Follow the Royal-Brick-Road!

london bridge

Have you booked one of our tours to London and Paris and are having a hard time deciding what to do or see during your free time in London? Have you ever wondered what it is like to be a part of the British Royal Family? We’ve created an exclusive Royal Road for you to follow to get a taste of what it is like to be a King or a Queen!

Follow this road to experience the royal pomp and pageantry as you discover the majestic part of London!

Tower of London:

Built around 1365 to house Edward III’s treasures, this building is one of only two left from the medieval Palace of Westminster after an 1834 fire. This world-famous historic landmark gives you the opportunity to see the Imperial State Crown and other royal treasures in the Jewel House. While you’re there, be sure to check out some of the exhibitions going on throughout the summer such as the Line of Kings exhibit – showcasing the Tower’s collection of arms and armour!

Kensington Palace:

This royal residence was Princess Diana’s last home. Visit the Fashion Rules: Dresses from the Collections of HM The Queen, Princess Margaret and Diana exhibit and indulge in exquisite dresses once worn by these royal leading ladies. Afterwards, enjoy an afternoon tea party and at the Orangery restaurant. Remember, pinkie up!

Queen’s Gallery:

The Queen’s Gallery is a public art gallery located at Buckingham Palace. This gallery showcases works of art from the Royal Collection. You can admire Queen Mary’s diamond ring at The First Georgians: Art & Monarchy 1714-1760 exhibit as well as the Diamond Jubilee state coach!

Westminster Abbey:

Consecrated in 1065, this breathtaking abbey is the crowning and burials site of most English monarchs since 1066. It also houses Poets’ Corner; the burial place of Charles Dickens and other writers. Visit the site that held the extravagant 2011 wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge!

Fortnum & Mason:

Established in 1707, this British store is famed for its food hall, hampers and china. Bring home gifts for your family from Fortnum & Mason, the official grocers of HRH the Price of Wales since 1863.

Royal Birthday:

You are cordially invited to celebrate Prince George’s first birthday. On July 22nd, Buckingham Palace will be opening their doors to launching Royal Childhood; a special exhibition of artefacts from different generations of childhood within the royal family. You will see 250 years of toys, clothes, unseen photographs and film footage. Happy Birthday, Prince George!

Comfort Tour Canada offers a London/Paris tour package for 9 days and 8 nights. We provide fully guided tours to all of the main attractions of each city. For each day that you are in London, you will also have the opportunity to go see sites and attractions at your own leisure. Following the Royal Road is a perfect activity to do during your free time to explore the majestic city of London! Embrace your adventurous side and book one of our London/Paris tours today!

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The European Capitals: London and Paris

Comfort Tour Canada — London-Paris Escorted Tours

Let Comfort Tour guide you through London-Paris along our 10-Day London-Paris Escorted Tours to these two European capitals and supply endless history, culture and excitement all in ten days and eight nights! Comfort Tour provides round-trip direct flights to and from the destinations, as well as fully-escorted bus tours in both cities, accommodation, and full daily breakfasts throughout the entire duration of the tour.

While in London, enjoy guided bus and walking tours to see the most recognized attractions such as the Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and the Houses of Parliament. Not all sites that London has to offer are found on land, so we offer you the pleasure of enjoying a scenic Thames River cruise.

London-Paris Escorted Tours - Big Ben and London Bridge

After spending four days in London, travel from the central St. Pancras station to Paris by way of the high-speed Eurostar train (the cost of the train ticket is included in your package). Relax, enjoy the scenic views from your window, and just two hours later, you will find yourself in Paris. There, you will have the chance to view and explore top attractions such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Champs Elysees, and much more. You will also enjoy a scenic Seine River cruise for a very unique perspective of Paris. In the four days spent in Paris, you will have all the opportunities to explore true Parisian culture, uncover the artistic heritage of Paris, and explore the cities’ hidden gems!

