The next day began bright and early. They kept us on a pretty grueling schedule while we were there. And I totally understand. We only had a few days to pack in as much of Paris as possible! And since there is soooooo much to see it only makes sense to have us running.
So, I woke up that morning and felt a little off. Turns out, I think I had the flu. It lasted for about 24 hours but I was so unbelievable miserable it wasn’t even funny!
So I go down to breakfast, and luckily one of the chaperones had some cold medicine which helped for the early part of the day.
After breakfast, we hopped the train to Notre Dame! Notre Dame is just as gorgeous as I imagined it would be (and I only sang songs from The Hunchback of Notre Dame for like half the time we were in ther!)!
As amazing as the outside of Notre Dame was, it was absolutely nothing compared to the inside! I have seen plenty of amazing cathedrals over the course of my travels and I can honestly say I think this was on of the more amazing ones! The sheer amount of stained glass in the cathedral was just incredible (I know, mom, you’re super jealous!)!
A friend of mine texted me a few days before this, saying she had a sick family member. She asked if the next time I was in a church if I could light a candle for that family member. I figured what better place to light a candle than Notre Dame.
The two main windows in Notre Dame are two of the most beautiful examples of stained glass I think I’ve ever seen!
After exploring the inside of Notre Dame, we were given the opportunity to climb the outside and go up on the roof to see the views of Paris from the top of Notre Dame. We hiked around to the outside of the building only to realize that the line was so long we probably wouldn’t be able to get to the top anyway!
Lucky for us, we heard there were crypts beneath Notre Dame that you could tour. We headed over to the entrance, since it wasn’t actually in the cathedral itself, and prepared ourselves to explore the crypts. Luckily, they weren’t real crypts. It was the old Roman city that used to be Paris (or at least what remains of it).
There were a lot of really cool interactive things to play with down there. They had one where you could deconstruct Notre Dame and look inside it. There was another where you could watch the progression of Notre Dame being built. There were a couple about the old city Lutetia that showed its original construction and layout.
In many of the areas, they had screen with projectors that showed what the area would have looked like back in its glory. They also had speakers hidden that played sounds that would be accurate. It really helped to paint a picture of what these ruins used to be.
Once we were done exploring down below Notre Dame, we had some free time to get lunch before meeting the rest of the group. We decided to look across the bridge from Notre Dame for food…
and stumbled across the English major motherland: the Shakespeare and Company Bookstore!
Now, you aren’t supposed to take pictures inside (but we know I never listen to that rule) so enjoy my sneakily taken pictures!
The inside smelled like books! It was wonderful! There were so many little rooms just filled with books. There were two floors, all filled to the brim with books, with little nooks and chairs and desks for sitting and reading! It was like being called home! It was one of the cooler bookstores I’ve been to (and yes, I bought a book! It was by Agatha Christie and actually has a Shakespeare and Company Bookstore stamp inside it!)
It was incredible! They had a little cafe attached to the bookstore so we popped in there and got some pastries before meeting back at Notre Dame.
We than began another “Bataan Death March” (again, not my words) from Notre Dame, up across the Pont Neuf to the Musee D’Orsay.
The D’Orsay was built in an old train station (hence the big clock), and once you’re inside you can really tell that it was a train station.
Now, this was probably one of my favorite museums ever! I loved every minute inside this museum! There was so much to see (as in every museum) that I can’t wait to go back and see the things I missed!
It was while we were sitting by these statues that I started to get panicked texts from my family and friends. Turns out, the terrorist attack in Brussels had just happened and naturally, many parents were worried about there kids. Luckily, we were all safe in Paris, but it was still very saddening that something like that happened and keeps happening around the world.
There were soooo many Degas pieces in the D’Orsay! It was wonderful! He’s a favorite of mine so it was amazing to see his pieces in real life!
I really loved this painting! It reminded me of my older sister and myself, since I’m blonde and she’s brunette. I think I was feeling a little homesick. Anyway, I bought us both the postcard version of this painting so we both have a copy!
We then wandered into the most beautiful ballroom I think I’ve ever seen! It was stunning! If I ever get married in Paris, the reception is gonna be in this room!
We also had a good time goofing off in this museum, and being “those” people!
They had a whole area dedicated to different styles of furniture! I thought the next couple rooms where the best!
Like, that’s how I want to style my future house (and I’m only slightly kidding!)
The next room we went into housed paintings based on myths and fairy tales. This room was cool because it showed how myths change and how they stay the same based on the different areas the paintings are from.
After we wrapped up at the Musee D’Orsay, we decided to go back to the Eiffel Tower and actually go up it this time since we had free time that night.
We hopped the train, and it was getting dark by the time we got there.
The had the Eiffel Tower light up with the colors of Brussels to represent what had happened there that day.
So, we got tickets to go all the way to the top. The elevators to get up and down the tower are super scary! I don’t like elevators to begin with, but these ones were awful! They back a lot of people in them and they go super fast!
But, we made it to the top safely!
The lights of the city were incredible! It was an amazing sight!
It was absolutely freezing up there! And by this point, I was so miserably sick! I think you can tell in this picture. I look a little haggard!
So, what did we decide to do?
Drink some champagne on top of the Eiffel Tower! I don’t think anything else I do will be as cool as that!
After we finished our drinks, and got back to ground level, we headed back to the hotel, where I fell right into bed and slept like the dead.