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On my final day in Paris, I headed to Montmartre, home of many famous artists such as Dali, Monet, and Picasso, as well as Basilique du Sacre-Coeur. I’m not sure if it was because it was off-season or if I just wandered through the wrong areas, but I was pretty unimpressed with the neighborhood. Sure, some of the old, winding streets were cool, but otherwise it was pretty dead. I get the feeling that the area’s days of being a prime artistic spot are long gone, and everyone who remains is just there to make a few bucks off the tourists who come by.

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I only stayed in Montmartre for about an hour, deciding to spend more time at the Musée d’Orsay instead. The Musee d’Orsay was one of the main things I remember about my first trip to Paris. I recall being very impressed by it, even when I was 15. It’s just amazing to be able to stand in one spot and see famous paintings from artists such as Monet, Degas, Manet, & Renoir – and that’s just in one room. The way they had the lighting set up on Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” was absolutely phenomenal, as the painting caught the lights and danced as you moved near it.

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By this point, it had started to rain. I had made it through nearly a week of my trip before encountering bad weather, so I guess I can’t complain. I took a train back to Ile Saint-Louis, where I stopped in a cheese shop that I had passed previously. I loaded up on some excellent French cheeses for my train ride to Nice the next day.

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