There really is so much to see and do in Paris, something to suit everyone’s tastes and interests. So well featured is this European city on the Europe a la Carte blog that Karen recently produced a post summarizing the Best of Paris Travel Tips as recommended in a number of posts on this blog over the last four years. But it really does not end there. There are still so many more attraction in Paris that make this city one of the best places to visit in Europe.
The suburb of Saint-Germain-en-Laye is about 12 miles (20 km) to the west of the centre of Paris. The Saint-Germain station can be reached on Line A of the RER, and also on the Paris â€“ Saint-Lazare suburban rail line. For anyone who is particularly interested in prehistory and history of France, this Paris museum is well worth a visit.
One of the main attractions in Saint-Germain-en-Laye is the ChÃ¢teau de Saint-Germain-en-Laye (above), now the MusÃ©e des AntiquitÃ©s Nationales (National Museum of Archaeology). The castle was built in the mid fourteenth century, but there had been a castle fort there for at least a hundred years previously. For a few centuries the castle was the Royal residence and a number of French kings were born there, including Louis XIV. It was Napoleon III who in 1862 had the castle designated a national museum for prehistory. The museum has some amazing exhibits that ranges from the Old Stone Age to the Iron Age (Celtic times).
Napoleon III set up the MusÃ©e des AntiquitÃ©s Nationales in the estwhile royal chÃ¢teau. This museum has exhibits ranging from Paleolithic to Celtic times. One of the most famous pieces in the museum’s collection is the small carving of a woman’s head, sculptured from a mammoth’s tusk about 25 000 years ago. At this age this little carving, the size of a man’s thumb, is currently the oldest dated representation of a human face. This piece is one of a number of Stone Age carvings in the museum’s collection, and on display.
The museum is open every day, except on Tuesdays and public holidays, from ten in the morning to five in the afternoon; with an entrance fee of 6 Euros.
Besides the National Archaeology Museum there is the Saint-Germain forest and a few concrete bunkers built by the Germans during the Second World War.
More on European Museums
Find out about more museums in Europe on Europe a la Carte.