Paris a Pied – Part 2

Paris, what’s not to love? It is possibly Europe’s most elegant city and best seen on foot. This is part two of a three part series, guiding you around Paris. If you wish to start with Part one, please click here.

From the Ile de Cite to the Eiffel Tower, along the Rive Gauche

Starting at the Ile de Cite, cross the Seine using Rue de la Cite or Boulevard du Palais, to the South bank of the Seine. After 5pm the Quais Saint Bernard here comes alive with gatherings of people dancing salsa which is magical.

Walk West along the river, keeping the river on your right and you come to the imposing building that is the Musee d’Orsay. It is a huge art gallery housing most of the work of the Impressionists. The beautiful architecture of the building gives away it’s previous life as a train station. This gallery is well worth a visit. All the paintings you have heard of like Van Gogh’s Café at Arles and Monet’s Coquelicots (the lady in the poppies).

The Thinker, Auguste Rodin, Paris, France

After that, head a block or two further west and then turn south (left) onto Rue Constantine, East (left) onto Rue de Grenelle briefly, then south (right) onto Boulevard des Invalides. Walk east (left) on Rue de Varenne and you come across another wonderful find. The Musee Rodin is a large private house and garden where Rodin actually lived for years. He still lives here in a way, as the whole house and gardens are now filled with his sculptures and artwork. Once you’ve taken in all Rodin’s passion and emotion, cross the Boulevard des Invalides, head another block south (left) and then turn west (right) into the French army barracks and gardens. Continue through to Invalides, Paris’ military museum and Napolean’s rather fancy tomb.

When you leave Invalides, continue west along the Seine and as you walk, take in all the splendid and unique bridges over the river. As you follow the river’s curve Paris’ most iconic monument greets you.

The queues to climb the Eiffel Tower can be ghastly but watching the illegal souvenir sellers scatter as the police chase them on bicycles passes the time. At the top, this being France, Champagne is available. There is also a very fancy (read expensive) restaurant, from which you can enjoy the view across the city. 

Click here for Paris a Pied part 3


  • Steve

    I almost decided on going to Paris this summer. It was a close decision, but I ended up choosing Ireland instead. It’s a big thing for me to see so I know I’ll go there one day soon. One of the biggest reasons I want to go is because of the Musee d’Orsay. It has some great works there that I really want to see. This post makes me want to see how soon I can get a trip there.
    My recent post How Well Do You Really Know Yourself

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    Hi Steve – I’m glad I have made you even keener to get to Paris! You must get yourself to the Musee d’Orsay. It is an amazing place. SO many really humbling works of art all under one roof. The architecture of the old Gare d’Orsay is beautiful too. Enjoy Ireland in the meantime!
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