[dropcap]O[/dropcap]n my last trip to Paris, I finally got round to doing something I’ve been meaning to do for over a year. Ever since my first day in Paris, I’ve been saying ‘I must climb Notre Dame’ and yet here I am, well over a year late, and I’ve literally only just done it. Now just a million other things that I never got round to doing, to do. Shame. I’ll just have to go back to Paris.
Free for under 26 year old EU people (shout out to the EU, my bae), the towers are a must if you want breathtaking views of Paris, and the chance to get up close and personal with a load of stone gargoyles. Once you’re at the top, you’re living the Quasimodo dream.
Getting to the top, however, is a nightmare. I’m not fit, but I’m not at all unfit, and bloody hell it was hard. Just endless stone spiral staircases, up and up and up, forever. FOREVER. You don’t even understand. It’s like climbing those stair machines at the gym, except you’re doing it in a tight stone tube and spiralling. The sense of relief when you catch a glimmer of daylight above you, and know you’re near ‘the top’ is indescribable – until you realise this is just a viewing section half way up and you still have a million stairs left to climb.
Even better is the walk down, done all at once. Spiralling down forever until you reach the ground and realise that you can no longer remember what a straight line is, and walking is a challenge. Why is there so much open space around me? Where is the stone tube? Why doesn’t the ground corkscrew at all? Why am I so dizzy?
That’s all I’m going to say now, because I think the photos really speak for themselves. I will leave you with one thing, though. How cool is it to be able to see inside everyone’s courtyards? All the Haussmann buildings have this inside courtyard bit and you never get to seem them unless you live there (cough. like I did. cough) I think it’s nice to get a view of Paris besides the pretty iron railed fronts of people’s homes, and be able to see in through their kitchen window.