Thursday, August 26, 2010

Europe - Part 4

Our last day in Paris was just a little over a half day. We got up early in the morning for a tour to The Palace of Versailles. There was one other family in our tour group - they were from Australia, and they were a hoot! We really enjoyed talking with them and walking around with them. There really are no words to describe Versailles other than amazing and out of this world! If we thought that the other castles we had seen so far were amazing, this one was in a totally different class. It is just impossible to imagine that people really lived with this level of opulence. I mean - a room for a wake up ceremony, and a different one for a going to bed ceremony! And all of the gilt and statues, and fabrics embroidered with gold and silver. My favorite room was the Hall of Mirrors. Every room we came to, Christy found something else to add to her list of things she would like to have someday. And then we went out to the Gardens. You could spend all day, and still only see a fraction of the gardens and fountains. The flowers were beautiful, as were the hedges - all trimmed and pruned just perfectly. Christy really enjoyed posing like the statues as we headed back to the Palace. And we bought our first French macaroons in the gift shop - Christy and I have decided that we have to learn to make them. Yumm!!!!
When we got back to Paris we only had a couple of hours left until our shuttle pick up for the airport, so we had lunch at the little Italian restaurant down the street from our hotel. Another really good meal! Then we headed over to the Louvre and wandered around the shops in the little mall under the Louvre. We ended up not finding anything that we needed, but it was a fun way to end our time in Paris.

Then it was off to the airport, and our flight to Dusseldorf. We were all excited about our hotel for the night - it was in Bonn, and was in an old castle - The SchlossHotel Kommende Ramersdorf. It was exactly as we had hoped it would be - a true fairy tale castle. They also had a wonderful restaurant. We really enjoyed our dinner (though none of us really thought very much of the appetizer they brought us of shrimp in some sort of aspic). Our rooms were actually in the renovated stables, and were furnished with lovely antique furniture. The rest of the castle is now used for events like weddings and things like that. They did unlock it for us after we checked out Friday morning, and just let us roam around for as long as we wanted. It was built in the early 1200's, and though not nearly as opulent as Versailles, was very interesting. It was much easier to imagine people living there. We got quite a surprise as we decided to climb the tower with a couple of German women who had also spent the night there to discover someone actually lived there. It turned out that we weren't able to climb to the top and go outside, but we were surprised when we got to the top floor we could go to that there was a swimming pool - a vinyl swimming pool set up there. Talk about out of place!

The first photo is of the chapel at Versailles, and the second is Christy, Carl, and Sean in the Gardens of versailles. The last one is our castle hotel in Bonn. See - a real fairy tale castle!!

More to come soon on the rest of our adventure in Germany!

1 comment:

  1. Wow Candy, what a trip! So glad you had the opportunity to see all these wonderful places with your family, the trip of a lifetime indeed!