24 Hours in Paris | A Paris Travel Guide

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It’s been a while since I last mentioned anything Parisian on the blog. After living there for 4 months I think I needed a bit of a break. Well it’s been several years since my last visit, but last week I found myself in Paris again. The problem? I only had 24 hours! You know me, whenever I visit somewhere I like to do as much as possible. That’s a given. I also like to share my adventures with everyone on my blog…

So here’s my Paris travel guide to help you through your 24 hours in the City of Love!

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24 Hours in Paris: A Paris Travel Guide

  1. Stay at: The Pullman Hotel, Eiffel Tower
    • Not only is the location amazing – it’s right next door to the Eiffel Tower! I dare you to find a better view from a hotel window.
  2. Have breakfast at: Cafe Kitsune, Palais Royale
    • If you’re anything like me, then you need a coffee to get you going in the morning. What better way to do this then in the gorgeous surroundings of Palais Royale. You’ll find Cafe Kitsune hidden in the 17th century arcade, with seating in the gardens.
  3. Take a photo at Les Deux Plateaux (Colonnes de Buren)
    • This controversial art piece is only a minute walk from Cafe Kitsune – I do like to make it easy for you, don’t I. Whether you’re a fan or not, this candy cane-esque installation leaves an impression. It’s pretty popular with locals and tourists alike, thanks to being so damn Instagrammable.
  4. Have lunch at: Aki Boulanger, Rue Saint Anne
    • This Japanese-French bakery-cum-cafe boasts some delicious treats, and is only a 10 minute walk from Opera metro station. You’ll find plenty of savoury and sweet food, all with nods towards the French location, and Japanese heritage. Think matcha mille-feuilles.
  5. Walk around Avenue de l’Opéra
    • It’s a beautiful part of Paris, which features some amazing architecture, and plenty of cafes and stores. Galeries Lafayette and Sephora are also nearby, and are a must-visit for any beauty or fashion fans.
  6. Have dinner at the local brasserie
    • You don’t get much more French than a brasserie, and luckily they’re an affordable way to try some decent, traditional French food. You’ll find them dotted around most streets. Chose the one with the bevy of Parisians sat outside, take a seat, and people watch.
  7. Stay up and watch the light show
    • After dark, the Eiffel Tower lights up every hour, on the hour. It’s a spectacular sight, and well worth waiting up for.

Feel free to leave your own Paris recommendations in the comments.
And don’t forget to check out my other travel posts.
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Travel Photo Diary: A Belated Slice of Heaven

A few days ago I realised that I never finished my Chamonix travel diary which made me equal parts nostalgic and annoyed (with myself; because I should have done it 4 months ago). So I decided to dust off the photos and finally put them up. If anything they’ll offer a sweet reminder of what’s to come when Britain finally decides to end it’s childish fight with the sun – flowers, clear skies and light, glorious light!

Chamonix Travel Diary: Part 7

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As a little treat Ben took my up La Flégère, one of his old snowboarding haunts. I’d been reading about how picturesque it was, and I was sad that I’d missed a photo tour by a local photographer, so he decided we’d recreate our own photo walk. During ski season this is a well frequented spot, however in Summer it becomes a haven for wildlife and flowers. Walking around the mountain lakes and looking out into the distance at Mer de Glace was spectacular. I didn’t put my camera down once. A lot of the flowers were beginning to wither, but we got some pretty lovely photos anyway. Although it was the lake with a mountain view that really took my breath away. It reminded me of just how beautiful Chamonix really is, and how lucky I am to have experienced it.

Chamonix Travel Diary: Part 6

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It’s been just over two weeks since we returned from Chamonix, and already I’m craving French food and long walks in the mountains. My nostalgia got me thinking; what better way to remedy my withdrawal symptoms than with a blog post? I have yet to publish the photo diaries from my last few days in France, so now seemed as good a time as any.

A walk alongside the river to La Praz is perfect for a mild day in Chamonix. We headed back via train and wound up in our favourite omelette restaurant…yes an entire restaurant dedicated to omelettes. Afterwards we went for another walk around the outskirts of town, and to the mountainerring/crystal museum. Unfortunately it seemed as though we chose the worst time to leave as we were greeted with torrential rain. So we ran through town, ducking and hiding under canopies before deciding that cake and hot chocolate were in store. After only a few minutes of nibbling on a Mont Blanc we had already forgotten about our wet clothes and the impending walk back to the apartment.