London-Paris escorted tours - Eiffel Tower and Louvre

Our tour directors are committed to informing you about the wonders and history of the majestic city and making your travel experience memorable! To complement the excellent guided city tours, Comfort Tour provides you with accommodation at high-quality, centrally-located hotels throughout the entire travel experience. This tour will not disappoint!

For more information about the tour, dates and prices, please visit: http://comforttour.ca/

Princess Diana Memorials in Europe

Lady Diana was often considered by the media as the “People’s Princess”. Loving, caring and beautiful, she possessed all the attributes needed to become a subject of idolatry. And so she became – an ideological figure.

The monument to French-American friendship- La Flamme de la Liberte, erected in Paris in 1989, is considered to be as the unofficial Princess Diana memorial. The torch in this monument is an exact replica of the one to be found on the Statue of Liberty in New York. At the foot of this torch, people are constantly pasting messages and photographs of the Princess and leaving flowers in her memory. Many people now treat this monument as a sort of pilgrimage place to honor Lady Diana. It is common to find a crowd of people standing around the statue in her honor.

A garden dedicated to the memory of Britain’s Princess Diana has been officially opened in Paris. French officials say the flower beds will eventually bloom and provide a place for children to learn about flowers, plants, vegetables and respect for the environment. But critics have scoffed at the project dubbing it as “1,000 square meters of leeks.” Paris mayor Jean Tiberi said. “Through this place I wanted to pay tribute to a woman whose generous heart showed her deep fondness for nature and human relations, particularly with children.” The garden opened in February 14, 2001.

There are also monuments dedicated to Princess Diana in London, U.K. The first memorial dedicated to the unfortunate couple with the name of “Innocent Victims,” on display at Harrods, a huge department store located in London. The symbolism here is extremely esoteric and significant. The statue represents Princess Diana and Dodi holding together a bird. There is also a park dedicated to Princess Diana contains an oval shaped fountain and a sanctuary. The most significant symbol however, can be found on the ground represented by a five petal granite rose, the classic occult symbol to represent female energy.

While traveling on our bus tour to Paris and London, you can get acquainted with the history of the British family and Princess Diana. You can also leave some flowers at the memorials!

Why Paris is the most romantic place in the world!

Paris is a favorite destination for couples, for individual travelers, for groups, for young and mature people, and well, for everyone! It has historical sights, dazzling entertainment, and beautiful views over the Siene River. The beauty of Paris brings a feeling of excitement and experience that one has not felt before. Paris is a great place to relight romance and fall in love again! Let’s find out why tourists experience such romantic feelings towards visiting Paris:

“Paris, as any other exotic location, dazzles a person’s eyes with the aforesaid reasons. Also, the beauty of Paris and the contrast of it from one’s own city bring a feeling of excitement and experience that one has not felt before. Great place to rekindle romance and fall in love again because it’s spontaneous rather than routine.”

“Art, culture, history, fun, good transportation network, charming cafes and Quiche-Lorrain”

“PARIS: food, ambience, art, architecture, views, history & mystery!”

“Whether you’ve been to Paris one time or 10, you’ll always find pleasurable surprises in store. As the French say, Allons-y (Let’s go)!”

There is something terribly romantic and dramatic about bridges wherever you are in the world, but Paris has gone one step further in the romance-stakes by producing a magical wish-granting bridge! Paris is also romantic with its amazing French cuisine, stunning views of the Paris skyline and a good bottle of vin rouge. The Jardin du Luxembourg and other gardens have been romance hotspots for centuries, with famous couples from Napoleon and Josephine to Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir being known to frequently meander through the grounds. It is still a love hub today, with beautiful statues, fountains and flowerbeds providing the perfect backdrop for a romantic stroll. Paris is charming at every corner.

To understand why Paris is so romantic, you need to visit it at least for one time and you will never forget this city. So we are ready to offer our tours! 

Bienvenue au Moulin Rouge!

