Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wrap-Up: Paris Favorites & Surprises

Actual date of this event: 26-31 December

Before I move on to write about our experience in Belgium, I have to wrap-up Paris or else I will forget those small details that caught me by surprise that I want to remember...

My Favorites:
1.) Eiffel Tower at night - it really is magical! It is the symbol of Paris and it is just amazing to see while it sparkles. Especially with your hubby by your side! Luke and I are by any means romantic, but seeing the Eiffel Tower added a touch of that.
2.) The Catacombs of Paris - such a unique experience that I would recommend everyone attempt to see at some point in their lifetime.
3.) Street Lights - I just loved the lights strung between building on so many different streets.
4.) Wine on cafe patios - the weather for our trip was in the low 50's during the day and low 40's at night. All of the cafes have heat lamps on their patios so you can sit comfortably outside while enjoying your drink. There were actually a few times that I needed to take off my jacket because I got too warm.
5.) Sainte Chapelle - Seriously, the most beautiful stained glass I have ever seen.
6.) Hanging out with Luke :-)

What I was Surprised By:
1.) Not Rude - If you have been to the German/Austrian/Bavarian area of Europe and you didn't feel that the locals were too rude to you, then you should have no problems in Paris. Compared to our Bavarian trip, the French were super kind!
2.) Metro System - I think about how many cities (ahem, Houston) in the States would be so much more awesome if there was a mass public transportation system that people actually used. It makes getting around so easy!
3.) Smokers - There are lots of smokers in Paris, but we never once experienced an issue with smoke indoors.
4.) Military - In areas of town with lots of people, you will find military men walking around with their machine guns in their arms ready to fire. It was pretty frightening, but I am sure that was the point. There was no way I was going to do anything to make one of those babies go off.
5.) Pick-Pocketers - Not that I have traveled to a bunch of places, but everywhere I have been so far, I have read warnings of pick-pocketers, but I have not once have I felt like pick pocketing was in action. Within the first 30 minutes of being in Paris, I felt like people around me were either in danger of it or people were trying to do it. It happened multiple times throughout the trip. Luke and I were always very aware of the bags on our backs and the things in our pockets.
6.) Visitors - Paris was PACKED! I am assuming that the Christmas and New Year holiday is a high tourist time in Paris since beautiful Christmas lights are displayed all over. Luckily, the tourist seemed in a fairly holly jolly mood and no one was too wacko.

Next Time:
Next time we come back to Paris, we hope to visit the downtown area where the high rises are located. The district of La Défense (skyscraper business area), was on our list this time, but we didn't have time for it. I would also like to do some of our day trips that we had as back-up: Orleans, Chartres, Giverny, Chantilly, St Denis, and I would like to go back to Versailles to explore the town. We plan to one day do a French road trip through the wine country where we can experience the greatness of French wines and take a cooking class! But our next French adventure is skiing in the alps!
'Adventure Photo' Morzine
Is there anything that we did not do in Paris that is on your Paris list?

Other Posts from Paris: Day 1Eiffel TowerDay 2CatacombesVersailles, Day 4Wrap-Up

Paris has over 150 museums and more than 400 parks.


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