Day 4 Paris Trip: The Latin Quarter and the Jardin du Luxembourg

January 22, 2008 at 10:30 am | Posted in Anime & Manga, books, Comics, France, General, Manga, Out and About, Paris, photos, Tourism, Travel | 6 Comments
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The last day in Paris was spent with a journey to the Latin Quarter and the Jardin du Luxembourg (Luxembourg Gardens).

I’ll start with the gardens first. I walked and used the Metro but you might prefer to ride a bicycle. Throughout Paris are bike rental stations  –Velib -where you basically hire it and can return to any other station. For the safety conscious they don’t come with helmets.

Paris 308

Meanwhile, the gardens are home to the French Senate.

Jardin du Luxembourg (20)Jardin du Luxembourg (24)

Extensive grounds.

Jardin du Luxembourg (2)Jardin du Luxembourg (27)

Statues.

Jardin du Luxembourg (3)Jardin du Luxembourg (11) Jardin du Luxembourg (15)Jardin du Luxembourg (14)Jardin du Luxembourg (21)

Chess games alongside the sleeping homeless.

Jardin du Luxembourg (8)

Flower beds and bare trees – presumably the place would be spectacular to walk around in spring.

Jardin du Luxembourg (9)

Or you could play tennis.

Jardin du Luxembourg (12)

Overall, the gardens allow for a relaxing stroll around the grounds. A pleasant escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Jardin du Luxembourg (22)Jardin du Luxembourg

Even in the slight chill there are plenty of people taking the opportunity to sit around, contemplate, chat or have lunch.

Jardin du Luxembourg (25)Jardin du Luxembourg (23)

I’ve often complained that London lacks any trash cans and I realise there are safety concerns but it wasn’t until Paris that I realised why even the clear bag option may not work.

Jardin du Luxembourg (10)

Then again perhaps a slightly thicker non explosive/metallic material would still allow for a clean and safe environment?

Once out of the Gardens I took to the Latin Quarter in earnest. Home of higher education for the esteemed university La Sorbonne. Thus almost completing my pained and over stretched analogy of a trip of highs.

Latin Quarter (21)Latin Quarter (27)

Or more cultural highs at the Pantheon. Or, rather I’m sure there would be if I’d actually gone in.

Latin Quarter (22)Latin Quarter (24)

Or the high from finding a real life manga cafe in Paris – near a number of other comic/DVD/book shops. After all it is a university student district.

Latin Quarter (30)

The blue shop is Album comics but while trying to find the URL I stumbled upon the Boulevard des Bulles which is the same area.

Latin Quarter (17)

As the masthead indicates this is Boulinier and on the right down the small Rue Serpente (with a yellow awning) is the small but potentially interesting AAAPoum.

Latin Quarter (12)

Another books shop I stopped in was Shakespeare’s (towards Notre Dame). A well known second hand English bookstore where the staff actually live in the shop. As you walk around you’ll see the folded up beds and the sparse belongings in small piles so as to not disrupt the customers.  

And now a last smattering of photos from the Latin Quarter. Definitely a worthwhile part of the city to get lost in.

Latin Quarter (3)Latin Quarter (16)

Latin Quarter (23)

Latin Quarter (5)Latin Quarter (6)

After leaving the Latin Quarter I picked up my bags from the hotel and headed to the station, Gare du Nord, for my final high. The high speed train.

Gare du Nord (3)Gare du Nord (5)

Arriving back in Kings Cross.

Kings Cross (2)Kings Cross

Overall, I liked Paris, despite warnings I was not prepared for the distances involved. Realistically, I could have packed more in and left a day early but in part this holiday was about taking things relatively slowly and chilling out a bit. For the most part this was accomplished so the next time I make it to France I’ll be able to travel further afield.

Now that I’ve dipped my toe into Europe I doubt it’ll be too long before I’m back on the continent!

More photos on Flickr!

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6 Comments »

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