Last month I headed to Paris, for the first time in 12 years, yes that’s right, 12 years! I haven’t visited Paris since I was 13 with my mum and dad on our annual family holiday to France. Don’t ask me why it’s taken me so long to venture to Paris again, considering it is so close to England but it did and I really regret having not spent more time here since visiting in March.
I fell head over heels in love with Paris, from the moment we arrived at our beautiful hotel, Hotel Banke (you can read that review here) to the moment we left to head back to the UK. We spent only 48 hours in Paris but it was simply a taster of what’s to come!
On a muggy Thursday morning me and Katie headed to Luton airport to fly to Paris with Ryanair. We had originally planned on taking the Eurostar but the prices had gone up and it was a lot cheaper to fly.
We landed at around 9am in CDG airport and jumped on a train into the city, where we walked to our hotel and unpacked our bags. We also had a quick freshen up and charged our phones (priorities obviously!)
We also sat down with a cup of tea and planned the next 48 hours of our lives, in beautiful Paris! I don’t know why but I hadn’t really asked for tips and tricks from the internet and instead was relying solely on my new Marco Polo Travel Guide to get us from one spot to another.
As we were only going to be in Paris for 48 hours we circled the places we really wanted to visit, and then crossed a few others off the list that we would save for another trip. We mapped out our route for the days and used the book to find out opening times, entry prices and how we would get there.
We began our day with a walk from the hotel down towards The Louvre, where we grabbed the famous cliche photo, walked through the Jardin des Tuileries and grabbed an ice-cream from a small cafe at the side of the gardens with views over to the Louvre. The weather was divine and we certainly hadn’t packed for sunshine, reaching to over 24 degrees!
We then headed up the famous Avenue des Champs-Elysees before exploring some of the shopping areas, grabbing a glass of wine at a small cafe and seeking out a recommended vegan bar selling the most incredible smoothies and healthy dishes called La Maison des Protéines.
After this we headed back to the hotel for a freshen up, a small nap and a large glass of wine in the hotel bar before heading to the hotel restaurant for some Spanish cuisine. I don’t have a dinner place to recommend as we actually ate in the hotel but next time I will send one your way. And our little guide book did make us jealous suggesting some great ideas for dinner including French, Italian and even Peruvian all within a few minutes of our hotel.
As we woke the next morning, we felt ready for our second day in the city. Today we had decided to walk over to the landmark of Paris, the Eiffel Tower and explore more of the west of Paris. It was about 2 miles from our hotel so we decided to walk it, in order to take in some of the lesser known parts of Paris, the parts you won’t get to see in a taxi or on a tour bus.
We used our pull-out map to navigate ourselves on a slow but beautiful walk along the River Seine down to the Eiffel Tower where we stood in the gardens mouths open at the size and beauty of the landmark. Bigger than I expected, the Eiffel Tower literally towers over you, and the best views in the house are from Place du Trocadéro where you can see the entire structure. This is also a great place to grab a photo, but be aware there are thousands of other people doing the same so try to go early in the morning for lesser people photobombing your ‘cute’ snap.
We left the Eiffel Tower and headed down Avenue Kleber. When we approached the Arc de Triomphe moments from my childhood came flooding back to me as the hundreds of cars sped around the roundabout, with no lanes and no instructions. I have no idea how they didn’t all crash, but somehow, it worked. Cars were coming from every direction and somehow there were no accidents, or at least minor ones.
We then had an hour to grab some lunch and decided to use our guide book to look for an afternoon tea. It recommended one I had heard great things about before called Laduree and Angelina. We head to Laduree as it was closer to our current location and I had heard from World of Wanderlust that it was a great tea room with a good selection.
Marco Polo Travel Guide books trump other equivalent maps because each time the book mentions a place, whether it’s a cafe, bar or landmark, it also makes sure it references the map co-ordinates too so that you can find the place super easy.
Then before we knew it it was time to check out and leave Paris! We headed back to our hotel, and jumped in a cab back to Gare Du Nord station ready for our flight back to the UK. I had a wonderful trip with Katie and we will be sure to come back very soon for some more adventures in beautiful Paris!
*This is a sponsored post, but all views and travel excitement my own