Bourbon kings Henri IV, Louis XIII, Louis XIV, and the Catholic church all left their marks on 17th-century Paris, a century some historians refer to as “le grand siècle”, the grand century. Grand 17th century buildings abound throughout the city. You’ll see many of them on this walk, starting with the Louvre where we’ll trace the contributions of each of the century’s powerful monarchs. From there you’ll cross back and forth over the river several times visiting grand Baroque monuments such as the Institut de France and the churches of Saint-Gervais-Saint-Protais and Saint-Paul-Saint-Louis. You’ll also see quiet, peaceful squares including the place Dauphine and the lovely place des Vosges. You’ll have a chance to stroll through the predominantly 17th-century Ile Saint-Louis before hopping on a bus to the Invalides quarter of the city. The walk ends there with stops at Louis XIV’s largest and grandest Parisian building projects, the Hôtel des Invalides and the stunning Dôme des Invalides.
Start: Louvre (Métro: Palais-Royal/Musée du Louvre)
Finish: Dôme des Invalides (Métro: Varenne or La Tour Maubourg)
Distance: 3-4 miles plus a bus trip
Time: 4-5 hours
Best Days: Tuesday-Sunday