Posts filed under ‘Future Destinations’

Paris Planning – initial thoughts

Obviously the biggest deal to Alice will be seeing the Eiffel Tower.

It features heavily in Madeline (from Madeline’s Paris):
  

It’s also in quite a number of other favorite books: Chasing Degas by Eva Montanari, A Spree in Paree by Catherine Stock,  Adele and Simon by Barbara McClintock, and so on.  We also see it in beloved Disney movies Aristocats and Ratatouille!

Alas, the Eiffel Tower is a bit trickier these days than when I last visited (gasp – 2004!).  Sometimes folks have to wait in line for more than two hours just to buy their tickets.  This does NOT sound like fun with a six year old in tow (or at all really).  There are four options to skip those long lines:

  1. Book reservations in one of the restaurants.  The Jules Verne and 58 Tour Eiffel were completely booked up by the time we looked, so that wasn’t a real option for us.  If folks are going at a less popular time of year or planning more than 3 months in advance (yes, seriously, that’s when I looked!), you can do this, and you get to go to a special elevator and skip the lines.  Of course, you’ll still have to purchase a separate ticket for the elevator ride to the very top, but the worst line is at the bottom.
  2. Join a guided tour.  There are a couple of official options for this.  Our group opted not to do this in order to save a few euros.
  3. Climb the stairs.  If you’re willing to climb to the first or second level (about 300 steps each), then you can purchase a cheaper ticket from a much shorter line.  This is a good option if you want to remain flexible about when you go up if you’re hoping for nice weather or you couldn’t otherwise get tickets for when you want to be there.  I’ve done it before, and the views are pretty great!  And you can still buy a ticket to the top once you’ve climbed the stairs.
  4. Buy tickets online in advance for a specific time.  These can sell out well in advance, so it’s best to plan ahead.  This is what we’ve opted to do as we want to go up on our very first day.

Have you been to the Eiffel Tower?  Which way did you get in?

 

April 28, 2017 at 9:32 pm Leave a comment

Paris Planning – initial thoughts (2)

Like I said before, the inspiration for the trip is Madeline!  Continuing as set out by this website, Madeline’s Paris, we’ll also have to make sure to see:

3. Pont Neuf and the River Seine: the oldest standing bridge across the river Seine in Paris, France. Its name, which was given to distinguish it from older bridges that were lined on both sides with houses, has remained after all of those were replaced. It stands by the western (downstream) point of the Île de la Cité, the island in the middle of the river that was, between 250 and 225 BC, the birthplace of Paris, then known as Lutetia, and during the medieval period, the heart of the city.

4. Jardin des Tuileries: a public garden located between the Louvre Museum and the Place de la Concorde in the 1st arrondissement of Paris. Created by Catherine de Medici as the garden of the Tuileries Palace in 1564, it was eventually opened to the public in 1667 and became a public park after the French Revolution. In the 19th and 20th centuries, it was the place where Parisians celebrated, met, strolled, and relaxed.

 

The pièce de résistance is yet to come…

April 25, 2017 at 9:05 pm Leave a comment

Paris Planning – initial thoughts

Alice’s nursery theme was Paris in Springtime, so she has literally always wanted to go to Paris.  I kept telling her I’d take her when she could read Madeline to me.  Well, she finally got through it the first time last fall, so it was time to start planning!

Obviously we simply *must* visit all the sites in the book. This website, Madeline’s Paris, sets them out.

  1. Le Jardin du Luxembourg:  located in the 6th arrondissement of Paris, was created beginning in 1612 by Marie de’ Medici, the widow of King Henry IV of France, for a new residence she constructed, the Luxembourg Palace. The garden today is owned by the French Senate, which meets in the Palace. It covers 23 hectares and is known for its lawns, tree-lined promenades, flowerbeds, model sailboats on its circular basin, and picturesque Medici Fountain, built in 1620.

2. Notre-Dame de Paris: a medieval Catholic cathedral on the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France.[3] The cathedral is widely considered to be one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture, and it is among the largest and most well-known church buildings in the world.

 

More to come!

April 10, 2017 at 8:59 pm Leave a comment

My gripe with Delta

I’ve posted at least once about how we’re going to Mexico soon, so y’all know about that.  You also know how much I love to plan in advance.  I have a very frustrating story now to share with you about how Delta is making this vacation more work for me – and not the kind I like.  There’s a travel tip buried in there for those who survive the gripe.

 I booked our flights back in October 2008.  I was so psyched – we had a direct there and back.  The times were perfect too.  On the way there, we were to leave around 12:30 and arrive at 2:30.  Perfect – we didn’t have to get up super early, but there’d be just the right amount of time to get in, get a car with our friends, and head out to our house in plenty of time for dinner.  On the way back, we were to leave at about 3:30 and get in at about 7:30.  If the flight was on time and we weren’t too zonked, this would allow us to make a graduation party that evening.

Imagine my surprise when I received an email just a few weeks before we’re to head out saying that our itinerary has changed.  Not only would we have to suffer through a layover in Atlanta each way, but the flight times were not good.  The flights they put us on to get there would make our friends wait several hours for us to arrive and then we’d have to drive to our rental house in the dark.  Awful!  The flights on the way back weren’t so great either – the first flight left at an okay time, but we weren’t seated together (and I couldn’t fix it since the flight’s so full), and we would definitely miss the party that night.

(more…)

April 4, 2009 at 3:37 pm Leave a comment


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