Notre Dame and walking along the Seine

This morning we visited the Archaeological Crypt of the Île de la Cité. It is under the square in front of Notre Dame. Originally the plan was to build a car park there but when they found Roman and medieval ruins they decided to relocate the car park. It was very interesting to see the remains of the fortified wall, the ancient baths and the beginnings of the construction of Notre Dame from 1163.

Next we walked around both the inside and outside of the cathedral of Notre Dame.

It was a beautiful day for walking.

I especially loved visiting Shakespeare and Company English Bookstore. It has been a literary fixture in Paris for more than one hundred years. In my mind it is a perfect bookstore full of nooks and crannies, rooms leading one into another and lots of inviting books. I could have spent all day there.

I didn’t buy a book since I would have to carry it for the next two months but it was very tempting!

We ate dinner at Hebe. They had a great tasting menu. We had six dishes to share. The fish soup and the scallops were the best.

Our first day in Paris

I love French croissants! I have been looking forward to a French breakfast ever since we started planning this trip. Monday morning our breakfast of coffee, croissants and orange juice at a little cafe near our hotel made me very happy.

After breakfast we headed to The Louvre. I’ve been there a couple of times before but this was Duke’s first visit. The size and splendor of the former palace always amazes me.

We saw many of The Louvre’s most famous pieces of art.

The Venus de Milo

Winged Victory.

The Mona Lisa

Mercury.

The Code of Hammurabi.

On our way back to our hotel we saw more than 100 horses with splendidly uniformed riders parading along the Seine. We couldn’t figure out why. But then over coffee in the lounge at our hotel we saw that President Xi Jinping of China and President Macron of France were reviewing the troops at the Arc de Triomphe.

For dinner we ate at another great little local restaurant near our hotel, Le Petit Pontoise. We started with foie gras. For our main course Duke had steak and I had veal kidneys. For desert we had crime brûlée. The ambiance and the good food made it a quintessential and perfect dinner.