The Moulin Rouge opened in 1899, on the cusp of a new century and amid the atmosphere of excitement and progress that had been engendered by the construction of the groundbreaking Eiffel Tower in the same year. The Industrial Revolution in France was smashing social barriers and encouraging a new, less rigid kind of class system, and it was in this modern era of loose definitions and morals that the Moulin Rouge was to carve itself into the decadent fabric of the new liberal Parisian society. Upon its official opening on the 6th October the theatre was established as an extravagant and wild home for music hall entertainment, and the Moulin Rouge has clung on to this reputation and evoked the spirit of the Belle Époque decades ever since.

The theatre was built by Joseph Oller, a Spanish entrepreneur who later opened Paris’ first music hall, the Olympia. Charles Zidler was his business partner and the manager of the theatre, and together they set out to create a place that would cater for the changing tastes of the public in the new Belle Époque era, imagining a venue where classes could mingle side by side and specializing in an over the top kind of luxury that could be enjoyed by all. These aims were borne out in the extravagant quirks that characterized the theatre.

Moulin Rouge quickly gained a reputation for being the place where men could view young Parisian girls whose unique and amazing dance moves were as flexible as their morals. And though the famous Can-Can dance had been present in working class ballrooms since the 1830s, the early days of the Moulin Rouge cemented its popularity, though during the first few decades that the establishment was open, it was little more than a bawdy dance performed by courtesans to entertain their male clientele.
Sometimes it was downright vulgar and what went on inside the Moulin Rouge caused much public outrage. During this time period, one of the music hall’s most notable patrons was artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, who painted a number of famous Moulin Rouge scenes.

The show features more than 100 performers decked out in the most extravagant costumes, which include lots of feathers, rhinestones, and sequins. The sets are equally as spectacular. Dinner, dance and show at Le Moulin Rouge will make an unforgettable evening for your stay in Paris! If you join Comfort Tour on our bus tour through London and Paris, you will enjoy 4 days in each city. Since you will have your evenings free, why not plan to see the Moulin Rouge and experience the extravagance of the show?

Address: 82 boulevard de Clichy
Area : Montmartre, Sacré-Cœur
Email : information@moulinrouge.fr
Website: http://www.moulinrouge.fr

Paris: The Fashion Capital

Paris has the best and most expensive clothes in the world. In fact, when you think of Paris, you often think of the Eiffel Tower, romantics and clothes. There are a number of reasons, mostly dating back to the 18th century, why Paris is considered to be the fashion capital of the world.

Haute Couture began in the 18th century, but the French had been looked up to with admiration or disdain in their dress sense well before that. In the 16th century, Anne Boleyn was famous for wearing a French-style hood, which showed her hair and had a generally provocative style. Even then, the French were famous for their liberal attitude towards sexuality.

Fashion in Paris

In the 18th century, couturier Rose Bertin was named the Minister for Fashion, and the position was still retained in the Napoleonic era. Initially, it was the rich and powerful telling the designers what they wanted to wear in clothes but in the 19th century this changed. It was, surprisingly, an Englishman working in Paris who became the father of modern Haute Couture when Charles Worth put his name on his clothing labels. He went a step further, creating designs based on his own ideas and displaying them on live models so that clients could approve or disapprove. The novelty was a success and designers then began to dictate what was fashionable.
From then on, it was understood that any designer who wanted to be a success had to be in Paris and either become part of a couture house or form their own. Paris was the home of fashion shows and all the fashion magazines were either based in or looked to Paris for their information. For women throughout the Western world, Paris was the be all and end all of clothes.

Paris provides the ultimate dose in high-end fashion. In an area bordered by the Champs-Elysées, Avenue Montaigne and Avenue Marceau, visitors can find the world’s top design houses – from Dior to Chanel to Yves Saint Laurent. When in Paris on our London/Paris tour, you will have plenty of free time to do some shopping on these famous fashion avenues!

Montmartre. Best Hill. Ever.

