(Less Than) 48 Hours in Paris

The beauty of living in London is that you have the rest of Europe literally just across the sea. It’s a great, cheap and an awesome way to get some culture in on the weekend. You really don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a quick getaway.

DAY 1

Tiredness comes in the form of trekking all the way to Victoria for a 2AM coach journey and a 6AM flight. Have I mentioned how out of the way Luton is? Anyway. Happiness, however, comes in the form of a 4AM American breakfast at Frankie and Benny’s. Tiredness was ever present that day, I’ll tell you that. All the nesses.

We arrived in Paris around 9AM, and after phoning the hotel to find out whether we could check in early, we braved Parisian transport to make our way there. The ticket system in Paris is a tad confusing. You have to buy a separate ticket to get into Paris from the airport, and then from there you just need the figure out which type of ticket you need. There are several options available:

  • A single metro ticket costs €1.80, and can be used for one journey, including all connections. 
  • White-coloured tickets can be purchased singly or in a book of 10 (“carnet”) for €14.40, at the ticket offices or machines in metro stations, and also in some tobacconists.
  • Paris Visite: This pass is valid for 1, 2, 3 or 5 consecutive days in zones 1 to 3 or 1 to 5.

I didn’t use the transport as much the last time I visited Paris, so it was kind of fun getting to explore using their method. I had prebooked our hotel on booking.com, which is a great site for cheap stays (I swear I’m not being paid for this promotion, ha) and for most of the hotels you don’t have to put down a deposit, you just have to pay when you get there. They take your card details just to hold your reservation.

Initially I had booked Lodge du Centre, however as we wanted early check in and they didn’t have any rooms available they sent us to their sister hotel, Hôtel d’Espagne, which was literally around the corner. I would definitely stay there again, when I go back, as it has really good transport links and there a good few restaurants/bars around the area.

It is a lovely renovated hotel, with all the charm of a B&B. The staff were really friendly and attentive, the room itself was cosy and clean, and the bed was super comfortable. We didn’t have breakfast, but that’s fine. The decor of the hotel was simple, and totally had a homey feel to it. Loved all the storage units. I’m a sucker for storage.

img_2749

bad ass sticker spotted on the way to the restaurant

After resting for a bit, we went out to meet my cousins at Le Rousseau, located in Saint-Germain-des-Pres, for lunch. My cousins had already ordered some starters: a 5 cheese board, duck foie gras and large burgundy snails.

SEE ALSO:  Stepped off the Plane at LAX

Okay. So. Snails. 

Surprisingly, not that bad. Granted, they did smother them in garlic and butter, it was still okay and not as bad as I had imagined it to be: slimy and just yuck. It was quite chewy, but at least I can say I actually tried them. They are a Parisian delicacy after all and I am all about trying out new foods (that I’m not allergic too). I also ordered steak and chips, because yum.

Also, it was so lovely to be reunited with my cousins. Missed them so much! 

After lunch, we headed to the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, a boulevard running between the Place de la Concorde and the Place Charles de Gaulle, where the Arc de Triomphe is located. The Champs-Elysees is seriously so long, and the amount of walking that we did was tantamount to ridiculous. Definitely worth it, though. We stopped by the Long Champ store, where my cousins proceeded to get extremely giddy about all the bags, and also the Chanel store. We then made the long walk to the Arc de Triomphe, and after security checks made it through. Mutay and I didn’t actually go up and into the Arc, but it is a beautiful piece architecture and totally worth admiring up close.

The Arc de Triomphe honours those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and the Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all French victories and generals inscribed on its inner and outer surfaces. Beneath its vault lies the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I. – Wikipedia

img_2759

#squadgoals

img_2753

it’s so big, it doesn’t even fit into the frame

We were extremely tired at this point so whilst my cousins headed off to the Sacré-Cœur, we headed back to the hotel to get some much needed rest. 

Funny story.

We fell asleep and didn’t actually wake up until half hour before we were due to meet the others for dinner. I guess we were that tired. We weren’t too late (only by like 15 minutes), but man, I was so frazzled when I woke up and realised what the time was. Fun times.

For dinner we went to Kitchen Galerie Bis (KGB, if you want to be that person. Ha), the younger sibling of the original Ze Kitchen Galerie by chef William Ledeuil. This restaurant has an awesome blend of “fusion” cooking using only first class products with the know-how of marrying classic French with Asia. Honestly, all the food seemed to dance in my mouth and for the first time I did not balk when eating steak tartare, which was a part of our “Zors-d’œuvres”. 

