anectorial : 003

As I sit here, full of envy because of a friend who is just about to leave to Paris, city of lights, my memory takes me back to few years back when I roamed the city... (by dk)

Notre Dame:

Perfect place to start from the religious center of Paris: Beautiful view of Seine River and roof top of the most famous cathedral in the world, worth every 387 steps
*metro exit: Cité

Sq. de I'lle de France:

Found it accidentally and will always cherish my visit: bold and powerful memorial sunken underground, meets Seine at a corner
*Rear (east) end of the Ile de la Cité

Pompidou Center:

Birth of Renzo Piano's career (and Richard Rogers), with wonderful exhibits and view of Paris
*metro exit: Hôtel-de-Ville/ Rambuteau/Châtelet but suggest to walk few blocks north from Notre Dame

La Défense:

You must see it to believe this modern mega-monument, a window to the suburban Paris and beyond: make sure to spend sometime in the museum at its top and its enormous void below
*metro exit: Grande Arche de la Défense (end of Paris metro)

Villa Savoye: Most famous international style villa designed by Le Corbusier
*RER exit: Poissy and bus 50 direction La Coudraie and exit Lycée Le Corbusier (right infront of the house)
Arc de Triomphe:

Center of Paris, beginning of Champs-Elysées with historical museum above and get ready to shop!
*metro exit: Ch.-de-Gaullé-Etoile (closest metro exit from the arch), look for Michael Saee's new work on south corner of Champs-Élyésse, can't miss it

Louvre: Modern monument and an end of the "Axis", an invisible giant underground space by I.M. Pei
*metro exit: Concorde (and start walking east towards Louvre for ceremonial walk through the Jardin des Tuileries) or exit Palais-Royal Musee du Louvre (if you are lazy)
Beaux Arts: The first architecture school, intellectual heart of Saint-Germain
*simply walk south, over Pont du Carrousel onto Rue des Saints-P
Eiffel Tower: Slight detour to the west side of Paris: suggest elevator up but walk down to admire its construction/view, and eat if you have money to spend
*metro exit: Trocadero for a picturesque view and walk over Pont d'léna (just follow the tower)
Maison Roche: Le Corbusier Foundation where you can find everything about his work and locations
*metro exit: Jasime, walk north on Rue de L'yvette, left on Rue du Docteur Blanche and left on to a small road, Square du Docteur Blance to its end
8-10 Square du Docteur Blanche
75016 Paris
tel 42 88 41 53
fax 42 88 33 17
hours vary, so double check
Le Sacreé Coeur: Watch out for bizzaros, but a beautiful view of the entire Paris city below and an interesting public transport system below the hill, fantastic eateries
*metro exit: Abbesses, just look up towards east
St. Denis Cathedral: North end of the Paris metro and the beginning of the Gothic Cathedral
*metro exit: Saint-Denis (notice an interesting bridge intersecting a neighboring building as well)
Parc de la Villette: Interesting future-urban-park designed by Bernard Tschumi
*metro exit: either Porte de la Villette and walk south or Porte de Pantin and walk north, just follow the red follies
Arabic Center: Its famous facade doesn't really work, but it's still a mesmerizing and elegant place
*metro exit: Jussieu and walk around the Science building towards the Seine and corner of Saint-Germain, can't miss it
National Library: Dominique Perrault's four transparent towers elevated from Seine River and sunken garden in between, elegant
*metro exit: Quai de la Gare situated along the Seine
American Center: Gehry's first attempt (you can tell) to build in Paris
*metro exit: Bercy or walk across Pont de Bercy from the National Library, next to a sports stadium
Salvation Army: One of the unknown Le Corbusier's work ground floor is open to the public but you can go up stairs at your own risk; I did
*RER exit: Masséna (walk along the train tracks, up north to Rue Cantagrel: large building on your right with vibrant colors over the entry) or just walk south along Seine from the National Library
Chartes Cathedral:  30 minute south of France from Gare Montparnasse
*you don't need a map, just get off the train station and start walking up the hillside


NOTE: There are hundreds of other places that were not mentioned here, that will make a book (maybe later I will write one). For now, you can visit Paris Online and find other wonderful spaces in Paris... so no hate mail please. However, if you are going to be in Paris for about a week and want to see spaces and constructions that bring life to urban space, this list will suffice.

SUGGESTION: buy a good map of Paris that includes all public transportation at a tourist information center, eat a good hearty breakfast, buy a packet(s) of 10 tickets (a Carnet) to save $ to eat/shop, and start walking!!