EUROPE 2005         









Page 6

Pantheon and Luxembourg Gardens

After a short day of walking only about 14 miles, we decided to walk about another 14, through the Latin Quarters (originally named because the Latin students from the Sorbonne University stayed in that area), to the Pantheon and then to Luxembourg Gardens. 

The Pantheon, although it has huge paintings on the wall, is completely empty inside except for Foucault's Pendulum.   Oh, and a bunch of dead guys in the basement.   OK, OK ...  originally built by Louis XV to glorify the patron saint of Paris: St-Genèvieve, it was redirected by a Revolutionary government from a church to a mausoleum for the remains of great Frenchmen.  Among those there are Voltaire, Rousseau, Mirabeau, Marat, Victor Hugo, Emile Zola, and Soufflot its architect.

We weren't real interested in the dead guys.

Mom at Sorbonne Pantheon Inside the Pantheon
Mom in front of the Sorbonne The Pantheon - a temple to the great men of France Inside the Pantheon, showing the Foucault's Pendulum suspended from the ceiling
Flowers Luxembourg Gardens Chris at gate
Luxembourg Gardens Luxembourg Gardens One of the several entrances to the Luxembourg Gardens
Dinky car Street musician Chris in the Latin Quarters
The dinkiest cars you'll ever see! Street musicians are everywhere – on the streets, bridges, in the Metro … Standing in the Latin Quarters


Notre Dame

Our hotel was about 2 blocks from Notre Dame.  Every time we went outside, we could see it.  Every day we walked past it at least once on the way to the Metro or some other sight.  Nevertheless, we decided to wait until we had been there several days before we went in (it just didn't fit into our plans, and I was waiting for a sunny day so we could see the stained glass better).

The massive square in front of the church is always a gathering place for crowds - people milling around, street musicians, bands, jugglers, other performers.  There is always a crowd there - it seems to be the social gathering place for the city.

Notre Dame doesn't have a reputation as one of the prettier churches in Paris, but we were impressed.  The huge rose windows are especially spectacular.  We liked the church so much, we went back a couple times, and one evening we went to an informative program about the church and its history and architecture.  

There is also an underground museum showing the excavations of the old medieval city, which we visited as well (courtesy of the 3-day museum pass!)

  Floor Plan

Floor Plan


Notre Dame Notre Dame Seine River
Notre Dame, view from Ile Saint-Louis Notre Dame, from the Seine river Along the Seine
Inside Notre Dame Window Stained glass
The main altar Window on front facade Stained glass window
Notre Dame Front Notre Dame at night Notre Dame at night
The front of Notre Dame Notre Dame at night Notre Dame at night





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