Sacre Coeur: A Magical Parisian Destination

By Rohan:

There are several places in the world that people dream about visiting. From picturesque beaches to bustling cities, the list is jam-packed with destinations around the world. Year after year, Paris makes the list for most popular vacation spot and most popular honeymoon spot for its awe-inspiring architecture and culture. There are many ways to end a day in Paris. Eat ice cream underneath the Eiffel Tower, watch the flame crackle by the Arc de Triomphe, or perhaps enjoy a scenic view of the city of lights from Sacre Coeur.

Sacre Coeur is a majestic cathedral that was completed in the early nineteenth century. The facade is made entirely of marble and it looms over Paris like a guardian, watching over the city as the sun sets. You can take a taxi to the foot of the church or use the funicular and explore the quaint, peaceful cobblestone streets illuminated by lamps hanging from wires above. From here, you are able to capture the beauty of the building firsthand and truly see how ornate and enormous it is. Turn around, and Sacre Coeur does not fail to impress with a stunning view of Paris and her lovely monuments. The Notre Dame cathedral, Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, and even the world-famous Louvre are visible from the top of this gorgeous landmark.

Once you get to Sacre Coeur, there are endless ways to spend your time. What we like to do is eat at one of the little cafes by the edge of the hill where you can get a view of the entire city and take a few photos. Then, walk up to the foot of Sacre Coeur and, if it’s open, take a peek inside. Remember to always be respectful and courteous when visiting these landmarks and obey all rules and regulations. Most of Paris’ top attractions are heavily protected and require that you abide by all posted and verbal regulations. Sacre Coeur is no different. Once you exit the cathedral, you can take one more look at the skyline before winding down the cobblestone streets. By now, you are ready for dessert and there is everything from tiny crepe shops to Haagen Dazs ice cream on the mountain top. Take the funicular down and enjoy the descent as you take in the entire the city of lights.

Out of all the landmarks we visited while touring the city, Sacre Coeur offered the most memorable experience and we cannot wait to return to one of our favorite places in all  of France.

Lakshmi’s Comments:  Sacre Couer is one spot I had heard very little about before visiting Paris, and in my heart it will always remain my most cherished part of the city.  Why?  First, it is situated in the bohemian neighborhood of Montmarte where Van Gogh once lived with his brother Theo, where Degas and Zola have their final resting places, and of course, the site that is notable for the presence of the cabaret Moulin Rouge.  I found it to be the most romantic site in all of Paris, a place away from the maddening crowds, the serenity of the church juxtaposed against one of the liveliest cities below.  This was probably why Indira Gandhi’s husband proposed to her here.  We sat there for several hours, listening to music, watching people come and go, and looking at the glow cast on the basilica by the setting sun, feeling so content in an act as simple as sitting on the footsteps of a church at the highest point of Paris.

If you are in Paris, please do take the time to go visit Sacre Couer.  To get more information, click here:

http://www.sacre-coeur-montmartre.com/us/index.html

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