Climbing in Paris with Patrick and James

When the boys were little they loved to climb steps, so we climbed the tallest towers in all the cities we visited. We have climbed St. Paul's in London, the Dom tower in Utrecht, Sacre Coeur in Paris, and lesser known towers and hills in England and other parts of Europe.
I guess I thought we'd done all the towers, but Jim decided while the boys were here again that we should climb some towers, so we did.

First we climbed the 387 (or 402 if you believe a different web site) steps to the top of the south tower of Notre Dame cathedral. Here is a picture of some of the chimera up there. If they don't act as downspouts they are called chimera instead of gargoyles. Notre Dame has both.

The next day we climbed to the top of the Arc de Triomphe. (about 287 steps-I counted) This is the spiral stairway in the Arc de Triomphe. That's my boot in the bottom of the photo and some strangers climbing up behind us.
Here is a picture looking toward the Bois de Boulogne west of Paris from the top of the Arc de Triomphe.
The next day we climbed the steps some of which are outside and others inside to the base of the dome of Sacré Coeur. That was 200 to 300 steps, not counting all the steps that you have to climb to get to the church in the first place. Then for some reason to climb the tower you have to go down to the basement and climb from there. The photo of the church here was taken on the day I visited it with Alice, which was a nice sunny day. It wasn't that nice the day we climbed it, so I don't have pictures from below on that day.

This is the view from the base of the dome. You can see the row of openings around the dome in the photo above. That's where this is taken from, looking down at the steps below the basilica. There must be about 200 of them too.
Here we all are in front of the Eiffel Tower. It was a grey day and the line was long to go up it this day, so we didn't.
But we did return the next day when the weather was better. The line was still long so we climbed to the second level and then bought a ticket to ride the elevator to the top. That was about 700 steps, which really felt like a lot. They are numbered on the steps-668 to the second level then about 15 more to the elevators and another 15 to the lookout area at the very top.
This is actually taken from the second level. From the top the horizon is less interesting, because you are so high you are looking down on most of the easily recognized buildings. This is looking toward the Montparnasse tower, with the golden dome of Les Invalides church on the left.

Sadly, I expect this will be my last post from Paris. We are packing up to return to Duluth on Friday. But I still have lots more pictures of Paris, so I could continue to put together web pages and link them here. It's just that I would be doing it from Minnesota instead of Paris.


paintergal said…
Well, you are surely staying in shape with all the walking and stair climbing! As always, beautiful pics. Some of those views would make me dizzy! :)
How fun that you continued your stair climbing tradition with the boys! Looks like you climbed more than 2000 steps with them - oh, Ceci! One flight of stairs gets my out-of-shape body breathing heavily. I'd be at the bottom waving up at you all - lol! Love the photos and commentary, as always! Have a safe trip!
PAT said…
Kudos to you and your family Ceci..I would have not made it past a few steps!!

That's a wonderful photo of your family!

Cécile said…
Thanks, Carol. i would have lost weight if I could have stayed away from the pastries! lol The Eiffel tower is really high.

Rose, It was a lot of steps. I was exhousted by the end of the week, but it was fun too. We loved having the boys here.

Pat, Thanks, I took that picture myself. We found a ledge to set up my camera on a little tripod I carried for that purpose. I carry it a lot and don't use it much, but this time it worked out and we got a nice picture.
Maureen said…
I've so enjoyed your blogs from France. I hope you will be keeping the blog once you are home, as it's been an enjoyable read. I know you're busy with traveling home, but when you have a chance, check out my blog- you've been tagged! Have a safe trip back home! Looking forward to your Christmas decorating photos!
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