THE BEST PARTS OF PARIS
Paris is of course one of the most traveled to cities in the world. Because of this, there are about a million activities for people to do. So, planning in advance is super important compared to other destinations, where “winging it” might be easier.
Paris is set up in sections called arrondissements. There are 20 of them. And depending on what you want to be close to, some are better than others to book a hotel.
I didn’t really know what I was doing when I booked our hotel, so I relied on the Hotels.com good location button for booking. This was a big mistake, and we ended up having to switch hotels after just one night.. We had a great location to the Moulin Rouge, which I get sounds okay if you’ve never been to Paris. However, the Moulin Rouge is exactly what the name is. It’s the red light district. The streets were filthy and were basically rows of prostitute dens and sex shops. While the inside of our hotel was beautiful, there was a strip club across the street, so you get my drift.
To get to the Eiffel Tower and other major landmarks would have been a 30 minute train ride too, so we just ended up making the switch and were so happy we did. Staying there for the night had it’s benefits, as we got to check out any restaurants and landmarks that were in those arrondissements (which one day was plenty to do.)
Anyways, not to complain and this will be the last of it, but I want to make sure you get a great hotel near the Eiffel Tower, Louvre, and all the other things I know you’re dying to check out!
The hotel we stayed at was called the Bourgogne & Montana by MH. The hotel staff, views, and walkability were lovely but the room was a touch small, so I would recommend getting a bigger room then the standard.
There are two main airports in Paris, the Charles de Gaulle Airport or Orly Airport. You can’t really go wrong with either, so pick whichever gives you a cheaper ticket. We took a cab from the Charles de Gaulle Airport to our hotel (which is the slightly further airport, about 10 minutes) and it was about 55€.
Once you get into the city, the public transportation is great. They have an underground subway system, and there are bike rentals everywhere. If you want to rent bikes, grab the Mobike app before you get there. Those are the bikes that we saw the most.
We walked about ten miles a day, which was awesome…and yet I still gained some weight. Insert cry face emoji here! lol
Which is a perfect lead into my next section.
Restaurant 58 Tour Eiffel on the Eiffel tower is an absolute must!!!
I thought it might be super touristy and a bit cheesy, but it was one of my favorite experiences in Paris. It’s a bit expensive at about 85-95 euros depending on what dinner package you go for. That’s basically the cost of two dinners in Paris. So if you’re debating the cost, I would recommend to just plan on doing one really cheap dinner one night, or going to the grocery store and buying picnic stuff and then booking the 58 Tour Eiffel because that 4 course meal is so freaking good!
The earlier dinnertime was all booked, so we ended up having to do the later dinnertime, but it actually worked out perfectly. I didn’t think with what time the sunset is in Paris. The sun sets much later than California (where I live) so it timed out perfectly with dinner. If you decide to book this experience, make sure to do it as soon as possible as it does fill up pretty quickly, and get the later time.
The other stand out restaurant we went to was a place called, Pink Mamma. It definitely is popular with the locals, and tourists come because of it’s interesting design and instagrammability (I think I made that word up.) Things to know if you decide to go here though, is that they do not take reservations. Each floor is stunning in it’s own right, but the 4th floor (shown below on the bottom right photo) is the most beautiful floor as it looks like an outdoor garden. The other 3 floors are amazing also, and if you could care less about instagram pictures then you don’t need to rush necessarily to get the best seat in the house. They do fill up quickly though as the food and cocktails are delectable, so be aware of that when going!
My husband and I are big into having a real breakfast, especially if we’re going to be walking around all day, and then saving by having a light lunch. So, we tend to find some really cute brunch places while we travel. There are tons of great places in Paris, but these were the best two that we had on our trip. The first image is from a restaurant called, Marcel and the other two are from Coutume. Another amazing brunch place that we unfortunately didn’t have time to try is the iconic, La Maison Rose.
Okay, now that your mouth is fully watering, let’s talk about the other things to do in Paris besides all the yummy goodness.
Getting tickets up to the Eiffel tower, in my opinion wasn’t worth the crowds and wait time. Because we had already done the Eiffel Tower dinner, we got to at least go to the first tier (there are 3) so I felt satisfied by that.
There is a beautiful park right by the Eiffel Tower, so you could easily set up a picnic there and take in the view. I do have to warn you though that there are many people trying to sell you things when you walk anywhere near the Eiffel Tower. Some might be useful to you, such as beer, wine,, or water for your picnic. While others are complete scams such as donate to XYZ charity to help poor children or really line my own pockets. But my husband and I got unscathed by just saying, “no, merci”.
ARC DE TRIUMPHE
The Arc de Triumph is beautiful and by a long street of retail stores. It’s great if you’re wanting to do a little Paris shopping, as you get a gorgeous landmark with it. We didn’t realize this, but you can actually walk to the top of the Arc and look over the city. It seemed really fun!
My husband found this amazing restaurant on the water after we had come back from our trip, so we didn’t get to experience it, but that shouldn’t stop me from giving it to you. It’s called Le Chalet Des Iles. You can check it out at chalet-does-iles.com to book a reservation. I will say it’s probably on the more expensive side.
Don’t mind me, just happening to stroll by these iconic restaurants as my husband just happens to have his camera out. And I’m too cool to be actually looking at the iconic buildings, lol. The things you will do for a good picture!
We got skip the line tickets from the concierge of our hotel, and they seemed to be cheaper then we had seen online. I think 30€ for both of us. The Louvre is absolutely stunning, and huge! Each floor is different and filled with so many amazing pieces of work. Honestly, it probably would have taken 3 full days to see everything so my Husband and I picked what we wanted to see the most and spent a half day there.
Because of all of the amazing walking around we did, we definitely would have to stop for breaks. The Seine River is the perfect place to do that, as it surrounds a good chunk of the city, and well who doesn’t want to relax by the river.
All and all, Paris is stunning. It might not be single girl fantasizing about running off to Paris and having the most artistic, romantic, and baguette filled life fantastic, but it is pretty spectacular! Everywhere you look, you will see gorgeous architecture, huge parks, and interesting people.
Another gem is a town called Champagne-Ardenne (near Reims) where Champagne comes from and is only a 40 minute train ride from Paris. It was one of the most beautiful and fun places we went to in France. Check out that article too!