An overdue post, but I need to summarize my February trip to NYC. I love visiting New York, no matter how cold or hot it gets!
Just touched down in London town.
After a few days in Paris, I took the Chunnel to London. The Chunnel (Channel Tunnel) is a rail that connects northern France to southeast England. There are over 23 miles/37 km of the tunnel that is underwater. It’s a very popular way to get from Paris, Marseilles, Lyon, and Lille in France to London. The trip took about 2 hours and 15 minutes.
London was loads of fun as well. I stayed by Hyde Park, a very convenient location to many of the attractions such as Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, London Eye, and Kensington Palace. The London Tube was easy to use and traversed all across the city, which made getting to and from the British Museum, British Library, and Wembley Stadium effortless.
When I came back from vacation, most of my friends and colleagues would ask, “Which one do you better?” London or Paris? Honestly, the two cities are very similar in a lot of ways. An epicure’s dream, culturally enriching with museums that house impressive works of art or sculptures, beautiful urban green spaces and parks, and landmarks that are historically significant.
To me, Paris is a breathtakingly gorgeous city that is well designed, compact, architecturally impressive, and more walkable. Meanwhile, London is more ethnically diverse, and its world-class museums are free. At the end of the day, it comes down to one’s preference. Scones or croissants? Louvre or the British Museum? Versailles or Buckingham Palace? Harrods or Champs-Élysées? Quite frankly, there’s no need to choose. I would love to go back to both.
As the iconic Audrey Hepburn said in Sabrina,
Paris is always a good idea.
For myself, a person who studied French since 7th grade (and even minored in the language in college), it has been a dream of mine to visit the City of Lights. Well, just last week I made that dream into a reality.
I planned a 10-day vacation (including travel days) to Paris and London, with Paris being the first leg. My flight flew into Charles de Gaulle Airport and after a lengthy Uber ride, I left my luggage with the hotel and walked two blocks down to the Louvre. From there, the next few days were packed with long walks along the Seine, visits to some of the best museums in the world, and nonstop bites of croissants, crêpes, soufflés, baguettes, cheese, macarons, and wine.
Everyone says Paris is beautiful. This is not an exaggeration by any means. Everywhere I walked was like being transported into a postcard. Even in the 6-9°C weather, the views were spectacular. I was seeing with my own eyes culturally and historically significant buildings, artwork and sculptures throughout the centuries, winding streets upon where great men and women have walked, and oases of greenery amidst one of the most populous cities in the world. Paris is beautiful by day or night – it’s no wonder people have love affairs with the city.
If you’re in D.C. or if you’re a big art fan, you probably know about Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors. In any city this exhibition travels to, it becomes one of the most popular art experiences in that city. From February 23 to May 14, Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Rooms is at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C.!
For those unfamiliar with Yayoi Kusama, she is a legendary Japanese artist. Her career has spanned over 60 years and she has influenced many other legendary artists, such as Andy Warhol and George Segal. She has dabbled in paintings, collages, sculptures, performance arts, and installations with thematic elements of patterns and psychedelic colors. Ever since she was a young girl, she has been inspired by polka dots and nets in her works. She has even stated that “polka dots are a way to infinity.” Her history is complex and intense, and I would recommend readers take the time to briefly review her story.