Montmartre and a Seine Cruise Apr 10, 2018

This morning we’ll hop on the Métro, then hike up Montmartre to tour the colorful neighborhood that was the haunt of artistic geniuses a century ago — including Van Gogh, Picasso, and Renoir — and generations of hopeful artists since. We’ll end our walk with spectacular views of Paris from the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. You’ll be free for lunch and have time to explore more of the city on your own this afternoon. We’ll regroup this evening to enjoy dinner together before embarking on a dreamy Seine River cruise. Boat: 1 hour. Walking: strenuous.

Activity

A routine is starting to develop, we meet for breakfast.  At breakfast, we began to discuss the previous days’ adventures. I recall one couple going to the Eiffel Tower and another seeing the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte. Other people had surrendered to the jet lag like we did. Along with sightseeing, we and our fellow travelers were sharing our restaurant reviews of cafe’s mostly near the hotel. There were very few less than stellar recommendations.  Quite literally, we were choosing from the best of the best. After breakfast, we took the metro to Abbesses metro station for the Montmartre walking tour. As soon as the group got off of the Metro we meet with our morning tour guide, Brad. At this time I need to give the Rick Steves’ Tours a plug.

Even though we have our tour guides Toni and Antoine, there are some/many of the venues that will not allow an outside tour guide or they want to use some who has a lot or experience or specialize in their tour. Brad was the first time the group had an outside tour guide, and he did not disappoint. Within steps of the Metro, we were introduced to several things that would escape most people. Not only did he point out what was in front of us, he also opened a view in to the past and how it shaped today’s world.

From a window of Vincent Van Gogh’s apartment, he was inspired to paint this painting (below). Today we can still see the building that he looked out on as he created his master piece. I gasped as I could see today and the view point of a great artist with a picture of a master piece.  At this monument, I felt that I was seeing in the past, yet I knew that I was in the present. Later, I learned this painting is called ”View of Paris from Vincent’s Room in the Rue Lepic”. Some art I see with my soul and not my eyes and this was one of those times.

Not only did we see the masters, but their spirit is alive and well today with street art.

At the end of the walking tour we made it to the top of Sacré-Cœur Basilica.

Sacré-Cœur Basilica

What is there to say, the picture is just a glimpse to the beauty of this church. We spent the afternoon sort of retracing our steps and exploring the streets of Montmartre. We made it back to our room to freshen up for the group dinner and then a river cruise.

The dinner was great and the company was just as good. After dinner we walked to the river, where we have seen some river tour boats going up and down the river. As we walked to the terminal to catch our boat, we passed a monument to Princess Diana, where she passed in a shocking car crash. Enjoy just a few of the landmarks that we saw from the boat cruise. Just a reminder that all of these pictures were taken with an iPhone and in the dark.  Unfortunately, quite a few of the pictures did not turn out to be presentable.  This was a great day.