Saturday, July 3, 2010

Vacation Highlights and France Top 10 Lists

This trip to France has been completely wonderful - relaxing, educational, filled with breathtaking experiences and good times spent with family and friends. We really couldn't have asked for a better vacation, and with just a few more days to go I am already starting to get sad about leaving. Some highlights:

Peaceful country life:






Stumbling upon some charming towns while driving around Normandy:

The old mill in Vernon

Picturesque spot in Cocherel

Giverny:





Mont-Saint-Michel and the Musée des Manuscrits du Mont-Saint-Michel in Avranches (a.k.a. the "Scriptorial"):







And of course, Paris:






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I am a list-maker, and I couldn't resist creating a few France-related Top 10 Lists. Here they are:

Top 10 Favorite Experiences in Paris

10. Going to the top of the Arc de Triomphe.
9. Walking through the area around the Place Vendôme (and drooling over the chocolatiers' windows...).
8. The green spaces: Jardin du Luxembourg, Jardin des Tuileries, Place des Vosges, and many others
7. Visiting the Musée Cluny and the area around the École de Médécine.
5. Enjoying the street performers in Montmartre on summer evenings.
4. Browsing the bouquinistes on the Quai de la Tournelle and Quai St.-Michel after Mass at Nôtre Dame; we also like the the bandes dessinées shops in the Marais
3. Walking the Quartier Latin.
2. Visiting the Musée d'Orsay (even when my favorite Caillebotte painting is out on loan, as it was this year).
1. Hanging out on the Champ de Mars (in front of the Eiffel Tower) at night when the sun doesn't set till 9:30 p.m.

Top 10 Experiences in France Over the Years

10. Shopping for groceries at Carrefour (the United States just doesn't make food this good)
9. Giverny
6. The Loire Valley / chateau country
5. Our afternoon in Dieppe
4. Paris, of course - especially off-peak
2. Mont-Saint-Michel
1. Relaxing in my husband's family's place in the country

Top 10 Things We Have Yet To Do As a Family in France

10. Versailles
9. The lovely villages in the south of France featured in the film A Good Year
8. Marseille
7. Caen, Omaha Beach, Bayeux
6. Ski trip to the Alps
5. Brittany coast
4. Reims
3. Some pilgrimage sites: Taizé, Aubazine, Lourdes
2. Honfleur
1. Spending the night IN Mont-Saint-Michel

3 comments:

Hinzi said...

A great photo adventure! I miss your writing, but I understand - you are on a vacation!

Kyla said...

Sounds (and looks) like an amazing vacation!

Natalie Smith said...

Thanks for the list. These are places I will definitely visit. Regards from Hotel Charles de Gaulle