained with red lipstick. Now a fence surrounds the entire area, this time to protect the glass ..

#Graves and Stories

Famous and romantic characters are buried in the Pere Lachaise Cemetery.

Abelard and Heloise are one of the couples. Abelard, who was a smart scholar at the Notre Dame Cathedral, attracted many students and admirers. The priest of Paris took him to be a private tutor for the orphaned niece who grew up in his house - Heloise. She was 17 years old and he was 36, their love won and it was not long before they had a son. The angry uncle sent messengers to neuter Abelar and as a result they both ran away to different monasteries that distanced them. Despite the distance, the two did not forget each other and wrote dozens of love letters that were published over the years. Legend has it that when Heloise was buried, 22 years after her lover, he extended his hands from the grave to embrace her.

We can learn another romantic story from the grave of a young journalist named Victor Noir, who was killed by Napoleon's nephew in a duel over the heart of a girl. On his grave was a life-size bronze statue of him, with a noticeable bulge in his trousers. Due to the fact that he was not a small man, the statue has become a symbol of fertility and to this day many women come to feel the bulge, hoping to conceive and surround the sculpture with flowers and potted plants.

Another story takes place in 1871, the last rebels of the Paris commune were barricaded in the cemetery. A total of 147 rebels were executed in front of the cemetery wall on the southeast side. "The Wall of the Commune Fighters," the wall of which their brothers were murdered and buried, is still a pilgrimage site for French leftists.

#An Interesting Anecdote About Pere Lachaise

In the early days of the cemetery, in 1804, it was greeted coldly by the Parisians who were used to throwing the dead into mass graves. The cemetery is actually a huge park in northeast Paris with about 6,000 trees on an area of 440,000 square meters.

300,000 people are buried in the Pere Lachaise Cemetery, however there are only 100,000 tombstones.

Weird, right? - The explanation is that when a grave does not have visitors for a long time, the body is transferred to a mass grave.
This is how today's rich Parisians, who want a "private home" rather than "public housing" after their death, win. Today they pay a lot of money to buy a permanent burial place for themselves and their families.

#Pere Lachaise Tourism

Today, Pere Lachaise is one of the most popular sites in Paris. This cemetery has existed for more than 200 years. It is the resting place of a million souls and attracts over 2 million visitors every year. Some of the tombstones are tourist attractions - such as those of Chopin, Edith Piaf, Moliere, Bizet and Oscar Wilde.

The staff of the cemetery, which is made of about 100 people, feel the workload: they have to clean the rubbish, the graffiti and the more or less respectable souvenirs left by the tourists to the dead.

A Closer Look at the Cemetery:

Grand Palais
Grand Palais
#About the Grand Palais - The Largest Glass and Metal Structure in the World

The Grand Palais and the Petit Palais, also known as the National Gallery, are located in central Paris close to the Champs Elysées and the Seine.

These buildings were built at the end of the 19th century for the Paris International Exposition in 1900, the same one for which the Eiffel Tower was built. This world exhibition was designed to sum up the 19th century and celebrate the opening of the 20th century in the center of the "Belle Epoque" period (The Golden Age of Europe, that was created thanks to the peace that prevailed at the time between the powerful countries, it brought prosperity and growth in the fields of science, and also for a significant improvement in quality of life). At that time, the exhibition was the largest ever to exist and included 50,000 visitors. The exhibition covered 120,000 square meters.

Within the framework of the magnificent buildings that were created for the exhibition, we can also find the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais.

In the beginning, the Museum of French Art was dedicated to the traditional Parisian art galleries - the French Artists' Salon and the Spring Salon. Here the works of Renoir, Cezanne, Matisse and others were first exhibited. The first works of cubism were also exhibited in the museums space for the first time. The museum has three different halls, each with its own entrance. The largest art exhibitions in Paris are held here.

In the main gallery you can see exhibitions of modern art, fashion exhibitions of the biggest designers, and exhibitions of antiques. Among the important collections of the place are the famous bronze sculptures, sculptures from the Greek and Roman period and ivory and jewelry from the French Renaissance period.

Today, the museum includes various galleries, displaying alternating exhibitions of modern and contemporary art in various fields: art, fashion, photography, music, dance, cinema, theater and even sports. The exhibitions are considered very high quality and present significant works in the world of modern art.

#The Architecture of the Grand Palais

The building is an impressive combination of classic stone work alongside iron and glass work in an Art Nouveau style. Thanks to its magnificent beauty and the title it received as the world's largest glass and iron structure, the Grand Palais is one of the most famous buildings in Paris. At its center you will find its impressive glass dome, built by three different architects.

Alexander the 3rd's Gate is also part of the complex of these buildings and continues their design line.

In 2006 the Grand Palais and its twin palace (Petit Palais) underwent serious renovations. As part of the renovations, the foundations of the showroom, made entirely of steel and glass, were reinforced. If we raised the issue of glass, it is interesting to know that since 1993 the building was closed after a metal screw that fell from the ceiling from a height of 35 meters plunged into the display case. A showcase in the Grand Palais is the dome in Art Nouveau style made up of 9,370 tons of green steel.

#The Grand Palais In Times of War

During the World War I, the Grand Palais served as a military hospital that employed local artists who were concentrated in the front area of the hospital rooms, so that they could create molds for prosthetic limbs for the wounded.

During the World War II and the occupation of France, the Nazis used the Grand Palais - initially as a warehouse for trucks and then as a place of exhibition for Nazi propaganda.

The Parisian Resistance used the Grand Palais as its headquarters during the struggle to liberate Paris. On August 23, 1944, shots were fired from one of its windows at a German row advancing on the next street. The Germans returned fire with tanks to the palace and the shells set fire to a pile of hay from a building set up for a circus show. Thick black smoke had engulfed in the fire that burned for the next 48 hours and caused serious damage to the structure. On August 26, American jeeps parked in the main hall, followed by tanks from the 2nd French Armored Division, marked the completion of the palace's liberation.

A closer look




Fashion show:


Tour Guide:

Musee des Egouts de Paris
Sewers Museum
# About the Parisian Museum dedicated to sewage

It may sound like a joke, but the Sewer Museum (Musee des Egouts de Paris) in Paris really exists and you are really standing at its entrance! This interesting museum is located in the seventh district, on the left bank of Paris, near the Pont de l'Alma bridge and across Pier D'Orsay number 93, which is the building that exemplifies the complex sewer system in Paris. Visiting the museum is an adventurous and unique way to get to know Paris through the underground sewer system, it is a sort of underground city underneath Paris's magnificent sites. This famous sewer system was also mentioned in Victor Hugo's "Les Misérables."

As you enter the museum, you descend into the sewer system itself, you get to learn about the different sewer levels around and how this system is upheld, while walking closely to the sewer pipes. The tour intermixes walking around pipes that are used today, and older pipes that are outdated and are abandoned. Above these is the history of the Parisian sewer system, from different view points, including drawings from different time periods. Though today the sewers are updated, the tours include a few alleyways of the older systems, that are located down there just for display.

