Bonjour Paris

Hi guys! It’s been a long time and I promise I’ll try to be more consistent. I guess I’ve just had a lot on, and trying to juggle the past few weeks has been tough when there’s emails to write and phone calls to make. 

This year has probably been one of the best for me. I got the opportunity to travel to Paris, the city of love. ❤

How we got there…

Manchester Airport
Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport

Upon arrival, we were greeted by our personal driver Jean-Claude who took our suitcases and led us to the car we were being transferred in. The feeling of sitting in the back of a Mercedes is amazing and the boujeness certainly came through. The ride took us 40mins, which wasn’t too bad.

Where we stayed…

Me and my friend stayed in Gentilly, which was a metro ride away from Paris City Centre. We decided, as we were spending so much money on a small trip around Europe, that we could stay somewhere pretty cheap. We ended up staying at the Ibis Porte d’Italie hotel. The hotel itself wasn’t bad, but the area was pretty rough, and it was not pleasant to go out exploring in the evening. I am very fussy about hotels; I make a judgement based on the interior and exterior, as well as the design of the room itself. The room wasn’t bad but the bathroom was definitely not the nicest. The shower had no door and the water kept filling up and spilling onto the floor, so showers had to be very short and rapid. The one thing I found very weird was how the toilet was situated next to the wall which also had the toilet roll holder attached onto it, so everytime you went to the toilet, you would be elbowing the holder. I mean it could have been much worse, right?!

Day 1…

After breakfast at the hotel, we got the metro to the centre to claim our Paris passes and then we headed off onto the hop on-hop off bus which took us around all the sights of Paris. 

Travel around Paris was super easy. The metro was the most accessible and it only cost €7,70 for a day ticket. The metro can get busy, and I must say, the Parisian life is certainly hectic, but full of life. Parisians are stepping off the metro before it’s even come to a halt and I stand there waiting till it stops completely: bet I stood out with that one. 

If you’re planning on visiting Paris, I would definitely recommend getting the Paris Pass, which allows you to have free travel for the duration of your stay, on any public transport situated in the capital. It also allows you free entry into the majority of museums, galleries and attractions, which comes in pretty handy when wanting to skip the long queues of people wanting to buy a ticket.

A view of the Eiffel
Another view from across the River Seine
Such mesmerising views

Paris was certainly busy. It was so hard for me to capture a breathtaking view without tourists popping out out of nowhere. Although for my liking, I would say it is a very expensive city, being the capital, and I have no idea how people manage to cover living costs as well as being able to provide for themselves. I certainly wouldn’t be able to (especially if paper bags cost €0,12).

Our first day was pretty hectic and it included a lot of walking, 20,953 steps and 11.6 km walking/running distance, to be precise. We didn’t manage to do a lot, which is such a shame, as Paris is the city I’ve always dreamed of visiting, but we got the main sights which was important enough I guess (here’s hoping to another visit to Paris… who’s funding my flights?) When we weren’t walking around, we would hop on the tourist bus and view the sights… Fun fact for you guys, did you know that it costs more to live on one side of the Avenue des Champs-Élysées because there is more sunlight – crazy, right?

The Arc de Triomphe
One of the 37 bridges
Notre-Dame de Paris

One place we managed to visit on the first day was the Réunion des musées nationaux – Grand Palais, which is a large historic site, exhibition hall and a museum complex situated in Champs-Élysées.

Entrance to the Réunion des musées nationaux – Grand Palais
Can’t not appreciate the intricate detailing
More appreciation
Alexa play Black Beatles

I hardly ate whilst there, just because of how expensive everything was. In the evening, I had to venture out and find a place with food worth paying for.  Unfortunately, it was late and all that was open was a Chinese restaurant, so I had to settle for a takeout consisting of rice and chicken (it had a fancy name).

Day 2…

The second day was a bit more hectic, as it was our last, and we had to try and see as many things as we could in a short space of time. On this day, we only managed to visit the Louvre, take a cruise down the River Seine. The Eiffel Tower shut early due to a high number of tourists trying to get in, so we couldn’t even appreciate the views of Paris 😦 (least I got a glimpse of our girl Mona). 

More ceiling detail
I’d pay to see a photo with no tourists in
Remains of the Louvre Castle wall
Honestly didn’t want to leave this museum at all

Referring back to what I was saying about the expensiveness (is that even a word?) of the city, I definitely had to be wary of how much I spent. Once in a while you do have to treat yourself, so I paid a visit to Le Cafe de la Régence, which was so expensive, I had to ask for a tap water!

Day 2 finished with an evening river cruise and the sight of the Eiffel Tower sparkling in all its glory, and then back to the hotel to pack for our next destination… TBC.

Paris, I louvre you