Paris, Places

The Palais Garnier

Hello, it’s me Marimonda!

Today, I’d like to introduce you the Palais Garnier also known as Opera. As a symbol of Paris, the Palais Garnier is an eye-catching architecture from far distance with its green roof and fancy decoration. It has a distinct architect style called <Napoleon III>, which includes Baroque, Renaissance, and Classicism all together. The Palais Garnier is also famous for the background of the book written by Gaston Leroux and the musical <the Phantom of the Opera>.

First it was built as the Académie Royale de Danse(Royal Academy of Dance) by Louis XIV in 1661. At that moment, it aimed to train dancers and formalize choreographic. Eight years later, Académie Royale de Musique (Royal Academy of Music) was created and this place started focus on dance and music. The name of the building followed after the architect Charles Garnier. Today, it’s primarily used for ballet and opera performances by Paris Opera Ballet, while the Opera Bastille is a home symphony and some ballet performances.

I reserved <The Paris Opera 350th Anniversary> tour to look around here. It takes 1h 20 mins and it costs €18. This tour is more focused on the history of the Paris Opera. If you’re interested in the structure of the building or general information on it, you can also take <The Opera Garnier Day Tour> which lasts 1h 20 mins(same) and costs €17. Considering that the entrance ticket costs €14 and the audio guide is €5, the guided tour seems to be a good deal.

Don’t forget to exchange your online reservation voucher to a ticket. You might have to line up and wait to get your ticket, thus I recommend you to arrive at least 15 mins before your reservation time. When you get your ticket, you should present one of your ID card. Then, wait for your guide in the waiting room. Your guide will distribute the audio system and check whether it works well or not. After checking the audio system, your tour begins. You can stay as long as you want after the tour until it closes.

You would be amazed by its opulence Grand Staircase when you step in the building. In the middle, there’s a big staircase decorated with marbles and fancy candle sticks and sculptures. Standing there and seeing people taking pictures, I felt as if I were a celebrity. It is breathtaking.

After learning some history of the Palais Garnier, I visited Auditorium and had an opportunity to sit down and listen to the history. The auditorium is impressive, and the guide explained us some scenes of the Phantom of the Opera such as where the phantom appears, etc. Plus, if there’s no performance going on, you could see a preparation room on the right end of the stage where Edgar Degas got inspirations when he painted his ballet series. Normally, it’s blocked with stage decorations, thus it’s hard to see.

The chandelier on the roof is full of Marc Chagall’s painting. He painted performances presented in the Palais Garnier. He added some flavors to this classical decoration.

The Grand Foyer is also an important spot to look. Decorated with candle sticks and paintings, the salon was similar to the Palace of Versailles. There’s a balcony where you can see the view of Paris. Don’t miss it!

Overall, the building is beautifully decorated and a great example of the prosperity of France. It might be a good idea to dress up moderately to get nice pictures if you plan to visit there. I stayed there for about two hours including the tour and it was enough.

Enjoy your trip with Marimonda! See you soon. 🙂

Practical Info.

Address : Place de l’Opéra 75009 Paris

Hours : 10:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (self-guided tour),

Admission for the participant of the guided tour hour is different depending on your tour schedule

website

Paris, Shopping

Puces de Vanves

Hi, it’s me Marimonda!

I hope you enjoyed French national holiday (also my previous post on it). Today, I’d like to introduce you Puces de Vanves, a flea market in Paris.

Flea markets are popular in Paris, they attract not only local people but also tourist. There are three big flea markets may worth to visit while you’re in Paris : Les Puces de Clignancourt, Les Puces de Vanves, and Les Puces de Montreuil. They are located on the border between Paris and banlieue.

Les Puces de Clignancourt, also known as St. Ouen flea market, is one of the largest and the famous flea markets in France. It’s located in the northern border of Paris (above 18th arrondissement). The market opens from Saturday to Monday from 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. (weekend) and from 11:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Monday). Address : 53 Rue Jules Vallès, 93400 Saint-Ouen.

Les Puces de Montreuil is on the Avenue de la Porte de Montreuil(20th arrondissement). The market runs for the whole day from 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. from Saturday to Monday. It’s located on the north east Paris on the border with Montreuil.

