Chapter XVII - Paris ♥
[Long, cultural and touristic post]

Oh yes - right after Teddy went away (*sad face*) - it was the Winter holidays in the 1st week of March, something that they have here in France (it's like our Carnival break, but bigger), so we decided to spend that week to visit and enjoy the capital, Párri
Sunday morning, me and Yomaira had a Covoiturage booked at 9h30 in the usual rendezvous point of the covoiturers around Rennes: La Poterie, the last metro station.
There we were, waiting, always checking who's around with bags and phones; we were going with a lady super cool that drove a 9 seats Van, which meant that we were going with a lot more people.
It was a very comfortable trip and we arrived at Pt. d'Orléans (also a usual rendezvous point) around 12h20.
The 1st picture of the day, going on the highway...
We only scheduled our arrival to the Hostel around 17h, so we needed to spend some time.
And, of course, as soon as we went to buy a metro pass for some days, problems!
Either you pay 5€ and give a photograph to make a card or blá blá, just troubles for tourists to go around Paris. 
We just payed the full-day ticket each day there to use the public transportations. 
Frustrations, frustrations...

We went to walk around the Eiffel tower, and sit down by the river and eat our lunch. 

The Pont d'Iéna.
Majestic, indeed.
After being a little bit there, we just decided to go to the hostel. 
Very friendly and cozy, there was no problem with the check-in hours, etc.
We saw our room, organized our stuff and decided to go around the block to see the views.
Weirdly, I was feeling very light-headed and tired, something that never happens when I travel; I also noticed that Yomaira wasn't the most motivated person ever to go walking around in Jules Joffrin. We returned to the hostel and lied down. I was reading until I slept a bit, then we went to the main area (where Wifi is available) to talk with the family and then go back to sleep and get ready to the next day. 

The entrance and main area of the Montclair Hostel.

Monday, the day dedicated to the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre Museum. 
After having a good breakfast (croissant with butter, chocolate milk for me and coffee for Yomaira and a nice glass of orange juice), we were arriving to the Tower and buying the tickets to go up the Stairs.
Passing by some love lockers in each staircase, it's a nice "climb" if you keep up the same rythm. 
At the 1st floor, we stopped to check the view and have some water. Continuing up, the 2nd floor is totally another level! Very beautiful!
It started to get very windy and cold, but nothing you could not endure. When we wanted to go up, we needed to get tickets to go on the elevator, and we didn't have them: we had no idea!
Super frustrated, we went to the souvenir shop, got a tiny Eiffel tower and descended furiously.

Why everybody wants to go to Paris.
Starting the climb...!
The view from the 2nd floor.
We went to the Louvre and had lunch in the gardens nearby. After it, we spent 30min in the line, got our free tickets, since we're less than 26 y.o. and we live in the EEC, and explored what we could.
The museum itself is very well organized, beautifully adorned and huge, of course.
After the visit, we went to the Louvre Starbucks! How I missed it, since there's none in Rennes. Here's some pictures:

The piece of art with the biggest number of indications
to find it in the museum...
The Virgin and Child with St. Anne,
one of my favourites by Da Vinci :)
Frapuccino break!
We still had time, so we hopped on the metro and went to the Arc du Triomphe. How lucky we were, by finding a section of it under construction! And it wasn't the only monument that we visited that was being "processed"...
After going around the roundabout searchin for the underground passed, we entered the little cubicle to get the tickets to go up on, guess what, more stairs!
Before the terrace, there was a museum-like level with Arch models, a souvenir store, etc.
We went up, and saw another 360º view of Paris in a different location. It was night already, so the city lights gave a great effect to the long and endless avenues. 
That bloody panel there always gets on my nerves...
Fast-track... (5€ for who guesses the band -
no Youtube or Shazam or whatever!)

