“Do you know how to get here?” asked another tourist outside the metro stop while pointing to a picture of Sacre-Coeur in his guide book. The answer was no, but how hard could it be to find a giant basilica in Montmarte? Answer: Not difficult at all. I wandered down the street, turned a corner to the left and saw the funiculare cars venturing up the treacherous hill with the church looming in the background. Not being one for lines, I skipped the queue and headed up the hill on foot. This was my first time to the church and aside from being a gorgeous monument, it also sits atop some of the best views in Paris. I stopped frequently to take pictures (and dodge scam artists hawking friendship bracelets) and just absorb the beauty.
When I reached the top there was also an outdoor food market on which provided some entertaining perusing. I didn’t go into the basilica as it was swarmed with tourists (even at 10am on a Sunday), but took in the views and then wandered around the Montmarte munching on macaroons before heading to my second monument of the day – the Eiffel Tower.
In between however, I took a little pit stop at L’Avenue for lunch, just off of the Champs Elysees in the heart of couture country. A beautiful lunch complete with champagne was the perfect way to recharge me for another tourist jaunt.
While it was my first time at Montmarte, I visited the Eiffel Tower before when Emily and I climbed it in 2007. It was as beautiful as ever, particularly set against a threatening grey sky. Even after trekking across the Champs des Mars to the Trocadero for some of the best views, I still escaped the rain as I darted into the Metro.
The rain came down steadily as I awaited my train back to London, but the sunshine came out the closer I got back to the UK. What a delicious, beautiful and rejuvenating weekend in Paris!
© Jennifer Konopasek and GoodTravelerKarma, 2013.