We just got back from a trip that we’ve been planning for the better part of a year – our grand, fantastic, European road trip! When the euro started to become comparable to the dollar, we started planning a trip overseas, especially when I could combine it with a trip to Disneyland Paris, crossing one of the top items of our bucket list off. We debated for months about locations, and how long to stay, before settling on a 9 day itinerary: flying into Paris, spending a day in Paris, a day in Disneyland Paris, and then making our way through different parts of France, Switzerland, and Italy by car.
One of the questions we get asked the most is how we travel so frequently, and I would like to reiterate that we are not trust fund babies (and yes, we do get accused of it!). We flew to Europe using Airline Miles from our loyalty program, and only had to pay fees on the flight (about $300). I will go over why I think it’s so imperative to have an airlines credit card if you want to travel frequently, and how we maximize ours in another blog.
We arrived in Paris after our overnight flight at 6 am, and had booked a car to get into the city. We were able to check into our hotel early, because the concierge took pity on our tired, jet-lagged souls. Paris is a beautiful, complicated city, and something we learned from our last trip there was to spend the extra money to stay somewhere that’s not sketchy. On our last trip several years ago, we were in a cheap hotel that fit our budget at the time, and I spent the whole trip terrified. We loved our hotel this time (check it out here), especially the complimentary French espresso, and beautiful views overlooking the city.
We knew that we couldn’t waste the day sleeping (WE WILL BEST YOU, JET LAG!), so we headed out of our hotel after freshening up, and grabbed an Uber to a different part of town, in search of more caffeine and French pastries. The weather was overcast, but nothing could drag us down (1D, anyone..?) when we stumbled upon Le Boulanger Des Invalide. This patisserie had some of the best pastries we’ve ever had, and fantastic cafe cremes as well.
After getting our breakfast fill, we started a leisurely walk through Paris, turning our attention towards one of our favorite spots – the Tuileries Gardens and the grounds of the Louvre. This garden is BEAUTIFUL, filled with minty-colored, leafy trees, fountains, ponds, and statues of conquering heroes. It’s the kind of place you could get lost for a while, or bring a book and just sit.
We walked through the Tuileries, then headed down to the Seine River and walked it’s banks, taking our time, and taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of Paris as we went. We crossed a ‘Love Lock’ Bridge as we walked and impulsively decided to add a lock of our own to the bridge, just as we did on our honeymoon three years ago.
After finding our way to the Rue Cler outdoor market, we picked up everything we needed for a Parisian picnic from the small shops that lined the street. We took our small feast to the feet of the Eiffel tower and snacked under its shade.
We finally gave into jetlag after our lunch, and headed back to our hotel for a short nap. After our nap (and more coffee), we headed back to the streets of Paris. We walked back through the grounds of the Louvre, and wandered some flower marts, where we picked up some gorgeous peonies.
An Uber picked us up from there and took us to the Sacred Heart, a cathedral on a hill north of the city center, and walked a million stairs to get to the top, where we were rewarded with a brilliant view of the whole city. After walking through the cobblestone streets next to the cathedral, we sat down for dinner at a tiny cafe near the Sacred Heart, where we feasted on duck, lamb, and fois gras.
Our last stop of the night was back to the Eiffel Tower, to watch its nightly show, as it sparkled and danced, looking like an exploding champagne bottle, spilling out and bubbling over–golden and glittery and magical.
Shop my look from my night out in Paris here: