Ulala – so we greet you this time not from the eternal city, not from the hippiest one or the northernmost in the World.
This time we say Bonjour from the city of love, Paris!
Some months ago I had the spontaneous idea, to travel with Birdie to the city of love.
At least I have never been there so far and Birdie just once a long time ago just for a day.
To be honest, there are far more cheap places to travel than Paris, but are they also THAT beautiful and unique like Paris? Yes, this post is a love letter to this City of Love, we want to share with you some tips and tell you more about the things to do in Paris!
So I wanted to spend 4 days including my birthday with Birdie there, so I started with research for flights, accommodation and program end of August.
Around one and a half months – fits! There are direct flights from Tegel with Germanwings or Air Berlin to Airport Charles de Gaulle or from Schönefeld with Easyjet to second biggest Airport in the south of Paris – Orly.
I chose the flights like this that we arrive on Thursday morning at around 9 am, in that case from Schönefeld to be in Paris already before lunchtime and back on Sunday in the evening time to Tegel.
The flight itself takes about one and a half hours and with the new built connection T7 from Orly directly to Villejuif Louis Aragon makes it very easy.
On this track you pass by the suburbs of Paris. After this you go by the legendary Parisian Metro M7 directly to the centre of Paris.
Stations like Pyramides, Opera or Châtelet bring you directly into the beautiful heart of the city.Exciting with this kind of transportation from A to B is at least only, that you don’t see anything yet from the beauty of Paris – the surprise comes when you take an escalator up to the streets from the Underground stations. To travel most easily and fastest way by using public transport you better buy an all-day-all-inclusive-ticket. Paris Visit it is called and it costs 12,30 EUR. Either buying directly at a station or to get an overview of the possibilities you can also check it out here: http://reservierung.parisinfo.com/z6200e2x26827m466g3727_de-ratp-verkehrsmittel.aspx
The first sight of Paris was unforgettable for us! Maybe it sounds a bit too romantic but this city with its immeasurable splendor, its Exquisite, its charm of long time gone epochs but still noticeable was binding us right from the start.
I can truly say that so far from all of our destinations Paris was enchanting us the most with its unprecedented elegance and antique charm.
This shine has its price, of course I realized this latest when I booked our accommodation (this time first via airbnb).
Right from the start i was looking for hotels, same as I was used to do usually.
At least 4 stars and located somewhere in the center… come on it’s Paris, it’s birthday – a bit exclusiveness should be possible. To find something in this category for three nights below 800 EUR? Forget about that.
And it was October, not the main season!
By far cheaper, even though not cheap in its meaning was the way doing it with airbnb. I for myself never tried it before, but job-related I had some accommodations already organized this way and also friends were strongly recommending.So the theme of our Paris-trip was “time travel”. Everything should be ideally related to the golden medieval epochs, especially the 17th and 18th Century. What a luck!
So I even discovered this jewel: https://www.airbnb.de/rooms/2878632
A domicile, still original preserved from the year 1770, commissioned by Marquis de Chabanais!
Things to do in Paris
The visit of the Opera in Paris, the strolling through old alleys, all these splendid places to see… with this flat we should have the perfect start for all our plans!
We had many plans for the things to do in Paris, but we had to think rationally, since to see all of that in couple of days would have been impossible.
For our first day we didnt choose a concrete destiny or location to discover. My idea was to walk spontaneously and explore by random.
Due to the fact, that our accommodation was located right in the centre it actually didnt even matter, which direction to go 🙂
The centre or lets say the heart of Paris is more or less exactly as one could imagine.
Spacious, exquisite, lively, charming, expensive, luxurious.
And the more you discover, the more extravagantly, the more lavish the whole scenery becomes.
The eyes can barely get all those impressions due to its simply mass of beautiful and unique architectonical masterpieces. It seemed that every new architect needed to impress more with every new building, put again on top, let mine be more impressive than everything so far.
And still nowadays you can still feel the glance of these long time gone times and you get a slight impression of how overwhelming this city once was shining.
Because of our center-located stay all the sights and landmarks like Louvre, Place de la Concorde, Champs-Elysées, Opera and others were in walking distance.
One of our first highlights was the legendary Lafayette, THE famous Parisian Galerie Lafayette Haussmann – where you can do shopping pure luxury.
Lets have here some impressions for you to see, which glance we are talking about.
Furthermore the Lafayette seems to be extremely popular as destination to visit for Asian tourists, as Paris in general.
The Lafayette at least felt like it was strongly in Asians hands – as far as the eye could see.
Not need to be mentioned, but you should have filled your pockets enough with coins, at least three-digits prices are here the minimum…
Countless small adorable Cafés, Luxury here, Chique there – Paris is one big lust!
I don’t even want to get too much into detail here to specific impressions. Our first exploration day we did completely by walking mostly along the Seine with some walks here and there into side streets and alleys. Something that the interested Paris-visitor should have in mind is the fact, that Paris is one of the most expensive cities in the world. Everything is expensive here.
Especially for people like us, that live in Berlin, where all is still unbelievably cheap compared to Paris.
Even our Iceland-Trip was related to food (no matter if restaurant or supermarket) cheap compared to the capital of France. However – when you know these things and are not worrying about this all the time, you can even enjoy Paris quite well.
We crowned our first day with a visit to the legendary Museum d’Orsay.An art museum, which is already quite impressive how it is embedded there directly at the Seine – but keeping its real treasures inside. Paintings, sculptures, photos and much more from countless artists like Manet, Monet, van Gogh, Max Liebermann, Degas and many more.