We had the spectacular 8 course tasting menu and could not have been happier. The chef chooses the menu, and the nice part of it is that they ask if you have any allergies, any preferences and accordingly the dishes are served.  Each course that came out was explained to us by our waitress, as well.

img_2775

I’m going to be honest and let you know that I cannot remember everything that the waitress said. I do know that we had steak tartare and tomato gazpacho, ha

img_2776

Vaguely remember the waitress saying that the pasta had shavings of wagyu beef. Absolutely gorgeous <3

food

It doesn’t look like much, but at this point in the meal I was actually starting to get full.

img_2783

Both desserts were absolutely delicious! My favourite was the one of the right – the mini meringues are what did it for me.

Despite the small looking dishes, it filled me up so much. Everything we ate was so delicious, and it’s definitely worth a visit if you’re in Paris.

SEE ALSO:  Boracay, You Sexy Beach!

Whilst my cousins were tired, as they had been out the whole day, Mutay and I decided to head over to the Eiffel Tower after dinner. It was the first time I had actually seen the Eiffel Tower during night, so it was pretty exciting. Bang on midnight, she lights up and looks absolutely beautiful.

img_2796

Dang, girl. You looking mighty fine.

We ended the night in O’Sullivans because every city has an Irish pub, right? Fun things that happened during the night: I got hugged by a random French man because I gave him a cigarette (he was actually so excited and grateful, bless his heart), another random French man thought it would be okay to touch Mutay’s hair (you know you could just say hi if you think I’m cute), and we had to run away from weirdo guys who told us to stay where we were standing inside because they were coming back for us. No, thanks. I’m good. Seriously. We were also given cheese and bread at the bus stop by a man who had set up shop at a bus stop – he offered us alcohol and also had music blasting out loud. I love Paris.

DAY 2

It would only be Mutay and I who would climb 10 million steps for food, right? IT WAS SO WORTH IT. Located in Montmatre, Hardware Société concentrates on an Australian spin on French breakfast classics. The perfect spot of brunch before heading over to the Sacré-Cœur. Absolutely loved the decor in there, as well: marble table tops and black and white tiled floors with tea cups hanging on the wall. So quaint. 

First thing’s first, I need to discuss the quote they have in their menu by Virginia Woolf: “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.” PREACH IT, WOMAN! Ultimate love for this restaurant immediately emerged as soon as I saw that quote, and that was before I had eaten anything.

Secondly, their food is gorgeous. I ordered a chai latte and butter croissant with orange and grapefruit jam, which was the perfect precursor to my main: pork belly and fried eggs. I’m talking potato and bacon hash, spiced tomato and apple relish on smoked sourdough. HNNNNGGGG. Foodgasm x 10000000000.

steps

Exhausted after 9 steps. But food calls.

quote

This is the motto of my life.

croissant

chai tea latter and croissant settings. (see: obnoxious Instagram post with filter thrown on top)

img_2828

THE PORK BELLY WAS AMAZINGGGGGG.

change

pun-tastic.

Satisfied, bellies full, walking like penguins, we stumbled across the Sacré-Cœur whilst walking back to the train station so we could go meet up with my cousins. Funnily enough, the previous night we were debating on whether to go with my cousins when they went and we were like, “Nah, we can miss out on a church.” Clearly, it didn’t want to miss out on us!

SEE ALSO:  I came. I conquered.

Whilst it was quite a foggy view, we still had an amazing view of Paris from the top of the stairs of the Sacré-Cœur. The church itself is absolutely stunning, as well.

The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, commonly known as Sacré-Cœur Basilica and often simply Sacré-Cœur, is a Roman Catholic church and minor basilica, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in Paris, France. – Wikipedia

img_2834

Imagine this view on a sunny day. Ohmygosh.

sacrecoeur1

A popular landmark, the basilica is located at the summit of the butte Montmartre, the highest point in the city.

sacrecoeur2

The Sacré-Cœur Basilica was designed by Paul Abadie. Construction began in 1875 and was finished in 1914. It was consecrated after the end of World War I in 1919.

After marvelling at the Sacré-Cœur we headed to Marché Bastille, which is one of the biggest markets in Paris, where we found my cousins buying striped shirts because they were having a “Oui-oui, La-la” day the next day. Don’t ask, hahaha.

We then headed to Louvre Pyramid, the main entrance to the Louvre, to find the Da Vinci Code – obviously. Shout out to my main man, Dan Brown. Spent an insane amount of time taking typical tourist photos, which you can find on my Instagram for your perusing pleasure, and then took a walk through the Tuileries Gardens, a public garden located between the Louvre Museum and the Place de la Concorde. 

