One of the biggest attractions in Paris is the Louvre. It was originally built as a royal palace. Mr. Pin Junkie and I walked through the gardens and admired it from the outside, but the crowds were just too big to go in. We'd already admired beautiful art from the impressionists at the Musee d'Orsay and viewed Monet's water lilies at the Musee de l'Orangerie.
So instead of looking at another museum, we decided to get away from the crowds and took the metro to the Chateau de Vincennes. The chateau dates back to the 12th century and is one of the few castles in France that has consistently been in use from the middle ages to the present. The chateau is made up of several structures, each one added at different times in history.
The chapel's construction began in 1380 and was completed in 1552.
The keep is the highest fortified medieval building in Europe.
The pavilions were built in the 17th century. There are two - one for the queen and an identical one directly across the courtyard for the king.
The chateau also has a moat and drawbridge.
The woods surrounding the chateau were once used as royal hunting grounds. Now there's a park for the public to enjoy. It's a beautiful space filled with shady trees, manicured lawns, and a wide variety of flowers.
My favorites were the lotus flowers.
After only three short days in Paris, it was time to go back to Brussels. On the way back to the train station, we stopped at the Eiffel Tower again. It's beautiful from every angle and just as elegant at night when it's illuminated.