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Europe Wandering – Paris!

Our next overseas trip! I was so excited to pick up and jet set that I must’ve packed my bags a month before we were due to leave! Our first European stop was Paris. I’ve never wanted to go anywhere more. We flew with Etihad, and it was a looooong flight. But once we landed, and got a transfer to our hotel, the very first thing we did was head straight to the Eiffel Tower. I couldn’t wait a second longer to bask in it’s glory, not matter how jet lagged I was.
Oh lord, I look so tired. We acted the tourist afterwards and ate escargot and beef tartare. The snails were ok – the herb sauce they were in was delicious, but after a few chews they kinda just tasked like dirt. Everything else was delicious. Once we finished up we were beat, so we headed back to the hotel. But it turns out the sun doesn’t set till about 10pm in Summer-time Europe, so we struggled to fall asleep for a while.
The next day we were up bright and early for our bike tour! Fat Tyre Bike Tours do guided tours around Paris, and they only go as fast as the slowest person, so I was in luck! Once we were fitted out with our cruisers, and inducted with basic training and hand signals, we were off! It was a great day, and I won’t bore you with the details of every stop, but let’s just say that it’s an amazingly informative way to learn the lay out of the city to prepare you for your days ahead.
We stopped at Jardin des Tuileries for lunch and finished up at the Eiffel Tower. Afterwards we RUSHED back to our hotel to get ready for our second tour of the day (bad planning on my behalf). That night we were heading for a guided tour on the River Seine, dinner on the Eiffel Tower and a show at the Moulin Rouge. Although fancy, the guided tour was through a little hand telephone thing, and the dinner on the Eiffel Tower was in the middle of the room, so our view was lacking. But the Moulin Rouge did not disappoint!
The next day we made our way to the Louvre. Matty wasn’t so keen on the thought of an art gallery, but I wasn’t leaving town without seeing all of it! Everything within was just amazing. The size of some of the paintings, the detail put into sculptures… I just never imagined such a display of skill. Here are some of my fav shots from the day…
The next day we trekked to Gare Du Nord to try and book our train tickets to Monte Carlo. It was sufficiently difficult and after a couple of hours and a tantrum from both of us, we left the train station, went to a local pub and drank a local brew and ate frogs legs. The local brew tasted like the juice from a can of corn, and frogs legs taste like a cross between fish and chicken. Sufficiently boozed up and having a good time again, we walked the length of the Champ-Elysees; ending at the large Arc de Triomphe. Another amazing piece of architecture. We climbed to the top and took in the 360 degree view of Paris. An amazing way to end another perfect day.
On our third full day we tried for the catacombs, but Matt and I weren’t prepared to wait 3 hours to get in, so we shot through to Notre Dame; another place, so full of detail, I can hardly believe that people don’t still make amazing buildings like this. Within the old church was beautiful stained glass and so much more. From one church to another, next we walked to Sacre Coeur where we climbed to the top of about a million stairs to stand over Paris from on top of a hill.
Afterwards we made our way to the Eiffel Tower for our final act: the climb to the top! There were elevators, but it was an hour or so wait for them. The stairs were immediate! So up we went. 1 set of stairs to get to the first platform, another set for the second platform, and to get to the third platform, an elevator. It was a long hard climb, but it was SO worth it.
Super sad to leave Paris. I ate so many croissants, drank so many espressos and ate all the cheese and bread. Oh, and the people are just magnificant!  I can’t wait to visit again.

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