I recently got back from Paris and I thought I’d share with you all my experience there. I travelled to Paris on the 8th of August and spent 5 fantastic (but way too short) days there.
To get to Paris I got on the Eurostar. I personally think this is so much easier than flying to France as there were no long queues, no weight limits and it was really quick. My train took off from St Pancras at 8.31 and I was in Paris by 11:47 (10:47 London time). The trains come with WiFi which was great, and once connected you had a choice of films or TV films to watch. Having slept most of the way, I didn’t see much of what was going on outside however we was there in no time.
My first stop was the hotel. We stayed at Hotel Riviera which luckily was only an 8 minute walk from Gare Du Nord station, so we was local to everything and places were very easy to get to. Despite having a few issues when arriving (e.g. having the bathroom door handle fall off and not having a working light) the staff were really friendly and had no issue upgrading our rooms free of charge. The price to stay here per night was £39.51 and I’d recommend staying here if you are looking for somewhere near the station and cheap but still very nice.
The first place we went to was Sacre Coeur which was about a 10 minute walk from our hotel. Along the way there are a range of tourist shops to buy souvenirs and loads of food places and icecream shops. The Basicilica of the Sacre Coeur is at the top of Montmarte Hill which is 270 steps! Once at the top of the steps there is an amazing view of Paris including the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame, so if visiting it is worth going to the top and also taking a look inside.
You are advised not to not bring big bags or backpacks which you should take into consideration as there are so many people wondering around the area. Also if you do have a big bag, you get searched on entry to the church. The church is active and there are people in their worshipping and praying, so when visiting its just respectful to be quiet and when taking pictures (which isn’t allowed) to do it in the areas where there are no people.
After visiting the Sacre Coeur I went on a walk. Unintentionally we ended up at the Moulin Rouge and walking down the sex strip (literally, the whole road was FULL of sex shops) which was quite funny considering how close it was to the Sacre Coeur.
Day 2 was full of exploring! First we visited the Eiffel Tower. Although we had already pre-booked our tickets, the line was still quite long. You have to queue up once to get in to the area, then again to actually go up. The whole time at the Tower was basically queues. However it was such a good experience. Tickets are only 12 euros, which is about £10, and to go all the way to the summit (the top) its such a good price! I’d say if you are visiting the Eiffel Tower, to go to the Summit, its so worth it! The view is absolutely amazing and you can see practically the whole of Paris. I’d also recommend bringing some snacks with you because of the queues and waiting around as you will get quite bored, and the few food stands that are there are expensive.
We then went to look at the Louvre which was one bus from the Eiffel Tower. The first thing we noticed was the WiFi, which was 10 times better than the WiFi back at my hotel! Being a tourist, I had to take the typical tourist photo.
After this we took a walk along the river before finding somewhere to eat. We ended up at this little restaurant, not too far down from the Louvre and ordered Pizza and a cocktail.
Disneyland time!! We got the metro from Anvers station and changed at Nation, then got the other metro straight to Marne la Vallee. Paris Metro’s are so easy to get around on, and they’re double deckered!! Once getting off the metro, Disneyland was right infront of us. The first thing we did was go to the gift shop, because you cant be in Disneyland without Minnie ears, right?!
We went into the Disney Studios first, and went on the studio tour on the train which took us behind the scenes and showed us how Disneyfilms special effects were made. We then got on a few rides such as Crushes Coaster (which is defo worth the long queue!!), the Flying Carpet and the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror before heading over to the Disney Park.
I’d say the Disney Park was the best out of the two. There was so much more to do and personally I thought the rides were better. If only buying a ticket for 1 park I’d definitely recommend this one!
The best rides here were Indiana Jones, Space Mountain and Pirates of the Caribbean. They have long queues but like Crushes Coaster they are so worth the wait. Make sure to bring enough food and snacks to get you through all of the long queues, and also make sure you have a portable charger because you on your phone a lot whilst waiting.
We watched the float go by with the Disney Characters, and went to the Frozen Sing-along and watched the Frozen characters go through the park on their horse. After getting on the rides, we went and got dinner at Liki Tiki (which is basically a very nice Burger King), then went to the gift shop to get some bits. We had one last look around Disneyland then decided it was home time!
Probably the only day that we wasn’t up at 9am! The first thing we did was go to Sephora, of course, and spent the majority of the euros we had left. My excuse was that ‘I’m on holiday so why not’ and that was my excuse for the rest of the day.So of course I picked up some makeup bits I’d been after for a while, such as the original Beauty Blender, a Nars Foundation and a Sephora Powder. After this we stopped for lunch at Corso. We’d walked past this restaurant so many times and thought ‘oh, too posh for us’ but we said its our last day so why not! Out of all the places we went during the week, Corso was probably the nicest yet it was the cheapest. So we had Pizza, again, and then went the Arch De Triumphe which to be fair wasn’t that exciting.
Then we ended up at Notre Dame, and sat here for a while. The queue was far too long otherwise we would have gone inside! But from what I’ve heard, if your interested in churches and architecture this is definitely a place you should visit! We then discovered that there was loads of makeup and clothes shops near by, so we went and took a look in Sephora (again), Kiko and H&M.
As it got a bit later we went for a walk. We found a little spot with a fake beach where we sat for a while and it had the nicest view! We hadn’t been out in Paris during the night so it was nice to see it the day before we went home. We watched the sunset on the ‘beach’ and then strolled down the river before going to a bar.
(If you ever go to Paris, make sure to stop at a Haagen Dasz shop as it tastes so much better than back home!).
Having cocktails probably wasn’t the best idea but it was at the time! And the French probably loved hearing us on the bus trying to speak their language (or not).