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The Paris attractions trips package is aimed at tourists coming for the first time to Paris and looking for Paris itineraries and top things to do in Paris. Book one of our Paris vacation packages to fully discover the city within your time and budget constraints., france tourist attractions

France Tourist Attractions You Should Visit

Want to visit France? Beyond the Paris and France tourist attractions you are already familiar with, such as the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Disneyland Paris, or the Château de Versailles, France is full of tourist attractions through its beautiful regions. Here is a short list.

1 – Futuroscope

futuroscope, amusement parks in Paris, france tourist attractions

Located in Chasseneuil-du-Poitou and in Jaunay-Clan, in the region Nouvelle-Aquitaine, the Futuroscope, with 1.9 million visitors per year, is a leisure park that offers scientific and technology-based attractions. Due to the diversity of the different ones, they are accessible to both adults and children.
You can experience sensorial attractions with realistic special effects, such as 3D and 4D (Ice Age attraction for instance) simulators, or get your adrenaline pumped up in training centers such as the Arena Fun Experiences, where you will test sports like the Flying Ball, and where you will experience sensational slides. More information here.

 

2 – The Castle of Chenonceau (Château de Chenonceau)

Chenonceau, 5 days in france, france tourist attractions

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Among France tourist attractions, we can obviously find the Château de Chenonceau, one of the Loire castles. It is THE castle which can’t be missed during your visit of the valley of the Loire. It is the second most visited castle in France, after the Château de Versailles. Built in 1513, it is an emblematic castle which has known many personalities, like Catherine de Medicis. At ParisByM, we have designed a package “Loire Valley”, where the visit of this castle is included. More information about the castle here and about the package here.

 

3 – Colleville-sur-Mer American Cemetery (Omaha Beach)

American cemetery D Day Omaha beach, france tourist attractions

Each year, the Colleville-sur-Mer American Cemetery attracts numerous visitors who pay tribute to the graves of 9,387 US soldiers dead during Operation Overlord during the Normandy landings of June 6, 1944.

The cemetery is on the edge of Omaha Beach, there is a chapel, a garden, and you can attend the American Flag Descent and Folding ceremony, which takes place every day.
We have created for you a special itinerary American D-Day Tour here. More information here.

4 – The Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont Saint Michel, mont saint michel abbey, france tourist attractions

Who has never wanted to visit the Mont Saint Michel? This rock detached from the mainland facing the English Channel is above all a village, on which thrills the Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel, overhanging a huge bay, which offers you a magnificent view. It is a must, and it is only 2 hours from the landing beaches in Normandy ! You can plan your visit checking information here.

 

5 – Top 1 France tourist attractions in winter/spring: ski resorts in the Alps!

france tourist attractions

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If you are visiting France from December to May, it is essential that you go skiing on the Mont Blanc massif, where a wide choice of resorts is possible: Chamonix, Brévent, Les Houches, Planard … According to if you want skiing at altitude or in valley. A great opportunity to discover the French Alps. More information here.

 

 

 

6 – Gorges du Verdon (Verdon Gorge)

france tourist attractions

Wikimedia Commons

Located between the Var and the Alpes de Haute Provence, the Gorges du Verdon are part of the natural beauty of France. The turquoise color of the Verdon river will not leave you indifferent, and for the sportsmen and sportswomen, a little walk will make you discover the detail of these magnificent landscapes .. Learn more here.

 

 

7 – Provence: Arles

provence in 5 days, arles, france tourist attractions

Provence is one of the most visited regions of France. Aix-En-Provence, Avignon, the famous village of Baux-de-Provence, they all are a must see, but the Roman heritage of this region is not to be overlooked: come and visit Arles, the magnificent Roman city remains with its amphitheater, its ancient theater, the thermal baths of Constantin (les thermes de Constantin), or the cryptoportica. History lovers, the information is here.

 

 

 

We hope our France tourist attractions will help you to prepare your visit!

 

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Paris Museums Which Match With Your Tastes

We all know the classics of the Paris Museums : the Musée du Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Musée du Quai Branly. The three general museums for those who are in a hurry and want to do a quick and unavoidable visit of Paris. And what if you want to be more specific? Here are some suggestions to discover unusual Paris Museums.

