I know, I know – My last travel update was for our trip to San Vito Lo Capo in August, but what can I say? We have been crazy busy with our travels and photo sessions, but I’m finally sitting down and doin’ this thang!
When I saw a great deal on airfare for Paris over a four-day weekend, I knew we had to go! Paris is one of those iconic cities that I have dreamed of visiting since I was a kid. We had such a wonderful time there; it was every bit of a romantic weekend getaway that I thought it would be. Jordan and I also had the pleasure of meeting up with a friend I met at Longwood, Christelle. We had an amazing time wandering the city with her and her boyfriend JB. Too bad we didn’t have more time with them!
Our little weekend getaway happened to fall right after our five-day vacation to Munich for Oktoberfest, so needless to say, we were pretty tired. The day we returned home, I started feeling ill, which I thought was just because of all of the traveling. However, it turned out to be a nice bacterial infection that caused me to be bedridden for over a week. Luckily, I’m on some heavy-duty antibiotics and almost feeling back to normal.
Either way, we loved Paris and would definitely not hesitate to visit again!
We stayed at Hotel Tourville , which was very close to the Eiffel Tower. I wanted to stay close to the iconic monument so we could easily walk there for sunrise. The hotel was really nice and even had a little free bar stocked with beers, waters, juices, and little finger food snacks. There are so many places to stay in Paris, it was definitely very hard to decide! Hotel Tourville did not have a direct view of the monument, but like I said, it was pretty close! I’d recommend it to a friend.
We began our trip with an early sunrise trip to the Eiffel Tower. Luckily for us, sunrise was at 8AM, so we didn’t have to get up too early bird! I’d highly recommend going at this time. There were very few people there and it was a gorgeous sunrise over the tower and the city.
We also visited at night, since it was so close to our hotel.
Needless to say, by the time we arrived around noon, it Notre Dame was PACKED. And, by packed, I mean the line wrapped around the block. I am not a line person, so we just took it in from the outside. If we return to Paris, we will prioritize this and go early 🙂
From there, we shopped at some little boutiques nearby, and then walked to the Louvre. As you probably already know, the Louvre is the world’s largest art museum and quite a historic part of Paris. Of course, I wanted to go in, but we opted not to because of timing and line. Next time, we will visit in the inside of the museum, but for this time, we just spent some time marveling at the outside and strolling though the nearby gardens.
We also met a sweet man who was offering Polaroids for 15€. Of course, I personally sought him out for this service and I absolutely loved the shots he took!
After exploring around the Louvre, we walked to Champs-Élysées for some real shopping! Just kidding, I didn’t buy a single thing. But, I did marvel at all of the stores. At the end of the shopping area, is the Arc de Triomphe. The traffic surrounding it was incredibly busy, so we got a good look and proceeded on our way.
At this point, we were super exhausted and decided to grab some quick food and call it a night.
On day two we got up super early and caught the train to the Palace of Versailles. We planned ahead and bought tickets online because I hate lines! After reading online that you should pre-purchase your ticket AND be there at 9am, when they open, we made sure not to be late. However, it wasn’t enough and the line was still 1.5 hours. Since the Palace is a decent train ride away from the city center, we stayed and waited out the line. My error here was that I didn’t buy the most expensive ticket to reserve a time because I only wanted to see the Palace. If you plan to visit the Palace while you are in Paris, buy the expensive time reserved ticket. There is simply no other way to visit.
The inside of the Palace was BREATHTAKING and completely worth the wait (although, like I said, I would pay more next time to avoid it).
After our Palace visit, we stopped for crepes at a nearby crêperie (Le Blé Noir). They were amazing and we were SO FULL for our train ride back into the city.
Once we returned to the city, we met up with Christelle and JB! We met up at the National Academy of Music and after walking around for a bit, JB headed off to watch a soccer game and Christelle took us to see Sacré-Cœur, The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris.
The city views of Paris from this hilltop church were stunning.
Before heading back for the night, Jordan and I went to check out Moulin Rouge. We considered seeing a show there, but time – and money (shows run ~$200/ticket).
For our last day in Paris, we mainly stayed close to the hotel. I was starting to feel poorly, so we just took it easy. We visited the Dôme des Invalides and Tomb of Napoleon I at the Musée de l’Armée. This was one of the most interesting churches I’ve been in, as it held flags of those conquered and spoils of war. I’ve never visited any other church that was similar.
Overall, we had a wonderful stay in Paris, but three days simply were not enough. For a return trip, I’ve love to visit the inside of the Louvre, Norte Dame, and the Catacombs (they are closed on Mondays). Use of the trains was extremely easy and affordable, although I’m told that buying passes in advance is a huge money saver. We just don’t ever plan ahead that far 🙂