Day 7: Musée Rodin

Rodin garden

Best of Paris Itinerary: Tour Over After Breakfast. Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. It’s a breeze to reach Paris’ airports by taxi, shuttle or public transportation. Your guide will help you with any post-tour planning, leaving you well prepared for the road ahead. Merci et au revoir!

Journal

Saturday, May 7
We said goodbye to Arnaud and friends from our tour over breakfast, then headed out to make use of the last day of our museum pass. First we did a little shopping at the upscale Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche, the oldest (and perhaps most expensive) department store. Ooo-la-la! We window-shopped a little, bought a few treats at a dry goods store with tablecloths and aprons, and explored a few of the sweet little pocket gardens.

We discovered Café Varenne nearby and had a delicious and relaxing lunch – fresh green bean salad, ratatouille, and good people-watching.

In the afternoon, we visited the outstanding Rodin museum and sculpture gardens. Rodin rented space, lived and worked here in the early 20th century – one of the exhibits is a recreation of his workshop area (goosebumps!) Among the other artistic tenants of the Hôtel Biron were the writer Jean Cocteau, the painter Henri Matisse, the dancer Isadora Duncan and the sculptress Clara Westhoff, future wife of the poet Rainer Maria Rilke. In 1908, Rodin rented four south-facing, ground-floor rooms opening onto the terrace, to use as his studios. From 1911 onwards, he occupied the entire building.

Musée Rodin was also Rodin’s workshop, and contains most of his significant creations, including The Thinker, The Kiss and The Gates of Hell. Many of his sculptures are displayed in the museum’s extensive garden. Fun fact: the park covers nearly three hectares (7.4 acres) – and we walked over 14,000 steps today.

This evening, we strolled through the Rue Cler street market, had dinner in an Italian cafe, and dessert from a street vendor for dessert. It was a nice “vacation” moment to walk down the cobblestone street in the evening, eating ice cream.

“Nature and Antiquity are the two great sources of life for an artist.”

– Auguste Rodin

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