From the Jardin des Plantes we took the Batobus to the Champs-Élysées, home of the fanciest Abercrombie & Fitch I have ever seen!  We window-shopped our way to the Arc de Triomphe which was closed due to a strike that was unfortunately affecting many of the national museums and monuments.  After the Arc we stopped at Ladurée for tea.  I couldn’t resist dessert and had a very delicate dacquoise cake with crushed hazelnuts, praline, layer upon layer of thin milk chocolate and ganache, with a decadent chocolate Chantilly cream.  C’est magnifique!  Of course, I couldn’t leave Ladurée without a box of macarons. (Pro-tip: If you eat in one of the restaurants or at the bar you can just add the macarons to your bill.  You don’t have to stand in the very long line!)

Once tea time was over we stopped by Musee de l`Orangerie.  Even though this museum was technically closed due to the strike they kindly let us in to see Monet’s large Nymphéas installment.  I’m so happy the French took such a laissez-faire approach to the strike because the Nymphéas were not to be missed.  From there we walked through the Place de la Concorde on our way to the gorgeous department stores Printemps and Galleries Layfayette (where I bought more macarons!).

We realized we could make it to the Eiffel Tower for sunset so we jumped on our trusty Batobus from the Louvre and made our way to the Eiffel Tower.  Before the trip we tried to book tickets to climb the Eiffel Tower and they had already sold out months in advance.  The strike helped us out because the Tower wasn’t officially open but they were selling tickets to the second floor, no line.  The catch was that we had to climb all 669 steps.  The first few flights were pretty cool but once the novelty of being inside the structure of the Tower wore off it wasn’t my favorite (Pro-tip: take the elevator!).  Once we finally made it, the view was pretty spectacular.  Just when I was catching my breath I realized we had to crazily run back down all those stairs to make the last Batobus home.  C’est la vie!

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