Montmartre is one of the most colorful neighborhoods in Paris so there is no surprise that this area is a favorite among tourists.

The word “Montmartre” is translated to mean “mountain of the martyr”. It was derived from the martyrdom of Saint Denis, the bishop of Paris, who was decapitated atop the hill in 250 AD. While there is no archeological data to support this notion, some historical observers believe Montmartre goes back to prehistoric times when it would have served as a druidic holy place due to its elevation in the area. In 1590, Henry IV used the hill as a fortress to defend Paris during a siege. Russian forces actually occupied the hill as well during the Battle of Paris in 1814. During the 1700′s and 1800′s, Montmartre was utilized for its many gypsum mines. At the end of the 19th century however, entertainment found its way to Montmartre. This had much to do with the hill being outside the Paris city limits, and thus it was exempt from taxes.

The highest point of Paris is topped by the famous Church of Sacré – Coeur. Parts of the ancient quarter on its slopes were long a favorite residence of the bohemian world. Until the 20th century, Montmartre retained a rural look and provided material for Van Gogh, Utrillo, and other artists who had their artist studios there. On any given night one could find Johan Jongkind or Camille Pissarro there.

An association of artists even grew during this time named Les Nabis and the Incoherent. This group consisted of avant-garde Post Impressionist individuals such as Henri Matisse, Pierre Auguste Renoir and Toulouse-Lautrec.

Montmartre is also famed for its nightlife: among its many nightclubs is the Moulin Rouge. The cemetery of Montmartre contains the tombs of Stendhal, Renan, Heine, Berlioz, and Alfred de Vigny. The town of Montmartre was annexed to Paris in 1860. The hill, a natural fortress, played a military role during the Paris Commune in 1871 and other periods.

Today in the Rue Saint-Vincent region of Montmartre vineyards still exist providing an output of approximately 500 liters of wine annually. The Museé de Montmartre still stands there. It is now the oldest hotel in the area.

Espace Dali is one of the more popular tourist attractions on Montmartre. It is now a museum exhibiting the works of Salvador Dali. Most prominently displayed are his engravings and sculptures. All told there are 300 original pieces of artwork available for viewing.

As a designated historic area, little development is allowed in Montmartre so it has retained much of its character and village-like charm. We welcome you to Monmartre!

Best place for pictures in Paris

Visiting Paris? We advise you to read below for tips on where best to capture Paris on camera…

The Eiffel Tower
When you think about Paris, you think about the Eiffel Tower, the “place to be” for a tourist. This is without any words, number one in the list.

Palais Royal Garden
The Palais-Royal is a palace and garden located in the 1st arrondissement of Paris near the Louvre and the Tuileries. Take the time to visit this small and historic garden. It’s a really nice place!

Le Pont des Arts
Paris is the city of love! Love padlocks are a custom by which sweethearts affix padlocks to a fence or similar public fixture to symbolize their love. Love padlocks can be found attached to the Pont des Arts, Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor and the Pont de l’Archevêché bridges in Paris.

Metro
Paris metro has become a symbol of the city, noted for its uniform architecture influenced by Art Nouveau. Some stations are gorgeous as Saint-Germain-des-Prés with its “place des poètes”, Cité, Louvre…etc… All of them are ideal places for creative photos.

Place du Tertre
The Place du Tertre is a square in Paris’ XVIIIe arrondissement. Only a few streets away from the Basilica of the Sacré Cœur, it is the heart of the city’s elevated Montmartre quarter. Draughts-men and painters take possession of the square. They invite you to share an artistic and pleasant time.

Sacre Coeur Basilica Viewpoint

The panoramic viewpoint at the base of the Sacre Coeur Basilica will be a good plus to your collection of photos from Paris. You can either brave the stairs up to the top, or take the funicular up the hill for the price of a metro ticket.

Montparnasse Tower

One of Paris’ only skyscrapers, the Montparnasse Tower, has little charm aside from the breathtaking panorama provided by a ride to the top.