We randomly found a goat whilst we were walking through the gardens. It looked really content, I must say.

img_2920

Me and ma goat

louvre

The Louvre Pyramid is a large glass and metal pyramid designed by Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei, surrounded by three smaller pyramids, in the main courtyard of the Louvre Palace in Paris.

Our last stop was Musée d’Orsay, a museum that  holds mainly French art dating from 1848 to 1914, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and photography. We were lucky to get in for free because we told British passports, and as members of the EU (for now) we can get free access to the museum.

It was utterly amazing seeing ‘Starry Night Over the Rhone’ by Van Gogh in real life, alongside many other beautiful pieces of art. Museums always give me a sense of inner peace, because it is usually quiet in the galleries so you get time to take in what you’re seeing and walk around in your own time as well. 

img_2885

View of the Musée d’Orsay from the fifth floor

img_2868

Me trying to get up in the morning

img_2903

Me on a good day

img_2897

Big Booty Judy – the picture, we’re talking about

img_2918

The sofa were were sitting on reminded me of a starfish. If you want to see it clearly go ahead and Google: Aster Papposus

When we came out of the museum, I managed to haggle with a man outside selling oil paintings and get one of them for €10 instead of €20. Bargain. We then went to get something to eat because we absolutely starving at this point – we ended up in Cafe Le Saint-Germain located on Rue de Bac. We ordered the assorted cured meats and pâté platter, foie gras, and again more snails! These ones tasted better than the ones I tried before because it wasn’t as overwhelmed in garlic and butter – tasted kind of sweet. We had a shit ton of bread, as well. Overall, a lovely place to eat for our last meal in Paris. Service was good and the food was delicious 🙂

After filling our stomachs, we headed our separate ways and Mutay and I headed to the airport to head back to reality.

Paris is such a beautiful city, and I will definitely be back soon. Considering it was so cheap to get there, how can I not visit again? I’m glad I got to see more of the city this time, as well, because the last time I went with my sister it was really mainly a Disney trip and seeing the Eiffel Tower. Had an absolutely wonderful weekend!

 

13 Comments

  1. October 3, 2016 / 6:17 am

    I love how you’re always out for an adventure to different places! Even though the travel to get to the destination is a bit of a hassle, it’s worth the effort for an amazing experience in Paris!

    Oh my goodness… I’ve had a bad experience with the swarm of garden snails as a kid. Don’t know if I can get over it to eat some escargot! Glad to hear the snails didn’t taste/feel that bad as you thought. Though- I bet the steak made up for it ;).

    The amazing thing about Europe are the architecture. I LOVE the detail in the statues and buildings- the artists are so talented and dedicated to make their creations pop! Meanwhile, we have a minimalism trend going on these days XD.

    The spectacular 8 course tasting menu sounds pretty amazing. Everything there looks delicious (thanks for making me hungry at 10pm XD). WAGYU BEEF??? Ahh I am jelly! The Eiffel Tower looks amazing! What’s with guys being weirdos -___-….?

    Your breakfast looks amazinggggg. For some reason, everytime I see someone mentioning goat, I think “Greatest of All Time” XD. Your haggling skills is off the roof. Definitely go back for Disney if you can ;). Sleeping Beauty’s castle is calling your name, Beauty! XD

  2. October 6, 2016 / 4:42 am

    That’s awesome! I swear that England is a gateway to wonderful things in Europe! Especially France! Glad you enjoyed your time in Paris, but goodness gracious those pictures ^^

  3. October 6, 2016 / 6:01 am

    I’m jealous that you can take quick trips like this! Living in Texas, everything is so far away. We thought about taking a quick trip to Paris the last time I was in London, but we ended up spending more time in London instead.

    I grew up eating snails, except prepared in Chinese cuisine. They’re not bad! Not my favorite thing, but definitely not as bad as they look, haha. All of your food photos look so good!

    I liked looking at all of your Paris photos, especially seeing all of the pretty architecture 🙂 I love the details on the Arc de Triomphe and the architecture of the Basilica. Beautiful photo of the Eiffel Tower too! Sounds like it was a great trip!

  4. October 6, 2016 / 1:35 pm

    If I lived near London I’d be travelling all the time because flights are so much cheaper from London airports than from Liverpool or Manchester!

    I went to Paris when I was about 7 years old on a coach trip that also went to Disneyland. So I don’t really remember that much and I would love to return some day.

    You seemed to do much considering you were there for such a short amount of time. And I can’t believe how amazing all that food looks! I’d probably like snails because I like mussels and imagine they have a similar texture. My mum didn’t like them when she tried them in Paris. I’m sure she said she threw up in a gutter. Classy.