Beyond the tour, you can see photos from the history of the sewage of Paris, and get exposed to different maintenance methods that these difficult logistical pipes require.

Visitors on this tour are asked not to bring food, and at the end of the tour are requires to wash their hands.

#The Sewer System

Until the Middle Ages, drinking water in Paris was taken directly from the Seine River, where used water was drained to fields or unpaved streets. For an unclear reason, the water was able to return to the river, which lead to many health issues for the residents. This unusual museum is dedicated to the real underground city in Paris - the sewer system.

The divided sewage system is something of an achievement for the capital's residents from the 13th century, when King Philip August gave the order to build the drainage channels. At a certain point Napoleon ordered to have these channels moved underground, and in 1850 began the building of the sewage system that today reaches more than 2,100 kilometers of tunnels.

Until the 1970's, the sewage system was a fascinating tourist destinations that rode around in carriages, and later by walking tours. Today tourists are satisfied by visiting the museum, which has managed to turn this stinky topic into a chic place to visit. Here you can learn all about the Parisian sewage system.

The museum is located under the Pier d'Orsay, on the left bank of the Seine.

If you go on one of the hour long tours, you will be able to see the photos exhibited about the materials that were developed over the years to maintain and repair the sewage pipes. Massive wooden balls that were used for cleaning the pipes, maps that show the expansion of the tunnels by the architect Eugène Belgrand, and dolls dressed in uniforms of sanitations from different time periods.









Palais de Chaillot
Chaillot Palace
#About the Palace

The Chaillot Palace (Palais de Chaillot), that replaced the old Trocadero Palace, is the building that represented France at the 1937 World Exhibition in Paris.

The Chaillot Palace, which consists of two separate parts with no connection between them, is characterised by two arms that look like a stretched arch from above. The structure was designed in the Strim Lane style, where the element of curvature is especially prominent. It was built by the architects Louis-Hippolyte Bauleau, Jacques Carlo and Leon Esme. The space between the two arms allows for a beautiful view of the Eiffel Tower, the Champ de Mars and the Seine.

The UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration on Human Rights here on December 10, 1948. The event was commemorated by a large stone monument in the square called the "Human Rights Promenade."

A fire that damaged the east side of the palace in 1997, brought it to a state of decay. However, with the years it became a paradise of architecture and construction. The place was redesigned and opened in March 2007 as the Museum of Architecture and Heritage, that tries to examine French architecture from the Middle Ages to the present.

On the east side of the palace you can find the Museum of French Statues, founded from the idea of the architect Viola-la-Duc. The exhibits are organized according to geographic regions and periods of times. This allows viewers to compare different styles and ideas.

Another institution in this side is the School of Architecture. It has an archive of 20th-century architecture and a place for higher education. You can also find here the National Theater of Chaillot..

#About the Museums Inside the Chaillot Palace

There are many interesting museums you can visit in the Chaillot Palace:

The Marine Museum - dedicated to the marine history of France. Here you can find different models of ships, antique maps and marine navigation equipment. The museum is located inside the Chaillot Palace.

The Museum of Man - a museum with ethnographic exhibits. It was founded in 1937 by Paul Riva for the World Art and Technology Exhibition of the Modern Era. The purpose of the compilation of collections under one roof was to present human development from the prehistoric period and the differences between the different cultures.

The Museum of Monuments - the museum presents the development of French architecture from the Middle Ages until today, you will find two galleries: one dedicated to architecture and the other to wall paintings and stained glass windows. The museum offers models, 3D screenings, stained glass windows, paintings, books and films.

The National Chaillot Palace - here you can find the best theatre performances in Paris. The theatre hosts many of the best and famous plays and contains 3 luxurious theaters of different sizes. It has from an intimate and small space to a huge theater. The entrance of the theater, The Grand Foyer, provides a beautiful view of the gardens, ponds and fountains of the Trocadero Gardens.

#The Trocadero Gardens

The Trocadero gardens contain a variety of statues, some very old. In the center of the gardens you can find the long and beautiful "Warsaw Fountain." They are divided into several levels decorated with sculptures. There are 93,930 square meters. In order to view them from the Eiffel Tower, you can cross the Pont d'Léna bridge, which connects the two banks of the Seine.

The gardens were built as part of the original palace that was here before the Chaillot Palace. The original palace - the Trocadero Palace was named after the battle of Trocadero that took place in France in 1823.

The big gardens are open to the wide public and are suitable for a nice picnic in the summer. On the edge of the big square in the center of the gardens you will find a small café with delicious desserts.

At nightime the statues are illuminated and during the day it is nice to take pictures in the gardens with the Eiffel Tower in the background.

For the residents of Paris the gardens serve as a meeting place for "skateboarders." The square is regularly used for demonstrations, events and celebrations.

A Closer Look:

Champ de Mars
#About the Park

Champ de Mars is one of the city's most green and beautiful places. The Champ de Mars, the bigger park in the 7th district of Paris, has a very special use - it's a field for parades and training of the École Militaire (military school), named after the Mars Field in Rome. In the past popular holidays and some exhibitions were held here. The park is located between the Seine River and the Ecole Militaire Complex. At the western end of the park is the Eiffel Tower. The park is 780 meters long and 200 meters wide.

Many of the most important and significant events in French history took place there. On July 14, 1790, the "Pieter de la Pedersion" events took place there during the French Revolution, and on July 17, 1791 a massacre was carried out there against French monarchs who called for the overthrow of the King, King Louis 16th.

The park hosted many renowned exhibits, such as: the Paris World Exposition in 1867, the Paris World Exposition in 1889, the Paris World Exposition in 1937 and the colonial exhibitions designed to present the colonies of the French colonial empire.

It's quite amazing that under the nose of one of the world's most famous places, the Eiffel Tower, there are 780 meters of quiet green gardens that allow you to stretch out on their lawns in total peace. The place is used by the Parisians to rest on sunny days and allows tourists to see the tower's strength in the background. Buy yourselves baguettes and croissants, doesn't matter from where, then just lie back on the grass and enjoy the moment.

#The Paris World Exposition

The "Champ de Mars" park you are standing in at this moment has hosted several important expositions in Paris. One of the largest and most important exposition is the Paris World Exposition which took place in 1889. This exposition still servers as a turning point in Parisian history, because the Eiffel Tower was built in its honor.

The exhibition was held in honour of the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution and was visited by more than 6.3 million visitors. Half of them were French.

The exhibit featured a number of fields to a large audience for the first time: plastic art, music from South America and the Far East. It has revealed modern trends in art such as symbolism and post-impressionism. This exhibition also presented African natives imprisoned in a human zoo, an artistic performance whose purpose is to raise awareness of the differences between people. In addition, the "Machinery Gallery" building was established, which presents inventions and innovations in the field of technology.

