Baguettes, all-black outfits, architecture, crepes, gardens and history. A few things that one of my favorite city in the world does best in my opinion.
I first fell in love with Paris when I took a tour of Europe after graduating college. There’s just something in the Parisian air (and it’s not the smell of cigarette smoke or fresh bread) that’s irresistible to me. Read on to let me take you through my favorite parts of Paris and suggest a few things for you to do along the way.
You’ll most likely arrive in the morning if you’re headed to Paris from America. Overnight flights can be dreadful, but try to stay awake as long as possible the first day so you can get on a new sleeping schedule. Spend your day taking a lazy walk down the Champs Élysées, a trip to the famous Ladurée for some authentic macarons and a stop at a café off the beaten path for a nice, light dinner. After that, go to literally any convenience store, pick up a bottle of wine and hop on a Seine river cruise for a relaxing to end your first night. There’s nothing more magical than seeing the sun set over Paris followed by the Eiffel Tower glittering against the dark purple of the Parisian night.
I suggest a little sleep in on day two before heading out to explore again. This time, head straight to the Eiffel Tower. You’ll get to snap the typical “I’m in Paris” photo and you’ll be able to scout out the best possible place for when you return that evening for your wine, cheese, apple and cracker picnic that evening. After you stake out your spot, the day is yours. Head to any of the amazing museums that Paris holds, stroll the Tuileries Gardens, head to the top of the Arc de Triomphe for the best view you’ll ever get of Paris, stop by a crepe cart, put your lock on one of the Love Lock bridges (only if allowed!), walk around a flower market, or take the Metro down to the Notre Dame to fulfill all of your hunchback fantasies.
Another way to spend the day is venturing out to Versailles. If you consider yourself a fan of history, if you really like fancy things, or if you have an obsession with palaces (raise your hand if all three apply), then you’ll fall in love with Versailles. It’s a day trip, so eat a big breakfast, be prepared to walk a LOT and make sure your camera is fully charged for pictures. I suggest taking the train out there, the cab fare is astronomical.
If you STILL aren’t sure what you want to do in Pairs or you’ve officially done everything I’ve already listed and need more to do, I’ve got you covered. You can go to the Place de la Concorde to see where many, many, many people lost their heads (gross), take a trip to Montmartre, head to the Luxembourg Gardens, explore the Latin Quarter, take a peek into the Père Lachaise Cemetery to see the graves of famous people like Oscar Wilde and Jim Morrison, stop by the Place de la Bastille, or if you’re in the mood for something particularly creepy, venture into the Catacombs.
There’s honestly no shortage of things to do in Paris and I strongly recommend that you try to get to as many things as possible. Remember to take your time, eat as many baguettes and as much cheese as you can, and enjoy your time in one of the most beautiful cities in the world – I’ll be waiting to hear how much you loved it.