Walk Down Memory Lane pt. 2~ Paris~ City of Love...

Category: , , , By Aleckii
As the days tick closer and closer to the 23rd of January, I can't help but feel a rush of excitement. For the 3rd year in a row now I'll be going off on another european trip, this time a new list of countries that I have never been to before.

But my travel plans will only be revealed in a later post, so shh....

Anyway, 2 years ago, around this time (late January 2006), I embarked on a bus tour of to a few European countries. Starting off with St. Petersburg, the bus took us to Finland, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands and then ending up in France, the City of Love. Until today, my memory of that trip to Paris, France still remain vivid in my mind.

But anyway I'll be sharing some tips with those of you who either will be visiting, or plan to visit France sometime in the future.

We started the day with a visit to the Basilica of Sacre Ceur, an amazing cathedral built on the montmarte hill. Imagine the construction for this building started at 1870's! The best thing was from the top of the hill, you can have a bird eye's view of Paris in all its glory. Of course, The Eiffel Tower can be seen crowning the skyline at a distance. There is this saying, there isn't a spot in Paris that you wouldn't be able to see the Eiffel Tower.

But really, if it were up to me, I'd BUILD MY HOUSE in front of the Eiffel Tower if I was allowed to!

We visited Eiffel tower around 8pm at night. By then, they had a shining display, where thousands of fluorescent bulb light up at once, then goes off totally, then shines again as it goes shining shimmering splendid. It was breathtaking. Too bad once we arrived at the 2nd floor (the peak was closed off due to renovation), it started to snow. I couldn't get a good grip on my camera because I was shivering all the while.

Another good option is to take a boat trip along the Seine River at night. It was sooo romantic! They played soft romantic music in the background, and around you you see all these magnificient grandeur that is Paris. I fell in love with Paris that moment itself!

Other highlights include:

the Twelfth Century Cathedral Notre Dame de Paris

The Arc de Triomphe,
built by Napoleon's man for him but only finished constructed 500 years after his death

A stroll (window shopping) down the Champs d-Élysées

Getting yourself lost in the maze that is the Louvre

Sneaking a shot of the Mona Lisa (cough... cough...)

a day trip to Versailles, the homes of past Kings and Queens

a visit to Moulin Rouge for a cabaret extravaganza

Not forgetting also, a day at Paris Disneyland. Man, I felt 10 years younger, walking in Disneyland to the tunes of 'Under the Sea' as we entered the themepark. I had such a great time I didn't want to leave!

Here we are posing at adventureland, in front of the Pirates of Carribean ride. Did you know that the Pirates of Carribean originally started as a ride at the Disneyland themepark? It was only later that they decided to make a movie based on its success.

Here is Mickey, signing a fan's autograph. I coudln't give a mickey (couldn't care less) about Mickey at that time because I was busy running from one corner of the theme park to the next, trying to get into the queues to some of the rides that they had.

French Fries do NOT originate from France, contrary to some common believes. My last year's visit to Belgium revealed that.

Croissant in France is amazing. It's funny that something as simple as a baked loaf of flour can taste sooo good. We had it for breakfast every single morning without fail. It was crunchy on the outside and heavenly soft in the inside. Plus when you serve it warm with jam spread... you'll guaranteed to have a Culinary Orgasm!

Knowing me, a budget traveller, I cannot afford eating each meal at just any restaurant. But we did, however, promised ourselves at least ONE good French meal, complete with appetizers, main courses, dessert and wine!

For the first time in my life, I got to taste escargot, or snails. Surprisingly? They were delicious! The flavour of the herbs combines nicely with the soft texture of the snail and it goes down smoothly with a sip of wine...

(I don't know about you, but I'm slobbering now...)

French people are a proud lot, in a good way. They are proud of their language, proud of their country, their unique culture and everything else French. And I love that about them. On the streets, it is extremely hard to find a French who can verse in English, but either way, they will stop and help, and some went to the extent of physically pointing the said area on the map.

A tip for people planning to visit France- go online and ask around, you can definitely find a list of words for basic survival in France.

Until now, I've got it memorized, 'Excusez moi? Parlez vous Anglais?' (Excuse me, do you speak english?)

You probably can research about this on yourself. We unfortunately stayed in a 3 star hotel located quite far from the city centre. However, recently I found this website which lists some Paris bed and breakfast, called B&B Paris. Through the website, you can find some information about some choices of accomdation in Paris. And I agree with what they say wholeheartedly, it's not only an accomodation, but the experience that count. People catering to your need, serving you delicious breakfasts... sigh... You can't beat that.

Hope that helps with those of you who yearn to search for a Bed and Breakfast options or Hotel Paris.

Go to Paris with an open mind, and you'll enjoy your trip. I did, and I hope this brief guide can help you guys.

au revoir!

7 comments so far.

  1. Starz in De Sky January 10, 2008 at 10:41 AM
    such a long post. i'm looking forward for my trip too.

    but for the mean time, i have to set my whole mind in studying surgery. hihi
  2. Sweetiepie January 10, 2008 at 2:06 PM
    wah!you really did the research before going for the trip.Paris is so beautiful.Is the snails expensive!!Does it cost alot to dine in a restaurant in paris?Thanks for the guide and info.:)
  3. Trinity January 11, 2008 at 3:45 AM
    I love to see those pictures! Seems that you guys were having fun! What subject do you study in Rusia? Medical student like Ingrid?
  4. Aleckii January 11, 2008 at 4:58 AM
    starz in de sky: Good luck! I should have already studied my paeds exam by now but I haven't started yet. Keep getting distracted. :(

    sweetiepie: Paris IS beautiful. One of the most beautiful places I've ever been in my life!
    You're welcomes. The snails weren't that expensive, actually. I honestly can't remember the cost of the dinner now!

    Trinity: Yeah we did, we had the time of our life there! I am also doing medicine in Russia, yes. Ingrid's my senior!
  5. Pailine January 12, 2008 at 3:43 AM
    I am definitely gonna visit France somedays thanks for the guide ;P i was slobbering when you spoke of the "frenchsnails" and croissant ;P
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