Living up to the hype: Paris

So Paris totally lived up to all the hype.

What is it that you always hear about Paris? “It’s beautiful, it’s the city of love, it’s the city of lights, there’s no place like it, etc.” We found all of this to be true and more!

Unfortunately, another common theme when people discuss Paris is the high cost of everything. This held true as well; Paris is the most expensive city we’ve ever been to. So be prepared for that if you ever go! But everything is worth the cost!

Paris Night 1: MY BIRTHDAY! We arrived to Paris much later than expected. Once there we had to venture into a less touristy part of town to find the apartment we were staying at. We rented an apartment through Airbnb, something I highly recommend doing! It ended up being so much cheaper than a hostel or hotel and it was just as nice…if not nicer. We met up with Kayla, the youngest daughter of some close family friends who I’ve known my entire life, and got settled in quickly. Kayla is studying in Barcelona and had some free time to travel and our dates worked out perfectly that we were in Paris at the same time! The three of us set out to see the Sacre Ceour first as it was the closest major attraction to our apartment.

The Sacre Ceour is in Montmarte, a well-known part of Paris. This area is also home to the famous Moulin Rouge. The Sacre Ceour was a beautiful cathedral atop a large hill so the nice architectural views were accompanied with views of the city as well.

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20130628-104854.jpg It was pretty hazy but you can see the Eiffel Tower! On a clear day I’m sure the views from Sacre Ceour would be even more spectacular than when we were there. We still thought they were pretty great though!

From there we headed to the Eiffel Tower! It’s lit up at night and every hour, on the hour, it “glitters” for a solid five minutes. As such, the Eiffel Tower is definitely something you want to see both during the day and at night.

20130628-105135.jpgFirst glimpse through the trees, it truly took my breath away.

20130628-105152.jpgBottle of champagne, glittering Eiffel Tower, 23rd birthday successsss!

Day 2 in Paris we had set aside to take on the Louvre. A whole day to see one museum, you ask? Yes. It’s crowded. So crowded. Set aside the better part of a day if you want to see a decent portion.

Best advice we’ve received on this entire trip was to go into the Louvre from underneath, through the metro. That was our main form of transport anyways so that worked out. If you go in underneath there is virtually no line. Come in through the top, outside, you could wait up to two hours!

So we got in pretty easily and headed straight for the Mona Lisa. Again, so many people. I don’t do well with swarming masses. Especially when they’re all shoving each other, completely unaware of anyone but themselves, trying to catch a glimpse of a painting. My advice would be to stand on your toes at the back of the crowd and get the best view that you can and then go see the rest of the amazing art the Louvre has to offer.

20130628-105951.jpg The Mona Lisa is behind there somewhere….

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20130628-110100.jpg As if the crowd wasn’t bad enough, there’s ladies (and men too) like this who have to turn around and snap 10 photos of themselves with the Mona Lisa in the background. (Can you sense my annoyance??)

The rest of the Louvre was really nice, especially the Ancient Egypt wing. This wing includes the Code of Hammurabi and the Colossal Statue of Ramesses II. Very, very cool.

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The area outside of the Louvre and then the Champs Eleysees (the long street beginning at the Louvre and ending at the Arc de Triomphe) are both attractions as notable as the Louvre. The close proximity makes them the most obvious things to see after the Louvre, unless you want to hit up another museum immediately after. For us, 5 hours in the Louvre was enough for one day. So, we headed on down the Champs Élysées toward the Arc.

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We’ll update on the remaining days in Paris and our trip to Versailles in another post. Right now were currently running late to catch a train to Sevilla!!!

Thanks for reading,

Kelly and Cameron

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4 thoughts on “Living up to the hype: Paris

  1. Yes Paris is Biutiful!!!
    Ask me sometime and I’ll show you a picture of me sitting in the lap of the Colossi of Memnon Statues shown in this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colossi_of_Memnon
    They were on the dirt road from the Nile to the Valley of the Kings which is on the West side of the Nile; the Temple of Karnak being on the East Side.
    I also climbed the Great Pyramids at Giza near the Sphinx; I understand they won’t let you do that anymore.
    Your Blog has been a trip down memory lane for me.
    Thank You

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