The Eiffel Tower served as the exhibitions gate, but since its construction was not over, the visitors were only allowed to climb up to the second floor.

The exhibitions area was about 1 square kilometer and spread across the Champs de Mars, the Trocadéro, the banks of the Seine and the Invalides. In order to travel around the exhibition, the visitors used a small train on a 3 km track, which was set up for transportation.

#Art in the Form of a Human Zoo

In one of the most important exhibitions held in this place, the Paris World Exposition in 1889, an interesting, perhaps even slightly disturbing, artistic performance was presented.

African kids imprisoned in a human zoo were presented to a wide audience. The human zoos displayed human children (ethnic groups defined as natural and primal populations in a particular place). Most of the children were African, Native American, Inuit and Asian. The purpose of the displays was to emphasize the "inferior" nature of the natives and the difference between them and the Europeans from Western culture. Ethnographic zoos were generally based on scientific racism and social Darwinism.

One of the main attractions of the Paris World Exposition was the "Negro Village," which was the human zoo that displayed 400 children in a grand show, presenting their authentic lives to the public. The attraction was visited by 28 million people.

A Closer Look at the Champ de Mars:

Hôtel des Invalides
#About The Compound

One of the most famous places in France is the Hôtel des Invalides. It was built at the initiative of King Louis the 14th as a hospital ("Utel des Invalides"), which was designed to provide shelter and care for his 7,000 soldiers who suffered from disabilities, old age or other defects. This was a rare and admirable act, given that at the same time governments didn't take responsibility for the damage caused to soldiers by the wars they were sent to fight in. At the time 6,000 soldiers who were wounded by the wars of France, lived here. Many don't know that to this day there are some discharged soldiers who stay at this compound and receive dedicated treatment and care. The compound is located in the 7th district of Paris, on the left bank of the city. Today this place is used as a national museum and sometimes it is used for military purposes. In 1789 weapons were stolen from the Invalides cellars and were used to liberate Bastille in the French revolution.

In the plaza of the Invalides, the ranks of Alfred Dreyfus were revoked after he was convicted of espionage, an act that is completely anti-Semitic.. A few years later, after he was exonerated, and his ranks were returned to him here.

The Saint Louis Chapel contains the tombs of Napoleon's brothers and of the French army ministers.


The construction of the Invalid complex was completed within five years from 1671-1676. The Golden Dome, which actually belongs to the Church of San Luis, is made of six kilograms of gold. The architect used a style considered in France to be a typical style of the Jesuits (the members of the Order of Jesus) and derived the the original idea from the first Jesuit church built in Rome. However, the architect also used classical elements which made his style identify with Paris. There are 6 tombs under the golden dome, containing the body of Napoleon which was returned to Paris from St. Helena in 1840. In the year 1861 at an official state funeral in the Dom Church, Napoleon was buried.

#What's in the Compound?

The front of the compound is decorated with statues of the gods of war and wisdom - Mars and Minerva sculpted by Guillaume Coustou. On the gable (the triangle on the facade of the building), you can see another statue of Cousteau the 14th riding on his horse.

You can find 4 museums: the Museum of Contemporary History, Museum of Models, Military Museum (in which you can find the uniform, armour and other belongings of Napoleon) and the Museum of Order and Liberation. Furthermore, it contains two churches: the Church of Saint Louis des Invalides and the Church of the Dom. The compound also has some important national institutions of France: the National Assembly and government offices.

There is a promenade inside the compound, covered with lawns and trees.

#What Happened Here?

One of the events that took place here was in 1894, when the ranks of Alfred Dreyfus were revoked in a humiliating ceremony at the front of the main building. Dreyfus was charged with spying for Germany and after being convicted, without any connection to reality, a ceremony was held here to revoke his ranks.

Years later, after a public struggle for a retrial, after a subsequent conviction and then a pardon and an exoneration in 1906, a different ceremony was held here, in which Dreyfus's ranks were returned to him.

#About the Museums in the Compound

There are several important museums in the Invalides:

The Military Museum (Musée historique de l'Armée) - The museum that was founded in the mid 19th century began as an artillery museum. As the years past, it combined with the Military museum and today it displays historic weapons, uniforms, armors, decorations of the French army and more. The museum is spread over a huge area of about 12 thousand square meters and includes a large and impressive garden. The chronological order enables a comprehensive and profound view of the wars France took part in, using historical information, videos, pictures, paintings and hundreds of thousands of military exhibits that illustrate the nature of the period. The floors about the First and Second World Wars are fascinating and recommended.

The Museum of Models (Musée des Plans-Reliefs) - relief maps and 3D models of French cities, were designed to teach how to attack and defend cities if a war were to break. These models were built for the use of Louis the 14th so he could prepare attack and defence tactics for the army during combat. More than 100 models were built by the best engineers and architects of Paris and they were kept and preserved for hundreds of years. In the 18th century they wanted to get rid of them, but the models were preserved and moved to an area in which they are still kept today. During his reign, Napoleon ordered a few more models. The museum is open to the general public since 1943 and is a historical testimony to the appearance of France in the old days.

The Museum of Order and Liberation (Musée de l'Ordre de la Libération) - "The Order of Liberation" was founded by Charles de Gaulle in the 40's of the 20th century and he led "Free France" and the rebellion of the Nazi occupation. "The Order of Liberation" is the second most important order in France. The museum includes many exhibits from World War II, members of the Orders, weapons, and historic documentation of the actions of "The Order of Liberation."

A Closer Look:


Napoleon's Grave:


An Outside View:

Moulin Rouge
#About the Club Moulin Rouge

Beside one of Montmartre's wind stations, lies a club with a red windmill emblem. Moulin Rouge has been one of the most important attractions in Paris for many years. This place quickly became known and very important people came to it. The Moulin Rouge is located in the 18th district of Paris and offer circus shows with animals, snakes, dogs and of course impressive and fascinating dances. In this place you can also eat dinner and drink champagne.

The Moulin Rouge was built by two activists who wanted to characterize the place for the upper class population so they could reach the fashionable district in 1889. The place was bold and sexual, offering champagne, food and provocative dancing. This was probably a winning recipe because the place almost immediately became a huge success. Over the years, the Moulin Rouge not only attracted the upper class, but also businessmen, artists, working class, foreigners and impressive women. Everyone came here to see and be seen.

At the time the club was opening, Paris was under the impulse of renewal, change, industrial and social progress, and its opening was a record for it's time.

The outdoor scenery, the famous windmill, has become the inspiration and theme for many painter's creations, pictures and posters, which are popular to this day. The Moulin Rouge became the symbol of Parisian bohemianism.

Before entering the club we would recommend you take a walk around the area, the streets are beautiful and the atmosphere is magical.

