With approximately four weeks before the start of our Drag Stars at Sea: Europe Allstars there is a lot to be done and planned before our cruisers begin their amazing journey. Each of our destinations within Europe has an overabundance of great activities and sights to take in before people are whisked off to the next leg of their adventure. This article is here to condense some of the information so that you, the ever busy traveler, don’t have to search all over for ingenious ideas on how to spend your time! Today we talk about Paris, France, where art and nature collide beautifully!
The Louvre is one of the world’s largest and most splendid museums as well as being a prominent historic landmark in Paris. Roughly 35,000 pieces from prehistory all the way up to the 21st century are on exhibit in the museum’s expansive 652,300 square feet! Comfortable walking shoes are a must for anyone who wants to transverse this amazing place! The Louvre also holds the distinction for being the most visited museum in the world and only getting more popular: the past decade has seen the number of visitors annually rise from roughly 8 million to now well over 9 million, with the number expected to continue to rise! Originally the museum opened in 1793 with a scant 537 painting. Throughout the years various kings invested time and resources into expanding the museum as well as a number of donations throughout the years. Some of the most impressive expansions of the collection came during the reign of Napoleon, who through many successful military campaigns managed to acquire a staggering amount of items. Napoleon was also responsible for appointing the museum’s very first director, one Dominique Vivant Denon. These days the collection is divided into eight curatorial divisions: Egyptian Antiquities; Near Eastern Antiquities; Greek, Etruscan, and Roman Antiquities; Islamic Art; Sculpture; Decorative Arts; Paintings; Prints and Drawings. By far the most famous piece in the museum, and the most famous painting in the entire world, is the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci pictured above. Other famous pieces include “Nike of Samothrace”, a beautiful depiction of the Greek goddess of Victory, and the “Venus de Milo”, an amazing sculpture of the goddess of love that shows the beauty of the female form.
The Jardin du Luxembourg, or the Luxembourg Garden, is located in the 6th administrative district in Paris and was formed in 1612 by the window of King Henry IV of France, Marie de’ Medici, for her new residence the Luxembourg Palace. The park covers over 23 hectares and is known for its gorgeous lawns, flowerbeds, and most famously the Medici Fountain, pictured above, which was built in 1630. The garden also features over one hundred states all across its ground. Among these many statues is a central space where twenty figures of French queens and other famous women stand on pedestals. The garden is one of the more popular spots in the entire city and serves as a nice respite from the hustle and bustle of Paris, which can be overwhelming at times for all of its beauty.
Paris is an amazing city, as beautiful as it is interesting, with so much to discover. The Louvre alone could take someone days to explore, much less anything else in this vast city. We love Paris, and it is why we’re so happy to be able to take people there as part of our 7 Day Taste of Europe pre tour as part of our Drag Stars at Sea: Europe Allstars! For all of the information on this great trip, go here.