Bonjour humble viewers -Sorry, I’ve been a little MIA recently but I’m finally back on track and ready to tell/show you all about my trip to Paris! My Mums 50th birthday was in December on the 23rd (right before Christmas) So I couldn’t get any time off work because I work in retail, so I thought – let’s go to Paris.( Paris is always a good idea)
Our hotel was situated in the 6th arrondissement of Paris called St-Germain, as Paris is split into 20 sections known as arrondissements and they spiral from the inside clockwise, with me so far? Personally, for me this was fantastic, we were walking distance ie less than 5 mins walk to Notre Dame Cathedral and located just beside the 5th arrondissement in Paris known as the Latin Quarter. The reason this was so fantastic was there were so many beautifully quaint and authentic french cafés, patisseries & little shops. It was heaven. I was already in awe with this place and I hadn’t even made it into central Paris.
Quickly discovered, to my delight that crépe stands were absolutely everywhere. After thinking ‘Nutella Coco’ just mean chocolate Nutella, I quickly realised it actually meant Nutella & Coconut – a mistake I’m so glad I made! This is a heavenly combination and I suggest that you call put coconut and Nutella on your pancakes.
We arrived in Paris at around 2/3pm-ish on our first day – having up all morning since around 5 am to catch our flight and wanted an easy first day to prep us for the amount we had to squeeze in on the next two days, Notre Dame was on our doorstep, so it would be rude not to.
N o t r é D a m C a t h e d r a l.
As soon as I saw Notre Dame, the soundtrack from ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’ came into my head – I couldn’t help it.(I hope you’ve got it in your head now too ) It was honestly so breathtaking. Seeing something online or in movies all your life to seeing it in person was honestly just one of the greatest feelings, the architecture is just stunning and just wait until you see inside. I guess me and my mum got lucky while we were in Paris, it rained nearly every day (i know typical) but that didn’t put us off – we’re Irish so we’re pretty used to rain. The reason I say we’re lucky is because I think this put a lot of tourists off, as the queues for Notre Dame were very small (score).
Entry into Notrè Dame was free! Although I assumed you would have to pay to travel up to the top but my mum and I didn’t bother. Inside was as you can imagine just stunning, so flash photography I’m afraid, I did my best with my camera, though.
A r c D e T r i o m p h e & C h a m p s E l y s e e s
Mornings became pretty routine after we woke at around 7am Paris time, we got dressed, ready, up and out for breakfast in the hotel – I ate so much pastry. no regrets. It was lush. To get around Paris as quickly as possible, we booked a two day hop on hop off bus so we could catch it whenever we like – this was actually so so handy when you’ve been walking non-stop for hours.
When I mentioned before that it rained, it rained so hard. These two pictures were taken on the same day – look at the difference!
L u n c h e s
A little place I sadly didn’t get the name of, the owner was Jolly and it was so quaint and quite, but perhaps was up there with one of my favourite places that we ate. The pizzas were to die for – I only wish i could get the pizza I ordered, in the UK. #pizzadreaming
E i f f e l T o w e r
The Eiffel Tower will hold a lot of memories for me – for two reasons. The first being that we had lunch on the 1st floor! The second is my mum falling down these steps. Upon leaving the Arc de Triumph we hopped on the bus which took us straight to the Eiffel Tower, the heart & the symbol of Paris.
This was one of my favourite moments of the trip but not my absolute favourite. We didn’t spend much time here on our first day, as unless you buy tickets to go up there isn’t a lot to do at the foot of the Eiffel Tower ie cafés or shops etc ( please note – photo on the far right is before my mum fell, very very funny now but not at the time of event)
5 8 E i f f e l L u n c h.
I urge everyone who goes to Paris to spend that little bit extra and book yourself lunch on the Eiffel tower. going up the Eiffel tower in general is quite spectacular but having lunch here is a memory that I won’t be forgetting.
Nothing prepared me for how amazing this was, i had to keep pinching myself to remind myself that I wasn’t just at the Eiffel Tower, I was in it – eating lunch. The waiter walked us over to our seat which I had been hoping and praying we would get the seat we wanted. She walked us over, sat us down and I was in awe. We could not have gotten a better seat! It’s just a shame that it was March as I could imagine that during summer this view would be 10x more spectacular.We sat down to what they called a ‘chic picnic’ which was typically french in every way.
L o v e L o c k s
This was always an aspect of Paris I greatly admired, adorned the most romantic city in the world the love lock bridge was a symbol of romanticism taking over the city. Walking around Paris, we walked across a bridge that looked familiar but I couldn’t put my finger on it – lamp posts had locks on but the bridge was now made of glass/plastic. I remembered then that France had actually removed the locks from the bridge which broke my heart a little.
Walking further down the streets of Paris we found the locks! I’m not sure if some of the locks were moved or if the people of Paris have just started a new Love Lock Bridge but I am 100% for it.
T h e L o u v r e
My happy place is in the Louvre. I think in all honesty I was more excited to go to the Louvre than I was to see the Eiffel Tower. Unluckily for us, we arrive on Monday thinking ‘The Louvre is the first place we will go on Tuesday’ – we arrive on Tuesday, only to find out it was closed. Typical right? Never worry though, we managed to spend our whole last night just wondering around the vast museum.
The reason I wanted to go here so badly, some of you may know but I did my degree in Art History & Archaeology – so coming here was just completely breathtaking for me. I was able to see paintings and sculptures that I studied, did essays on, paintings I did 20-minute presentations on and looked into detail. Paintings I thought I would never see in my life – I got to see with my own eyes & that for me was just amazing.
I read reports prior to the Louvre that the Mona Lisa is virtually impossible to get close to as hundreds of people flock to see it every day – maybe my mum and I got lucky – because we managed to get pretty close!
As close as we could get without security going after us that’s for sure – it’s a shame that you can get up close and personal with this Da Vinci painting though as it’s behind 10inch bullet proof glass and then your behind a barrier that’s behind a barrier. More importantly, though, I’m just so happy I was able to see Da Vinci paintings for myself – yes there may be greater pieces of grand gesture in size and maybe depicting subjects which make more sense here in the Louvre – but I will forever love Da Vinci for making people wonder.
& that’s all folks. I really could blog about Paris forever but i figured I had to end this blog post at some point. i hope you’ve enjoyed reading this as much as I have enjoyed writing it. Don’t forget you can keep up to date on all of my adventures & blog posts on social media.
Or even just pop your questions in the comment section at the bottom. If you could also give my facebook page a like it would be greatly appreciated!
lots of love