Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Walk 4: Of Art, War, and World's Fairs: Invalides, Musée Rodin, Tour Eiffel

This walk didn't get done all in one day, and in fact may have taken three different occasions to finish, because it is chock-full o' amazing things.

We started with les Grand et Petit Palais, both of which were built for the World's Fair of 1900, and now are home to various art exhibits.

Crossing the Pont Alexandre III,

and heading left, we come to the Rodin Museum, far and away one of my favorite places in Paris. Stunning. Absolutely magnificent. Rodin is Michelangelo after it was no longer cool to be Michelangelo. Every single one of his sculptures looks living, looks breathing, looks pensive, looks desperate, looks real. I love them all.

Barely a block away is Les Invalides, a hospital built by Louis XIV to house wounded and elderly veterans. It still serves that purpose, but it also the final resting place of Napoleon Bonaparte, and includes a war museum.

Yeah, that's the Napoleon's hat and coat. I'm almost jealous of myself, it's so cool.

Et, finalement, La Tour Eiffel, that international symbol for Paris. It's HUGE. It towers over everything, and when it was built (history lesson: by Gustave Eiffel in 1889 for the World's Fair) it was the tallest building in the world. It weighs over 10,000 tons and requires 60 tons of paint to cover it fully. I love it. Who am I kidding though, I love everything here.

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