#The Can Can Dance

The Moulin Rouge is also known as the birthplace of the Can Can Dance. This is a difficult and demanding dance, originating in France in the early 19th century. It is performed by a number of female dancers who dance next to each other in a line, dressed in long stockings, and skirts with many layers. From time to time, the dancers will lift their skirts in a provocative way, so that part of their leg is exposed. Due to this act, the dance was considered obscene and immoral and was given the name of a prostitute dance.

In the beginning, the Can Can dance was a done in pairs of men and women, however it gradually became a show dance performed to an audience - just like a performance in night clubs and brothels. Over the years, the dancers added elements of acrobatics, shouts and gestures, such as lifting the skirt up to the top of the head, kicks, jumps, and more.

The dance gained a lot of popularity and later gave birth to the cabaret.

A Closer Look:

Museum of the Romantic Period
#About the Museum of the Romantic Period

The Museum of the Romantic Period (Musée de la Vie Romantique) is located in the ninth district of Paris, not far from the Opera House. It is surrounded by a blooming garden and rose bushes, and exemplifies the Romantic period, using art pieces and many lectures. The Romantic Museum is located near Pigalle Place in the ninth district. The museum is inside a villa built in 1830, where a Dutch artist lived name Ary Scheffer, who was the King of France's favorite painter (the last king, King Louis Philippe).

During the 19th century the villa was used as a meeting place for the elite artists, poets, composers, painters and authors. Among them: the poet Lamartine, the composer Rossini, the painter Delacriox, and the author George Sand with her lover, the composer Frédéric Chopin.After Scheffer passed away, the villa was inherited by family members, and in 1982 it became a museum dedicated to Scheffer's life works and the wild life of George Sand.

the museum's exhibits have to do with the Romantic period. The museum displays Scheffer's work from the years 1795 - 1858, the years he hosted the elite artists of his time. The atmosphere was bohemian and it is as if it froze in time, far back in the 19th century.

The house where the museum is located was built in the 18th century by the student (and family relative) of legendary Ventura Rodriguez. The museum shows a collection of furniture, musical instruments, porcelain, ceramics, different decorative items, the living room where the meetings were held, a long dining table, even the bathroom of King Fernando VII. All these things together bring to life the life styles of that period.

You will also find a magical garden to pass a little time in.

#A Short History

The small house with the garden is dedicated to its owner, Ary Scheffer, and reminds of a whole artistic movement and legendary artists of that time in the ninth district. Scheffer was a Dutch painter that arrived to Paris with his mother. He befriended Louis Philippe before he was made king, and was a teacher to the King's children. Later he was awarded a the title of Duke in the royal court. The house was built in 1830 and Scheffer built a studio for his work and for hosting.

In 1985, the family donated the house to the city, who turned it into a museum showcasing Scheffer's work in his own home. You will also find a library here that has accumulated over 4 generations. The place is also a memorial for George Sand, French author from the 19th century, a neighbor and friend of Scheffer's, who was a leading feminist. Her granddaughter saved many of her belonging, which you can find today in the lounges, which restores her original apartment.

The small museum has temporary and impressive exhibits, it is worthwhile to see when these exhibits are happening and come accordingly.

A Closer Look:

Au Lapin Agile
#About the Chansons Club in which Toulouse-Lautrec Painted

Lapin Agile is an old and well-known cabaret club. This is where chansons singers and songwriters are hosted, the ones who give Paris in general and the Montmartre in particular, their special sound. In fact, this place has for many years been the meeting place for the bohemian city of lights. Chansons fans and city artists adopted it and made it a unique and beloved meeting place.

Indeed, the design here feels like it's from a different era. This place looks exactly like the old days, before the modernism and designism of the modern era.

Like a French brothel from the old days, the dim "Lapin" is illuminated only by a reddish light, the aroma of erotica and romance surrounds it. The guests sit at long wooden tables, on heavy chairs, with drinks in their hands, singing loudly with the singer that is performing here. The wooden floor of the club is dark and has been used alot. If the walls here could tell us what they had seen, we would certainly be happy to hear...

This is the cabaret where in the 19th century the renowned painter Toulouse Lautrec used to sit and paint his paintings of Paris of that time. Many of the heroes of his paintings and famous posters, are people that used to sit or work here in the club. Among them were, waitresses, singers, dancers and prostitutes of whom he drew so well...

In addition, many paintings created by famous artists who have been inspired by the place, have been hung on the clubs walls. Apart from Toulouse Lautrec, the artist whose name is really associated with the place, Picasso, Modigliani and many others also painted here. The waiters know to say that here Hemingway often met with local intellectuals and that Charlie Chaplin played the violin here.

The club, whose name means "The Quick Rabbit", has been in this place for over 150 years, close to the northern slopes of Montmartre.

#About Picasso's Harlequin

Among the many artists who have documented the club and its performances in their paintings, was young Picasso. One of his most famous paintings, "Bluffin Agil", was painted here in 1905 and Picasso gave it to the clubs owner as a gift.

The owner didn't get the painting with no purpose. In the painting you can see Picasso as an Harlequin, a joker wearing a Napoleon hat. Next to him, you can see Pardo, the owner of the club playing on a guitar.

However, in 1912 when he needed money, Pardo sold the painting for $20. That could have ended its way, but whoever bought it continued to "roll" forward, and its price snowballed. For illustration, in 1989 this painting was sold at auction for $41 million. Today its value in the art market is hundreds of millions of dollars, and it is exhibited in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

#The Origin of the Name - The Quick Rabbit

In the beginning the place was called "The Cabaret of Assassins," but in the year 1875, when the place was just 20 years old, an artist named Andre Gill, painted the club a new sign. In Gill's painting was a rabbit that jumped out of a pot. It turns out that in Paris people started to call the club "Gill's Rabbit" (Le Lapin A Gill), but with time the name changed to "The Quick Rabbit" (Cabaret Au lapin Agile).

And, by the way, it's funny, but it seems that this rabbit was a kind of start-up that was ahead of its time... really... Agile in today's startup world is a development method that says that you release the product as quickly as possible to the internet or as an app and check its responses and problems, then fix them quickly, to make improvements almost in real-time... so this rabbit is no longer the only one that is quick...

And by the way - if we have already mentioned this, we would be happy if you would write us comments and reviews in the Contact Us section above so we can develop Guidol faster, so that on your next trip it will be even better!

Pictures from Lapin Agile's History:


A Closer Look:

d'Orsay Art Museum
#Musée d'Orsay - The Train Station That Became an Art Museum

One of the most impressive art museums in the world is dedicated to art from the second half of the 19th century and the early years of the 20th century. The d'Orsay Art Museum (Musée d'Orsay) is located on the left bank of the Seine River in the 7th district of the prestigious area of Saint Germain. The museum has an impressive collection of art, including a variety of important and famous works from 1848 to 1914.