An admission charge of 12 EURO is related to what you get there absolutely fine and probably one of the cheaper things in Paris 😉
Well, as long as you don’t have an apathy against art or beautiful things n general we strongly recommend you a visit to Museum d’Orsay!
So ended for us a long, exciting and impressive day in the City of Love!
Paris, je t’aime – that was already clear for us!
Tips for discovering Paris
The next day we started with a hearty and extensive breakfast in one of the many French Cafés. Croissants, Bisquits and finest roasted aromatic coffee promised us a best possible start in the day.
Theme of today was: Discovering Paris by one of our most favour transportations: “Hop ON Hop OFF Busses” or in that case “Big Bus Tours”.
This kind of going through a city is for us an ideal way to see a lot in short time.
For today we decided for the famous South route with stations like Louvre, Eiffel tower, Champs-Elysées and more.
Also we decided to buy a two-days-valid ticket, because we expected that there will be far more for us to explore on the second day, especially on the North route.
Long story short – of course all the sights and landmarks are legendary and everyone, really EVERYONE has seen at least pictures of all these buildings.
In fact, Paris is even in the low season full of people.
It’s unbelievable how many people are walking along the streets. The foot of the Eiffel tower looks from the distance like an anthill. Same with Champs Elysées – incredibly crowded. But somehow also logical for a city with such appeal.
Great thing with the BIG Bus Tours is, that you can hop on and off on every station all 5 to 10 minutes and the routes are highly frequented by these busses.
From that point – it was very comfortable for us and with the Audioguides in 11 languages you definitely will not get bored.
To not bore you now with too many words we want to give you now here an impression about some highlights from our photo-shootings that day.
A mentioning of the names is surely not in need, everyone knows which popular buildings and places we have here 😉
Facts about Paris
Lets see some very interesting facts here about Paris in short:
- Roman ruins exist in Paris.
Paris was a Roman city and you can still admire some existing ruins like Arènes de Lutèce. Read more here parisinfo.com .
This Roman city was called Lutetia.
- Potatoes were illegal in France between 1748 and 1772.
Farmers considered this vegetable to be poisonous and not healthy at all. People fed their animals with potatoes, and only the most starving, sick ones. Read more about poisonous potatoes here perryponders.com
- After the fall of Napoleon France had a plain white flag for several years.
Read more about this Bourbon Restoration on Wikipedia wikipedia.org/wiki/Bourbon_Restoration
- Roman ruins exist in Paris.
The next day we spent with discovering the legendary Opera House Garnier and in the evening we saw an Opera in the new Opera building. Our impressions to these extraordinary visits you find in our other Paris Blog – Operas.
At this place we also come soon now to the end of our Paris Blog with our impressions from the last day of our trip.
I was choosing our flights so, that we could use the days fully and because our flight back to Berlin was scheduled for the evening time, we still had nearly the whole day for exploring the northern Paris with places like Moulin Rouge or Sacre Coeur, the holy heart.
Pretty exciting on this tour was that we started our last trip in Sunday morning hours and that while discovering the famous Boulevard de Clichy, the sinful red light mile of Paris.Everything was somehow a mix between going to bed and morning awakening. Bit strange but exciting. Just at this time there was also a small running competition which was underscoring this feeling even somehow.
Moulin Rouge itself leaves no wishes with all its shopping possibilities nearby for some erotic hours. It was pretty enjoyable that it was not somehow dirty or annoying – everything with its typical French old school style and classy!
As our final highlight we had the visit of the Sacre Coeur, the Holy Heart – an old church located on a hill in the northeast of Paris and with an overwhelming view over whole Paris!
But please look for yourself:
Well, how should it be different – this place was one of the most crowded at all. Additionally to this there are also plenty of annoying “dealer guys”, which are offering all kind of stuff to tourists and from time to time getting a bit too close to one.
This problem seems to be nothing new for police, I was witness of some scenes, where helpers of these guys are all the time checking for Gendarmerie and warn each other.
Also one situation we had there where a guy was putting a stripe around the arm of a tourist and within seconds the situation escalated somehow and there were some fisticuffs.
No one really needs such things, especially not in their vacation time and somehow police should be able to control such situations better.
But however, when you are not completely new with such things and not totally dumb, usually things should turn out well.
Sacre Coeur itself was for us a very special place with this breathtaking view and now at the very end of our post we want to share the ultimate secret tip with you: The backside of Sacre Coeur is not really visited that much by tourists, all the people stay in front and enjoy the view.
But for those discoverers among you there will be waiting a small, but amazingly romantic pleasance.
Smaller than a football field, but pretty private and intimate, right in the middle of all those busy places.
Legends says, that if you have concrete goals while visiting Paris with your beloved one, you have here quite a private and very romantic locations to ask the question of all questions without hundreds or thousands of beholding eyes.
Asking at Eiffeltower? Forget it.
Notre Dame? No way.
Small garden behind Sacre Coeur? Perfect place 🙂
So – now we wish you good luck by planning your Paris-Trip!
Of course everyone should have been at least one time in this city and see everything with own eyes. Therefore Paris is simply too beautiful, too chic, has too much charm and style to just to know it from books or movies.
Paris – we love you!!
Dear reader, if you enjoyed reading our article we would be very happy about a small donation.
Thank you sincerely, Birdie & Hendrik.