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C'est La Vie - Montreal + Paris Visual Journal

Sacre Couer, Paris, France // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

I am fiiiiinally starting to catch up on all these blog posts I've planned out earlier this year. A lot has happened in the past year and I am now motivated enough to get cracking on all this content!

First up is a three part visual journal from earlier this summer -- the Rwanda Missions Trip. A couple friends, my sister and I had the opportunity to go on a short-term missions trip to Rwanda and partner up with one of the local churches and ministries there in Kigali, the capital and largest city of Rwanda. I will go into more detail on the Rwanda portion of the trip in another blog post, so stay tuned for that! However, for now, this blog post will be about our multi-city explorations of Montreal and Paris, prior to our missions trip in Rwanda.

All photos were taken with my Fujifilm XT1 and Fujinon 16mm f/1.4, my go-to travel photography combo.

Boutique Bonjour Montreal, Old Port of Montreal // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

We landed late in the night in Montreal from Vancouver. It was still a few hours before any of the buses or transit were running, None of us had any sleep on the flight there, so we napped for a few hours at the airport. Once it started getting light out and we overstayed our welcome on the comfy couches outside one of the airport hotels (yep, we got kicked out), we dropped off our luggage at the airport locker and got an Uber to take us into the city. We had about a solid 8 hours of exploration time before we had to board our flight to Paris.

Waiting for the Uber // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

I feel like we saw quite a lot in Montreal for the time we were there! I honestly don't know the names of the places we visited (my memory sucks so bad), but we did just stay around the Old Port of Montreal and walked around the area. We visited a basilica, got coffee, visited a co-sharing space cafe (I really love these type of spaces!), got poutine, got smoked meat in our poutine, got ice cream, and walked down lots of cobblestone streets. I loved Montreal and would like to visit again sometime! Here's some snapshots of our time in Montreal:

Exploring Paris // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

Our next stop was Paris! The last time I was in Paris was back in 2008 on the Europe trip I went on for my Grade 9 Social Studies class. It was nice to be back and be able to spend more time revisiting the places I saw before at a more leisurely pace. We spent two nights there at an Airbnb just outside the city centre. I had initially planned out a loose itinerary of things to see and do, but 3 of my travel companions were too tired from our Montreal excursion (that was a long time to be awake without steady sleep), so for our first day in Paris, my friend Cole and I, ended up taking the metro down to see Sacre Couer and take the Bato Bus around to see the Eiffel Tower.

Climbing up the to the tower of Sacre Coeur // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

I find Paris absolutely charming and beautiful! There's a lot of history in this city and I had a lot of fun just wandering about. Here's some more snapshots of our first day in Paris:

Amongst the glitz and glam of the Palace of Versailles // XT1 + Fujinon 16mm f/1.4

Day 2 was Palace of Versailles day! We actually woke up late and didn't make it in time to get in early, so we ended up having to wait awhile in the loooooong line just to get in. The rain held up for the most part, but unfortunately it started pouring once it hit the afternoon. Despite the grey skies, I found the Palace of Versailles absolutely fascinating! The glitz and glam contrasted the muted colours of the cityscape. The extravagance and grandeur was something to behold.

After Versailles, we had the rest of the day to explore more of Paris. I had heard lots of good things from this little bookshop called The Shakespeare & Company Bookshop, so I wanted to check it out. I fell in LOVE with this store! Unfortunately photos weren't allowed in the shop, but if you're a bookworm and want to see towers upon towers of books, you should definitely give this place a visit! I found it similar to The Last Bookshop in Los Angeles, but Shakespeare & Company has more of the small store charm. I picked up a beautiful book on illustrated flowers as a keepsake from this book store.

Paris, you were simply charming. I hope to visit again someday! Here's some snapshots from our second day in Paris:

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