The spacious building now used as a museum was no less than a train station and a hotel in the past. During your visit you can still see the huge clocks used by the passengers and the floors remind you a little of the platforms that were once here. The transformation of the station into a museum began in 1977 and opened to the general public in 1986.

The museum also features sculptures, decorative art, photographs and furniture. You can see the works of the most important impressionist artists - Monet with "Women in the Garden", "Heaps of Hay" and "Poppies", Renoir's famous works such as "Dances in the Moulin de la Galette" and "The Bathers", some of Degas's sculptures of famous dancers and Manet most important works, "Breakfast on the Grass" and "Olympia"

Do not miss the works of the amazing realist Krove, which will leave you stunned with your mouth open. Then continue to the Impressionist side - paintings that accurately reflect what the eye sees.

As we continue to wander through the museum's parts, we arrive at the post-Impressionists part - those who rebelled and abandoned Impressionism in favor of establishing a new artistic language. Van Gogh, the father of expressionism, describes not only what exists in nature, but his moods and feelings, which are not only private and personal, and which embrace each other.

#Creations Worth Looking at in the Museum

There are many worthwhile creations in the museum, here are some of them:

#Starry Night over The Rhone (Vincent van Gogh)

Van Gogh's work was painted in 1888. It depicts the banks of the Rhone River in the city of Arles in France. The painting is drawn from a remote perspective, from the eastern bank of the river to the western bank, which allows it to demonstrate the reflections of the street lighting (gas lamps) in the river. In the painting you can see a pair of lovers strolling along the riverbank. The painting shows specific buildings in Arles, such as the church towers of Saint Julien and Saint Tropez.

#Bal du Moulin de la Galette (Pierre Auguste Renoir)

Renoir painted this work twice - once big and ocne small. The large version can be found in the museum and the small one is currently in a private collection. The work depicts a dance of the bourgeois class, which takes place in Montmartre in Le Moulin de la Galette, on Sunday afternoons. The painting includes a large number of figures - some standing, some dancing and some sitting at tables. Above the group are trees that allow rays of sun to pass and illuminate the characters. The characters in the painting are cut off and therefore there is a sense that the scene is part of a larger event that takes place outside the boundaries of the picture.

#Lunch on the Grass (Edouard Manet)

Manet's oil painting depicts a naked woman beside two dressed men, dining in a garden in Paris in 1863. This was the first time female nudity in daily context was introduced in a painting, without any explicit social or political statement.

#The Museum's Building

The Musée d'Orsay, considered one of the most impressive and popular museums in the world, is a magnificent architectural structure of metal and glass, which began its construction in 1898.

The museum was built where a train station used to be. The station was inaugurated in 1900, but due to a lack of compatibility with newer and more modern trains, it was only used for 40 years. The building was used for several decades for different needs, until in the mid-1970's when the entire building was designated for demolition. A modern multi-functional complex was planned to be built there, but due to the stubbornness of the French museum management, which discovered the potential inherent in the special building, a museum dedicated to art from the second half of the 19th century to the early years of the 20th century was created there.

In 1977, the decision was made and the railway station became an artistic lodge while preserving its outer shape. The museum opened to the public in 1986, and to this day, while utilizing the high spaces of the building, it presents neoclassical, romantic, impressionistic, realistic and other creations.

The ground floor is divided into three levels that present painting, sculpture and architecture.

On the second floor of the building are Impressionist works by a variety of painters.

#The Story of the Striping Artist

In 2016, the artist Deborah de Robertis from Luxembourg was arrested after lying naked in a museum, in front of the painting "Olympia" by Edouard Manet. The painting shows a naked woman lying in her full glory looking directly at the viewer's eyes. Behind the woman is a black maid. In those days, the exhibition "Luxury and Misery: Images of Prostitution 1850-1910" was presented at the museum, which dealt with the excitement of various artists in the phenomenon of prostitution that grew in the second half of the 19th century. Manet's painting caused turmoil at the time, ever since the first time it was presented in 1865. This is because the painting was very direct and daring for its time. He introduced a real prostitute and not a mythological figure, historical or religious - which was more common in the works of the time.

But the naked appearance of the striping artist, while many people were standing around the painting, awakened the museum guards, who closed the room and asked her to dress. Because she refused, the police were summoned and removed her from the place.

The artist's lawyer explained that she carried a camera in order to document the audience's reactions, and that in fact it was a work of art. Despite the reputation that comes to France as a place that promotes free sex, cases from recent years indicate that there too, they find it difficult to accept such harsh provocations. After her release from prison, the artist said that the French reaction was hypocritical to her.

A Closer Look at the Museum:

Sacred Heart Basilica
#About the Sacre Coeur - The Basilica of the Sacred Heart

Ever since the Romans days, Montmartre, which is now a lively entertainment area, is associated with worship. The Gallic Druids saw it as a sacred site and the Romans built there temples dedicated to Mars and Mercury. In the 19th century, during the difficult war between France and Prussia, when Paris was in one of the lowest moments in its history, when the siege and hunger were unbearable, two of the city's residents vowed that if Paris were saved from the German blockade, they would set up a church on the top of the holy hill - dedicated to the holy heart of Jesus. This is also the reason the basilica is called the "national vow."

The construction of the Church in question, Sacred Heart Basilica (Sacre-Coeur Basilica) was the responsibility of Paul Abadi, who won the competition for its construction. The church was built in direct partnership with the government of the Third Republic and was funded by France as part of a national fund. The construction was completed at the beginning of the twentieth century, but because of World War I it was not officially inaugurated until 1919.

The church's impressive dome is the second highest point in Paris. To get to its famous balcony you must climb many stairs or ride a cable car. But despite the effort, the climb is worth it.

#The Architecture of the Sacre-Coeur

The Sacre-Coeur Basilica, which is large and impressive, is seen by many as a huge wedding cake. It was built in a Byzantine-Romanesque style. The basilica was constructed from travertine, which contains a material that ensures that the structure will remain white, will not be affected by the weather and will be noticeable from many points in the city. The basilica has 4 domes, the main one being 80 meters high. It includes a large number of windows that bring lots of natural light into entirety of the church.

The main hall is 100 meters long and 50 meters wide.

The entrance of the basilica is especially impressive. Above the main entrance there are two guards, two horsemen, who are religious and national symbols of France - Joan of Arc and Louis Lepre.

Inside the church, in the choir area, is a huge mosaic describing Jesus and the Sacred Heart. On his left side stand Michael and the Virgin from Orleans and on the right, King Louis the 16th and his family. The interior of the basilica is built in the shape of a Greek cross and is decorated with amazing mosaics, which are located on the roof of the apse, the semicircular niche on the eastern wall of the classical basilicas. The largest mosaic in France is located there, covering 475 square meters.

