TRAVELS WITH YOUR NAVIGO – THE CHÂTEAU DE MALMAISON

Le Chateau de Malmaison. Photo, wikipedia

Famous as the last residence of the Empress Joséphine, it’s also synonymous with her cultivation of rare and exotic plant species hitherto unknown in France, but especially the importation and propagation of roses.  This small château, with its fascinating memorabilia of its most famous residents and its beautiful garden, is barely 15kms west of central Paris, making it a perfect day trip from Paris using your Navigo transport pass.

Continue reading

EXPERIENCE THE UNIQUE ATMOSPHERE OF A CONCERT IN A PARIS CHURCH

A concert in the magnificent Sainte Chapelle. Photo, monuments-nationaux.fr

If you’ve never attended a concert in one of the many historic churches in Paris, you’re in for a very special treat.  The wonderful acoustics, soaring ceilings, beautiful stained-glass windows, timeless stone sculptures and sometimes priceless paintings, all combine to create an atmosphere that cannot be experienced in a regular concert venue.

Continue reading

DISCOVERING THE PALAIS-ROYAL, PARIS

The Palais-Royal and Gardens. Photo, parisselect

It has always come as a surprise to us that the Palais-Royal, although situated in the heart of Paris, is so often missed by visitors.  Perhaps it’s because the entrance isn’t obvious or perhaps visitors are distracted by a visit to the Louvre, which is opposite.  For a weary visitor, the beautiful gardens of the historic Palais-Royal are a haven of peace and relaxation away from the crowds of the Louvre and the hustle and bustle of the city.

Continue reading

TRAVELS WITH YOUR NAVIGO – THE CHÂTEAU DE FONTAINEBLEAU

Aerial view of the Chateau de Fontainebleau. Photo, i.pinimp

On a list of ‘must sees’ for most visitors to Paris, along with the obvious sights such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre etc., is likely to be the Château de Versailles.  Far less familiar though is the Château de Fontainebleau, arguably the centre of the history of French monarchy.  No site in France can compare as a royal residence.  It predates the Louvre itself by 50 years, and Versailles by 5 centuries.

Fontainebleau is the only château that was lived in by every French monarch for almost 8 centuries.

Continue reading

THE REMARKABLE STORIES OF THE THREE PARIS PAGODAS – Part 2

La Pagoda Paris is unmissable on its prominent street corner. Photo, wikimedia

This story continues on from my previous post about one of the three Paris pagodas, the Japanese-style pagoda, known as La Pagode, which was converted to a much-loved cinema.  The other two are equally fascinating, with their own surprising stories to tell.

The three Paris Pagodas are as visually startling, unexpected delights today as they were when first created.

Continue reading