Paris is always a good idea
My first time in France and in Paris was in 2006 when I was still in junior high school and I went for a short exchange with students from local high school. To be honest I didn’t really fell in love with this city that time, maybe because it was an organized group trip so I had to follow the guide. I was much more impressed by small towns, especially in the Loire Valley. Anyway I felt I need to go back to give Paris a second chance. In March, when I was already back from Erasmus, struggling with back-to-school reality, I walked to Daria’s room and asked her: what if we go somewhere sometime soon? She was more than up for that and within an hour we had tickets to Paris booked and four other friends convinced to do the same. As Paris is one of the world’s most popular destinations I am not going to show anything surprising, just some photos and favourite places. And the fact that the city might be slightly overrated doesn’t make it less beautiful and interesting in many ways.
Althought I wasn’t very excited about my first visit to Paris 9 years ago I remembered that my absolutely favourite place in the city was Basilica Sacre-Coeur on Montmartre and that is why we picked a place to stay just in front of the church. It was so cool to go there in the evening as well as early in the morning the next days. First evening we spent totally on Montmartre checking Place Pigalle, Moulin Rouge, walking here and there, getting lost and just enjoying the beauty of Paris at night. We also took metro to walk around Eiffel Tower in lights and ended up drinking wine around the corner.
Another day was a sightseeing day and it would be just perfect if it wasn’t raining all day. Anyway we took a typical path on Champs Elysees, starting from Arc de Triomphe, photographing the sights and walking around. Louvre was included but just to chill outside. I was quite dissapointed by Pompidou Centre as I always thought it is something more spectacular. It maybe it was just the rain… Notre-Dame was a great escape from the rain but due to weather we coulnd’t really enjoy Jardin du Luxembourg. Pantheon was under construction and it seemed that we are not supposed to see the whole beauty of the city. Although some of us have already been to Paris, it was more impressive now, being on our own, than travelling with parents or guided tour. I also had a funny coincidence meeting a friend, firstly met in Zagreb, in the bus from the airport, so I was very happy to had a chance to explore a bit with a local person. Crepes included but generally French cuisine is not my favourite (very hard to beat Indian). Our stay was quite short and we had to go back on the third day but we managed to take some typical pictures in front of Eiffel Tower. Obviously we had some culinary trips in the city but nothing really worth mentioning. I have visited a few famous parisian museums during my previous visit and this time we skipped them in order to wander all days.
The thing I like the most in France is definitely the beautiful language, it was hard to learn for me but I really enjoy listening to people who speak it. Apart from Paris I have visited Stasbourg, Saint Mont Michel, Angers and a small city of Pouille where we stayed during the exchange in 2006. I have also been to some villages on wine tasting tours and went for a trip down the Loire Valley, visiting historical towns and stunning castles. Since everything mentioned is located in the northern parts of France I am really willing to go explore South. I hope it will happen soon 🙂
Out way back to the airport in Beauvais was also pleasant. Usually I do not visit cities that low cost airlines fly to but this time our taxi driver showed us a little of the town which was actually very nice. Suprisingly in this not very big city we have seen a big beautiful gothic cathedral.