I can’t believe it had been 5 years since I’ve been to France! This post will be about my adventure traveling with 7 HHS students (and 1 aunt!) plus about 30 SPHS people to and all over France. Here’s a little breakdown of our trip…
Wednesday- overnight flight from Atlanta to London
Thursday- Arrive in London, buy British candies, fly to Nice! Hotel de Suede in a very central location. Dinner at the bistro across the street, late night walk and ice cream.
Friday- Breakfast on beautiful terrace of hotel overlooking Nice. Bus ride to Monaco with a stop for pictures at Villefranche. Eze and the Fragonard perfumerie, then exploring the old town and hanging on the rock beach in Nice.
Saturday- TGV from Nice to Paris. Then bus to Tours. Long walk in Tours (little rainy near the end)
Sunday- Exploring the chateaux of the Loire Valley! Chateau de Chenonceau with it’s awesome hedge maze, amazing history of women, and beautiful gardens. Then to Amboise where Leonardo da Vinci is buried. Also a visit to his home during the later years of his life. Back to Tours fo
r dinner and then coffee with my former student Gabrielle who is studying abroad with the University of Alabama there in Tours. (Proud teacher moment)
Monday- Bus to Mont Saint Michel and tour of the Abbey. So many stairs!!!! Then on to the fortified city of Saint Malo for a walk and dinner. (I loved Saint Malo!- first time for me there.)
Tuesday- Normandy! Visit of Pointe du Hoc and it’s preserved bunkers and cratered landscape. Also a great view of the cliffs the special forces scaled after arriving on the beaches. Then the American Cemetery at Omaha Beach, the most moving place I’ve ever visited. And a war museum in Arromanches where there are still roads out in the ocean that the Allied forces built to transport vehicles onto the beach. Bus to Paris and a walk on the Canal Saint-Martin in the 19th arrondissement.
Wednesday- Versailles! Explored the castle and the gardens then back to Paris for lunch on the Champs Elysées. Guided bus tour of the city with stops at Trocadero for some awesome Eiffel Tower pictures and a tour of Notre Dame de Paris. Dinner at a great restaurant near the Eiffel Tower, then up to the top for breathtaking views of the city followed by our first ride on the metro (almost lost some people, but luckily the doors just closed on their backpacks).
Thursday- Last day in Paris- Musée d’Orsay, my favorite museum in the world for housing the best Impressionism collection. They also had a great exhibit- the Hay Collection. Then we all split into small groups: the Marais and Louvre, Latin Quarter and monument pictures, and Hotel des Invalides. On this afternoon I ate at my favorite falafel restaurant, L’AS du Fallafel in the Marais. Then explored the streets around l’Opera Garnier followed by dinner at a great restaurant near by. After dinner, some students and Ms. Burnette went to see the Eiffel Tower glittering at night!
Friday- Return home! Flight from Paris to London to Atlanta, then bus to SPHS where all the parents were so happy to see their kids! And I was happy to bring them all home alive and unharmed! 🙂
I have so much more to write about the trip, but I’ll save that for another post!