A few months back, my friends and I planned to spend our fall break touring the wondrous city of Paris. The city of romance and inspiration. All it takes is drinking champagne under the eiffel tower or walking down the streets of Montmartre to feel as if you are in a Hollywood style film. I was worried that Paris would be an overrated city that would be anything but excitement: I was wrong.
My friend and I were arriving in Paris around 9pm because we had just left from Vienna visiting our other friend who lives there. Vienna was absolutely beautiful but that is a blog post for another time. We were meeting our friends at the Airbnb we had rented for the weekend and all of us took different transportations arriving: buses, trains and planes. This was a chaotic way of arrival and of course the chaos began on the first night, for example: being locked out of the Airbnb because your friends find it rude that you visited the Eiffel Tower without them. We would have waited but it was going to take them forever to finish dinner and we were ready to see the Eiffel Tower.
As soon as you walk out of the Metro and walk down the block towards the Seine River, the Eiffel Tower appears to jump out in front of you. The beauty of the tower was overwhelming. I mean it is one of the most magnificent national monuments that you only ever read about in novels and see in films. I heard stories that the tower was underwhelming but that was far from the truth; I never got over the fact that I was standing next to such an amazing structure that some people only ever dream about seeing. Little did we know the Tower became more exciting once it lit up on the hour and glimmered across the night sky.
It was definitely a great first sight for the start of our trip.
As soon as everyone was awake and ready to go we decided to stop by this little cafe before going out and meeting our friend who lives in Paris to show us around the city. The cute little cafe was called, Loup. It was a great to start the day off with an espresso and croissant.
Next we met up with our friend by the Fontaine Saint-Michel. This area is beautiful and features many small cafes and shops. La Cour de la Huchette Restaurant is fantastic if you want to try the French delicacy escargot (snails), wondrous mussels, and other French cuisines. It is a great restaurant for those who have never had French food and would love to have a great first experience.
There is a fantastic sweet shop, Les Gourmands, near this area which features hundreds of flavours of macaroons and other sweets.
Next we went to see the Notre Dame Cathedral which was just in walking distance of the Fontaine Saint-Michel. Seeing the Notre Dame Cathedral was amazing. There were people lined up all around the cathedral waiting to see the inside. In history class I read all about Napoleon and saw the infamous painting of the coronation of Napoleon (which can be seen inside the Louvre). To see the cathedral in person from this historical perspective made it such a surreal moment to see in person.
Next we decided head towards the Louvre. The Louvre is one of my favourite museums I have ever visited. It has artwork from all over the world and sculptures and artefacts that can be traced back thousands of years. Some pieces of work featured at the Louvre are the Mona Lisa, The Coronation of Napoleon, and The Winged Victory of Samothrace.
Lastly, we visited the Arc de Triomphe before we ended our day at a very nice restaurant in the heart of Paris.