 

For literature lovers

House of Victor Hugo, Paris Museums

We obviously recommend the House of Victor Hugo (Maison de Victor Hugo), which the famous writer occupied at the Hôtel de Rohan-Guémenée, Place des Vosges, from 1832 to 1848. A place of life and a place of writing (« Les Misérables » was written here) which evokes his early youth, and offers a collection of objects redrawing his life, from the exile to the « after exile », exposing his drawings, family objects too, and manuscripts. Relive the life of the author of « The Huntchback of Notre Dame » by exploring his apartment from the antechamber to the Chinese salon at 6 place des Vosges 75004 Paris.

 

House of Balzac, Paris Museums

The House of Balzac (Maison de Balzac) is also a must-see for anyone in love with French writers. You can find the author’s famous “Cabinet de Travail” (Study), his personal effects and the table where he wrote many works such as “Une ténébreuse affaire”. A library is set up and is open to all, including original editions and bindings of the romantic era. Discover Balzac at 47 rue Raynouard 75016 Paris.

 

 

 

 

For scientific people…

Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie, Paris Museums

Among the Paris museums, you can find everything. As proof, scientists will find fulfillment in the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie, located in the Parc de la Villette. You will be able to discover mathematical challenges, discover the mysteries of sound, light and brain, take a break in the space dedicated to the aquarium, and for astronomy lovers, you can visit the “Objectifs Terre” section dedicated to the revolution of satellites. Interesting temporary exhibitions are also held throughout the year. You can find it at 30 avenue Corentin Cariou 75019 Paris.

 

The Curie Museum, Paris Museums

The Curie Museum (Musée Curie) offers to discover the life of the physicist and chemist Marie Curie and her family who hold five Nobel Prizes. First woman to have received one, she discovered with her husband two new elements: polonium and radium. This museum houses her laboratory which has been preserved without any change, the garden she has herself arranged in the Radium Institute, and even her office. All the secrets of this famous scientific family can be found at 1 rue Pierre et Marie Curie, 75005 Paris.

 

If you are a fan of history…

The Museum of Natural History of Paris, Paris Museums

Come and discover the first steps of the humanity at the Museum of Natural History of Paris (Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle), in particular at the Grande Galerie de l’Evolution, in the rooms devoted to the evolution of life, mankind or even animal species, whether you are interested in the marine environment, the terrestrial environment, or both. A permanent exhibition describes how mankind has changed its environment, from Homo-Sapiens to nowadays, evoking the transformation of landscapes and pollution. Location : 36 Rue Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire 75005 Paris.

 

Holocaust Museum, Paris Museum

The Holocaust Museum

We would also recommend the Holocaust Memorial (Mémorial de la Shoah), which relates the history of the genocide of the Jews during the Second World War. More than 5,000 square meters of exhibitions of pictures, original documents, and activities are available to permit the visitors to pay tribute to the memory of the deportees, but also of the « Justes », French people who helped to avoid several other deaths by hiding Jews in their houses. You can also find here a bookshop to increase your knowledge about this period, which offers more than 10,000 documents tackling the history of the Shoah. The museum is located at 17 rue Geoffroy l’Asnier, 75004 Paris.

You may be interested in the Invalides, which hosts the museum of War, of World Wars, the memorial Charles de Gaulles, and the tomb of Napoleon : check information here.

 

Modern/contemporary art lovers…

Picasso Museum, Paris Museums

The Picasso Museum (Musée Picasso) is for you. It contains a large collection of paintings and sculptures of the artist, representing the movement of cubism of the XXth century. The museum has various pictures and archives of the same century, by Picasso himself and artists of the time like Brassaï or Man Ray. 5 rue de Thorigny 75003 Paris.

 

Museum of Modern Art, Paris Museums

You will especially appreciate the Museum of Modern Art of the City of Paris (Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris), between the Champs-Elysées and the Eiffel Tower, which counts nearly 9,000 works belonging to different movements of the XXth century and especially the second half, where you will discover chronogically and thematically movements such as New Realism or Conceptual Art. So, artists, find yourself there : 11 avenue du Président Wilson 75016 Paris.

