Paris: The City of Love

eiffel tower paris france

They say that Paris is the city of love, but the French capital is well known for being so much more than that. The city is abundant with pretty much everything you could ever want. With a few days away from work recently, rather than waste my days at home, it seemed like a good idea to make an impulsive trip over to Europe.

I visited Paris last year, but as I was with friends, I didn’t get to see everything. This time around, I resolved to have a nice, relaxing vacation exploring the city for a couple of days. I was so excited to go, because for me Paris is a wonderfully cinematic place of lights and literature. Even just walking down the street, I feel like an extra from an art house French film. The food is amazing, the drink is fantastic and the overall vibe of the city is so relaxed and bohemian.

When I arrived and settled into my hotel, which was only a few blocks from the Champs-Élysées, it was late afternoon. I headed out immediately to find the Eiffel Tower. I walked of course, though I lost myself a few times. It’s easy to find yourself heading in the wrong direction in Paris, as most of the streets are long and diagonal and you’re not always going way you think you are. Nevertheless, I think everyone should lose themselves in Paris at one time or another, as you never know what you might stumble upon!

river seine paris france

I found the Eiffel Tower by heading to the River Seine. It makes for an amazing walk when the weather is good and doesn’t cost a thing. When I got to the tower, firstly I bought some food because I was starving and couldn’t resist the lure of a strawberry crepe with Nutella. So simple, but so delicious! It filled me up and I was ready to go. Rather than wait in line to go up the tower, which would have taken a really long time, I decided to walk instead. It’s cheaper and really only takes about twenty or thirty minutes if you are in good health. Also, you get the views as you ascend, and you can go back down in the lift. It was amazing up there, but super windy. Always worth a visit though!

The Eiffel Tower is very commercial, with expensive gift shops, so it’s up to you if you choose to spend more. Surrounding the area (and pretty much every tourist spot in Paris) are men with chains of tiny Eiffel Tower souvenirs to sell. I would say always avoid these men, because about fifteen of them ran for it when they saw that that police were in the area!

versailles palace

The next day I went to Versailles, which is a place I have wanted to visit for a really long time. I am fascinated by the history of the palace and it didn’t let me down. I traveled there on the train and followed the signs to the palace, queuing up and buying a ticket to see everything when I arrived. My first impression was ‘wow, this is opulent!’ Even the gates are a stunning gold colour! Completely luxurious! The palace and gardens are absolutely huge. I wanted to see it all, so I was there for hours, wandering through every room, through the hall of mirrors and out into the gardens. You can see that they work really hard to maintain the palace and it was wonderful to see such an impressive part of French history.

louvre museum paris france

The day after that I visited the Louvre. I had already been on my trip last year, but we literally only went in to see the Mona Lisa and I didn’t get to see anything else. I’m so glad I was able to take more time in there on this visit, as it was absolutely mind blowing. Art may not be for everyone, but I don’t think anyone could fail to be impressed by the paintings in there. The imagery and detail is fantastic. I couldn’t even begin to imagine the work that must have gone into some of those!

The rest of my trip to Paris was spent on little explorations. I made a literary pilgrimage to Shakespeare and Company, an English bookshop located near Notre Dame Cathedral. I went shopping, spending probably too much time looking at make up in Sephora! I visited the famous ‘Love Lock’ bridge and spent time reading by the side of the river. I was very lucky with the weather. Paris is even more beautiful when the sun is shining.

i love paris france

When I came home, I felt wonderfully relaxed and cultured. I took my time and planned ahead of where I wanted to go, and I think that’s often the key when visiting anywhere. Paris is a city that could be anything. It is beautiful and historical, but also fashionable and cultured. I would urge anyone to pay a visit and make the city their own.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Hi, my name is Christina Crook. I’m 27 years old and currently working as a freelance writer. I love to travel and my wanderlust has grown rapidly over the last few years! I love to explore new places and am always mentally planning my next trip. I live in England and when I am not writing, I like to read, run and ride my bike.

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