September 20, 2014 – Saturday – the Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
On my own after the Rick Steves Best of Europe in 21 Days tour
After breakfast, the Rick Steves tour is officially over. I say goodbye to the tour members in the lobby who are leaving today. I meet Jennifer’s boyfriend, who lives in the south of France. I end up spending most of the morning catching up with my journaling, sitting in the lobby just chilling out a bit. I chat with a few tour members who are staying in Paris for a few more days. Some are staying in other hotels, so they are moving this morning.
I skip lunch and walk over to Easy Pass Tours to pick up my prepaid, priority entrance ticket to the Eiffel Tower. It is great to walk past the lines of people waiting to buy tickets, breeze through a priority security line, and zoom up to the second floor in the main elevators. Following the Easy Pass instructions, I wait in line for the smaller elevators that take people to the top of the tower. This takes about 20 minutes, but finally I’m at the top, and have absolutely beautiful clear and sunny weather, so I take lots of photos, including a few selfies. I then descend back down to the second floor for a look around before returning to the ground level.
The priority ticket from Easy Pass Tours is well worthwhile in my estimation, since it saves so much time and aggravation. I walk back through the Champ de Mars – a beautiful park with the leaves falling from the trees. There is a Family Day celebration going on, so there are lots of people, kids and dogs around this afternoon.
I previously arranged to join some of the tour members for dinner this evening. We have reservations at Le Bosquet restaurant, which is recommended by the Rick Steves guide. Seven of us dine together, and by all accounts everyone is pleased with the food and service.
Today was most enjoyable, and I’m really appreciating the much slower pace from my days on the tour!