Arc de Triomphe
From here you can witness the perfect symmetry of the Avenue des Champs-Elysees, the Tuileries Gardens beyond, and more.

Centre Georges Pompidou Rooftop

From the rooftop of the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris city center, you can procure excellent views of most landmarks.

Montmartre

It’s a great spot to take your significant other for break-taking views of the city. Wander through the narrow, winding streets lined with small cafes and shops. Salvador Dali, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso and Vincent van Gogh were just a few well-renowned artists who had studios or worked in the Parisian neighborhood.

The possibilities are really endless because you are in Paris!

French Cuisine – C’est délicieuse!

The history of French cuisine dates back to the middle ages. During this time French meals where very similar to Moorish Cuisine (the food of North Africa and the Iberian Peninsula) and were served in a style called service en confusion, meaning that meals were served all at once. Meals consisted of spiced meats such as pork, beef, poultry, and fish. In many cases, meals where determined by the season. Meats were salted and smoked for preservation, and vegetables were salted and put in jars to preserve for the winter months.

salad in parisian cafe

The Middle Ages brought Guillaume Tirel, better known as Taillevent. The modern age, starting in the 17th century, however, saw a move toward fewer spices and more liberal usage of herbs and creamy ingredients. This began with La Varenne and further development with the notable chef of Napoleon and other dignitaries, such as Marie-Antoine Carême. During this time, the presentation of the meal was also very important. The more lavish and colorful the display, the better the meal. For more colour, cooks would use edible items such as saffron, egg yolk, spinach, and sunflower. One of the most extravagant dinners of this time was a roast swan or peacock which was sewn back into its skin and feathers to look intact. The feet and beak were gilded with gold to complete the spectacle.

French cuisine was codified in the 20th century by Georges Auguste Escoffier to become the modern version of haute cuisine. Escoffier was chef and an owner of many restaurants, as well as a culinary writer. Escoffier also developed a system to organize and manage a professional kitchen. The system was called a “brigade system” and separated the kitchen into five sections. In this system, each member of a designated section created a specific part of the dish. The sections included the “garde manger” that prepared cold dishes; the “entremettier” prepared starches and vegetables, the “rôtisseur” prepared roasts, grilled and fried dishes; the “saucier” prepared sauces and soups; and the “pâtissier” prepared all pastry and desserts items. By reorganizing the manufacturing of dishes within the kitchen, Escoffier was able to cut down on the time that was required to prepare a dish, in turn making professional kitchens more efficient.

Meert patisserie in Lille, France

Les pâtisseries

Present day French meal structure is divided into Le petit déjeuner, Le déjeuner, and Le dîner (Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner). Breakfast often consists of “tartines” which are small slices of French bread which are then spread with jelly, and or pastries. Lunch, on the other hand, was once known as one of the largest meals of the day, and in many professional situations workers would be allowed a two hour lunch break. Though in today’s French society, many French workers are allotted an hour for lunch, which most use to eat out or at the business or school’s cafeteria. Today, dinner is the biggest and most lavish meal for the French. In most cases, dinner consists of three courses: the entrée, the plat principal or main course, and the cheese or desert course. Some popular French dishes include Blanquette de veau (blanquette of veal), Coq au vin (rooster in red wine), Bouillabaisse (fish soup), and Boudin blanc (delicate flavored sausage).

bouillabaise

Bouillabaisse (fish soup)

Wine is also an essential part of French meals, and it has a rich history in France. Often, a different wine is paired with each course in a meal, and each wine is picked depending on what is being served for each course. An interesting fact is that although France is known for its wine, there has been a 60 percent drop in the consumption of wine during meals throughout France! Instead, there has been a rise in fruit juice, water, and beer consumption, as well as other alcoholic drinks mixed with cider or other mixers.

There are many significant regional dishes that have become both national and regional. Many dishes that were once regional have proliferated in variations across the country. Try it for yourself when visiting Paris on our London/Paris bus tour.

