Thursday, 9 February 2017

BIRTHDAY TRIP TO PARIS

At the end of last month I was lucky enough to be taken to one of my favourite cities ever, Paris. My amazing boyfriend surprised me with the trip after Christmas and I felt so so spoilt and grateful to be going. I've already uploaded a few pictures from the trip on my Instagram (@instyleofemily), but wanted to write a more detailed post on here about what we got up to. We made sure to plan out each day before the trip to make sure we made the most out of our 4 days there. I feel like we packed everything in that we wanted to do and more, so thought it might be useful to write a mini 4-day guide to Paris in case you're thinking of going.


DAY 1:
We arrived to Paris around lunchtime and so decided to just spend the rest of the day exploring the area around our hotel after we had checked in, which was Montmartre. This is where the Sacré-Cour cathedral is and also the Moulin Rouge which is definitely something that I wanted to pass by. We also stopped for multiple hot chocolates because it was freezing (and I love hot chocolate - so any excuse!) The hotel was really quirky and cute and had lots of features inspired by Rudyard Kipling's travels, hence the hotel being called Hotel R.Kipling (would definitely recommend and it has great travel links to other places around the city - the perfect base).





DAY 2:
This was my actual birthday day! We had planned all the best things to do for today which included some of the biggest sites. We started off the day at Place de la Concorde which is a huge public square in Paris and starts off the Champs-Elysées which is probably the most famous road in Paris. We walked from one end of the road to the other - admiring all of the beautiful shops along the way of course (and a cheeky Sephora stop-off) and then ended up at the Arc de Triomphe. 




We went up the Arc de Triomphe despite the snow (yes, it actually snowed as it was THAT cold) and looked at the amazing views from up there. After that it was time for a lunch-stop, and we just wandered around the area until we saw something that took our fancy. Then it was onto the Eiffel Tower. We didn't unfortunately go up as it was quite foggy and the top was closed anyway, but we strolled along the river and went over to the Trocadéro which is an amazing viewing area for the Eiffel Tower (where you see those cliché Instagram pics being taken- and yes I got some too obviously).





After we had spent some time around the Eiffel Tower, I decided that I wanted to get some cake of some sort, seeing as it was my birthday. Then I remembered that I had seen so many recommendations for a place called Angelina's. It was quite a walk back from where we were at that point, back towards the Place de la Concorde that we started the day off at, but it was so worth it. They served the most amazing afternoon tea with macaroons and a selection of different cakes to choose from and the best hot chocolate I have EVER had - it was basically a pudding. It felt like something out of Beauty and the Beast with the beautiful gold decor and dainty tea cups. It was definitely a dream and finished off my birthday perfectly..



 DAY 3:
First up on the agenda for the third day was The Louvre. I feel like you can't come to Paris and not visit that amazing museum - especially for all the iconic pictures inside. The museum is a sight itself with the incredible architecture even if you don't have time to go inside. We spent about 2 hours inside and saw some different exhibitions and of course went to look at the famous Mona Lisa painting - which quite frankly I don't really like.



After the museum we stopped off for a crêpe nearby as a snack and headed towards the Notre Dame. This is probably my favourite building in Paris because its next to the river and just has such a grand feel about it. We went inside and walked up hundreds of stairs to go to the top of the tower which was another incredible view of the city. I have to say, even though I'm not scared of heights, it's really really high, especially the second level of the viewing platform which gives you a 360 view of the city - amazing but kinda scary!




DAY 4:
On the last day we didn't have a full day as we had to head back home early evening, so we headed out early to make the most of the morning. We first visited Jardin du Luxembourg which consists of amazing gardens to stroll through as well as a huge mansion house/palace. Luckily the weather was lovely and sunny on this day which meant we could have a nice walk around the gardens and the fountain and take our time.



After another hot chocolate stop, we decided to head back towards the Louvre area and have a walk along the River Seine to take in the views and see where we ended up. I also really wanted to visit the Chanel boutique which was one of the first ever opened, because why not?! Chanel is gorgeous and especially in Paris! As we were walking towards the Chanel store, we passed through the Palais-Royal which led onto some beautiful tree-lined gardens. The Chanel store was amazing as I had imagined it would be (sadly I left empty handed), but it was beautiful to see. 




One more hot chocolate stop to finish off an amazing 4 days and we headed back home. I'm so grateful for Charlie taking me back to one of my favourite cities (despite the freezing cold), and it was definitely an amazing way to spend my 23rd birthday! Let me know what your favourite cities are or if there are any places in Paris that we should have visited but missed...always looking to go back and discover new things to do.
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