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Showing posts with the label Montmartre

The Café Culture in France

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The Shades Club are out in force here in Montmartre.

It’s pure delight to sit and drink a fine red Bordeaux while contemplating on this sculpture by Jaume Plensa. Bordeaux offers many outdoor cafés for watching the world go by while enjoying their famous canelé pastry.
In Nîmes, the best seat for a cuppa is right beside the Roman amphitheater that was built at the end of the first century.

In Nice, orange chairs and hanging laundry provide a colorful backdrop for these outdoor cafés.

In the medieval hilltop village of St. Paul de Vence, there’s always time to join friends for coffee and conversation at the outdoor terrace.
“And the idea of just wondering off to a café with a notebook and writing and seeing where that takes me for awhile is just bliss.” J. K. Rowling
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Images by TravelswithCharie


Montmartre on foot

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There's more to Montmartre than the Sacré Coeur and Place du Tertre. Though neither should be missed on your first visit to Paris. Knowing a little bit about Montmartre beforehand prepares you for a day's exploration of this historical and lively neighborhood.
The sinking house as it is called isn't really sinking. It is firmly standing just below the Sacré Coeur Basilica. Some photographer took an "illusory" photo (similar to the image I tookabove) and it became a social media hit. It wasn't all that easy to take this image because I had to consider both the foreground and background so that they do not lean with the building as well. The published pictures of the sinking house are usually taken from the grassy enclosure beside the basilica because the grass provides a level field. The fence surrounding this grassy expanse was closed to the public during my visit. In this photo, the trees provide the anchor I needed to complete the illusion.
A dozen windmills …

Exploring Montmartre

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La Basilique du Sacré Coeur de Montmartre
It's been awhile since I visited Montmartre so after seeing the "wall", I went up to the Basilica of Sacré Coeur for a view of the city of Paris. Many years ago I took the stairs to the Basilica but this time around I opted for the easy way up which is by funicular. The fare is similar to the metro. So it's best to buy a carnet of metro tickets if you're staying a few days in Paris.

In front of the Sacré Coeur a crowd of people spilled down the long flight of stairs. Street entertainers were having a field day, in particular, a young man who climbed up the lamp post and played with a soccer ball, oblivious of his precarious position as the crowd cheered him on. Across the horizon Paris lay in a haze. It was a gorgeous day to be outdoors.

Walking through narrow streets I passed cafés buzzing with activity. I thought I'd go down Rue Lepic to the Café des Deux Moulins and try their crême brûlée which is now called Amelie