Weather: ⛅ + ☔
Novelty factor: 🐌 + 🍷
When planning my trip to Vietnam I discovered it was cheaper to fly direct from Paris to Hanoi. In light of this discovery, I decided to turn the detour into as much of a worthwhile visit as possible. I visited France a few times as a child but I have always wanted to return to Paris & un avant-goût de la France as an adult* (for the sake of this blog post, let’s assume I’m an adult…) After my trusty sidekick agreed to come with me, we booked two tickets for the Eurostar and arrived 48 hours before my eventual flight on to Hanoi.
We got into Gare du Nord station late Wednesday evening, pleasantly surprised at the crazy convenience of our train journey across the Channel. We headed to our hotel which was located close to the Hotel de Ville. It was a quaint little place, quintessentially Parisian in style, with an amazing view of the Rue de Rivoli. Before bed we grabbed some food at a nearby cafe, where we managed to find super tasty pasta and salad for around 5 euro! Would highly recommend dropping in if you happen to find yourself strolling along the Rue de Rivoli, looking for a cheap but also filling meal! Snack Rivoli on TripAdvisor
Despite a bit of an unexpected lie in, we managed to fit an insane amount of sight seeing into one day. Luckily Ryan had visited Paris a few months prior to our trip so rather than me calling the shots (as habit would have it) I was quite content following him around as he sent us on a magical mystery tour of the city.
In the space of just one day we managed to do all of the below, all by foot I hasten to add…
- Notre Dame de Paris
- “Love Lock” bridge
- The Louvre & Mona Lisa
- Sampled some escargot*
- The Eiffel Tower
In the evening we tried ourselves to huge dinners – steak for Ryan and bacon cheeseburger pour moi, my last western meal for a while.
Ryan saw me off onto my airport shuffle bus early Friday morning and I was sad to say goodbye to both my best friend and such a charming city. I definitely made the right decision to pick a direct Vietnam Airlines flight from Paris, it was a much cheaper option than flying from London Heathrow, not to mention they served Camembert on the plane… ♥
*A brief note on Escargot:
Similar in texture to mussels, snails are typically served in a (VERY) garlicky sauce, with a butter base. I would recommend trying them if not just for the sheer bush-tucker trial factor, but also they are surprisingly not slimy or gooey like you might expect, but more tough and chewy. I sampled six meaty molluscs at Le Musset, Rue de L’echelle.