 

And for the gourmands…

Museum of Chocolate, Paris Museums

There is the Museum of Chocolate (Musée du Chocolat), where you can learn about the history of chocolate, meet chocolate makers, taste chocolates, or create your own! We are not telling you more. Go to 28 Boulevard de Bonne Nouvelle, 75010 Paris.

We hope you will enjoy the Paris museums as much as we do!

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touristic places in Paris,notre dame cathedral, notre dame cathedral facts

Notre-Dame Cathedral facts you must know !

Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, Notre-Dame is the most visited monument of Europe. However, this outstanding gothic edifice didn’t appear out of the blue, and its story has been quite bumpy over the years. Here are some Notre Dame Cathedral facts you should know.

notre dame cathedral factsThe Story of the Cathedral

Instead of the Notre-Dame’s forecourt we all know today stood another Cathedral until the 12th century: the Cathedral Saint-Etienne. It was a very big Christian Basilica composed of five naves. We still don’t know a lot about this Cathedral, but it was removed in the middle of the 12th century, under the reign of Louis VII. The bishop Maurice de Sully indeed decided to replace it by a new Cathedral, much longer and higher since the architectural progress finally enabled it. And so was born the gothic-styled Notre-Dame Cathedral with its huge two towers, as a tribute to the Virgin Mary. More precisely, the first stone of the Cathedral was set down in 1163, in the presence of the Pope of the time: Pope Alexandre III, and the edifice was complete around 1350. Its famous forecourt was created at that time as a separation between the non-believers and the believers’ world.

notre dame cathedral factsAs time went by, and because of the French Revolution, it unfortunately became damaged, losing for instance its arrow in the 18th century. The Cathedral is then in a sorry plight, and its gothic features are more and more considered obsolete. That is why, from the following century, some people tried to restore it, such as Viollet le Duc who was in charge of its renovation. Among other things, he rebuilt a new 96-meters-high arrow, and recreated the King’s gallery to make this Cathedral live again. However, his decisions were quite controversial, since he managed to add some personal details to the monument which didn’t exist originally, like the chimeras. Haussmann, as for him, made the forecourt (the Jean-Paul II square) much bigger, and this is now how we know this place.

Top 5 : the Notre Dame Cathedral facts which make this edifice very special and will undoubtedly surprise you !notre dame cathedral facts

5 : It holds a historical and religious unique treasure. Although its 70 thorns has been spread around the world through time, the Holy Crown, which was worn by the Christ during the Passion, is now located in Notre-Dame Cathedral, along with a piece of the Cross and a Passion Nail. This very precious relic is honoured during the Thorn Holy Crown Worship Ceremony which happens every first Friday of the month, every Lent Friday and on the Good Friday.

4 : Its revival is mainly due to Napoleon and then Victor Hugo. As we mentioned before, Notre-Dame Cathedral has been through hard times in the 18th century, and it was even suggested to make it collapse. However, these two men helped saving it: Napoléon Bonaparte decided to make it the place of its 2-december-1804 Coronation, and planned big renovation works. Later on, in 1831, the publication of Victor Hugo historical novel Notre-Dame de Paris and its success provoked a serious awareness of the value of this Cathedral in people’s mind, so that they gathered to save it.

notre dame cathedral facts

3 : It is the departure of all the France roads. In front of the Cathedral, on Notre-Dame forecourt, you can find a round stone anchored in the paves, in which it is written “Zero Point of France roads”. It means that this point is used to calculate distances with the other French cities, so that maybe we could think that all roads don’t lead to Rome, but to the Notre-Dame Cathedral!

notre dame cathedral facts2 : It was a warehouse at a time. At the end of the 18th Century, it indeed housed many wine barrels of the troops of the Revolutionary Army, which shows how the situation was difficult and threatening for this Cathedral.

1 : Its roof is now full of bees. The aim is not to scare you, but to help preserving there species and to honour the benefits they provide to Earth. Don’t miss the opportunity to taste it, you’re palate will be thankful for its sweetness !

