First off, sorry this is so late! Everything’s been so hectic what with friends visiting and settling in! However, the other day I was looking through my bucket list at a loss at where on earth to begin. I decided I may as well be methodical haha, so took on the first arrondissement.
I took the Metro to Louvre-Palais Royal and found my way to the beautiful gardens of the Palais Royal. Constructed in 1633 it is such a calm, peaceful environment I loved it. It’s true that it’s very very cultivated so if you’re looking for a more natural, less pristine park this is not the place to go. However, as I walked through it I could easily imagine being a member of the French aristocracy which was so cool!
Jardin des Tuileries
I then made my way to Jardin des Tulieries, making sure to grab a ham and cheese crepe along the way. These are the famous gardens between the Louvre and Place de la Concorde. Here again the gardens are highly cultivated, André Le Nôtre (King Louis XIV’s gardener) redid them in 1664, giving them this cultivated French feel and it hasn’t changed much since. However it’s a lovely escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. I sat there, ate my crêpe and appreciated the shade (it was reaching about 30 degrees at this point and I am not good at dealing with the heat haha).
Musée de l’Orangerie
I then wanted a bit of culture (and needed the toilet let’s be real) so went the Musée de l’Orangerie. Paris is amazing if you’re 18-25 and a member of the EU (which thankfully England still is… for now!). Entrance was free and I got to see some amazing art by Renoir, Matisse, Picasso and many more. I highly recommend a visit to this museum, especially if you get in for free!
What is more, on the top floor there are amazing rooms, full of massive Water Lilies paintings by Monet himself. I sat there and stared at them for ages. The lighting of the room compliments the paintings so much, and on a hot summer day the depiction of cool water lilies was so so tempting lol.
Again, free entry for 18-25s in the EU, this Church is 100% not to be missed! On initial entry I was a little underwhelmed- having heard so much about it the bottom floor, though ornate, did not live up to my expectations. However I realised there was a floor above and headed up the stairs…
As soon as I walked into the upper chapel my breath was literally taken away. It’s absolutely stunning I am not exaggerating. It’s covered in 600m2 of stained-glass, and with the sun shining brightly through, the floor was covered in an array of different coloured lights.
The photos do not do it justice at all, this is definitely something you have to see in person. It’s a Gothic Church built in the 12th Century, at the time to house Christ’s Crown of Thorns (now actually in Notre-Dame), and took only seven years to build. I will definitely be heading back there!
Jardin de Luxembourg
The 1st Arrondissement, although obviously being incredibly touristy, is still such an important part of Parisian culture and history. I don’t think the fact it’s touristy detracts from its beauty or importance so I highly recommend a visit if you find yourself in Paris!