Destination: Paris, France
Local attractions: culture, gastronomy, shopping, history, art
Accommodation: Airbnb (Montmartre)
Transport: walking + public transport
Dates: July 3-4, 2019
The final stop of our honeymoon trip was none other than the city of love, Paris! ❤ Having been to Paris twice before (2008 and 2011), I had already done and seen the major attractions, but Alex had never been.
We took a very short flight (about 1h30) from Barcelona to Paris Orly and arrived at our Airbnb in Montmartre around midday. I highly recommend the Airbnb we stayed at; the host was great, the place was nice, clean, comfortable and had AC, the price was right and the location quite convenient. The only negative comment I have is that I wouldn’t qualify the area as the safest one in Paris (we were a 5 minute walk from Gare du Nord / La Chapelle) ; I’m not entirely certain I would have felt safe staying there alone and walking around alone at night. Day time however was totally fine.
Day 1: Restaurant Center Food, Montmartre, Sacré-Coeur, Restaurant La Poulet Au Pot, Tour Eiffel
Our first stop was a lunch stop, at a place called Center Food, which was an interesting mix of pretty much every cuisine from Turkey to India you could possibly think of. I opted for a naan tandoori chicken wrap (which had cheese inside – interesting, wasn’t expecting that) and Alex went for a chicken biryani. Both were good and satisfying.
Afterwards, we took a quick nap, before heading out for the rest of the afternoon/evening. We (I) got lost on our way to Sacré-Coeur, but finally made it 40 mins later (after what should have been an 17 minutes walk). We came up from the “right side” (if you’re facing it) and there were soo many stairs and no elevator (there’s an elevator that takes you up most of the way from the “front” side and costs about 2 euros).
After checking out the Sacré-Coeur from the outside, we went back down from the “front side” and continued strolling through the streets of Montmartre – its shops, restaurants and cafés – which were charming. We took a small break at one of these cute bistros and enjoyed a quick apéro.
We continued walking and made our way down to a metro and pretty much got out on the other side of Pont Alexandre III, which is a very beautiful bridge with views of the Eiffel Tower. We also passed by the Grand Palais & Petit Palais, which are right in front of each other. As we crossed the Alexander III bridge, we came upon a large open space, with locals playing volleyball and having picnics on the grass. As we kept walking, we walked into what seemed more of a business area and decided to have dinner at La Poule Au Pot which was excellent. We enjoyed a “Greek-style” salad, pan-seared foie gras, steak and andouille.
After dinner, we kept making our way towards the Eiffel Tower, which you could follow from a distance. We chose not to go up (I’d already been up twice) and instead admired it from different sides, from the river and from a merry-go-round. Alex absolutely wanted to see it lit up, so we stuck around till about 10pm to see it glow and glisten.
Day 2: Musée du Louvre, Jardin des Tuileries, Champs Élysées, Arc de Triomphe, Restaurant Le Servan
Day 2 saw us off to an early start and the latest end of our trip. We made our way to the Louvre by metro and stopped at a nearby bakery/pastry shop for some breakfast: croque monsieur, pastry and coffee for me. We then headed to the Louvre and visited for more than 3 hours the exhibits that interested us the most: Greek-Etruscan-Roman antiquities, Italian paintings, Egyptian Antiquities, Decorative arts and the History of the Louvre.
After the Louvre, we slowly made our way towards l’Arc de Triomple, with various stops along the way: l’Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, a stroll through le Jardin des Tuileries, a quick electric scooter ride through les Jardins des Champs-Élysées and a lunch stop at a market.
Later on in the evening, we met up with my friend Chris who has been living in Myanmar for the past two years, at our friend Mikey’s new job/restaurant: Le Servan! Le Servan is a 1 Michelin star restaurant (maybe? I keep finding conflicting information) located in the 11e arrondissement of Paris and offers Asian fusion French cuisine. Don’t let yourself be fooled by the simplicity of the menu; every dish we ordered was amazing (except the tuna dish but that’s just cause I’m not a huge fan of tuna) and full of flavours and textures. We opted for 6 dishes to share between the three of us (2 entrées and 4 mains) plus a bottle of mousseux: moules, piment basilic Thaï – tartare de boeuf, céleri, piment, cacahuètes – thon rouge et aubergine laquée – poitrine de cochon confite (pork belly), salade de haricots, sauce XO – girolles de correze poêlées, amandes fraîches, mozzarella grillée, jus de viande – homard, beurre de corail, pommes de terre nouvelles au piment fumé. Everything was excellent, but the lobster was my number one; it was more likely the best lobster dish I’ve ever had. The lobster was cooked to perfection (not underdone and not overly rough), tasted great and was covered in such a delightful, rich, buttery and amazing sauce.
After dinner, we hung out for a bit at a bar called Les Enfants Terribles and enjoyed a nice bottle of sauvignon blanc.
Day 3: Notre-Dame, Quartier Latin, Saint-Étienne-du-Mont, Panthéon, Jardin du Luxembourg, Montmartre
Day 3 in Paris was our last day in Paris and also the final day of our honeymoon! Our flight back home was only at about 4pm, so that gave us all morning to keep exploring Paris.
We headed straight for Notre-Dame, even though most of it is gone, Alex still wanted to see what remains. The front part with its two huge column-like towers and immense stained glass windows is still standing (cause its made of stone) but almost everything else is gone.
We kept walking along the Seine and ventured into the Quartier Latin. We stopped at La Maison d’Isabelle for breakfast, who won the 2018 best croissant award. Of course, we got a croissant (or two) to test them out and they were very good indeed. Unfortunately, my croissant knowledge is not that great so I couldn’t tell the difference between their croissant and all the other ones we’d eaten in two weeks in France.
We continued strolling through the Quartier Latin, until we reached Saint-Étienne-du-Mont church and the Panthéon. From there, we walked towards and through le Jardin du Luxembourg, with its many statues of French queens. Afterwards, we caught a metro back to Montmartre for a last touristy shopping spree and a last rose gelato cone from Amorino.