Tuesday, let's go to the Sacrée Coeur!
Going around in the Monmartre Quartier, we followed the signs and we had to take, again, never ending stairs. 
When we got there, there was a nice, tiny and very useful funicular that was useless for us to go up due to our ignorance...
Alas, here's some exterior pictures of the Basilica and the view. No photos inside!
Brace yourselves... Stairs are coming.
So imposing!
The zombie in the horizon...
After going down, yes, in the funicular!, we rented online for 24h bikes to go around Paris. 
We picked them up in whatever stop-spot where you can find them and rode to the Moulin Rouge and then continued until we didn't know where we were. After that, well... Hello, métro!
"Why does my heart cry? / Feelings I can't fight!..." McGregor  ♥
You can never surpass my fabulousness.

We went to Trocadéro, where the architecture merges itself with the landscape and you have a gorgeous view to the gardens and the Eiffel tower.
We walked fully straight by the Champ de Mars until the Military School, passing by the very sleek and modern Wall of Peace (in 32 languages!) in direction to the Hôtel des Invalides, where the Musée des Invalides and the Église Saint-Louis des Invalides, being in the Dôme the Napoleon's Tomb.
Here's some pictures of all these sites:
We were so lucky with the weather...
Another point of view.
The Wall of Peace with low-lifes going around...
The inside square of the Museum.
I just found this so adorable! His mascot penguin! *.*
So sad :c
Inside the Église.
Napoleon's Tomb. Not that impressive for a man so charismatic as him.
Wednesday, after the failed attempt in the day before of going to Versailles (it was already closed), it was our morning destination!
The town itself is very charming, and the path to the Château is very attractive.
And the official residence itself, well - it is breathtaking!
We started with the Château itselft, followed by the rooms of the Mesdames, and finishing by a tiny and cute train-ride around the gardens, the domaine of Marie Antoinette, le Petit Trianon, passing by the Grand Trianon and coming back to the castle. 
And more pictures!

One train that was decorated "Marie Antoinette" style.
Going to the Château!
The Gate!
Oh yeah, there was a field trip there...
One of the main halls.
The Queen's room.
A library of one of the Mesdames. How I wished I had one like this!
Le Petit Trianon.
One of many fountains around the Gardens.

After lunch at almost 16h, we still had time to go somewhere. And where could that be? Notre-Dame de Paris!
There was a Mass going on, almost finishing, with a beautiful sacred music to choir and organ. It was very touching.

Having a sacred rest.
And now... the "side".

Before going back to the hostel, we had a little walk around the Quartier Latin, where I bought 2 books, each for 0.20€! Le Quai des Brumes and Kramer vs. Kramer. Also a vinyl record for 0.50€ of Orchestral pieces by Mussorgsky-Ravel. Yay for bargain!

Thursday, let's visit the XXI century and the Impressionism, by going to the Musée d'Orsay.
Unfortunately, the Van Gogh exhibit was still closed, but we're able to go around everything else, including a lot of other artistics styles, though not all the sections, because it's also another huge museum.

Le Musée d'Orsay.
Another interpretation of the Birth of Venus.
After giving a quick tour around the Parc des Expositions and eating in an Asian restaurant, considering that the Bistrot Portugais called Marquês was impossible to find, Yomaira wanted to visit the tomb of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre: which means, Cimetière du Montparnasse.
In the map, it was marked the grave of Saint-Saëns, nº 71, if I recall.
After visiting the previous one mentioned, we searched for the composer's, but with no success. Oh, sadness.
I wonder whose DNA is that...?
To finish the day, we went to the Grand Arc, a very modern and minimalistic arch, followed by an encounter with a friend of Yomaira, Lhuan, that is living here in Paris. A good thing is, while waiting for her, we saw the Royal Academy of Music!
Sooo cool.
Too bad the modern civilization ruins the photo...
The Master.
Friday, the final day, we spent the morning resting and eating and organizing, and to spend sometime until going to the Covoiturage location, we walked by the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais, the Pont Alexandre III, and only then to Malakoff (what an unfortunate name).
We had lunch there at a very nice restaurant in the outdoors, sat down in a public garden/square reading, had a hot coco a little bit before tea-time, succeeded by the meeting with the driver and going back to Rennes.
The Grand Palais.
Le Petit Palais.
The view from the bridge.
The last picture that I have before coming back. Great lunch. :)

Unforgettable week. Thank you, Yomaira, for being there with me! :) 
[Don't forget to check her blog!]