Les Puces de Vanves is located in the southern part of Paris next to 14th arrondissement. THe market opens on the weekend from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Nearby, there’s another flea market specialized in old and used books (Marché du Livre Ancien et d’Occasion). This market also opens only on the weekend from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Amongst those flea markets I’ve been to the last one couple of times because it’s the closest one from my place(simple reason). It’s absolutely an interesting place to visit and look around antiques. Some stands look like a mini-museum with all old coins, badges, or old posters. I like seeing dishes with gorgeous decorations. Some of the are expensive, and probably they’re from Limoges in southwest France and it’s well known for its decorated porcelain. There’re many resellers in the market to buy some good objects with reasonable price to sell them with higher price.

I guess other flea markets will have similar atmosphere. Though, it’s good that there’s another flea market specialized in books nearby, and there’s a grandpa who plays the piano in public. There’s nothing to eat in the market except the kebab truck. It costs about 5 euros. The market opens at 7 a.m. but not many stands are ready at that time. It’s good to arrive at the market around 11:00 a.m. to fully enjoy the time since around 12:30 p.m. some sellers start to pack up their stuffs. Since most of the goods are so fragile, it took the owners 30 mins to one hour to complete the packing.

When you buy things, don’t forget to try to negotiate the price. Even though the sellers put the price on their items, you can always try to get some discount. It may work or may not, but you won’t lose anything to ask.

Enjoy your travel with Marimonda! See you soon 🙂

Practical Info.

Address : 14 Avenue Georges Lafenestre, 75014 Paris

Hours : 7 :00 a.m. – 2 : 00 p.m. (Open on Saturday and Sunday only)

Paris, Places

Bastille Day

Hi, it’s me Marimonda!

Today, I’d like to introduce you some events around Paris to celebrate the Bastille Day (Fête nationale française), which is the most important national holiday in France. In French history, Storming of the Bastille is really important because it was the day when french people expressed their dissatisfaction to the King and the government. They took the Bastille where used to be a Parisian prison on 14 July 1789 and it became one of the triggers of French Revolution later. As a result, political power in France has transferred from the King, the clergy and the nobility to people (the rest).

Big and small events are already planned all around the country. Among them, I chose some events in Paris where you can feel the festival mood.

In the morning, there will be a military parade on the avenue des Champs-Elysées. At 10:00 a.m. Macron (the President of France) will arrive at the event place and go through Champs-Elysées till Concorde Place. Then military parade will begin. The parade lasts about 2 hours including 66 planes, 36 helicopters, 196 vehicles, 4,212 people, and 200 cavalier. It is a good occasion to see all french military marches and to enjoy a colorful airshow with the Triumphal Arch.

In the evening from 9:45 p.m., a big symphony concert will be hold in Champs-de-Mars. The French National Orchestra will amuse our eyes and ears with its selections such as a song from Carmen, Romeo and Juliet, or compositions of Vivaldi, Brahms or Beethoven. Listening to those music in the open air, you would feel amazed and thankful being here in Paris on the Bastille Day.

Continuing to the concert, don’t miss the fireworks which might be the most memorable event of the day. The Eiffel Tower will be illuminated to celebrate the Bastille Day, and fireworks will color the sky. Usually, fireworks near the Eiffel Tower is forbidden, but today is an exception. It will be an unforgettable moment.

There are two things to keep in mind before you go out to enjoy the holiday: pickpocket and transportation. As you know, Paris is famous for its beauty but also is notorious for pickpockets. On the Bastille Day, there are more people than usual everywhere. With this crowd and events, it would not be easy to pay attention to your stuffs always, but you should. It’s sad that you should pay attention to your stuffs while you enjoy the events, but it’s gonna be sadder and be hassle if you lose something.

Also, since many streets will be blocked or controlled during the day, you should check your transportation. RATP, which runs public transport in Paris announced that the time table will be modified on the Bastille Day. For example, before and after the fireworks, nearby stations will be shut down to ease the circulation. You may be guided to use the metro station Pont d’Alma or other stations.

Enjoy your Bastille Day in Paris with Marimonda. See you soon 🙂

Paris, Places

Musée des Arts et Métiers

Hi, it’s me Marimonda!

Today, I’d like to introduce you an interesting museum in Paris <Musée des Arts et Métiers>.

