Yesterday’s fire at the Notre Dame in Paris was not only a shock to the Parisians and French people, but also to the rest of the world. Cathedrals, unlike any other building except for castles, have stood the test of time. But where castles have remained closed but for the happy few, at least until recently, Cathedrals have welcomed billions of visitors over many centuries, including countless tourists (13 million per year for this church alone).
The destruction of a great part of this Paris landmark saddens us all. Most of the people in the Expat Club community have visited this incredible structure, possibly even multiple times. During the many Expat Club trips to Paris, our groups always stopped at the Eastern end of the Île de la Cité. Just to look and be amazed by the iconic towers and the works of art inside. It is hard to comprehend what was lost in the flames.
One of the reasons why we organise so many trips is to show our community the cultural heritage in this part of the world. Cathedrals are therefore key destinations for many of our outings. Only 3 days ago I was talking exactly about this subject on the bus during the Champagne trip, telling about the history of the beautiful Cathedral in Reims. About the French Kings who were crowned here. About the stained-glass windows by Marc Chagall in the back. But also, about the other Cathedrals we visited during our trips. And that I wanted to write a blog article about all we visited so far: Strasbourg, Metz, Lille, Blois, Canterbury, York, Cologne, Aachen and many more.
No doubt I forget a few here, but let this photo album be a start. We will surely see many more in the future as our destinations expand, and hopefully one day also a gloriously restored Notre Dame in Paris.