We hope you enjoyed these Notre Dame Cathedral facts, and if you want to discover other sights in Paris, we designed packages for you right here !

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Famous Streets In Paris, Latin Quarter, city walks

The Latin Quarter : what to see, what to do

Have you heard about a very charming district of Paris full of students and always pleasant ? If so, it was definitely the depiction of the Latin Quarter. Called this way because the language used there was the Latin for a long time, its particular atmosphere with all its monuments, museums, green spaces and narrow lovely streets makes it a must-see of Paris we will tell you everything you should know about.

Monuments and Religion

Latin Quarter

Let’s start with the most famous monument of the Quarter: the Pantheon. First built as a church in the 18th century under the reign of Louis XV as a tribute to Sainte-Geneviève, the Pantheon became lay during the French Revolution, although it knew some periods of religiousness afterwards. But since 1885, it is the place which houses the graves of “The Great Men of the Homeland”, be they writers such as Victor Hugo or Rousseau, scientists like Marie Curie, or supporters of the Resistance and “Justes de France” like Jean Moulin.

Latin QuarterAs for religious monuments, you can find different kinds: there is the beautiful church Saint-Etienne du Mont located just behind the Pantheon, but you shouldn’t miss either the Great Mosque of Paris, whose green-white colours and peacefulness will amaze you !

 

 

The Students’ District

Sorbonne university, Quartier Latin, self-guided walking tour, Latin Quarter

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The Latin Quarter is also famous because you can find there a lot of renown schools, and the streets and gardens are crowded with students. Don’t miss the amazing Sorbonne and its square from which you’ll be able to admire its chapel, having a drink in the outside. The Sorbonne is surrounded by the most brilliant high schools of France, Henri IV and Louis Le Grand, but also by the “Collège de France”, which is a prestigious monument dedicated to education and research. Thus, you won’t escape the lively but peaceful atmosphere the students give to this quarter, especially in the Luxembourg’s garden.

 

Green Spaces

Free Things to Do in Paris, Latin Quarter

Credit: ParisByM

As we just said, the Luxembourg’s garden is one of the most famous in Paris. It was created with its Palace at the request of Marie de Médicis in 1612, and they both belong to the Senate today. It is divided into a French and an English-styled part, and there are many activities you can do there to relax, such as contemplating the fountains and statues or renting a remotely controlled boat for the kids.

Further, next to the Great Mosque, you can find the Jardin des Plantes, made of greenhouses, specialized gardens, and even a small zoo. The variety of activities it offers will undoubtedly enable you to get your fill of nature !

 

Museums

Appended to the Jardin des Plantes stands the National Museum of Natural History, in which you should go especially if you want to discover the evolution of species and wander among life-size representations of them. If you are fond of nature, animals and biology, you shouldn’t miss this museum !

Hotel de Cluny, Latin QuarterIn a very different category, you can visit the Musée de Cluny, dedicated to the Middle Age, as suggested by its physical appearance. You’ll be stunned by the place itself, composed of the Gallo-Roman thermal baths of Lutèce and the hotel of Cluny, which will immediately dive you into another time. The vestiges you will find there are also very varied : there are paintings, daily items, goldsmithery, sculptures… and many other treasures!

Finally, there is the remarkable Institut du Monde Arabe, along the River Seine. Retracing the story and the evolution of the Arabic world through many items such as jewels, ceramics, clothes and others… If you go there, don’t miss the rooftop’s view over the Notre-Dame Cathedral and l’Ile de la Cité which will leave you delighted.

 

Streets and Places

quartier latin, Latin Quarter

Saint Michel Fountain. Phot credit: ParisByM

There are two boulevards you shouldn’t miss : the Boulevard Saint-Michel and the Boulevard Saint-Germain. The first one begins at the Square Saint-Michel, where you can find a very beautiful fountain, and reaches the Port Royal intersection throughout the main sights, like the Pantheon, the Museum of Cluny, or the Odeon Theatre. The second one is headed to the National Assembly, and will provide you a pleasant walk with its restaurants, luxurious boutiques and numerous furniture trading names, without forgetting the beautiful Church Saint-Germain des Prés.

