So this past weekend I gave myself a long weekend and went to Paris for the first time with my friend Erika! France has always been on the top of my list of places I’ve wanted to travel, and finally, my dream came true. It just so happens that some of the sources I needed to look at for my Master’s thesis were located in Paris, so lucky me, I had to take a trip to Paris for school work.
From London, Paris is an easy destination! The Eurostar train from London gets to Paris in just over two hours. The train goes underwater from England to Northern England and takes you straight to the heart of Paris in the nick of time. It was funny though having to go through security, customs, and border control before getting on a train, but it was so much easier than flying to Paris.
I arrived in Paris around 20:00, about an hour and a bit before Erika so I headed for the hotel. Erika had done a fantastic job booking a hotel as we were about a ten-minute walk from the Eiffel tower, so after I dropped off my bags I headed straight for the Eiffel Tower! I was so excited as I just kept following the light until it led me straight to the tower, and it was even more spectacular than any photograph could capture.
As soon as Erika arrived we headed out to a restaurant around the corner from our hotel. I couldn’t get over how many restaurants were open at 23:00, and they were all filled with people, most of whom were sitting outside! We ordered our first meal of rose, cheese, and bread while enjoying the 25-degree weather. We even got in a bit of French ourselves, which we continued to use the entire weekend!
Saturday morning we were up and out of the hotel by 9:00 (we were pretty excited to explore the city). We headed straight to the Champ de Mars to see the Effiel Tower in the daylight. It was sooooo beautiful. What was really nice about being up early on a Saturday morning was that the streets were relatively quiet and peaceful, plus it was 28-degrees out, so I could already tell it was going to be a wonderful day.
After our visit to the Effiel Tower, we headed to a cafe for a French brunch, which consisted of croissants, baguette, jam, orange juice, and coffee. Over the course of the next three days, I ate more bread, butter, and cheese than I had over the past three months. But, I was in Paris, so it was worth it.
Following brunch, we decided to explore Paris for the next few hours. We walked down so many beautiful streets, saw multiple other views of the Effiel Tower, the l’Arc de Triomphe, Moulin Rouge, a couple of parks, walked through markets, and eventually made it to our lunch destination.
Our plan for lunch was to have a picnic up in Montmartre, the historic hill which was the area during the Belle Epoque where many artists like Modigliani, Monet (my favourite artist), and Van Gogh used to paint. On our way walking up the hill, we stopped in a boulangerie, cheese shop, wine shop, and a market to grab our picnic supplies. I felt like a local hoping in and out of different shops, and the different shop workers were soooo friendly and kind to us, everyone had a smile on their face.
We began to explore for a picnic location, and we lucked out, finding a small little park in front of the Basilica of the Sacre Coeur with a view of the Effiel tower. It was about 30-degrees as we sat and had our lunch, we honestly were sitting there for almost two hours just soaking up the sun and watching all the people go by.
Once we finally got up, we went and explored the Basilica. The view from the top was incredible, you can see the entire city.
Following Montmartre, we went down to La Seine where we got on a champagne boat cruise. The boat cruise was about two hours and went down the Seine. It was such an incredible way to see the city. The cruise was really relaxing and goes past so many main attractions, like the Effiel Tower, Notre Dame, the Louvre, la Musee d’Orsay, the Statue of Liberty, and so much more. It was a wonderful way to end our first full day in Paris.
I absolutely fell in love with Paris after this past weekend. Clearly, this was my adventure day where no school work was involved, but it was perfect to get it out of my system so I could concentrate on what I needed to see the next two days (which included going to a France Chateau). There will be a couple more posts to come about where we adventured to the next two days we were in Paris.