France Trip 2018 – Diary

After a year of planning and waiting we were finally leaving to France. Our excitement was building for a little over a year now and the wait was finally over. After arriving at the airport at twelve and saying goodbye to our families we went through security to our gate where we waited to board our first flight from Melbourne to Bangkok with barely contained excitement. We took off at three and settled down to a nine-hour long flight where we watched movies and chatted excitedly about our trip. Although we were all excited at the beginning of the day the flight tired us out and by the time we arrived in Bangkok we were exhausted. We still had two hours to our connecting flight to Paris, so to pass time we played cards and walked around to exercise after being cooped up for so long. When the wait was over, we finally were able to board our next flight. We were all so tired that most of us went to sleep as soon as we got onto the plane. We were on the plane for twelve hours, the longest flight that most of us have ever been on, and at seven the morning, Paris time, we landed. Paris was just as beautiful as we imagined and although we were tired and jetlagged from our long trip over, we were looking forward to what Paris would have to offer.

-Swasti, Bhargavi and Rachel

Day 2

“Paris is always a good idea”

– Audrey Hepburn

After a very French breakfast of croissants and baguettes, we started our journey to the Eiffel Tower. We bought our lunch from a local bakery (boulangerie) and ordered in French. We then took the Metro (where we saw a French busker!) to ‘La Place de la Bastille’ where we saw La colonne de Liberte. The column commemorates the French Revolution. We then made our way to the Luxembourg Gardens and on the way we passed through the Latin Quarter, where we saw the Pantheon and many French students. Unfortunately, it started to rain a little bit but luckily we could still admire the beautiful scenery and architecture as the rain cleared. Finally, we took a bus and reached our destination of the Tour Eiffel. We took the lift all the way to the top floor and the view was breathtaking! We were lucky enough to see a proposal at the top! Overall, it was an experience that none of us will ever forget. We took the RER train (which was double decker!) and the Metro back to our hotel. After a rest we went for a delicious dinner at an Algerian restaurant called the Café Zerda. We ate couscous with a flavorsome vegetable broth and chickpeas, sausage and chicken. It was an interesting view into the different cultures that have influenced French cuisine.

– Charlie, Anya, Isabella, Ellie

Day 3 – Entry 1

Today was an amazing day! After a lovely breakfast of pastries and fresh fruit, we hopped on the train with our pre-purchased baguette sandwiches, to the Musée de l’Orangerie. At this museum, we got the wonderful opportunity to see firsthand Monet’s Water Lilies, which are recognised as some of the first leaps into impressionist art. Alongside these beautiful pieces, were some artworks by Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso and Paul Cézanne, just to name a few! We enjoyed this time to view different collections of art, which have been greatly influential in modern art culture. Then we had lunch in the gardens outside of L’Orangerie, facing the beautiful views of Cleopatra’s obelisk and the Eiffel Tower in the distance. After lunch we strolled along the Seine and saw the ornate Pont Alexandre III bridge. We walked past the glass exhibition building and the Petit Palais. On our walk, we were shown the unique designs from the turn of the century and how Parisian architecture was influenced by the world fair. We continued our journey to the Avenue des Champs Élysées, where we got the opportunity to do some shopping for our friends, families, and ourselves of course! We briefly got a chance to see the Arc de Triomphe and take a few pictures before we moved our journey to Galeries Lafayette.

–          Lucy, Felicity & Heather

Day 3 – Entry 2

Today we visited many interesting places, including the Musée de l’Orangerie, L’Arc de Triomphe, Champs Élysées and Galeries Lafayette. We started off the day with a fresh baguette and got on the metro to the Musée de l’Orangerie. We saw many different artworks and the one that stood out the most was the Water Lillies by Claude Monet, we then went shopping along the Champs Élysées, which was very entertaining as there were many different shops. We then walked the short distance to the L’Arc de Triomphe which had amazing architecture and detail, which was so different to anything seen in Melbourne. We didn’t climb it just yet, as we had two hours to kill, so we sprinted for the 22 bus to Galeries Lafayette which was massive and fairly expensive. The ceiling was incredible with blue and red mosaic pieces that swirled and twinkled. Finally, after all the shopping was done, we travelled back to L’arc de Triomphe. We climbed over 200 stairs up the spiral staircase to the top which had a marvelous view of Paris. Finally, we rushed back down to the train station and got the train to Bouillon Chartier, where we had a traditional French dinner. Overall, it was a long day but it was interesting and very fun!

–          Ruby & Abbey