December 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Fit for a King

Maybe Louis XIV stole all of the architects and designers from the Chateau de Vaux le Vicomte back in the 1600s, but he sure didn't steal its Christmas cheer.

Just south of Paris, this chateau dazzles, sparkles, and shimmers at Christmas time with its halls quite literally decked. And they know their way around a Christmas tree at this chateau. Maybe its more popular and bigger, but could the Chateau of Versailles pull off such a festive feat?

No, and here's the proof.

First off, it's a 17th century chateau, and people still live in it, so of course it needed to be decorated...

Monday, December 15, 2014

Provins: Medieval Christmas Market and Other Oddities

Something out of a Game of Thrones episode, or nearly.

Nothing says Christmas like wenches and codpieces – or at least that was the impression I was getting. Provins, a little town just southeast of Paris, is known for its annual Medieval Christmas market one weekend each December. This past weekend, it all happened.

I had been waiting for years to find the right moment to go to Provins. I’ve read about and to me, it was a secret little vault of miracles just outside my front door. But alas, I had procrastinated. But being Christmas, and needing to get into the spirit, I decided it was the right year, month, and day.

An early train on Sunday whisked us away, and in just over an hour, we were there, walking back through time, mostly, through the streets of Provins. I mean, they’re not stuck in the past entirely – they have a Monoprix, after all.