Paris was one of the first European cities I visited in my life about 7-8 years ago. It was magical! I remember being constantly amazed at the old narrow streets full of Baroque and French Renaissance buildings, the smell of freshly baked baguette from nearby bakeries, stylish people walking around with grace and the Eiffel Tower standing strong and looking powerful. I loved it all. I spent about 10 days in Paris back then and wanted to come back ever since.
Years flew by and it was not long before it was time to get on the flight to Paris from JFK. This time with my husband we set on the journey on Friday night about 3 weeks ago. Not knowing what to expect from a direct flight with XL Airways France with who we flew for the first time, we boarded the plane. Well, well, not bad at all. The seats were comfortable with extra legs space and great service. Happy us made it through the night (no, I can’t sleep on the plane!) and landed at Charles De Gaulle Airport. We took a taxi a ride to Saint-Germain de Pres which is where our hotel was located. It was 2pm in the afternoon, on the hot and sunny Saturday. We were in Paris!
Our hotel (Hotel Europe Saint Severin) was located on the busy street near the Notre-Dame de Paris. We booked a room with the view of the street and with a balcony which was super cute:
Once checked-in, we took a short nap and head out for a walk around:
We were pretty tired on the first day so we had an early dinner and decided to rest in the room. Closer to the midnight the street got really busy. Music, bar chatter and partying noise were coming out from the outside. People were enjoying their Saturday night on a hot July day. Good for them, not too good for us. We couldn’t sleep that night at all. It got quieter only closer to 5am.
We overslept breakfast that day, of course. As we were ready to leave the hotel that morning/afternoon, we decided to stop by the reception and see if we can switch the room to a more quiet one. Aaand, woot, success! The hotel manager Emma was super nice and upgraded our room to the bigger one on the higher floor. We got a little more excited for upcoming breakfast as we were pretty happy to get such great service.
The breakfast place (Eggs & Co) was about 20 min walk from our hotel which was nice as we got a chance to explore more of the surrounding area:
We really liked the food at Eggs & Co! But we were not the only ones who knew about this gem hidden in a quiet alley. There were others. And despite the fact that it was already lunchtime it was Sunday so people we getting there for brunch. We waited about 40 minutes for the table but it was worth it so I definitely recommend checking out that place if you are in Paris.
My husband has never been to Paris before so during the trip we needed to get the touristy places out of the way first. After breakfast, we decided to head to nowhere else but the Eiffel Tower. And after that, Arch de Triumph, Champ-Elysees, Place de la Concorde and The Louvre:
10+ km later we made it back to the hotel super tired but happy. The new room was waiting for us and it was amazing:
We finished the day by having a delicious dinner and a bottle of red wine at the hotel. We slept very well that night.
Next day, we really wanted to see Montmartre. We figured we’d leave it for Monday as it is likely was very busy over the weekend. Turns out, Montmartre is full of tourists on any given day! Nonetheless, we really liked it there. We started our journey by having a cup of coffee at Cafe des 2 Moulins where the Amelie movie was shot. It was nice to visit the place and remember favorite scenes from the movie. The cafe was not very well maintained though and the staff was not friendly. I imagine they are really tired of tourists visiting the place daily just to take a photo:
Ready to go, we set out to explore Montmartre. While there were many people everywhere, I managed to take some good shots around:
We finished in Montmartre around lunch time and decided to do a bit more sightseeing in the center of the city. We head towards Les Invalides and from there walked back to the hotel area passing Musee d’Orsay along the Seine river:
Later that day we had yet another delicious dinner and went for another night walk. Our trip was getting over as it was our last day in Paris. The following day we flew to Venice, Italy – I wrote a blog post about our stay there as well.
Paris mini-trip was nice and romantic, we loved every minute of it. There are many places that we didn’t visit of course but it was a great gateway nonetheless. I think when we come back, we’ll try to do more local staff to avoid tourists crowds and enjoy the city even more. Until next time, Paris! Je t’aime!
As always thanks for reading and stay tuned for more!