My Top 10 Must-do’s When Visiting Paris!

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I’m not sure if it’s obvious by our instagram posts lately, but we LOVE Paris! I’ve managed to visit three times in the last year, and can’t wait to head there for the fourth in March. It really is an incredibly beautiful city with so much to explore and discover. Whilst there’s the obvious touristy things to do like heading up the Eiffel Tower or a boat trip down the River Seine, I thought I’d post my 10 must-do’s to show that there’s so much more to do that doesn’t involve a lot of crowds whilst you’re in Paris!

  1. Take a stroll around Montmartre
    Montmartre is without a doubt my favourite area of Paris. Although it’s often full of tourists during the day, there are ways you can get away from the crowds and experience Paris just as you’d seen in the movies! There’s a small local vineyard, plently of little hidden parks and winding roads and Place du Tertre, a square at the top of the hill full of restruants and artists. I’ve ate here a few times, in each of the restraunts and loved them! There’s also of course, the Sacré-Coeur which is a definite tourist stop for photos and there are often locals performing on the stair case of an evening. When I went there were two guys peforming a fire and light show which was incredible!
  2. Check out the Vintage Shops
    There are so many amazing vintage shops in Paris, I came across a few little boutiques in Montmatre that sold vintage Chanel bags and I had to force myself away! I’d also highly reccomend having a look in Tim Bargeot on Rue de Turbigo, it’s a really retro store and sell all sorts of vintage looking/styled clothes. I loved everything in there when I visited!
  3. Walk up the Arc de Triomphe or the Sacre Coeur
    Although it’s pretty much a must-do to visit the Eiffel Tower when in Paris, I prefer heading up either the Arc de Triomphe or the Sacre Coeur. After a lot of climbing (at least 200 steps up for each of them), you get the most incredible views of Paris with the Eiffel Tower in shot! At the top of Arc de Triomphe you get amazing views of the Champs-Élysées, but I’d say the Sacre Coeur is by far my favourite! It’s so much quieter and because it’s so high up, you see ALL of Paris. No matter how many times I Paris, I always love to do this!
  4. Find a little cafe in Montmartre and people watch
    Montmartre is full of amazing little cafes with amazing food that won’t break the bank! One of my favourite things to do is just to relax in the sun and taking a moment to take it all in. There’s always so much going on, I love watching the artists in the little square called Place du Tertre.
  5. Put a padlock somewhere hidden
    An obvious, yet a must do I think! Sadly, because of all the padlocks the Ponts Des Arts collapsed and has been boarded up so no more can be placed on there. Instead, me and my boyfriend put one somewhere hidden near somewhere we really loved. Ours is currently (hopefully), padlocked on the gate in Montmartre just opposite the view of the Eiffel Tower. I think this is a good idea because it’s so nice when you re-visit that place and find your lock still there.
  6. Have an evening picnic on the banks of the River Seine
    Cheap and easy! and it gets you away from a lot of the tourist crowds. Of an evening the banks of the river are often packed full with locals and local students, and I think it’s a great way to enjoy Paris just as it’s locals do. We sometimes just bought a baguette, some cheese and either a bottle of wine or some juice and relaxed of an evening. It’s really lovely and peacful watching all of the boats go past, and if you stay long enough in the summer months, you may even catch the Eiffel Tower sparkling!
  7. Discover the Latin Quarter
    One of my favourite areas of Paris! We didn’t really get to visit this area during our first trip, but from now on I make sure to stop by here almost every day.
  8. Visit Canal Saint-Martin
  9. Visit Père Lachaise Cemetary
    Although some of you may find it weird that I’m suggesting you go visit a cemetary during your holiday, there really is something so peacful about Père Lachaise. Here you’ll also find the graves Frech artists, musicians, composers and artists. Along with the graves of Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde.
  10. Have a stroll round and buy a sandwich from Marché des Enfants Rouges
    A market full of amazing local produce, the sandwich I bought from the stall at Marché des Enfants Rouges is by far the best sandwich I’ve EVER tasted! I constantly find myself craving them all the time.

 

Thanks for reading! Leave us a comment with the thing you love/would love to do the most in Paris!

 

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Disneyland Paris on a Budget

This September I came back from a long awaited holiday with my boyfriend to Disneyland Paris and at the time we were poor students, so we needed to find the best way to enjoy Disney on a tight budget.

We managed to catch the 2 nights 2 days free deal, which helped our budget out a LOT and for a 4 night 5-day stay, we paid £600. The price included tickets for both parks, breakfast every morning and the actual room, so fairly reasonable for everything included! Now we only had our flights left, which we booked through EasyJet. For flights, luggage and insurance from Manchester to Charles De Gaulle it cost us £198, again fairly reasonable for two people!

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We made a huge mistake that cost us when we arrived at CDG – Disney has a bus called the Magic Shuttle, which is a massive saving compared to the other options available. We didn’t research this or know that this was available to us and since we hadn’t been to Paris via CDG before and this was a maaaajor overlook. We struggled understanding trains and thought a taxi was our best bet after around 2 hours of strolling around CDG trying to find a way to our hotel, we were advised the rates changed if there was traffic… Surprise surprise, there was traffic! When we FINALLY got on Disney property, I was relieved, tired and excited… Until we saw the price of the taxi! €90! If you are staying on a budget, I would advise to pre-book the shuttle and save yourself the heartbreak of parting with your holiday money that is supposed to be spent on piles of Disney food and merchandise!

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Speaking of food, it’s so easy to buy EVERYTHING in sight because it all looks so delicious, but as we were on a budget we, unfortunately, couldn’t do that (I also didn’t want to come home 2 stone heavier!). When we arrived at our hotel it was around 8:30pm so not really enough time to go wander around the park without getting caught in the Disney Dreams crowds, so we looked to the restaurant in our hotel. As we were staying in the Santa Fe, the restaurant offered an all you can eat Mexican buffet that cost €25. The food  was alright for a hotel restaurant but we didn’t visit again, we had too many options elsewhere! The best idea we had during the week was to take a detour to the shop inside the train station located right next to the entrance of Disney and buy the meal deal, we got a sandwich, snack and drink for around €6 which generally kept us going for the day (with the exception of the occasional Nutella crepe!). We tended to wander over to Disney Village for our meal on the night, we visited Rainforest Cafe, Planet Hollywood and Annette’s, planet Hollywood was by FAR my favourite and our meals averaged out €25-35 per person, so we budgeted to be very careful through the day so we could go all out on the night!

The whole trip can be really affordable, I don’t think we broke the bank on our visit and it helped that I had a little bit of willpower and didn’t buy every piece of merch in every store we visited. Visiting Disney is such a magical experience and they have so many ways to make it accessible to everyone, no matter what their budget is.

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– @ashleighlillyx