Getting on/off a motorcoach. Walking up to 2 miles throughout the day, standing up to 2 hours at a time; pavement, cobblestones, gravel paths. Expect crowded conditions. Timing of Seine River trip subject to change; if scheduling conflicts arise, river trip may be moved to another time or day.
At the hotel, we will have a lecture by our instructor on Paris during the Renaissance period and the 18th century. Next, we will set out on a walking field trip to the Latin Quarter. The University of Paris and its core college, the Sorbonne, were founded on the Rive Gauche (Left Bank) about 1257, one of the first universities in the world. This quickly became the intellectual heart of the city, called the Latin Quarter as Latin was the language of the educated classes. Over succeeding eras, it attracted artists, writers, and bohemians.
At a restaurant in the Latin Quarter.
We will continue exploring the Rive Gauche with visits to St. Germain des Prés and St. Sulpice. The neighborhood known as St. Germain des Prés was once a gritty haven for artists, philosopher, and writers, many of whom frequented the famed Café Les Deux Magots or the Café de Flore. It has become an upscale neighborhood that still retains much of its historic ambience. It is also the home of Café Le Procope, the oldest café-restaurant in France (1686) that was a favorite — at different times! — of Voltaire, Danton, Hugo, Balzac, Rousseau, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. Église Saint-Sulpice is the second-largest church in Paris after Notre-Dame. In addition to fascinating architecture, interior decoration, and history as a center of esoteric knowledge, St. Sulpice is notable for its rich musical heritage with one of the finest pipe organs in Europe, considered the finest achievement of organ builder Aristide Cavaillé-Coll. The church also figured in Dan Brown’s novel “The Da Vinci Code.”
We will provide meal vouchers known as “tickets restaurant” that can be used at restaurants, bakeries, brasseries, and cafés displaying a TR sticker on the window with messages such as this: “Nous acceptons les Tickets Restaurant.” (Change is not given back if the meal cost is less than the value of the voucher.) The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.
We will board a river boat for a late afternoon or evening trip (depending on time of year) along the Seine to view wondrous sites on the Rive Gauche and Rive Droite.