Apartments for rent Paris, quartier latin, Latin Quarter

Credits: Flickr

The Latin Quarter is also made of pretty and lively streets. The Rue Mouffetard, one of the oldest streets of Paris, is famous for its restaurants and cafés, while the Rue Vaugirard, the largest of Paris, is known for its shops. It goes from the Sorbonne Square to Versailles, through Odeon, the Senate, and the Luxembourg. What a pretty walk, isn’t it ?

 

Along with these main sights, the Latin Quarter is composed of many bridges and fountains, combined with a joyful atmosphere which will make you fall under its spell…

 

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The army museum : a History gem in the Invalides

Presentation of the Museum

Louis XIV decided to build The Hôtel des Invalides, in order to host and take care of the damaged soldiers. The aim was quite philanthropist : enabling them to enjoy the rest of their life the best possible in a place they would be taken care of. Then, two museums were created in the Hotel : the Artillery Museum (1796), exposing royal collections and other gifts, and the Historical Army Museum (1896). Only in 1905 did these two museums merge to become the army museum. Today, this almost 10 000m² museum holds about 500 000 pieces so that it is the 3rd global collection, which makes it very impressive and undoubtedly worthseeing !

What you can’t miss

Invalides, army museum

Since the army museum is divided into about 10 sections, we’ve decided to present you those you cannot miss. Let’s start with the most famous one : The Rounded Roof Church.

The Rounded Roof Church

This dome is the symbol of the Hotel, because of its architectural magnificence. Built in the end of the 17th century, this royal chapel pays tribute to its creator, Louis XIV through its decoration, but it also quickly became a sanctuary. In the 1800s, it began to house the tombstone of two renown Marshalls, Turenne, and Vauban (his heart at least). Recognizable from very far, it is mostly famous because it contains Napoléon 1er’s tombstone. The decoration style is quite stunning, with very few but fancy colours in noble stones (quartzite, granit and marble)… Thus, it has all the elements to amaze you !

The District of old armors and weapons (from the Middle Age to 1643)

There, you will discover the evolution of the weapons used in Europe in this period, in a chronological order. From medieval swords to more modern arms such as guns, you will be invited to approach the unfolding of many European wars, and even to learn about the Asian inheritage of the weapons.

army museum

The Modern District, from Louis XIV (1643) to Napoleon III (1870).

More focused on the French History, you will be revealed the evolution of technologies and war strategies, but also the different political regimes France knew all over this period. You will be able to approach the soldiers’ daily life through their costumes, weapons, and you will also access Napoleon’s personal goods. Besides, the section is renown for the diversity of its collection, so that you will also find more unusual items such as musical instruments or decorations.

The Contemporary District and the Two World Wars

Turning points in the French, but also the World’s History, this district presents a very diversified collection of items showing what these wars were made of in terms of arms, and how they unfolded. You will note the contrast with the first District through the improvement of the weapons, and all the different rooms will make you feel like one of these soldiers. Moreover, there are personal documents such as letters or pictures which undoubtedly won’t leave you unmoved.

army museum

The Charles de Gaulle Historial

Paying tribute to the 18th June Man, the one who liberated France from the Occupation, this district is quite different in shape and content from the others, because it is above all filled with multimedia archives. There are no items but many screens and an infra-red audioguide to dive you into the path and the achievements of Charles de Gaulle, a President of paramount importance in the French History, and who is still deeply rooted in its memory.

If you want more

We advise you to pass by the Cour d’Honneur, in which you will find other pieces of the French Artillery through 70 bronze cannons. You can also visit the Museum of Bas-Reliefs to discover plenty of cities and countrysides models. Finally, if you were pleased by the Charles de Gaulle Historial, you should visit the Museum of Order and Liberation, paying tribute to those who fought through the Resistance for the Liberation of France.

Practical Information

Click in the following link to learn about the cost of the tickets and the opening hours. Note that the audioguides are available in 8 languages. Moreover, if you want to eat, there is a restaurant called “le Carré des Invalides”. Enjoy your visit in the great army museum !

