10 September 2017

Paris 2017: Alexandra David-Néel in Saint-Mandé, Val-de-Marne (94)

In Saint-Mandé is the Jardin Alexandra David-Néel (1868–1969), whom this plaque calls 'the most famous female explorer in the world', which is perhaps true. But she was certainly born in Saint-Mandé at 57 Cours de Vincennes (now Avenue de Paris), near the entrance to the Hôpital Militaire Bégin. The plaque goes on to say that she made many journeys into Europe and Africa, then Asia, and that she was the first female western explorer to enter the forbidden city of Llasa. The plaque further relates that she died in Digne-les-Bains in her 101th year, which I recorded on my visit to Digne here. The small park, interestingly, has different areas dedicated to maps of the continents of the world.

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