Bus, Metro, train and. . . . . Boat
Yes, lots of ways to visit Paris. Today we traveled by boat.
We are all familiar with the River Seine that winds through the city. There are also several canals intersecting Paris.
To prepare for this trip today we started with a very fancy Kir Royal. This is sparkling wine with Creme De Cassis and French Griottissimo cherries. YUM!
Fortified and ready to go, we traveled to Parc De La Villette and boarded our Paris-Canal boat with along with a pretty large friendly group of French tourists.
The quiet canal Saint Martin has 2 swing bridges and is crossed by 4 foot bridges. Through a series of 9 locks, we were lowered approximately 85 feet to the level of the Seine.
At the Récollets lock, we can see the Hotel du Nord. There is a famous French movie about this hotel; we ordered the DVD about six years ago after our first Canal St. Martin tour. Maybe we will watch it now.
The most unique aspect of the canal is a 1.2 mile long underground vault or tunnel. This tunnel was built by order of Napoleon when boats were vital to industrial transport. It is topped by holes that allow natural light in from above. At the location of the Opera Bastille we pass directly under the July column, commemorating the spirit of the 1789 revolution.
At the Ecluse de l’Arsenal we entered the Seine River with a fabulous view of Notre-Dame cathedral and headed toward our final destination, Musee d’Orsay.
Orsay Museum houses French art from 1848 to 1914. This includes the furniture, sculpture and the Impressionism artists, Manet, Degas, Monet, Van Gogh, Cezanne and many others. On Thursdays, this museum is open late and gave us a quiet, uncrowded opportunity to visit our favorites.
The Impressionist artists really impacted the world of art with light, color and everyday subject matter. They tell stories of life of the day, weather, emotions and relationships without words. I had a vision last night of rearranging these pictures. I think I could create a complete novel without one written word.
“We traveled by train, to the Opera Garnier, to see the Ballet!