France · International Getaways

A Parisian Affair

Ah, Paris.

Paris at Christmastime. Paris in the Spring. 

I’ve experienced them both and the vibe is so different that it’s really hard to decide when is my favorite time to be in this magical city. I love it so, and this time I was sans a significant other and still had a blast- which I feel says something about the city of love and lights! So, on a fine Belgian evening, we took our €1 Megabus tickets from Brussels to Paris and were there in a short four and a half hours! Since both Alex and I had been to Paris before, we were afforded the luxury of not being on such a time crunch trying to pack seven million activities into two and a half days. We both had things on an informal list we hadn’t experienced before, but were happy to also enjoy some time doing leisurely things like picnic on the Eiffel Tower lawn!

Ladurée, French bread, wine, and cheese = Bon Appétit!
Ladurée, French bread, wine, and cheese = Bon Appétit!
Art being sold near the Notre-Dame Cathedral!
Art being sold near the Notre-Dame Cathedral!
Sacré-Cœur Basilica provided us with amazing views!
Sacré-Cœur Basilica provided us with amazing views!
View from the top of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica!
View from the top of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica!
The less glamorous side of travel- eating at McD's so you can afford to eat €16 worth of Ladurée macaroons.
The less glamorous side of travel- eating at McD’s so you can afford to eat €16 worth of Ladurée macaroons.

This go around, it was more important to me to take in my environment than to get from Point A to Point B in minimum time. We walked A LOT. Like, I broke my pedometer record by a ton and walked nearly 18 miles one day! We were able to squeeze in a Sandeman walking tour (highly recommend to get your bearings on the city!), several trips to Ladurée, and made evening strolls to the Eiffel Tower to watch the light shows that happen on the hour every hour during the evenings. My favorite part was probably walking up to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica because not only did we get a fantastic view of the ENTIRE city, but we were able to walk through bohemian Montmarte, which was the artistic center of Paris over a hundred years ago. Of course, the area is now trendy and way too expensive for starving artists to afford these days, but I can only imagine the energy and good vibes shared by all of those creative minds at that time in history! The bohemian artists at the time were poor and relied on their work to get them to the next day, and this economical change from what we saw closer to, say, the Eiffel Tower was subtly demonstrated in the changes we saw to the architecture in the area. Instead of lush green gardens and wide avenues, we saw more narrow pedestrian streets. The buildings grew more simpler as well. I can only imagine that in 1900 Paris, the upper classes probably wouldn’t have ventured down far this area. Something about that is so dreamy and vogue to me!

Fancier parts of Paris!
Fancier parts of Paris!
Simpler Bohemian apartments.
Simpler Bohemian apartments.

And, of course, here are the touristy pictures. What would a trip to Paris be without them?

Starstruck by this gem!
Starstruck by this gem!
Touching the top of the Louvre!
Touching the top of the Louvre!
Alex and I at the Eiffel Tower!
Alex and I at the Eiffel Tower!
H-Town hol' it dine
H-Town hol’ it dine

And so, Paris was a true treat. Never letting us down, never failing to help us gain three pounds in just as many days. It’s truly a magical city and I could talk for days about how and why everyone should make the journey at least once. I can’t wait to come back again- I’m definitely going to be making a trip in the fall during my Ireland 2.0 experience! There’s nothing quite like sipping a glass with a view of one of the most internationally recognized towers in the world. It’s simply so iconic and inspirational. And that’s something I’ll toast to!

Cheers,

Monique

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4 thoughts on “A Parisian Affair

  1. Cheers mon Cheri! Thank you for that envigorating stroll through Paris. Whew! I’m exhausted after virtually strolling 18 miles in one day! Will I ever get to see this city first hand? Maybe not, but so grateful you are experiencing these adventures and taking the time to share them with me!

  2. That was a great short visit. There is so much to see and do in Paris that it can be challenging what to squeeze in. I have been there 4 times and each time I am so excited to be there. It feels like the first time, every time. I am glad to see the details of your trips and I hope that you continue to have wonderful experiences that you can cherish forever. Be safe…

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