Chamonix Travel Diary: The Foodie Factor

One day in particular I found myself taking more than my usual share of food photos, so I thought I’d round them all up in one post. Whether it’s a sweet snack, or a regional speciality I always have time for French food.

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day (although I beg to differ) but it’s not always easy to choose what to eat. The typical French breakfast is simple; croissant, maybe a pain au chocolate, bread, butter and jam. It’s a carb overload, but boy is it satisfying. Fresh French bread can not be beaten, and even though I’m not a convert to croissants, I don’t mind this particular offering.

Bread does leave me slightly full though, so instead of a ‘proper’ lunch I opted for an English take on a French favourite – macarons with tea. The French supermarkets may carry a wide selection of teas, but I can never find a particularly decent one, usually having to settle for imported British tea. How English is that? I can’t even last a week without a cup of tea. Anyway, I do enjoy pairing teas with sweet snacks such as cake or chocolate, but macarons have to be one of my all time favourites. Can you believe I originally discovered this amazing treat in Japan, not France? I don’t know how I’d managed to miss them for all those years, but it was the Japanese who wowed me with their own unique versions. True, matcha and sakura are not your typical flavours in France, but I can always go for pistache, cafe, or chocolat.

Now as for dinner…

The overuse of cheese to some, is complete heaven to me. I’ve always loved cheese and would gladly give up all other foods for it. So of course a fondue was on the cards whilst we were in Chamonix. In fact fondue is always on the cards in this particular region. It’s a speciality, and you’ll find it in almost every restaurant. Some do it better than others (I speak from experience), and it doesn’t just come with bread (I always recommend potatoes and ham). You’ll probably want to share with someone, although I’ve tackled one by myself and come out alive on the other side. Speaking of the other side… after all that cheese you may want something a bit sweeter, and my personal favourite is Coupe Mont Blanc – an almost sickeningly sweet ice cream dessert topped with pureed chestnut and cream. It’s safe to say I’ve been hunting it down in London since I first had it several years ago. Alas I have had no luck so I knew I had to have it during our trip. Our waiter winked at me as he place the dessert in front of me. It was as if he knew I’d waited a whole year for this…so he’d given me a whole years worth to eat. Everyone around me laughed (with me), but little did they know I’d easily demolish it…and demolish it I did.

OOTD: Monochrome Madness

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Top* – New Look | Jeans – Topshop | Sneakers* – New Look | Bag* – Oasap
 
I could so easily fall into the crowd in London whilst wearing this outfit. I’d disappear and all that would be left is the tale of a girl with too many striped shirts. Thankfully in Chamonix there is a distinct lack of monochrome (oh hey super bright sports gear), and stereotypes aside, I’ve not spotted anyone wearing Breton stripes…unless I count my own reflection. Truth be told though, I’m not one to care if someone is wearing the same outfit as me. There are far more important things in life to worry about, such as if I have any Camembert left in the fridge.
I have begun to worry though that once A/W hits I’ll be left with no striped tops to wear (as they’re all short sleeved), which I can only imagine would drive me to madness. Note to self: go shopping for more long sleeved striped tops when you return home.

Chamonix Travel Diary: Part 5

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Yesterday was all about getting back to nature. We hopped on the train and headed to Servoz, a small village that reminded both of us of our time in the Japanese countryside (thanks to the lush greenery and the lack of anything apart from a train station). Walking through the village and small hamlets we happened upon a house that I am 100% certain either has been, or must be featured in the next Wes Anderson movie. It’s perfect, right? I wonder if it’s for sale…

Servoz was not our final destination though, we were there to find the Gorges de la Diosaz. The gorge has seen the public walk it’s paths for hundreds of years…even at night (no thanks!). The trail starts with a cave that tells a rather sad story, and a monument dedicated to a poet who died at the gorge. The walk continues with a variety of bittersweet stories and facts about the area. The various waterfalls that litter the gorge aren’t very strong at this time of year (Spring is better), but they were still impressive. The steep footpaths that wrap around and over the gorge are worth visiting for alone though, as they offer spectacular views. The gorge itself is a thing of beauty, and it’s almost humbling to walk the footpath and be reminded that humans can’t control nature (although some of us would like to think otherwise). The walk is around an hour and a half, with plenty of stunning views and hidden secrets to find. The inscriptions carved into the rocks and the remains of the old footpaths in particular made me feel as though I’d been transported into another world.

Les Gorges de la Diosaz has reminded me of how wonderful and magical nature really is.