27 October 2015

Travel | Paris - The Best Birthday Ever

I turned 25 in September which would have been a pretty traumatic experience if I hadn't received a trip to Paris as a present! I'd never been to France before and despite never previously being very interested in going to Paris, I was incredibly excited to visit somewhere new and also incredibly grateful to receive such a generous and thoughtful gift.

We travelled on the Eurostar which was a surprisingly pleasant experience despite leaving at 5:40am and being stuck in a carriage with some ridiculously loud teenagers - seriously, who has that much to say at such an awful hour?! The journey took less than two and a half hours and I managed to sleep for a large part of it which helped.

As soon as we got to Paris we made our first rookie tourist mistake and headed to the place closest to the station for breakfast - a rock hard croissant and burnt coffee wasn't exactly the welcome to French cuisine I was expecting!

Our hotel was right near the Eiffel Tower so we needed a taxi to get there, I'm mentioning this because as you come out of the station there's a huge line of "taxis" ready to take you to your hotel, one guy stopped us as said he could take us for "just €80" or we could "go and wait for over an hour in the taxi rank queue" - I had a quick look at Uber because I thought the price sounded extortionate, bearing in mind I'm from London and I spend a small fortune on taxis, which it was because Uber helpfully pointed out the journey would be less than €20 so please, don't get sucked in by those guys!

We stayed at a beautiful recently refurbished boutique hotel Le Derby Alma which was a 30 second walk from the Eiffel Tower. The room was small but beautiful and stocked with Hermes bath products which pleased me no end, as did the waterfall sink - you can tell I'm in property, it's always the little things that excite me! The staff were super friendly and couldn't have been more helpful, we were even allowed to check in 6 hours early.

The weather was absolutely beautiful so we decided for the most part to walk everywhere which is my favourite way to see a new city, you get such a good feel for a place by walking around it and learning all of the little side streets that you may otherwise miss if you were travelling by metro or taxi.

One of my favourite things about Paris, along with the architecture, was the food. Oh my God, the food! Our hotel was really conveniently located for Rue Saint Dominique which had some of the nicest cafes and bistros so we headed there on our first day for lunch. Having spent the last 8 hours walking around we headed to a bistro on Rue Saint Dominique where I had the best pasta I've ever had in my life and that includes in Milan! Packed to the brim with ham, parmesan, truffle and mushroom it was absolute heaven - plain but exceptional.

On the subject of food, we had dinner on our first night inside the Eiffel Tower which was the most incredible experience ever and fully deserves a post of it's own so keep a look out for that going live in the next few days because it is one of the best things I've ever done and I fully recommend it to everyone.

I am so super excited to share my Christian Louboutin purchase with you all but that warrants it's own post, as does my Sephora haul, but I can honestly say they were a wonderful decision and I am so happy with them. 

If you've never been to Paris and you're a bit undecided on it as I was then you simply must go, I enjoy every place I visit but I absolutely fell in love with Paris and I can't wait to go back one day and try different restaurants and boutiques and just have an absolute ball again.

Have you ever been to Paris?

Vicky x


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