Dome of Basilique du Sacré-Coeur de Montmartre

The Basilique du Sacré-Coeur de Montmartre is one of the best-known landmarks of Paris: Located at the top of Butte Montmartre, the white church is visible from the whole city and, at 200m, its dome is one of the highest points of Paris. It houses an observatory accessible only by stairs but the view at the top is worth the effort.

Above, skyscrapers of La Défense and Palais de Justice under construction.

Above, crowd in Montmartre.

Above, Eglise Saint-Pierre de Montmartre.

Above, Eiffel Tower.

Above, bell tower. The bell itself was forged by Paccard in Annecy-le-Vieux.

Above, the observatory is quite narrow.

Above, Gare du Nord.

Above, Halle Saint-Pierre.

Above, Eglise Saint-Vincent de Paul.

Above, Square Louise Michel.

Above, Tour Montparnasse and Dome of Les Invalides.

Above, TV relay tower of Romainville.

Above, on the way down.

Above, the Basilica from the ground.


Parc Georges Valbon (Parc de la Courneuve)

Parc Georges Valbon (aka Parc de la Courneuve) is a huge park (417 ha) in Seine-Saint-Denis. After my visit to the Basilica of Saint-Denis, I walked to the park and spent the rest of the day there, until sunset. The weather was really nice and the park looked great in fall colors.

Above, geese.

Above, large concrete sculpture.

Above, Grand Lac (Great Lake).

Above, the top of that hill has a nice viewpoint on the park.

Above, at the top of the hill.

Above, on the bridge crossing the train tracks.

Above, Cascades.

Above, mounds.

Above, view from the big mound, the highest point in the park.

Above, landing strip of Aéroport du Bourget.

Above, looking towards Paris. Basilique du Sacré-Coeur de Montmartre and the Eiffel Tower can be seen.

Above, Vallon, covered with algae.

Above, crossing the train tracks on the way back.

Above, in the rose garden.

Above, shadow of the entrance gate in the setting sun.

Basilique de Saint-Denis

The Basilique de Saint-Denis (Basilica of Saint Denis) is a large catholic church in the city of Saint-Denis, north of Paris. A church was present on the site starting from the 5th century. In 636, the relics of Saint Denis, a patron saint of France and famous cephalophore, were reinterred in the basilica. It then became the burial place of the French Kings with nearly every king from the 10th to the 18th centuries being buried there. The church was rebuilt in pretty much its current form in the 12th century.

Above, tomb of Henri II and Catherine de Médicis. While the church is freely accessible,  getting near the tombs requires buying a ticket.

Above, statue of Saint Denis, after his decapitation.

Above, feet in the tomb of François 1er.

Above, tomb of François 1er.

Above, memorial to Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette. Their tombs is in the Bourbon crypt.

Above, tomb of Henri II.

Above, tomb of Louis XII.

Above, tomb of Clovis.

Above, tomb of Dagobert.

Above, crypt with the tombs of Bourbon kings.

Above, archaeological crypt. Those tombs are the oldest in the church. They were discovered in the 19th century and are thought to date from the end of Roman times.

Above, tomb of Louis XIV (of Versailles fame).