Summer 2013 Events in Paris, France

The warmer weather has arrived! When in Paris, the parks and gardens are the perfect spots to relax and enjoy the summer sunshine. However, there are also plenty of summer activities that take place in the city. Here are some of the events for you to enjoy this summer in Paris!

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Paris Jazz Festival
When: June, 08- July, 28

The Paris Jazz Festival is becoming quite the interactive cultural event.
Visitors can take part in debates and discussions, visit photo exhibitions or find out about the latest artists, concerts and recordings from the modern jazz scene. The festival offers concerts and events every weekend in June and July, to the east of Paris, right beside the Château de Vincennes.

Futur en Seine
When: June, 13- June, 23

Futur en Seine was created by Cap Digital in 2009, as a ten-day festival presenting the latest digital innovations from France and around the world for professionals and the general public. It will continue in all neighborhoods of Paris, with approximately one hundred partner events taking place throughout the ten-days.

Paris Air Show
When: June 21 – June 23, 2013

With over 2000 exhibitors and 150 aircraft participators, the 50th Annual Paris Air Show is one of the world’s largest events showcasing the latest technological innovations in aviation and space travel. You won’t want to miss this exhilarating event!

Midsummer Fireworks
When: June 24, 2013

Paris celebrates the summer with the Midsummer Fireworks, a spectacular display set off from the Ile Saint Louis each year. Whether you’re celebrating the shortest night of the year, St. John the Baptist or simply a perfect summer evening in Paris, the Midsummer Fireworks are an amazing reason to spend the night out!

Carnaval Tropical de Paris
When: July 6, 2013

Summer is the perfect time to go tropical during the Carnaval Tropical de Paris, a colorful and fun parade starting at the Place de la Nation and continuing through the streets of the 11th arrondissement back to the starting point. The costumes, music and atmosphere are very lively and it’s a memorable event to experience in Paris.

Tour de France
When: June 29- July 21, 2013

For cycling enthusiasts around the world the Tour de France is one of the most exciting races of the year. If you love cycling, it’s a unique experience to watch the cyclists zoom through the streets of Paris as you carry on with your day. However, the most exciting way to observe the Tour de France is to make your way to the finish line on the Champs-Élysées!

Bastille Day Parade & Fireworks
When: July 14, 2013

On July 14th, Parisians celebrate Bastille Day, the national holiday that marks the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789 and the beginning of the French Revolution. With a national spirit similar to the Fourth of July in America or Canada Day in Canada, the celebrations for Bastille Day are some of the most extravagant of the year. Enjoy the impressive military parade down the Champs-Élysées and then at night, find the perfect spot to watch the amazing fireworks display around the Eiffel Tower.

Paris Plages
When: July 20 – August 20, 2013

Paris Plages will transform some of the roads along the Seine into a temporary beach resort atmosphere complete with sandboxes where you can rent umbrellas and deck chairs to soak up the sun. You will also find a floating pool, live music, sport events and lots of fun summer activities. So if the heat of the summer is overwhelming, head to the beach right in the heart of Paris!

Cinéma au Clair de Lune
When: August 1- August 15, 2013

Now celebrating its twelfth season, the Cinéma au Clair de Lune features classic films in iconic locations in Paris, such as Sacré-Cœur in Montmartre, the beautiful Place des Vosges, Trocadéro gardens across from the Eiffel Tower, the Esplanade des Invalides and other lovely spots throughout the city. Enjoy a truly Parisian evening outdoors by catching one of these free films.

Feast of the Assumption
When: August 14- August 15, 2013

The Fête d’Assomption brings pilgrims and the faithful from around the world to celebrate the Assumption of the Virgin Mary at the Cathedral of Notre Dame. The two part religious festival includes a river procession along the Seine around the islands of Paris in the evening. On the following day after a special mass, a grand procession takes place on foot through the Ile de la Cité – a moving and memorable experience in Paris!