Oct 15, 2013

travel tuesday // montmartre

grab a warm cup of tea (or a pumpkin spice latte!) + get ready for a whole lot o' beauty 
as I reminisce on our amazing day atop Paris' hill, Montmartre, for todays Travel Tuesday!

A little history lesson before the photos start rollin' in:
Montmartre literally means "mountain of martyrs" and named after the Bishop of Paris, Saint Denis, who was decapitated here around 250 AD. Legend has it that Saint Denis was sentenced to death during the Decian persecution of Christians in 250 AD. Along the long walk to his execution, his guard got tired from walking up the steep hill and decided to behead Saint Denis on that very hill, which later became Mont (mountain) martre (martyr). The crazy part, however, is that apparently, Saint Denis picked his head up (ahem, quite literally) and carried it 6 kilometers, preaching along the way to the original spot, then died. This later became the samll village of Saint Denis outside of Paris. Statues of him carrying his head is in many areas of Paris, including Notre Dame, so if you see them, you'll know the background story!
Since Montmartre was outside the city limits during the prohibition on alcohol + free of Paris taxes {+ since the local nuns made wine}, the hill quickly became a popular drinking + adult entertainment area at the end of the 19th + early 20th centuries, most notably, Moulin Rouge and Le Chat Noir.  Now, this is all found at the base of Montmartre, aka Lower Montmartre, whereas Upper Montmartre is a village-like commune.
Have you seen the adorably quirky movie, Amelie? This is Amelie's cafe she worked at! Many scenes in the movie were shot in Montmartre, so it was fun finding the spots
Here is our rather handsome French tourguide from the Discover Walks. His accent and nerdy spectacles were dreamy, I gotta admit! Oh la la! 
Place Marcel Aymé is home to the now famous sculpture by Jean Marais. It depicts "The Man Who Could Walk Through Walls" penned by Marcel Aymé in 1943. The story is a bit scandalous, but the artwork was fun. Apparently, rubbing the man's left thumb gives you good luck, which led to the left thumb being a lot more discolored than the rest of the hand from being rubbed so often! 
La Maison Rose (the Pink House) is a charming little restaurant that has made its rounds in the Pinterest world + it was so cool to cross this off my Pinterest bucket list!
Vineyard in the Rue Saint-Vincent in Montmartre
 
And without further ado, here iBasilica Sacré Cœur!
 
  . . . and here is the view from the top! The Eiffel Tower was hidden behind all the trees.
I was trying to find this spot, but I think any view of Sacre Couer is a good view!
Rue Foyatier is one of the most famous streets in Paris because it consists of flights of stairs leading to  Basilica Sacré Cœur. We found it by accident while exploring (don't you just love when that happens?). And when I looked at my Pinterest board, I realized I pinned this months ago! So cool to stumble upon it!
 
After our guided tour, we just explored the adorable upper Montmartre, which is just so adorable. I kept forgetting that I was still in Paris. I felt like we were several hours away in a quant little village. The Lower Montmartre area is the sketchy side with many adult entertainment, including Le Moulin Rouge and similar (albeit, more risqué) cabarets along with adult shops and the like. That was definitely not why we wanted to see Montmartre (and is the main reason I did not visit Montmartre during last year's visit), but Upper Montmartre? Well, this is just dreamy!!
  
And here is another Pinterest pin come true: the adorable restuarant, Le Poulbot!
How lovely is this? Painters on the sidewalks. This is Place du Tertre, known for artists who paint tourists for pleasure . . . well, and money.
 
 and some guys where just having a little bit of fun!
Well, we eventually made our way back up to Sacré Cœur for round two!
 
We walked down the many steps from Sacré Cœur + over to the I Love You Wall, where LOVE is written in 273 different languages. Another check-off my Pinterest bucket list!


This was honestly my favorite day in Paris! There was so much to see and it was just so great to get out of the busyness of Paris and explore a quieter village-like corner of Paris.

