Aux Champs-Elysées

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French Language & Culture


As in the famous song “Aux Champs-Elysées” by Joe Dassin, the students strolled along this famous boulevard “Au soleil et sous la pluie » (in the sun and the rain).  Many famous shops and cafés line each side of this street.  There is no boulevard more famous than the Champs-Elysées!  Our final destination: l’Arc de Triomphe.  After climbing the 284 steps of the spiral staircase, they enjoyed  a well-deserved panoramic view of Paris.

L’Arc de Triomphe is located at Place Charles de Gaulle/ Etoile where 12 streets converge in a large rond-point (traffic circle)  Commissioned by Napoleon in celebration of his victories, construction began on his birthday in 1806.  However, he was not alive for the completion of the monument in 1831.    The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was placed under the Arc de Triomphe along with the Eternal Flame in 1921 after WW1.  Festivities like the 14 juillet and the arrival of the Tour de France center around this monument. 

Each group of students experienced this activity in their own way.  There were many moments for iconic photos, window shopping and even some history lessons! L’Arc de Triomphe is really a monument at the heart of Paris.