Thursday, 31 May 2012

Montmartre Stair by Stair

Up to Sacre Coeur

With some rain predicted in the coming days we decided to take advantage of the sunny day and go to Montmartre. This area has been portrayed in many paintings and movies. I should have been forewarned when the walking tour had a little note: “This walk includes many staircases and steep hills”. Understatement! Well, at least Paul’s way of doing it anyway – all PVB shortcuts in France and Netherlands involve stairs and/or hills.
I took the easy start with the funicular railway up to Sacre Coeur basilica while Paul took the stairs – of course he had to beat the train just to prove I should have climbed too.
I mentioned the basilica in the previous blog. After that we wandered through the cobblestoned streets looking at a few shops before getting to the artist’s market square. Paul kept pushing me to have a portrait done but I thought a caricature of the two of us would be more fun – it was hilarious. People stopped to laugh and make comments and the end product was pretty ugly – the artist said he would make me pretty and Paul ugly! If you are nice to us we might just show you.
Then lunch at a quiet little bistro just off the market square before more stairs and hills, past various buildings used in the film Amelie to the Montmartre cemetery where many famous philosophers, writers, republique-thought leaders, performers and other artists are buried. There was a funeral procession walking down the centre road as we sat in the shade. (Unlike other tourists, we showed our respect by not taking ‘happy’ snaps).
On to the Moulin Rouge with its long queue (at 1500 in the hot afternoon sun) and then a hot subway (more stairs) back to our B&B. 
In the evening, another walking tour from the Louvre to Rue Cler (cobblestoned tourist trap/historic arcade) then a walk in the rain by the Eiffel Tower before Batobus back to the Marais and a well-earned sleep in a blissfully cooler night.



Anything to be able to sit down!

Cute Wall Art


  1. Now I know why Parisian women are so thin - it's all those stairs.

    1. Shame it's not working for me :)
      We are really enjoying the French hospitality, probably a little too much!