Other unique points in the church include France's largest bell and one of the largest in the world (18.5 tons). The bell is located in the square tower. The church also has a very impressive organ, which sounds great.

#Detective Mission

Try to find the decorated mosaic of the Star of David in the basilica.

#Religion and Tourism in the Basilica

The basilica was built in 1870, after the hard war between the French and the Prussians. After France's defeat in the war, the political upheavals from within and from the outside drove the nation into a terrible depression. Groups of Catholic believers fed up with the atheist spirit of France set themselves the goal of building a spectacular church on Montmartre Hill, which would be a symbol of renewed hope and repentance.

Despite the declaration of construction as a "public benefit" taking place in 1873, the construction itself only began three years later, and out of the 78 plans submitted to the committee, the one chosen belonged to architect Paul Abadi. The construction wasn't fast enough, was filled with problems and difficulties that caused the whole project to be delayed.

In 1919 the church was opened to the faithful, that saw it as a place of religious and patriotic identification as one.

The church is a focal point for many tourist to this day, especially in the spring and summer months. These tourists sit on the wide stairs leading to the church and use them to view the magnificent view of Paris, that opens in front of them from the hilltops.

#Joan of Arc

At the entrance of the basilica stands a statue of Joan of Arc (Jeanne d'Arc), the French general who was executed when she was only 19 years old. Joan of Arc was the one who led the resistance for the liberation of France from the English occupation during the Hundred Years War, in the 15th century. In a heroic struggle she led the French army to war against mighty England.

The devout Catholic girl was hearing voices in her head since her childhood. In order to convince her that she, a villager, has been chosen by God to lead France, she came for a meeting with King Charles, went straight to his room, and in a series of quick tests proved her supernormal abilities and "her connection with God." King Charles gave her the army and in a series of brilliant battles, dressed in male clothing, she broke the blockade on the city of Orleans and brought about the surrender of the English. She conquered the city Reims and formally crowned Charles as the rightful king of France, also under the law.

The young maiden proved to be a brilliant general when she realized that the English were always victorious because of the great battles they fought. Therefore, she replaced the French army's poor war tactics with superior guerilla warfare tactics and repeatedly defeated the British with her soldiers. However, after being injured 3 times, she was captured and sent to the English. After a long trial conducted by the church she was declared guilty of witchcraft, of connections with Satan, and of other offenses.

Joan of Arc was sentenced to death by fire. Legend has it that an English soldier who was present at the execution cried in horror, "Oh the holiness we burned!"

In 1456, a couple years after the execution, a retrial was made for Joan of Arc. The verdict of the trial was a total acquittal and "Miss Orleans" became an official national heroin of France. In 1920, the Catholic Church also declared her as a saint and finally recognized the greatness of the young girl.

#About the Basilica

The Sacred Heart Basilica was built at the end of the 19th century in an attempt to atone for the sins of France, which led, according to popular belief, to the defeat of the French against the Prussians in 1871.

Because of the style of the basilica, a combination of Neo-Romanesque influences with neo-Byzantine elements, not many Parisians will say that the structure is refined and beautiful in their eyes. However, over the years the basilica became a wanted and popular sight in the French capital skyline.

If you stand in front of the church, you will see the whole center of Paris spread in front of you. On a bright day you can even notice statues and other points of interests in the city. You will probably find the Montparnasse Tower with its 56 floors, that much before its establishment, bohemian and avant-garde people would walk there in the Montparnasse district. They did so after abandoning Montmartre, in the post-World War I period.

If you agree to climb more that 230 stairs to the dome of Sacre Coeur, you get to enjoy a spectacular view. You may buy the entry tickets to the dome in the entrance to the chapel.

A staircase leads from the basilica to the bottom of the hill. You can also go down through a Funicular - a tiny cable train.

A Closer Look:

Tuileries Gardens
#Some History

The Tuileries Gardens (Jardin des Tuileries), or the beautiful Tuileries, are a large public park, located between the Place de la Concorde to its west and the Louvre on its east. The gardens were planted by Caterina de Medici (the wife of Henri II of France) starting in 1564. Their main purpose was to decorate the Tuileries Palace, whose construction began simultaneously that year. The whole area is named after them - the Tuileries area. In the garden you will also find a big fountain, a zoo and a cave. The Musée de l'Orangerie was added in the early 17th century.

In 1664 Jean-Baptiste Colbert ordered the redesign of the gardens by André Le Nôtre, a French landscape architect and gardener of Louis XIV. Le Nôtre gave the garden its wonderfully symmetrical shape, with its clear lines, which can be seen to this day.

Le Nôtre built a central avenue on the Palace's axis, on the east a pool of rounded water, on the west an octagonal pool. He built two terraces-one by the water's edge, along the quay, and the other along Rivoli Street; In addition, he built two terraces along the current border of the Place de la Concorde.

In 1871, the Tuileries Palace was set on fire by the Paris collective. After the arson, some of the building remained in its place, and it was only more than 10 years later that it was decided to completely destroy the remains, and the palace was never restored.

The garden has sculptures of various statues spread around the park, including Rodin, Alberto Giacometti, Maillol and others. From the 19th century, the gardens became the Parisians' leisure and recreation spot, and were mentioned in many works of art.

#About the Gardens

The Tuileries were once the gardens of the royal palace of the Tuileries. In the past, the kings and queens of France used to calmly stroll through these gardens. They became a public park in 1667, after the French Revolution. From the 19th century, the gardens became the Parisians' leisure and recreation place, and were mentioned in many works of art.

If you wondered about the origin of the name, it is named for the tile factory that was located on this spot (tiles in French at called 'tuiles').

The gardens have many cute corners where you can read and relax, as well as attractions and amusement facilities for children. Sculptures of various statues are scattered throughout the garden, including Rodin, Alberto Giacometti, Maillol and others. In recent years, modern sculptures have also been placed in the gardens to give an atmosphere of renewal. In 1988, a statue of Alfred Dreyfus was also added. You can walk around the two big fountains, sit on one of the chairs scattered around them and watch the miniature boats floating on them. On both sides of the central avenue, you can sit down and breathe the air on the benches in the shade of the trees and watch the Parisians playing on the grass surfaces with ball games. Children can play in the playgrounds, go horseback riding, watch a puppet theater, or sail small sailboats in the water pools. The gardens have cafes and ice cream parlors with drinks.

#The Gardens Throughout History

The garden's story begins in 1564, when Caterina de Medici decided to build herself a palace, and a garden to accompany it and be in her favorite Italian style. But the person who is responsible for the great change that the garden has undergone is actually a family member of de Medici, Marie, the mother of Louis XIII. She decided to plant a line of elm trees that formed a promenade, between the southern border of the Tuileries and the Seine. The ultimate goal was to allow the aristocracy of the city (at first it even blocked entry to the commoners) to travel in the new carriages and showoff their wealth to everyone.

