Day 1 - August 10, 2016
The day started with us still on the airplane trying to sleep.
Alison, Ada and Lyla taking a rest.
Lyla all cozied up.
We landed at Charles De Gaulle Airport and searched for a pastry shop. Kate went with a chocolate croissant.
Ada with a chocolate croissant.
Lyla with her muffin.
I researched and debated and couldn't decide the best way to get from CDG to our hotel. We ended up taking Le Bus that took us directly from the airport to the Gare de Lyon train station. Our hotel was right next door so it worked out perfectly.
Riding the bus.
We checked into the Novotel Hotel. This was our view from our window. A little French plaza.
Gare de Lyon Train Station. Notice Lyla avoiding the camera. This was a bit of the theme of the trip.
There is a metro station right at the train station that we used quite often. It was right on line 1, which runs right through the heart of the city. The windows were open and the wind gave Al's hair that lovely wind-blown look.
Our original plan for today was to go to Versailles. However, because of our flight delay there was no way that we could make it there in time.
So, we called an audible and made our way to La Defense. Right when we came out of the Metro we found ourselves in front of the Grande Arche de la Defense.
Ada and Kate running around chasing each other.
Selfie. We took lots of selfies.
Treats. We ate lots of treats. The girls got some huge macaroons and we ate our treats near Le Pouce de Cesar:
Polished, waxed and varnished bronze. 1990.
Now with our traveling animal heads!
One last view. 12 meters.
Our first view of the Arc de Triomphe. Look closely.
Looking up at the underside of the Grande Arche de la Defense.
There were carousels all over Paris. This one was in the Place de La Defense.
We walked through the plaza from the big arch to the next Metro station. There were sculptures all over, which shouldn't have been surprising, because this is Paris!
Ada, Kate & Lyla with a sculpture and fountain.
A tree grows in Paris.
Our first real view of the Eiffel Tower. I caught a glimpse of the tower on Le Bus, but it was from far away. You can also see the Arc de Triomphe.
Now time for some acrobatics. Kate.
We jumped on the Metro for a few stops and made our way to the Arc de Triomphe. This thing was magnificent. Much larger than we expected.
Lyla was really sad for some reason, but by allowing her to have her very own picture with the pig head she perked right up.
The tomb of the unknown soldier. Located at the base of the Arc de Triomphe.
Looking down the Av. des Champs-Elysees. I loved watching the Tour de France this year getting a feel for the country, but especially the final day when they took 7 laps between the Louvre and the Arc de Triomphe. I would love to watch the finale of the race in Paris one year.
The large arch.
Ada and I looking down the Champs-Elysees.
Climbing the stairs.
The view from the top of the Arc de Triomphe. Looking down the Av. des Champs-Elysees towards the Louvre.
Le Tour de Eiffel.
It was a little chilly and windy. Lyla did not want to be up there.
Looking towards the Grande Arche de la Defense.
The prospect of going down from the top made Lyla a little happier than she had been.
We went down one level where there is a souvenir shop and then I remembered that I had a bag of animal heads. Kate and Lyla didn't want to come back up so we left them on a bench and ran back up to get some pictures in our animal heads. I couldn't quite get all of us in the selfie, so a kind lady offered to take our picture.
A nice picture, but we're blocking the Eiffel Tower!
Lyla as a hippo.
We went searching for somewhere to eat dinner along the Champs-Elysees. None of the restaurants were grabbing us and most were crowded, so we turned around and made our way to McDonald's.
The view of the Arc de Triomphe looking up the Av. des Champs-Elysees.
Riding the Metro back to our hotel.
Tomorrow: Art museums, Cathedrals and the Eiffel Tower.