Here are the five most visited historical monuments in the major cities of France.
1. Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris
The towers of Notre Dame along the banks of the Seine call everyone to come and delight in it. It is just stunning with its intricate gothic architectural details. It’s famous bell tower from which it is still possible to imagine to the Quasimodo of Hugo to carry out its functions. The gargoyles are grotesque, scary or humorous. The dazzling interior rosette.
The cathedral of Notre-Dame consists of a choir and an apse, a short transept, and a nave sided by double corridors and square chapels. Two massive early Gothic towers 68 meters high crown the western façade, The facade has divided into three floors, and its doors ornamented with beautiful old Gothic carvings. It has crowned by a row of figures of kings of the Old Testament.
2. Eiffel Tower, Paris
The world’s most famous landmark opened as part of the 1889 World Exposition in Paris, most described it as a monstrosity on the city skyline. In fact, many demanded its elimination. Now it has become the most visited of the monuments of France.
The tower was built with 7300 tons of pig iron, notably little considering the height of the structure. The tower has three levels, and there are restaurants in the first and second. Most visitors use the elevators to the first and second tier, although there are stairs for the very energetic. Access to the top is by the lift only.
3. Mont Saint Michel, Normandy
An impressive medieval walled city, crowned by a large Gothic abbey. It has built on a small outcrop of granit or stands alone in the estuary of the river Couesnon. This area is now known as Mont Saint Michel bay. Mont Saint Michel is one of the few places in France that has preserved intact its walls and medieval defenses.
The first Christian oratory has established on the island in 708 AD. During the Middle Ages, Mont Saint Michel was a famous and iconic place in this part of northwestern Europe. Its abbey flourished as one of the great places of learning in the twelfth century. The abbey has most visitors come to see; it is a good example of medieval architecture and one of the finest monuments in France.
4. Palace of Versailles, Versailles
In 1661 Louis XIV transformed a humble hunting lodge into a shining palace. The entire estate covered 2,000 acres. The Palace Apartments are luxurious stages filled with murals, paintings, and sculptures. In addition to velvet curtains, Savonnerie carpets, gilded bronze and colored marble. These halls were dedicated to Greek deities like Hercules and Mercury. Louis XIV chose the Hall of Apollo, the sun god, to serve as the throne room for the Sun King.
The most spectacular of all is the Hall of Mirrors. A ballroom lined with 17 large mirrors. The central axis of the gardens of Versailles is the Grand Canal a mile long, which is situated to reflect the setting sun. Around it are planted geometric plantations of stonecutters, trails, ponds, and lakes. Including a spectacular fountain in which a cart pulled by horses leads a triumphant Apollo. Without doubt one of the most breathtaking monuments of France.
5. Palace of the Popes, Avignon
The Palace of the Popes is one among the most toured monuments of France. It is a real symbol of the influence of Western Christianity in the fourteenth century. It is the largest medieval fortress and the largest Gothic palace in Europe. The Palace of the Popes is the amalgam of two palaces. Benedict XII built the old Palace to the east and north, and his successor Clement VI, South and West.
It offers diverse and exceptional riches, both architectonic and pictorial. The Palace sinks visitors in the heart of the splendor of the papal court. It takes a good hour to discover the more than 25 rooms open to the public. Among them are the ceremonial rooms, the courtroom and the consistory. In addition to the chapels with their magnificent frescoes by the famous painter Matteo Giovanetti and the private apartments of the popes.
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