Out of all my travel regrets, not spending more time in Paris is at the top. I was never was one of those girls who was DYING to go to Paris, however after I arrived I realized I should have allotted more time. The main reason I went to Paris was the flight was cheaper flying into Charles De Galle then arriving into other places. I had planned a 2.5 week European Extravaganza and was looking for an open jaw flight that would be affordable. Into Paris and out of Rome seemed to be my best bet.
My trip was planned like this PARIS->HUNGARY->CZECH REPUBLIC->ITALY TO CRUISE THE MEDITERRANEAN->VENICE->ROME. All I knew was the date I needed to get onto the ship and the remainder of the dates I could play around with. I ended up only spending 2 full days in Paris, can you imagine the panic I was in when I arrived there and realized how stunning it was?
Can we talk about how everything smelled like flowers? Or how absolutely picturesque every direction I looked was? I will say, I did expect the Eiffel Tower to be a bit larger, but sitting underneath it at night with a bottle of wine in front of me had to be one of the most surreal nights of my life. It’s a huge culture shock when you are able to sit in public with a bottle of wine, and know you wont get arrested.
The buildings were so old and had such character, the pastries, cheese and bread were to die for and I’m embarrassed to say that in my 2 days I managed to eat (single handedly) a 12 box of macaroons from “Paul”, 3 nutella crepes, a quiche, numerous pastries, on top of my regular meals. Needless to say there was a lot more junk in the trunk on the plane ride home.
My biggest beef though has to be the coffee sizes. What’s a girl gotta do to get a large cup of coffee in the morning? Those mini Americanos were doing nothing for me. The second day I asked for a big coffee, I thought they understood me, and in return I got 2 Americanos poured into one cup. I was less then impressed to say the least.
SO, day one we arrived into Paris around 11am from our overnight flight. I researched which way was the best/ most affordable to get into the city center since its about a 40 minute drive in. We were staying near the opera and there was a bus called “The Roissy Bus” which was around 10 euros I believe and it dropped us right by there. We needed to get into a cab from there to get to the hotel since the streets criss- crossed in a chaotic manor and we literally had no idea which way was up at that point. We then checked into hotel and freshen up (you cant look jet-lagged in PARIS)
LESSON ONE: Get a pastry, cheese and bread STAT! That is the stuff that dreams are made of here!! We walked through the charming streets, past Le Halle and onto The Louvre. I am ashamed to say that we didn’t actually go in. I’m not much of a museum girl, although I know it IS a museum worth going into if there ever was one. There just wasn’t enough time. We took some really fun pics out front though (Not the same but it looked like I went, anyways?) After the Louvre photo op, we spent the remainder of the day wandering around. The best thing you can do is immerse yourself in the culture. Through our wanderings we found the Arc de Triumph, The Champs Elysse & The Eiffel tower, where we took a nice rest and just enjoyed the moment.
We continued to wander until we found nice restaurant for dinner. It was called Pizza Pino- definitely not traditional French cuisine; I ended up somehow with a pizza with an egg in the middle, and I’m pretty sure they were singing, “That’s Amore” behind the counter. I will say though, for desert I have crepe number 2 of the trip.
Day two: Bright and early we were up- drinking the double Americanos, which I accepted out of desperation. We found a great market filled with fresh pastry, cheese, fruit etc. and stocked up. We continued our wanderings until we made our way to Luxembourg Gardens. This place was truly stunning!! I felt like I was in Alice in wonderland where Alice has the encounter with the queen of hearts in the perfectly manicured gardens. The trees were shaped in a tall rectangular formation, the grass looked to be exactly the same length through the entire garden and the most adorable pond sat before this incredible building. Kids were sailing mini hand held boats in this pond, people were tanning, reading, drinking their mini coffees and just enjoying life underneath the palm trees. If I could think of a way to spend a perfect day, it would be in here.
After our tour of the gardens we walked towards The Seine, visited the lovelock bridge, (Obviously put a lock on and threw away the key) Notre Dam Church and did some shopping through the Latin Quarter.
The little pig was at it again when she saw “La Maison des Tarts” and I inhaled a quiche. I’m not even ashamed it was amazing.
We took the subway to Montmartre, an ADORABLE part of Paris filled with winding streets built up-hill. Towering over the city was Sacre Coeur Church, which was beautiful inside. The magical part about Paris is the fact that there are random carousels hanging out everywhere. If you’re ever feeling the urge to jump on the back of a pony, you’re in luck here.
JUST A NOTE: If you are a big shopper like me, this may be common knowledge for you when going to Europe, but there is nowhere to shop on Sunday. NOTHING was open. I had my visa out and ready to “charge it” at the gallery Lafayette when my heart shattered into a million pieces when I saw the closed sign. There were the odd stores along the street open, but nothing compared. LESSON LEARNED.
We had a cute dinner in Montmartre, and then headed back to the hotel to change into some comfy clothes. We bought a bottle of wine and headed to the Eiffel Tower at dusk to have some drinks and wait for the tower to sparkle. Interestingly enough, it didn’t get dark ‘til about 11pm in June, I was expecting it to be dark by 930 tops. Lets just say we needed another few drinks while we waited, then wandered around town for our last night in the city of love.
MY NEXT TRIP TO PARIS:
I will definitely be going to Versailles. That was one of the things I wanted to do, however it was a full day thing, and my time was of the essence this time around.
Paris Disney. I’ve been to both Disney’s in the states, Id love to say I’ve been to all the Disney’s in the world- just need to hit up japan next!
Going INTO The Louvre, and not just a photo shoot outside, although outside the Louvre was more magical then most places I usually frequent, anyways.