Monday 24 October - Touring
Had a great morning touring with a local guide and seeing some amazing sights. We visited some ancient Roman monuments and Les Baux de Provence (an ancient village) on the top of a mountain before visiting the Pont du Gard - a Roman built aqueduct built over 2000 years ago, amazingly, it still works :o)
We returned to Avignon and spent some time on the Pont du St Benezet (the bridge that only goes half way across the river) and then we discovered a stairway and were able to climb all the way to the top of the town :o) Can not get over the structures and their designs; they are amazing!
|Les Baux de Provence|
|Pont du Gard|
|Pont des St Benezet|
Stumbled through the Palais des Papes (Palace of Popes) before a lovely revitalising lunch of soup and dessert. We really were too tired to thoroughly enjoy the palace, but after lunch we managed to stroll through the town and even bought a painting from a local artist before going back to the hotel for a bit of a catnap :o) All I can say is that my feet were killing me and would have gladly paid for two new ones!!
|A courtyard in the Palace|
We drove to Arles today. Well Mum drove, and I navigated with the help of the GPS (finally worked out how to use it with no manual) She only nearly went off the side of the road twice - we asked for a compact and they gave us a sedan, it was at least twice the size of the car we were used to driving!! Anyway we visited the Amphitheatre in Arles; I can't believe they still have bull fights there!!
|The Amphitheatre of Arles|
|The Bullfighting Ring|
After a good nights sleep we packed the car; had a last stroll through Avignon and then drove back to Marseilles. We caught a train back to Paris. The trains are so fast here. What would take all day in Australia only takes 3 & half hours.... and they allow dogs on the train. I have to admit that the dogs here are so much better trained and behaved. This one was gorgeous :o)
|The cute puppy on the train :o)|
I feel like a big kid, it's amazing. We have fun parks in Australia, but they have nothing on Disneyland :o)
|Isn't the castle pretty?|
|A view from the train|
|Looking toward the Queen of Hearts castle|
Well we picked up our Paris Passes and used the bus tour ticket. This pass is great, actually it's three passes - the Paris Pass, the Museum Pass and the Bus Tour ticket. Along with those it also comes with a travel card for all their public transport. We took the buss tour today to get acquainted with Paris. Loved it!!
Can I just add that it is so much easier to get around Paris with no French. Still not easy, but a lot better than Avignon.
|View of the Arc du Triophme|
|Self Portrait with the Eiffel Tower|
We did a tour of Notre Dame and climbed right up to the top (there are 387 steps to the top) and then after also visiting the crypt at Notre Dame and doing a tour of the Opera House; we also climbed the steps of the Arc du Triomphe (there are 284 steps to the top). No problems; and got some amazing views for our efforts too!!
The opera house was also amazing; it really shows when your guide loves his subject and our guide William is studying to be an opera singer and really loved the building and the history. It showed :o) It was one of the day's highlights.
|One of the gargoyles|
|Second highest point :o)|
|The Opera House|
|Me at the top of the Arc du Triophme|