You know how there are some amusement parks that go all out…like Disney World, or Silver Dollar City….They make every detail, every building look like something out of a storybook…that is how all of Paris is, except it isn’t an amusement park or from a storybook…its a real place.
When I was 15 my parents did a surprise room makeover in everything pink and Paris. Going to Paris is something I never thought I would be able to say I’ve done, but this past weekend…exactlly 10 years after my Paris room makeover ….. it actually happened!
After celebrating Thanksgiving with some new friends here in Germany we boarded an ICE train headed to Paris on Friday morning. The train was a first for both Daniel and I, and it was awesome! We treated ourselves to first class and enjoyed watching the German and French countryside flash by us at 200mph! In just two and a half hours we were rolling to a stop in Paris!
Stepping off the train and into the station/subway was very intense. We have gotten slightly used to hearing the German language and reading some German signs, so when everything was suddenly French we were a little overwhelmed. I am so thankful we had experience navigating the subway systems in New York City earlier this year because when all the signs and maps are in French it gets tricky!
Thankfully, I am married to a logistics expert so I just followed Daniel where ever he went. Like a pro, he managed to get us on the right train and before I knew it, we were climbing the stairs to emerge into the city of Paris!
If you are like me and you are super visual I would highly recommend buying this helpful map! it has tips, transit information and highlights the must-sees for Paris! Click here to get yours!
First, we needed to find our AirBnB apartment and drop off our bags. I’ll be the first to admit that Daniel and I are super practical so this was our first time booking an Airbnb. It ended up being great! It was neat to be able to stay in a real apartment and pretend we were locals! Our apartment was a tiny one bedroom apartment just a five-minute walk from the Eiffel Tower on the fifth floor of a beautiful, old building.
Our apartment had an ONE person elevator but we squeezed and made it work 😛
After ditching our bags and checking out the apartment our first stop was…duh! The Eiffel Tower! It was just so crazy to actually be staring up at something so iconic. I remember laying in bed as a teenager staring at the pictures of the Eiffel Tower in my Paris room and now I was actually seeing it in person. Fun fact: I have always thought the tower was black, but it is actually brown!
Next, we started to explore the city! Before arriving we bought The Paris Pass online. If you ever plan a trip to Paris I would HIGHLY recommend getting this! It is a super cool pass that you pay one lump sum for and it gets you unlimited rides on buses and subways, and entry into tons of museums and attractions! I know we paid for it, but it was fun because it felt like you got in places for free because you got to skip the lines of people waiting to purchase tickets. Hey…you can pretend, right?
Our pass included a Hop on, Hop off bus tour. At first, we were thinking it was a tourist trap for old farts….but we saw a bus and decided to try it out. It really ended up being one of my favorite parts of the whole trip! We rode around on the top of an open-air double-decker bus and listened to the fascinating history of all the places we passed.
The rest of the day Friday we visited Notre Dame, ate crepes, walked the Champs E’lesse, and climbed to the top of the Arce de’ Triomphe.
The bell town brought back all the Disney Hutchback of Notre Dame movie feels 🙂
Finally, we ended the day on a Seine river cruise where we froze our butts off, but got to see the city lit up!
Saturday we were up bright and early! We started off my Birthday (Yippee) with a breakfast of Capichinos and Croissants at the cutes little French restaurant.
Then we headed to the Louvre! Dang guys…the place is huge! So before the Palace of Versailles was built it was the palace. Daniel and I are not super big into art so we only spent about two hours at the Louvre (gasps I know! ) We liked looking at the floral paintings and some of the sculptures but other than that….it’s really just a lot of boobs and butts! Haha….I know all you out there who have a true appreciation for art probably hate me right now!
After the Louvre, we just wandered around the streets of Paris window shopping and shopping for Christmas presents! Finally, we ended the day bundled up, drinking bottles of wine and eating macarons under the twinkling Eiffel Tower!
Our final day in Paris was spent at the Palace of Versailles, a wine tour under the Louvre and more wine on the banks of the Seine.
Whew! I am so thankful for the opportunity to visit Paris and hope to go back soon!
Tips if you Plan on Visiting Paris
- Start a training on the stair master…like yesterday! We climbed to the top of Notre Dame, the Arc Triomphe and many many more stairs climbing in and out of the subway. All the stairs are worth it, but man its tough!
- Get a Paris Pass! Totally worth it!
- Carve out time to just wander the streets!
- Eay all the croissants you can…..I grew up on Pillsbury and Holly mother of bread! The croissants in Paris were out of this world delish!
- A big fashion trend for women is to wear skirts with black pantyhose…not tights…pantyhose….brrrrr!
- Women wear bright lipstick
- Many many people smoke!
- Dogs just walk by their owners…most do not use leashes!
- People drive link they are not afraid of death! It is just amazing it watch! I highly recommend you never ever try driving in Paris!
Other Updates from Life here in Germany
- Daniel started work and is very very busy!
- We STILL don’t have our furniture or other belongings yet! Insert head banging against the nearest wall!
- We have made some friends! Woot Woot!
- We found an amazing fur babysitter who stays over while we travel and the pups love her!
Miss our past Germany updates? Click here to catch up!