This was a great success, and thousands came to watch the noble's carriages. Within a short time, peddlers began walking around offering fruit and sweets between the carriages. Afterwards, the Parisians arrived in the neighborhood and began to provide the aristocratic dynasties matchmaking services, and pass lover notes between prospective grooms and brides.

The success of the garden led Louis XIV to transform the Tuileries gardens into a larger and impressive garden, appropriate for a royal garden. The architect André Le Nôtre redesigned the gardens and gave them their current appearance - the style of the traditional French gardens, landscaped gardens, cuttings of geometrical shapes and organized flower clusters. All arranged in symmetrical and precise areas.

Some interesting events took place in these gardens. In 1783 the Montgolfier brothers chose the gardens for their first hot-air balloon flight. A few years later, in 1792, during the reign of Louis XVI, a revolutionary mob burst into the Tuileries Palace and slaughtered the bodyguards. Two years later Maximilien Robespierre celebrated the "Feast of Reason" in a lavish ceremony held by the pool.

#The History of the Gardens

The subject of taking a stroll, especially when it comes to such pleasant and calm gardens, is almost self-evident for us. Although the main avenue of the Tuileries was wide and adapted for carriage travel, the nobles decided to do something they had not done before - to walk. In Paris in the 17th century it was a tremendous innovation, because there were no sidewalks in the city that made it possible to walk comfortably without getting your feet muddy, or risking being trampled by passing carriages. When the residents of Paris began walking, the Tuileries became the first public park in Europe. It is therefore inevitable that in 1678 the first public benches, made of wood, would be created on which young lovers and leisurely travelers could sit.

The gardens had different uses during that period. Couples who were lovers could come around in the afternoon and meet in one of the side alleys of the garden. A trip on the main boulevard is still a meeting point for all the Parisian residents, where they can chat and drink cool lemonade together.

During the 19th century, the garden underwent changes as a result of the paving of Rivoli Street by Napoleon I. Napoleon III, who was his nephew, added the building of the Orangerie which became a very successful museum in the 20th century. Shortly afterwards, a fire destroyed the Tuileries Palace started by a mob in Paris.

Since the end of World War II the Tuileries Gardens have become more beautiful and inviting than ever, especially because of the impressive statues and green chairs that invite visitors to sit and enjoy all of this beauty.

#Tuileries Fashion

From the moment the Parisians started walking around in public gardens on foot, they discovered that their clothes were a source of attention. In a moment, the Tuileries became a model for the aristocracy to display the most interesting clothes and fashion trends. The rumor spread, and thousands of foreigners would come to the gardens to catch up with the passing fashion to try to imitate it in their country. As a result, at that time the first fashion magazines were created.

Despite the prosperity of the fashion industry those days, there were some less pleasant cases. The women of Paris, who saw the attire of the royals throughout the garden, wanted their tailors to sew them exactly the same clothes. In so doing, they tried to blur the lines between them and the nobles. During this period, professionals began to teach the French how to behave politely in society (basic rules, like how during a French meal it is accustomed to spit only to the right side). This helped women succeeded quite quickly in their goal, and it soon became almost impossible to distinguish between the classes.

Surprisingly, there were equally the same stories about noblewomen who wanted to pose as simple peasants. For example, the story of 1698, in which a Marquise (a title for a European aristocrat) decided to dress up as someone who had just arrived in Paris, began to speak to a Baron she had met at the Tuileries Gardens. After a conversation of more than an hour, she stunned him by saying "goodbye" and went to her luxurious carriage that took her to her Parisian palace.

A 360-Degree View of the Gardens:


Pont des Arts
#About the Bridge of Locks of Love

How much do we love romance? Especially when it is expressed in a lock that is eternal.

The Art Bridge has become the most well known bridge with love locks whose keys have been tossed into the flowing river to symbolize eternal love. This is a pedestrian bridge in Paris. It crosses the Seine River and is located between the Louvre Museum and the Court House. The bridge sidings are made out of steel, and today are almost completely covered with locks that have the couples names or initials written on them.

This tradition began in 2008, when couples began attaching locks to the bridge above the Seine. Some say that these small additions are not a pretty sight, and enhance the likelihood that the bridge will collapse from the weight. There is also threat of the river being polluted by the all the rust from the tossed keys.

In the summer of 2013 the Parisian municipality came to a stance about this issue, having to do with the weight these locks were putting on the bridge. The city decided to take down the locks, and stop this tradition from continuing. Two glass panels have been added to cover the steel edges, and stop any more locks from being added.

#The History of the Bridge

Between the years 1801 - 1804 9 metal arches formed the first metal bridge in Paris - the Bridge of the Arts. The interesting invention came from Napoleon, who was inspired by an English design. At first, designers Louis-Alexandre de Cessart and Jacques Dillon Conçoivent wanted the bridge to give a sense of a garden with green trees, flowering flowers and benches. To this day, the bridge is a pleasant walking area, allowing only for pedestrian crossing.

Since 1803 the bridge has been renovated several times.

In 2014, after years of apprehension, part of the railings of the fence collapsed due to the weight of the locks placed on it by hundreds of loving couples. In June 2015, the locks were removed from the bridge.

On the pleasant summer evenings you will find street musicians here, a wonderful view and perfect corners for romantic and family picnics.
Luxembourg Gardens
#Tourists in the Gardens

The beautiful Luxembourg Gardens (Jardin du Luxembourg), located in the heart of Paris, are open to the general public and attract not only tourists but also locals.

In the gardens you can find scattered statues of prominent figures from French history: female figures of French queens and figures of writers and poets.
There is plenty of room to relax, eat ice cream or drink coffee from the many stands in the area. You can enjoy the warm and relaxing sun, rest and gain energy for the trip in the Latin Quarter.
In the center of the garden there is a large pool surrounded by dozens of green chairs ment for tourists and they provide the perfect atmosphere for a moment of comfort and relaxation.

The gardens are not only an attractive destination for the Parisian population, but also for tourists:

You can rent a boat and let kids push it with a long bamboo stick from bank to bank on the big lake.

When you go up, to the center of the garden, you can ride around on ponies or if you a are with younger children you can ride the local carriage.
Deeper in the park, you can find a carousel and a puppet theater that has shows almost every day and in the southwestern corner you can find beehives, and courses on how to raise them.

You can find places to read and play petanca (bowling) for adults, a romantic trip for couples or a lunch break for students, who usually come from the Sorbonne - the famous University of Paris, located right next to the gardens.

It is one of the most beautiful green pieces in Paris, with a proper blend of light and shade, trees and lawns, hidden corners and public spaces for both children and adults. Take a basket with a little food and a blanket - and go for a picnic.

#The History of the Gardens

The construction of the gardens began after the assassination of King Henry the 4th in 1610.

The widow of the king, Marie de Medici, could not bear to live in the Louvre filled with her shared memories with her husband and moved to the Luxembourg Palace.

