"Parvis de Notre Dame - Jean Paul II" Île de la Cité Tip by spanishguy

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The "parvis" is the square in front of the Notre Dame cathedral. In French the use the word parvis to name the squares in front of cathedrals and main churches because it comes from "paradise" and you're suppose to be closer to Heaven when you're next to the Cathedral.

This square was very narrow in the past, with a lot of houses, churches and the Hôtel Dieu (hospital). Haussmann designed an important remodelation, creating the big square we see nowadays demolishing all these buildings during the Napoleon Second Empire. Currently you can see the plan of how the square used to be thanks of the different colours of the floor. There are even inscriptions with the names of the old houses and churches. It's true they destroyed a lot of buildings but in fact we can admire the wonderful cathedral much better right now.

There are one more sign in the square and it's the Point 0 of French roads. It's a millestone in front of Notre Dame from which the distance from Paris and the other French cities are calculated. Tourists like to stand theirselfs in the center of the millestone ant turn around because it's suppose they'll return to Paris if they do this :-)

The square called Parvis de Notre Dame added the name of the Pope John Paul II in 2006 because he visited Paris several times, so the square is named Parvis de Notre Dame - Jean Paul II

El "parvis" es la plaza enfrente de la catedral de Notre Dame. En francés se usa la palabra parvis para nombrar las plazas enfrente de las catedrales e iglesias principales porque este nombre viene de "paraiso" y se supone que estamos más cerca del Cielo cuando se está cerca de la Catedral.

Esta plaza era muy estrecha en el pasado, con muchas casas, iglesias y el Hôtel Dieu (hospital). Haussmann diseñó una importante remodelación, creando la gran plaza que vemos en nuestros días demoliendo todos estos edificios durante el Segunfo Imperio de Napoleón. Actualmente se puede ver el plano de como era la plaza gracias a las baldosas de diferentes colores. Incluso hay inscripciones indicando el nombre de las diferentes casas e iglesias. Es cierto que se destruyeron muchos edificios, pero en realidad gracias a esto podemos admirar mejor la magnífica catedral.

Hay otra señal en la plaza y es el kilómetro 0 de las carreteras francesas. Es un hito kilométrico enfrente de Notre Dame desde el cual se mide la distancia entre París y otras ciudades francesas. A los turistas les gusta ponerse en el centro de la piedra y dar una vuelta porque se supone que gracias a esto se vuelve a París :-)

A la plaza, llamada Parvis de Notre Dame, se le añadió el nombre del Papa Juan Pablo II en 2006 porque él viistó París varias veces, así que la plaza se llama ahora Parvis de Notre Dame - Jean Paul II

Address: Metro - Cite - line 4
Directions: Between Pont Neuf & Pont de l'Archevêché. In La Seine.
Website: http://www.experience-privee.com/city/Paris/Ile-de-la-Cite

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Sep 16, 2008
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