01.17.15

FOR THE L O V E OF PARIS

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There is one word to describe Paris–LOVE.  Wes spent over a week in Paris so we were able to do and see everything but if you have to narrow it down I’m going to make a list of the top ten things to see/do.  I usually like to deviate from the norm and see things that aren’t usually as sought after. So let’s get started on one of the most wonderful places I ever had the privilege of seeing.  To start all of these photos were taken on a cell phone because out camera broke the moment we landed (just my luck!).

What To see:

Top 10 Things to Do/See In Paris

1. The Eiffel Tower 
2. Cathedral of Notre Dame
3. The Arc de Triomphe
4. Louvre Museum (Mono Lisa)
5. Montmartre Walk
6. Moulin Rouge
7. Take a City Bus Tour
8. Visit Cafes
9. Flower Markets
10. River Boat Tour

These are obviously opinions based on my own experiences (we didn’t see Moulin Rouge but I really wish we had so I’m throwing it on there).

A typical day in Paris is everything you would imagine and more.  My heart is throbbing just thinking about it and even though I don’t love travelling the same place twice, I would definitely consider Paris again.  You wake up, indulge in fresh bakeshop treats from the bakery right around the corner and sip on a delicious cup of coffee. What could be any better?  The streets are full of fresh flowers and baked goods lingering under your nose.

You must of course see the things Paris is known for the like the Eiffel Tower, Cathedral of Notre Dame, The Louvre and The Arc de Triomphe.  All so different and so remarkable.  One of my favourite things was having a picnic under the Eiffel Tower, it was so romantic!  I was absolutely in aw of everything we saw and they are honestly must sees for yourself.  The streets alone are full of character and a site you’ll never forget.   P.S. Paris is so busy on Saturdays and that can be very overwhelming so make sure you have a couple days of calm too.

So I didn’t mention the Love Lock Bridge–how come!?  Well, the Parisian people are slowly getting rid of it because of the weight and damage it is creating for the structure of the bridge itself.  Can you imagine how much all of those locks weigh?  Tim and I had no idea about this prior to locking our love on it but now we know! It was pretty cool to see though.

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Where to Stay:

Tim and I have standards when it comes to where we stay.  Okay let’s be real I do.  I’m a germ-a-phobe who is very precocious.  However; the best way to stay when visiting paris is to book apartments for rent. Airbnb is usually our favourite because it’s reliable, safe and you are getting exactly what they say you are.  We had such an amazing experience and it was so wonderful to get to live in the life of a Parisian right down to where they bought their groceries and had their morning coffee. It was a phenomenal experience and I highly recommend doing this when visiting Paris. Hotels can be pricey and I feel a huge part of the experience was the apartment.    

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Where To Eat:

Alright veggies, you’re in luck.  Paris is very vegan friendly and I was happy with our overall dining experience there.  Tim and I actually didn’t make it out to a lot of night dinners because by the time the sun had set we were exhausted and wanted to head back to the apartment (remember at this point we had been traveling for over a month).  We did however eat lunch out almost every day and it was a lot of fun! There was always an option for me and if there wasn’t they would create something.  Having an apartment was good so I could have vegan necessities like nut butters on toast!

The only part I struggled with in Paris was the coffee! It seems as though they don’t believe in soy or almond milk and this is the first time this has ever happened in all the places I have ever been.  Even when we visited Thailand I was able to get soy/almond milk everywhere I went.  Anyhow, I settled for black coffee and survived just fine.  Oh, and deserts.  Sorry, this isn’t like Greece where they make a fasting version of everything and it was probably good for my waistline at this point of the trip!

One thing you need to see is Laduree.  It’s certainly really pricey (no honestly, my tea was 11 euros) but it’s worth it.  Even the washrooms are beyond gorgeous.  Consider it a treat.

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Getting Around Paris:

Getting around Paris was probably one of the easiest systems we have ever used.  The metro literally can get you everywhere you need to go and it’s so easy to figure out. I would HIGHLY recommend buying a pass for however many days you are there because it will be your saving grace.  We used it a million times a day and have zero complaints.  

Well, other than the begging.  Paris has an extremely high rate of people asking for money and it can make you a bit uncomfortable.  I always shared whatever food/treats we had.  I never really got to know what sorts of community development they had or anything like that but of course my heart hurt with these situations.  The best we could do was offer a smile and warm eyes. You’ll notice individuals will come on the train and perform songs or play instruments and then ask for money in return.  Just a heads up I had never seen anything like this before.

As far as site seeing goes Tim and I decided to do a Hop-on-Hop-off City Tour.  He had never done one before so we thought it would be kinda fun to get to hear and learn about the history but work it around our own schedule. This was amazing and I highly recommend it.  Plus it’s a cool way of getting the amazing views of the city and you literally get to see it all.

We also did a river boat tour which I can’t say I loved the most.  It was interesting to see the city from that angle but I don’t know that I would suggest it if you are doing the bus tour as well.

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What To Wear: 

So depending what season you visit Paris is will determine what you are going to pack to wear.  Paris has multiple seasons (much like Canada) and we visited in the early fall so dressing was quite easy.  Light dresses with a cardigan, blanket scarves and a light jacket were perfect pieces to have a along.  I mostly like wearing flat shoes when we travel because it almost always included a lot of walking and exploring and this is how I feel most comfortable.  

One fashion trend Europeans have under control is wearing sneakers with your outfits.  Literally, you’ll be dressed to the nines and throw on a pair of Nikes.  I’m not hating, I’m just jealous I can’t seem to pull this off.  A couple of my favourite bloggers are ALWAYS rocking this look and it’s something I hope one day I’ll feel comfortable doing.  Let’s get real, Europeans do a lot of walking, it only makes sense!

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The Parisian People

It’s only appropriate to mention what happened in Paris the other day.  Acts of violence are never taken easy and my heart is with everyone in Paris.  We were warned about how rude Parisians are and everyone always asks how, “so how rude were they?”  The truth is that some of the nicest people we have ever encountered were in Paris.  People would see us looking at a map and stop and ask if we needed a hand.  Men on the train would stand up to let me sit down.  People would hold doors open for you and remember your name if you visited the same restaurant twice.  There was nothing rude about the people and we will always remember our stay there as welcoming and kind.

One thing you have to watch out for is pick-pocketers. Okay, if you ask my opinion I think thats a skill almost worth recognizing! Like who on earth has the courage to reach into someones bag, snatch their wallet and go on with their day?  Pretty impressive.  It is however a huge problem so my purse never held much more than a lip gloss and hand sanitizer.  We put our money in the front pocket of Tim’s pants.


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Overall Paris was the best way to end our first year of marriage, anniversary trip and I would recommend it to anyone looking for an amazing experience.  Let me know if you guys have any questions or if I missed something I would LOVE to answer any questions.  xo Eleni

 

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