  5. October 9, 2016 / 9:15 am

    I definitley agree, London is so close to everything. I would definitley be looking around for adventures every weekend if I had the money, time and lived in London 😉

    I love Paris. I’ve been twice and absolutely loved it. Its always had this vibe I felt like I fitted in, I always felt super Parisian walking around in my over the top outfits – yep I belong in Paris! ? (Especially during Fashion Week!)

    Ah, snails. I really wanted to try eating snails when I visited but ugh, the thought freaks me out! I’m glad you tried it though and from your description it doesnt sound THAT BAD. But still… *shivers*

    I’m glad you had a blast though and even saw your cousins which is always nice 😉

    Can’t wait to read your next adventure – I know you’ll be on another one somewhere soon!

  6. October 9, 2016 / 12:19 pm

    Oh, Chynna! I love your travel posts 😀 You’re so lucky you can do these getaways due to living so close to the Continent 🙂 Paris has been on my to-go list, but I find myself wanting to visit other European cities first before hitting there. However, your post is making re-consider that XD

    I am not sure about those snails LOL. I mean, I’ll use their secretions in skincare, but I am not certain about consuming them. Good that you tried it! I may try it one day, but I’d have to share that with someone in case I can’t finish it or something.

    I am LOVING that shot of the Eiffel Tower! That’s a great shot and the angle is so neat! Girl, you should totes print that and frame it in your room or somewhere!

    All those museum photos are also making me want to visit more museums. I am not keen on them, but I think sometimes experiencing the real thing is way better than just reading about the subject online 😀

    Thanks for sharing your trip! I am now curious on your next adventure! ^^

  7. October 9, 2016 / 8:53 pm

    Chynna!! This post brings back so many memories of when I visited Paris and has me dying to go again! I’m so jealous that you live close enough that it’s not a long journey to visit. Nothing like living in the middle of the US of A where it takes forever to get anywhere! DX

    We walked the Champs-Elysees when we visited, and I was pretty tired that day afterwards! We started at the Arc de Triomphe and ended at the Place de la Concorde before we had dinner. I miss the croissants the most I think, which sounds silly, but I can’t find croissants like the ones I had in Paris anywhere! They’re so flaky and warm and fluffy, oh my gosh. Mouth watering.

    I went with a large group when I visited, so I wish I could have experienced more of the dining (because girl loves to eat). The 8 course meal you had looked and sounded wonderful. And snails! I didn’t try those when I visited! xD

    I’m glad you had such a wonderful weekend! Next time take me with you? 😉

  8. October 13, 2016 / 5:28 am

    Wow! It’s amazing what you got accomplished in such a small amount of time. Very cool. A nice quick trip!

  9. October 13, 2016 / 8:30 am

    So jealous that you’re always on holiday. Wish I lived in London so I could visit loads of cool places all the time. Leeds is shit. Haha.

    All the food looks amazing as always. Your blog always makes me want to eat. Not the snails, though. I doubt I’d could ever forget they were snails, which would make it a really difficult dish to eat.

    Great to see that you had fun! Paris definitely looks interesting.

  10. October 13, 2016 / 3:08 pm

    Now that I think about it – I’m super jealous you live in London! Mostly because it does sound so much cheaper and easier to travel to other cool places. Kudos to trying new and interesting things! I’ve had sea snails before but I don’t think I’ve ever had snail snails before. But I guess if the French think snails are a delicacy, they can’t be too bad? Which would have been my thoughts going into it, haha.

    And OMG at that random french man thinking it’s okay to touch your friend’s hair. I enjoy reading about all your adventures! Makes me want to on some as well!

  11. October 22, 2016 / 2:51 pm

    Ah, this makes me want to go back to Paris! I miss snails and steak tartare! Very lovely entry.

  12. October 25, 2016 / 12:57 am

    I’m always so jealous of the people who live in Europe because you’re right, everything is literally right across the sea. Usually under a day away. Outside of North America, I’ve been as far as China for a stop over to the Philippines, but that was pretty much it. I still have to step foot into anywhere in Europe really! 🙁

    But your trip to Paris, although short, sounded so beautiful anyways. It must be nice, I feel like you’re always travelling now from what I see! It must be a fun story to tell, “yeah I just was just in Paris last weekend, chilling” lol. I’ve always wanted to go there, my cousin had been last summer but she sadly didn’t take me with her *sigh*.

    Also I’m crying at the captions you left on the statues lmao. Definitely nodding my head at all of them.

    Meet ya there next time??

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.