After getting engaged in ‘The City of Love’ two years ago, Paris has undoubtedly become my favourite European city. Aside from the obvious romantic connection there are a million-and-one things about it that I just absolutely adore – from the architecture to the food, the landmarks to the shopping, and the live music to the street art. So, when I was asked to spend a whirlwind one day in Paris, I couldn’t turn it down.
After spending the Friday night in the Hotel Russell, London in order to make my 9am Eurostar to France, I was ready and raring to go – especially after a great Full English breakfast! I met up with the lovely Eurostar reps outside the Business Premier office (travelling in style!) and the other 20 people that were excited to be going on the trip. Having never used the Eurostar before, and with my massive fear of flying, I was delighted at how smooth the check-in was. Definitely my mode of transport for any future French travel!
Arriving into Paris after just 2 hours 15 minutes I had my camera at the ready, itching to explore the city. We’d booked hop-on-hop-off city sightseeing tickets in advance, which in hindsight was a brilliant idea and really helped us see as much as we could in just 5 hours! One of the highlights of the trip was the Paris Plage – an annual event where 2km of Paris’ main roads are turned into beautiful sandy beaches along the River Seine. Bustling with music, swimming pools, petanque, table football and who knows what else, it was a brilliant atmosphere and rather surreal.
First stop on the bus tour was Le Musée du Louvre. Now, I’ve seen pictures and videos and obviously I’ve seen the Da Vinci Code, but nothing prepared me for how stunning the building was in real life. As a bit of an architectural geek, I was pretty much in heaven. Unfortunately so were about 10,000 other people, so it was back on the bus and onto Notre Dame, which I visited the last time I was there…at night time…with very few people around…so it was nice to see it in the daylight and enjoy its impressive design.
We lunched on the Champs Elyseé in full view of the Arc du Triomphe, somehow managing to find the only Danish restaurant in Paris, Restaurant Flora Danica. It was nice nonetheless. We hopped back on the bus to make our way over to the main reason most people come to the city – The Eiffel Tower – with some stunning bridges, columns, museums, shops and views of the river along the way. Crêpes were on the menu as soon as we got to the tower, with Nutella chocolate and strawberries. As you’ll see with my upcoming video they were very enjoyable. The Eiffel Tower itself was breath-taking as always, although this time I wasn’t getting forced to all the way to the top! The fabulous weather made the day even better. It doesn’t get much better than eating crêpes underneath the Eiffel Tower in 27 degrees.
For a final flourish we headed back to the Paris Plage for an ice cold beer and a bit of sunbathing beside the river. In all honesty, I would never have thought that ‘Paris in a Day’ was possible or even worthwhile, but now I’ve done it I can truly say it is! Obviously it’s much better to spend as long as you can there, but don’t discount Paris as a brilliant day trip – especially if you’re already visiting London! The Eurostar was faultless, the bus tickets were ideal and the city is one-of-a-kind. Give it a go and see for yourself!