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Posted on: Wednesday, 9 July 2014

24 HOURS IN PARIS.

Bekka of Orbiting Oceans in Paris

So last November my friend Caitlin and I headed to France for three days. Well actually, we got there on Friday morning and left on Sunday night, but it's close enough. We stopped at Disney's Newport Bay Club and spent Friday and Sunday at Disneyland Paris. I don't care what anyone says, you're never too old for Disney! However on Saturday we dedicated the full day to exploring Paris, and though it came with its struggles, I am still to this day surprised by how much we managed to fit into our one day of exploring.



We woke up bright and early, showered and had breakfast. We headed for the metro/train station which is right next to the parks, and used the self-service machines to buy our tickets. We then got onto the platform and realised we had no idea where we were going, because none of the stations had names like The Eiffel Tower like we had naively expected. After going back to the tourist information part of the metro/train station (which is something I suggest doing in the beginning) we learned we had bought the wrong tickets, were told what to do and picked up a map. The map, not that we knew it at the time, was our absolute lifeline. If you ever go to Paris and expect to travel by the metro PICK UP A MAP.

Paris

By the time we got onto the metro from Disneyland it was about 10am and took a little over an hour to hit the centre of Paris. I learned that the metros in Paris are pretty daunting, at least for two girls travelling on their own anyway. There was a man playing an accordion who constantly walked by our seats, but the worst culprit was a supposedly homeless man. This "homeless" man passed out cards with broken English on them asking for money for food or train tickets. I tried to keep the card but he wouldn't let me, and looked really angry so I ended up giving him €1 so he would leave us alone.

Once we were off the train our first stop was the Arc De Triomphe where we were greeted by a clown, literally. Why there was a clown prancing around, I have no idea. When in Paris...? Anyway, I took some photos and we walked down the Champs-Elysees, admired all of the expensive shops and headed back to the train station in order to buy the right ticket. We were then on on our way to see some other sights, and once you're in the centre of Paris the metro stations are mostly labelled with tourist attractions - so that was a massive help too.

Arc De Triomphe

Next up was the Eiffel Tower. I had never been to Paris before this trip but I've been obsessed with visiting the Eiffel Tower since the Olsen twins released their movie "Passport To Paris" back in 1999. We made the mistake of not eating beforehand and not booking tickets for the tower online, both of these things I strongly suggest you do! We waited for an hour and a half in the queue and then took the lift right to the top of the tower. I honestly can't explain just how breathtaking it was, and urge that everyone go to the top at least once in their lifetime! You can walk all the way to the first floor if you want, it shortens your queue time by like an hour. While we were at the top, a nice French man offered to take a photo of Caitlin and I. This led to him taking my camera, taking over 20 photos of us, and then he began taking photos of other tourists. I was slightly freaked out at the time, but I got my camera back and he took some pretty nice photos so I guess it all worked out!


Using the map to help us navigate (seriously it has a hole in it because we used it that much), we soon realised that the places we wanted to visit weren't as close as we had thought. We made it to the Notre Dame and the River Seine , but ended up spending a lot of time looking for connecting trains so we wouldn't have to go back on ourselves. In the end, we backtracked in order to see the Louvre Pyramid. It was pretty dark by the time we got off at the right station, and it required a little bit of a walk until we got to the Louvre. In fact we basically stumbled upon it by wandering around and also because we could see the lights shimmering in the distance. I ended up being even happier that we seen it in the evening, I have a thing for lights so it just made it better. I would love to go back and have a proper look around though!

Louvre Pyramid

My aforementioned thing for lights meant that I wasn't coming all of the way to Paris and not seeing the Eiffel Tower in the dark looking all sparkly, so we hopped on the metro back and it was SO worth it. It was the whole highlight of my day, and I don't honestly think I will ever get over it. We must have spent ages just staring at it and taking photos and eee, it just fills me with pure joy thinking back to it now.

As we headed for our metro back we stopped at a doughnut stall and treated ourselves. It was the first thing we had eaten since breakfast because we literally never stopped moving. That's how fast-paced everything was, but it was so totally worth it. The cold and long ride back to Disney wasn't so fun though! By the time we made it back to Disney it was about 9pm ish. I don't remember for sure, I just remember we made a reservation for food at 7pm and weren't even on the metro by this point. But I guess it goes to show just how much you can cram into one day in Paris. There's SO much to do and I can't wait to plan another trip back. Hopefully I'll get to spend more than 24 hours there next time. Have you ever been to Paris?

Bekka x

Eiffel Tower at Night

Champs-Élysées

Notre Dame


River Seine

View from the Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower Autumn

4 comments:

  1. You had so many mad experiences! All adds to the memories though :) I went for a 2 night break a few years ago and had such an amazing time, I definitely want to go back!

    Chloe x
    newgirlintoon.co.uk

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  2. Aw, this reminds of my first trip to Paris! I hate how you can never go back and re-do a day like that where you are just discovering all the beauty of a place for the first time!

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  3. I went to Paris a few years back and although I like the city, I didn't fall madly in love with it. To me, it's a bit too dirty and smells a little weird, particularly on the metro. There are so many creepy people begging for money that it kind of puts you off the city.
    I never climbed the Eiffel Tower, instead we chose to climb Notre Dame instead, the view was pretty awesome too. I thought the Eiffel Tower was quite small in comparison to how it appears in photos, I always imagined it to be a lot taller. It's an impressive structure all the same, just small :)
    We spent two days in Paris exploring, I think that was plenty of time. I would like to go back, especially now that I only live a few hours away on the train.

    Lovely photos! Especially the last one!

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  4. Your pictures are really great! I went to Paris in February and really didn't reckon much to it but I think the fact it peed it down the whole time put a bit of a downer on it. Seeing posts like this makes me want to give it another chance (in better weather!)

    www.TheWanderlustEntries.com

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