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Travel: a Weekend in Paris

Travel Jan 26, 2015

paris travel guide

Or to be more precise, a long weekend in Paris. Late last year I was lucky enough to travel to the city of lights to work with Paris Airport – more on that to come! Not being one to waste an opportunity, Ben and I decided to make a long weekend of it, taking time out to visit our favourite Paris places, and discovering some new ones along the way.  And in case you’re pondering your next visit, recent heartbreaking events in this gorgeous city hasn’t dimmed my urge to immerse myself in Paris, rather made me want to go more in order to support the people and place itself.

I visited Paris a handful of times when I was living in London, so on this particular trip we were all immersing ourselves in gorgeous neighbourhoods, trying to eat, drink and shop like locals. You all gave such great recommendations it was hard to decide where to start!

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay, for this trip we stayed behind the Champs- Elysees, which was centrally located, however to be honest not my favourite area. To be honest, accommodation in Paris is so incredibly expensive and (unless you spend a mountain) not usually all that nice, so if I was you I would either book a nice hotel early (like, a year in advance) so you can get a good rate, or (my choice) go for something like an Airbnb. I prefer the Marais district if you’re trying to decide where to stay!

Day 1 – Tuileries & Le Marais

On our first day, we did some series walking! We started our hotel near the Champs-Elysees and walked down through the Tuileries (check out the Lourve if you haven’t already). After wandering the gardens and the start of the Autumn and the turning of the leaves, we wandered over to Claus for our second breakfast. You’re in paris! Live a little! Next we checked out the gorgeous arcade called Galerie Vero Dodat, which is pretty much across the street from Claus. We then started the trek walking over to the Marais area (it turned out to be quite a long walk, but we needed it). We stropped off at Pompidou on the way and checked out a few of the exhibits, although there wasn’t a whole lot on.  We then finally arrived at the Marais! You could get the Metro for this trek but walking was just what we wanted. Traditionally the gothic or Jewish quarter, the Marais area (3rd and 4th arrondissements) has so much character and life in the streets it’s hard not to fall utterly in love as soon as you see it. The old buildings make you really want to have an eat pray love moment and just move there! We pretty much walked ever lovely street, popping into Merci and then went to warm and cosy Glou for lunch. Delicious!  After a very large bottle of wine we wandered over to the Place Des Vosges, taking a moment on the lovely bench seats to digest. I then did a little shopping in the streets around the Place, namely Delphine and a few of the vintage stores around like  Free ‘P’ Star and Coiffeur Vintage. The area also has lots of other gorgeous boutiques and shops and is perfect if you love to pick up some pretty things. We then headed back to the hotel (via taxi, feet were killing!) and got ready for an amazing dinner at La Bossonnerie (highly recommended). What a day!

Day 2 – Flea Markets and Canal Saint-Martin

Being addicts of vintage furniture markets, the Marché aux Puces has always been high up on my list of things to do. So we dedicated a large chunk of day two to this experience – one of the BEST markets I have ever seen or been to. I lived in Paris my whole house would be full to the brim with gorgeous wares. As it was we bought a few small pieces, and got a few bigger ones shipped (we’re still waiting haha!). I’ll definitely do a longer post with tips and tricks for doing thee markets so stay tuned, but needless to say we needed a bottle of wine and steak frites for lunch to get through it all. After that, we jumped on the metro and headed over to the Canal Saint Martin area, wandering the gorgeous canal which you might recognise from Amelie, and ending up at this utterly amazing warehouse bar/cafe called Le Comptoir Général, you MUST go if you are ever there. If you’re hungry when you’re in this area I would also recommend Hotel Du Nord which is on the canal and we ate at last time we were there.

Day 3 – Long Sunday Brunches and the odd Gallery

We started at the markets Marche des Enfants Rouges for breakfast, checking out all the yummy fresh produce first and then eating across the road at lovely Cafe Charlot – a lovely Parisian cafe. We then got the Metro down to the amazing Gallery of Palentologie which is in the Jardin Des Plantes, AMAZING! Honestly, one the best things I have ever seen. We wandered the gardens a little before heading back over the Seine (what a beautiful river!) over the two islands, stopping for a very lunch lunch at Saint Regis. We then headed over to Saint Germain to spend the afternoon in their produce market (although it was pretty much closed up by the time we got there), so we just wandered the streets. Finally, we walked back towards our hotel, and snapped a pretty view of the Eiffel Tower. We topped it all off with dinner at Andy Wahloo, the Moroccan part of the restaurant for a little bit of a change from steak frites.

Autumn in the Tuileries

Cafe Camille in the Marais

Galerie Vero Dodat

Nothing like a day in the gardens of the Palais Royal

A little souvenir…

Walks along the Seine

Cafe life in Paris

Brunch at Claus

Let’s imagine, for a minute, that we live here. *sigh*

Step off the south west corner of the Place Des Vosages and you’ll find this beauty.

It was a bit too chilly for sitting out, but I remember how nice it was in Summer!

Casual travel outfits – comfort is key in Paris because you’re going to be doing a lot of walking…

Always on that metro 🙂

Marché aux Puces, my favourite place in Paris. More on this soon!

The changing of the leaves.

Book lined walkways at Merci

Place des Vosges

Merci!

The gorgeous passage around Place Des Vosges

A quiet corner of Le Comptoir Général

The Gallery of Palaeontology

Place des Vosges

Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out my guides to Sardinia, Hanoi, New Zealand, and my travel board on Pinterest here!

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