Founded in 1794 by Henri Grégoire, it is a museum where you can see the progress of technology in history. The museum consists of seven parts : Scientific instruments, Materials, Energy, Mechanics, Construction, Communication and Transport. It was interesting to see all the technological development in one place.

Here, you can see from Pascal’s calculating machine to Blériot’s plane. The thing I liked the most in the museum was not only they displayed the instruments but also provided some videos with important inventions in history. Instead of guessing the functions of the instruments, you can see how it actually worked on a small screen in front of the showcase. That really helped me understand the principles beneath the machine.

I recommend to visit this museum especially when you travel with kids. They can explore the world of science and technology freely. Also, parents can recall their memories when they were kids. Looking at the telephone, TV, radios, or other things that I’ve used when I was young was interesting. For this reason, I think it’s a good museum to visit with a family. All family members from different generations can share their experiences and it’ll be a good opportunity to open a conversation.

The opening hour is from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. except Thursday (to 9:30 p.m.). If you have a limited time in Paris, you can visit there on the evening. Plus, it’s free on Thursday after 6:00 p.m. I went there around 6:30 p.m. and I enjoyed the museum until it was closed. Even if it’s free you need to get the ticket from the ticket booth.

Enjoy your travel with Marimonda! See you soon 🙂

Practical Info.

Address : 60 Rue Réaumur, 75003 Paris

Hours : 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. (Thursday 9:30 p.m.)

Price : adult  € 8

Website

France, Travel

Auvers-sur-Oise 오베르 쉬르 우와즈

Hello, it’s me Marimonda.

In the last article, I wrote a review after visiting Giverny. Today, I’d like to guide you to Auvers-sur-Oise, a town located about 30 km away from Paris. This village became famous because Vincent Van Gogh spent his last 70 days and drew 80 paintings here.

Van Gogh described this town as ” Auvers is for really gravely beautiful, it’s the heart of the countryside, distinctive and picturesque.” in a letter to his brother Theo. As he described, the village is very peaceful and full of nature. Including Van Gogh, this small town inspired many artists like Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, or Charles François Dauvigny etc.

The easiest way to get to Auvers-sur-Oise using public transportation is taking a train. With navigo pass covering zone 5, you can visit Auvers-sur-Oise without paying extra penny on train.

At Gare de Saint-Lazare or Gare du Nord, you can take RER C, Transilien line J(Saint-Lazare) or H (Gare du Nord) to pontoise, then transfer the train toward Persan-Beaumont. Then take off at Auvers-sur-Oise.

On the weekend, it’s easier to go there. There’s direct train from Gare du Nord to Auvers-sur-Oise (Transilien Line H, departs at 9:38 a.m.) and from Auvers-sur-Oise to Paris (Transilien Line H, departs at 6:32 p.m.).

Once you take off the train station, there’s a tourist information center across the street. You can stroll around the town or take recommended courses, Chemin des Peintres. Following the path, you will be able to see printed pictures with real scenery that inspired the paintings. I went there last Saturday (8th June), yet the field was too green. I may visit there again in a month to see yellow wheatfield.

Auberge Ravoux by Marimonda World

Next to the tourist information center, you will find Auberge Ravoux, which Van Gogh stayed in 1890. His room was quite small (7 sq.m) and empty. Entering Auberge Ravoux is strictly regulated. Hence, you should ask the time you can enter the building when you purchase the ticket. You can enter the building with a guide who will explain about the place and Van Gogh. Taking pictures inside the place is prohibited.

Van Gogh moved to this town to continue his treatment with Dr. Gachet. In the middle of the town you might see a direction saying Dr. Gachet’s house. The doctor not only consulted artists such as Cézanne, Pissarro and Renoir including Van Gogh, but also provided his place as a meeting point to them. As a result, many artists stayed or visited this small town and were inspired by the town’s view.

Tombs – Marimonda World

Don’t forget to the check out the town’s graveyard. There, you can find where the great painter and his brother is resting. The tombs are located at the end of the graveyard near wheatfield.

After visiting Giverny and Auvers-sur-Oise, now I’d like to visit Rouen soon. It’s time to organize the next trip!

Enjoy your trip with Marimonda! See you soon:)

Travel Info.

Auverge Ravoux : Admission €6. Wed to Sun 10:00 a.m. to 6:00p.m

Musée Daubigny : Admission €5, check the opening hours on the web.