26 comments:

  1. I just uploaded a ton of pictures from Paris for some posts, but I couldn't find any good ones of the Sacre Couer! I think I was too busy looking around. We also went to the Moulin Rouge for a performance but since you can't take pictures, I didn't take my camera so don't even have any pictures of the building haha. It looks like you had a great time! I loved the artist square, we stayed there for ages as my bf paints, he loved watching them.

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    1. Aww, yeah, it's easy to forget to take photos when surrounded by so much beauty! So glad you stopped by my blog!

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  2. What a quaint area! I LOVE those restaurants and the atmosphere in general just looks amazing!

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    1. Yes, it really was! I felt like I was dreaming! I wish I had the time (and money!) to visit all the adorable shops and restaurants!

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  3. Ahhh, this makes me miss Paris! I should return for another visit one day... Love your hair ;)

    Michelle @ Mishfish13

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    1. Aw, thanks, Michelle! You've been to Paris? I'll stop by your blog soon to check if you've posted pics in the past about Paris too! I just love seeing other people's experiences with cities that I've also beed to. It's interesting how everyone sees a city differently and experiences different parts in beautiful ways!

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    2. Haha, I didn't have a blog when I visited, but I might be able to scrounge up a few photos for later travel tuesdays :p

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  4. ::sigh::
    to be able to see all of that in person - i'm so jealous! ;)
    such beauty and SO MUCH HISTORY! gah, love it!
    (and LOOOOVVEE y'alls outfits!)

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    1. Thanks Amy!! Yes, the history was mind-boggling! So fun to experience. My sis and I kept mentioning how so-and-so's feet stepped on the same cobblestoned steps we trod on in different parts of the city. Surreal !

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  5. I love Paris and I wish I had more time in Montmartre when I was last there. I wanted to get a portrait sketched but never had the chance.

    Great photos!

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    1. We did too but we were short on time and watched to see as much of the area that we could . . . plus we figured it would get wrinkled by the time we arrived back home in the States!

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  6. GAH, I am SO living vicariously through your amazing travels!!

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  7. Wow, you got to explore so many amazing places. I'm going to have to remember these places for when Nate and I finally get a chance to go to Paris! :-)

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    1. Yeah! Let me know when you start planning and I can email you my itinerary for ideas!

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  8. Amelie is one of my favourite films - so cool you got to see the cafe! I would definitely love to go there! I have been to Paris twice before, but never to these places!

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    1. It's a bit out of central Paris, so it's easy to miss. I did too last year, but I made it a priority this year and so glad I did! It was just so beautiful!

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  9. One word: Beautiful! Every time you do a travel post my bucket list grows.

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  10. Aw I'm so glad to finally read your post about this - I loved seeing your pictures on instagram which got me reeeeally excited because we were headed there a few days later - I also loved montmartre and the quaintness of it. Looks like you were at the Sacre coeur on a much quieter day than us - it was packed!

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    1. Awww, that's awesome that you got to see it too! We went on a Wednesday and it was perfect!

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  11. Montmartre is my number one favourite part of Paris. It's the only place I could live and I can visit over and over again. Can't wait to go back and I love your pics!

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  12. ooh! great pics!!! i adore Montemartre; it's so quaint and lovely. i went there a few years ago during a wine festival and it was so crowded! so i really enjoyed seeing your photos of the streets less crowded. i had no idea there was an 'iloveyou' wall. next time i'm there i'll have to search for it!

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  13. This is such great information about Montmartre!! I had no idea of the history there, as in the story of how it became what it is today. I admit I never spent much time up in that area (I lived in the 5th and then the 11th) but I always loved climbing the steps to the Sacre Coeur to enjoy that view over the city. Great photos too!! :)

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    1. Thanks, Amy!! It was one of my highlights of Paris!! Miss it so much!

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  14. Montmartre is my favorite spot in Paris. Such a beautiful place and you've captured it perfectly! Thank you so much for joining the #Cheersmadame link up! Beautiful post! xoxo

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    1. Thanks, Selena! The link up was so fun!!

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Elle Alice