Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Latin Quarter - Paris

The Latin Quarter is Paris' traditional center of great thinking. Some of the world's most important artists, philosophers, and writers have passed through the area throughout history, frequenting the centuries-old Sorbonne University or the many now-legendary cafes around the area. The Latin quarter retains the nostalgic charm of past ages, while still being an important hub of education and ideas to this day. It's also a lush, picturesque area of Paris, with lots of quiet squares and gardens, winding backstreets, and vibrant open-air markets. The Latin Quarter Walk takes us through the heart of Parisian history and touches on everything from Roman ruins to the great intellectuals of France. Enjoy two of the world's most famous cathedrals, one of the world's most famous universities and Paris' most beautiful gardens. This is where Paris began many centuries ago and continues to be one of the most popular areas of the city. Places to visit are

St. Chapelle

The St. Chapelle was commissioned by King Louis IX to house Christ's crown of thorns and was completed on April 26, 1248. The stained glass walls are considered to be among the most impressive in the world. Visitors can either visit the church during the day or enjoy a classical concert there in the evening.


King Louis XV vowed that if he recovered from an illness, he would build a church in honor of patron saint of Paris, St. Geneviève. Foundations were laid in 1758, but the building wasn't completed until 1789. In 1851 a French physicist demonstrated the rotation of the earth using a 67 meter pendulum beneath the dome. The Pantheon is the oldest large-scale dome in Rome. It is one of the best preserved of all Roman buildings. It has been in continuous use throughout its history.
Notre Dame

The most famous cathedral in the world is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Construction began in 1163 during the reign on King Louis VII and has stood as a symbol of Paris for almost nine centuries. On the top of the building sit 13 statues; 12 are the apostles and one is a statue of the architect himself.
Pointe Zero located just in front of Notre Dame, this is the point where from which all distances in France are measured.

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