In 1624 the construction of the Luxembourg Palace was completed for the widow, who ordered the architect, Salomon de Bruce, to build a Palazzo Pitti style palace, like the palace she left behind in her hometown, Florence. The gardens around it were designed to remind her of the landscape of her childhood.

The truth is, that although the Queen planned to spend the rest of her life in the palace, fate must have wanted something else, and in practice the royal widow had not lived in the palace for more than five years. She was exiled to Cologne in 1630 by the order of the new king. During the revolution, the palace was confiscated and for two years served as a prison; It was then designated as the location of the Assembly of Representatives. The monastery next to it was destroyed.

By the way, another historical anecdote - about the famous writer Ernest Hemingway, it is told that as a young man he was hungry for bread and used to go out to the gardens to hunt pigeons for consumption.

#The Luxembourg Palace as Parliament

In the heart of the symmetrical and impressive gardens is the Luxembourg Palace. The palace was originally built according to the design of the French architect Solomon de Bruce, to serve as the royal residence of Marie de Medici, the mother of King Louis the 13th.

After the French Revolution it was re-designed by Jean Chalgrin and was converted into a parliament. The main staircase was destroyed and replaced by the Senate Hall on the first floor. Chalgrin also destroyed the Chapel de Medici. Chalgrin closed the terraces and turned them into a library. At the same time he built a staircase in the western wing, which was surrounded by iconic columns. The construction ended with the destruction of the gallery.

In early 1835, architect Alphonse de Gisors added a new garden aisle. The new Senate Hall was located in what was then the courtyard area between the gardens. The new aisle included a library with paintings by Eugene Delacroix. In 1850 by the request of Napoleon the 3rd, Gisors created a conference hall.

During the occupation of France by Nazi Germany in 1944, the palace became the headquarters of the Luftwaffe in France, and in general the palace was a strategic place for the German forces that defended the city.

During the year 1946, the palace was used as a venue for the Paris Peace Conference.

#The Architecture of the Luxembourg Gardens

The park and its beautiful gardens manage to put nature in the heart of the Parisian urban fabric and makes travelers rest and feel embraced by nature.

Not only do the visitors get to experience the nature and space, the garden also has a magical atmosphere, it is beautifully maintained and the garden beds are designed in a meticulous French style. Self-pruning and chestnuts attract Parisians and tourists of all ages.

In the center, you can see an octagonal pool with a fountain, where you can rent and sail on models of ancient sailboats. This part of the garden is decorated in a classic French style - with straight and symmetrical lines. While later, from the center to the edge, the style becomes like an English garden style, in a less formal way of curving paths and random clusters of trees.

The current design of the gardens was given to them in the 19th century by architect Chalgrin.

#The Luxembourg Gardens Fountain

The Luxembourg Gardens, spread across 57,000 square meters, attract many tourists and locals, because of the well-tended gardens, the wonderful sculptures and the relaxed and Parisian atmosphere.

But one of the true charms of the garden, which is not visited too much by tourists, is the spectacular Medici fountain.

The fountain was built in 1630 and has deep routes in the rich French history. Because of location, in an isolated corner of the garden and because the boulevard of tall trees hides it a little, many visitors are unaware of its existence. The fountain was also commissioned by Marie de Medici in 1624. She wanted to give it typical Italian mannerism features: a complex fountain, an artificial cave decorated with statues, just like the one she knew from the Beauntanti Cave in the Boboli Gardens.

The architect Tommaso Francini, who was in charge of the fountains and water, in the gardens of the Medici villas in Prinza and Rome, was chosen for the construction and planning of the fountain.

He created a large water basin leading to a huge sculpted fountain, topped by two statues of nymphs spilling water from their hands and a gable bearing the Medici emblem.

The fountain was located on the left bank of Paris, where free water flowed and the groundwater was quite deep, and therefore considered one of the wonders of that period.

After Medici's death, in the mid 18th century, the fountain needed serious repairs due to poor maintenance. The neglect was so severe that the statues on the fountain disappeared (to this day they do not know when exactly they were stolen) and the supporting wall collapsed. In 1811 Napoleon appointed architect Jean Chalgrin to renovate the fountain, the same architect who created the Arc de Triomphe.

During the reign of Napoleon the 3rd, it underwent another incarnation (by architect Alphonse de Gizur), which shifted its position by 28 meters to make way for the construction of a street behind it. In the empty space left behind, another fountain was built, the "Leda and the Swan," which stood in one of the adjacent streets and the two matched each other like a glove. To the sorrow of the original Medici fountain, most visitors focus on her new sister.

Another change was the addition of two new sculptures representing the Seine and Heron rivers at the top of the fountain, where the nymphs once stood. He reconstructed the Medici emblem that had been damaged in the French Revolution and set up a sculpture set by the sculptor August Otten.

A Closer Look of the Gardens:

Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain
#About the Cartier Foundation Gallery

The Cartier Foundation is located in a unique building designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. The architecture of the building is characterized mainly by transparencies. The facade of the transparent structure, surrounded by Lebanon cedar, surrounds a huge glass fence. In its gallery, the foundation presents more or less familiar contemporary artists, from all fields of art and design.

The building consists of six floors of offices, the first two floors make up a space of 1,200 square meters dedicated for displays.

It is recommended to go outside in the direction of the botanical garden and sit on the grass behind the building. From here you can see the gallery as if it was a spectacular glass showcase.

To know which exhibition is displayed on the days you visit the gallery, you may want to visit the foundation's website.
Antiq-Photo Gallery
#About the Gallery

To the lovers of art in general and specifically photography the Antiq-Photo is a must. This is a store which is also a museum for the history of photography. Here you can see vintage objects from old photographs, such as stills from old models, movie cameras used for films in the 1930's, and more.

Photography lovers can not resist the unique and aesthetic atmosphere of the place. Aside of the vintage photography equipment, the Antiq Photo Gallery has a collection of antique photographs, taken with various types of technologies. Furthermore, stereoscopic images are shown here, double images that present whatever is being pictured at the same angle as the two human eyes, and provide three-dimensional vision.

There are also Autochrome Lumière photos, a technology of color photography that uses natural colors developed by the Lumiere brothers in 1903.

Daguerreotypes from the 19th century are also displayed in the store. Daguerreotypes are ancient photos, from the beginning of photography. The daguerreotypes that you will see here are rare and special items. These are polished silver plates laid behind the "Camera Obscura", an antique photo box. They were the film and the picture. The photographed image was directly embedded in them by rays of light, which passed through the camera obscura, for many minutes, until they were stamped in the daguerreotype and became a picture.

The atmosphere here is romantic and historic. Even if you do not purchase anything you will not leave the gallery-store empty handed, you will leave with an experience that will stay with you for many years.
Hôtel de ville de Paris
Cognacq-Jay Museum

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