Paris is the largest metropolitan area in France. With a population of almost 12 million, it is one of the most densely populated metropolitan areas in Europe.
When planning a trip to Paris from Atlanta, you will find that there are several affordable options. Most major carriers offer daily flights to Paris. But the challenge begins once you arrive. Since Paris is known for its culture, style and romance, it attracts millions of tourists every year. So, make sure you have a firm plan, if not, consider some of the places we recommend.
In 2014, Paris welcomed 15.6 million visitors into the capital – and it’s no surprise it’s one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world as its famous for its sidewalk cafes, stylish boutiques, world-class museums, and five-star restaurants. It is no wonder the city has a reputation for seduction.
Paris is known for its numerous art galleries that showcase the world’s most recognized paintings and sculptures. One of the most famous art galleries is the Louvre Museum, home to the Mona Lisa. A glass pyramid greets you in the courtyard as you approach the Louvre. The museum houses over a million pieces of art. You should plan to spend at least 4 hours there.
Across the River Seine, the Musée d’Orsay is another must-visit gallery. Impressionist and Post- Impressionist artwork by Degas, Monet and Van Gogh, can be viewed at this famous gallery. The Beaux Arts architecture makes it one of the most impressive buildings in Paris in addition to the world-class art and sculpture featured inside.
Notre-Dame de Paris
If you want to experience a symbol of Paris, a visit to Notre-Dame might be in order. The Gothic masterpiece is over 800 years old. Located on the Île
de la Cité, a small island in the heart of the city, and the official seat of the Archbishop of Paris.
The bells of Notre Dame are also some of the most famous in Europe. There are five large bells and the one in the South Tower is the most prominent. Known as “the bourdon bell Emmanuel,” it weighs over 13 tons. At the North Tower you will see the other four bells. Traditionally, the bells were rung by hand, electric motors, installed during the 20th century control the bells today.
Notre Dame has experienced a number of periods of destruction and restoration. The most recent restoration program began in 1991 and continued
until 2010. This effort focused on cleaning and preserving sculptures and facades.
As I stood at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, I could see the amazing iron lattice structure known as the Eiffel Tower peeping up from the trees. You couldn’t possibly visit Paris without standing under the Eiffel Tower. But, even if you choose not to visit this memorable structure, you will see its top from all over Paris. The tower stretches 300 meters (984 ft) in the air. At one point it was the tallest man-made structure in the world.
Gustave Eiffel, known from his revolutionary bridge building techniques, is the mastermind behind the Eiffel Tower. He was also known for the construction of the Statue of Liberty’s iron framework.
The structure took more than two years to complete. Each one of the about 12,000 iron pieces were designed. The pieces were prefabricated and fit together using approx. seven million nails. At night, the lights around the Eiffel tower illuminate the sky. It is no wonder Paris is known as the City of Lights.