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Place de la Bourse Bordeaux France Itinerary

Bordeaux, the “Sleepy Beauty”

First, we recommend you to start this France itinerary staying a few days in Bordeaux, also nicknamed “La Belle endormie” because it is the second French city (after Paris) in terms of number of listed historical monuments. And you indeed won’t be disappointed by the famous Place de la Bourse (and the stunning “Miroir d’eau”) which marks a shift between the medieval and the new classical city. Bordeaux is quite astonishing for its blend of temporality in its monuments: the contrast between the neoclassic Palais Rohan built in the 18th century, the roman arena Le Palais Gallien, and the gothic Cathédrale Saint-André speaks for itself. Plus, if you are a wine lover, jump at the chance of participating to an excursion which will bring you at the core of the fabrication of the renown and delightful Bordeaux wine ! (Check our special Bordeaux Package if interested)

 

Place du Capitole Toulouse France Itinerary

Toulouse, the “Pink City”

Then, we advise you to go to Toulouse, which is about 2 hours and a half away from Bordeaux. You will be seduced by its colourful streets and monuments, starting with the Capitole, stunning for its rose marble pillars and statues. During the day, you can admire this place and wander in the charming streets nearby; but when lit at night, this beautiful monument becomes highly outstanding, and we are convinced you don’t want to miss that either. As for religious edifices, you will be amazed by the particular shape of the Basilique Saint Sernin and the Eglise des Jacobins. If yearning for more nature, you will be pleased by a wander along the Canal du Midi, which was designated at UNESCO World Heritage Site. Finally, if you are eager to discover more quirky activities, you should visit the Airbus factory, which is one of Toulouse’s biggest success and pride.

 

Calanques France ItineraryAix & Marseille, the “Phocean City”

To continue this France itinerary, next you should go to Provence, especially in two cities: Aix and Marseille. In Aix, let yourself be charmed by the “Cours Mirabeau”: this alley is full of gorgeous fountains and gardens which will bring you to a little heaven of pureness, inserted among splendid hotels such as the famous Hotel de Villars. Then, if you want to change for another atmosphere, go to Marseille, the “phocean city” where there are plenty of treasures. Some are religious, as the Basilique Notre Dame de la Garde or the Cathédrale la Major; some are historical, as the Castle d’If or the Palais Longchamp. But maybe the “must see” is the Canebière, a huge and lively street leading to the old Harbour of Marseille. From there, you can plan an excursion to the Calanques which will amaze you by the contrast they offer between the rocky cliffs and the turquoise-blue water of the sea.

 

Lyon, the “Gaules Capital”

Once revived by such a natural show, head to Lyon. Its historic site is registered in UNESCO World Heritage Site, which already informs you the delight you will feel discovering this city. First, take time to wander in the Quartier Saint-Jean in which the paved little streets, the artisanal boutiques, but also the Cathedral Saint Jean will seduce you. Then, an inescapable Notre Dame de Fourviere Lyon France Itinerarymonument certainly is the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière, for its magnificence in dimensions but also in the idea of pureness spread by its fair colours fair. Don’t forget to enjoy the view it gives upon the entire city, crossed by the Rhône. By the way, a walk along the river may meet your expectations of nature, but the Parc de la tête d’Or will undoubtedly fulfil them. Finally, for an uncommon visit of this city, try to find the Traboules, starting from the top of the Croix Rousse for instance: they are hidden ways silk workers used not to damage the material, you can find them pushing doors and seeing if they open on a secret passage !

 

Lille Grande place France ItineraryLille, the “Flanders Capital”

To end this France itinerary, if you are leaving from Paris, we recommend you to go to Lille since it is about 2 hours and a half away from the French Capitol. This very charming city is above all known for its “Vieux Lille” district, which architecture is full of colours, and which sinuous streets are covered in paves. You shouldn’t miss either its impressive monuments; some are gathered in la Grande Place such as la Vieille Bourse de Lille, but you can also be as much admiring in front of the Palais des Beaux Arts or la Librairie Furet du Nord. Thus, if you have a spare day, don’t hesitate to enjoy a moment in this very lively and appealing city !

 

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