maria and i did our annual day trip to paris on a £59 return ticket last week – you have to book in advance, but its worth it. Maria was actually in Paris and Tour for a few days before me, and I joined her on her last day; I arrived just in time to have breakfast in one of the many street cafes – we always start at rue Buci, with its vibrant fruit and flower market – its a great spot to watch the world go by . buy a book of 10 metro tickets on Eurostar – you may not use them all that day, but they are worth keeping for the next visit and means that there is no queuing for tickets. the metro gets you from one side of paris to the other very quickly. Paris is a city for walking around, enjoying the sights and streets – its amazing that its just 2 hours from Kings Cross by train. there are always so many wonderful exhibitions on and you need to choose beforehand where you want to go.
this time we aimed for the spectacular digital light show – Atelier des lumieres – a vast warehouse space is projected with works of art – a dedication to Klimt and a century of viennese painting. its quite overwhelming at times, constantly changing and moving images are projected on every wall, floor around you; you move around to experience different angles – definitely worth a visit. we also visited the old cemetery of Pere Lachaise – with its strange monumental tombs, quite like Dr Who telephone boxes with domestic doors – cemeteries are serene, melancholy places – but always visually stunning.
although Paris is perfect for strolling, its good to plan a route bearing in mind closing times. we headed to the recently opened Yves Saint Laurent museum, which is actually the building where he designed from – so not only was there a display of some of his beautiful clothes from the 1970’s, but also you could go and see his working studio, still in tact with his desk and mood boards, books and boxes of fabric samples. we then headed towards St Germain and Bon Marche – a very lovely department store – I loved the mary poppins style xmas trees in the main hallway; a lot of paris stays open late fortunately and then we headed back to gare de Nord for a train that got us back into london before 11pm. its tiring, but so pleasurable, inspiring and is a lovely way to spend a day with a good friend.
fortunately my friend maria is very organised at seeing whats on and always organises this; but I recommend that you sign up for offers with Eurostar – they seem to do this £59 return ticket several times a year.