France travel guide


Paris Travel Guide

Explore Paris

Le Bastille

The Bastille was a fortress that protected the western side of the city of Paris. For many centuries it was an important part of the city's defences, but over time it lost its strategic importance and became a prison. The Place de la Bastille is now located there, in its place. Nowadays on July 14, there is a celebration of the revolution that replaced the autocratic king Charles X with Louis-Philippe.

The Bastille Opera

This is a modern Theatre /Opera House which was inaugurated on July 14, 1989, to commemorate the bicentenary of the storming of the Bastille. This building can sit 2,700 people. The design is functional and modern, with the seats draped in black in contrast to the walls and to the glass ceiling. It has five moveable stages and is considered to be a masterpiece of the technological ingenuity.

Place du Trocadéro

Napoléon III ordered the construction of a palace for his son in the Chaillot hills. At the end of the empire the Palace of Chaillot was built for the Universal Exhibition in 1878. The palace had a Romanesque - bizantine-islamic style and was demolished in 1935. The 'Palais du Trocadéro' is now located in its place, a neoclassic building that houses three museums, the Musée national de la Marine, the Musée de l'Homme and the Musée national des Monuments Français.

The Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower was constructed for the "Exposition Universelle" of 1889 to commemorate the French Revolution, and was inaugurated on 31 March 1889. Of the 700 entrants in the contest it was Gustavo Eiffels' which was selected. In the beginning, the tower was not accepted by everyone, but now it is one of the most visited places in the world. With a height 320.75 m and weighing 7300 tons, it became the tallest building in the world in 1930. It was almost torn down in 1909, but fortunately it was saved and so we can still see it today.

Les Invalides

Louis XIV constructed this building it which was designated to house all the invalid aged and crippled soldiers. It was inaugurated in 1674, but was concluded three years later by architect Jules Hardouin Mansart and his young pupil Robert de Cotte. At the end of 17th century, the building housed 4000 disabled people

Hôtel de Ville

This Neo-Renaissance style building was constructed in 1873 and was located near the Pompidou Centre. It was reconstructed and replaced an old building destroyed by fire in 1871, during the Paris Revolution. The square was a place of execution in old times. Revaillac, the man who murdered Henry IV, was executed here in 1610. As part of a guided tour of the rooms, you can see the décor featured murals by the leading painters of the day.

Saint-Denis Basilica

Constructed over the tomb of Saint Denis, the this Basilica was one of the most important places of pilgrimage and during this period influenced artistic, historical, political and spiritual life, cultivating privileged links with French royalty. The Saint-Denis district is home to France's national stadium, Stade de France, which was built for the 1998 Football World Cup.

Tour Montparnasse

This tower was constructed from 1969 to 1972. It has a central cement node resistant to the wind and the floors' weight. It's 210-metre (689-foot) high and is the tallest skyscraper in France. 52 of the 59 floors are designated for offices and accommodates 5000 people approx.

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