Perhaps I was finally over the jetlag or maybe my marathon day exploring Paris yesterday was to blame, but I slept way later than originally planned. Luckily for me so did my dorm mate from Spain which meant I had someone to explore the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay with.
Sneaking into the Louvre via the train station that stops below allowed us to avoid the lines of people entering through the pyramid above. You can also try and skip the long lines and enter via the arch just down from the pyramid entrance.
Everyone knows you can easily spend days lost in this place and while it was amazing to admire some of the great artwork locked inside, both my feet and mind were saying stop. Deciding to just see level 2 and a small section of the ground floor where the main attractions lay was defiantly a good choice. If you really love art then you need days here so plan your trip accordingly, after all this is just one museum in Paris.
Fighting for a spot to see the Mona Lisa where I could attempt to get an average photo of her was an experience in itself. A bus load of Japanese tourists on one side and an army of American’s on the other. Squeezing my way in for a photo I found myself pleasantly surprised at how big the painting was. Maybe it was years of people telling me how disappointed they were at the size of the painting that I had lowered my expectations too nothing larger than a postage stamp.
Escaping the mass of people I then wasted away many an hour in the Louvre before skipping onto see the next museum on the list, Musee d’Orsay. An impressionist museum that many say is much more interesting to visit, all while being much smaller than the Louvre.
Something to note for other travellers too is that if your under 25/26 and hold citizenship or valid visa to a European country you can enter the museums for free. Yep save yourself 8-10 euro a pop and just hit up the payment counter and provide proof of your status, pretty good for any budget travellers. It won’t be at every museum so just look out for the signs.
After checking out Monet, Van Gogh and the like at Musee d’Orsay I have decided that I like Van Gogh’s style of painting. The use of his brush strokes keeps the paintings rather simple which for a non-arty person like me is perfect.
By now I was pretty much museum’ed out so tagged along with my Spanish friend to the Eiffel Tower again where we ate at a little cafe in the park and soaked up some of the great weather Paris had treated me too over the last 3 days. A rather fitting end to my exploring of Paris, sitting in the shadow of something so Paris like the Eiffel Tower.
Ending the day with my first bout of laundry abroad and rest before making sure I knew where to meet up with my friend Elke from inmyhands.com in Brussels. I was overly excited about both catching my first train to a new country and about getting to taste some great Belgium beer.