It was easier than I expected it to be, being alone in Paris. I explored Paris mostly by foot and metro because that was the cheapest option. I also decided to be a cheapskate and go without data because I was confident I could navigate the meandering streets of Paris alone with just a plain old map. Pfft. I forget that I am hopeless at finding my way around without an arrow on Google map pointing out where I exactly am. I believe I walked for 3 metro stations in the Montmarte area trying to find my way. I gave in the next day and all is well with my solo world again with data in my hands. 🙂
Day 1: Montmarte + Sacre Coeur
I walked to see Sacre Coeur because the receptionist at the hostel recommended it to me and assured me that it is within walking distance and handed me a map to find my way there. The map did have this labelled but lacked the road names SO as expected, it took me longer that it would have been to find my way. Only to realise that Sacre Coeur is located right at the top of a hill which of course means climbing stairs and more stairs. I should have done my research better but remember I had no data?
It was worth the climb though because I got a free glorious view of Paris. I got there close to sunset so seeing the whole city bathed in the sun’s golden colors were just too pretty to ignore. There were also a lot of people loitering so I just sat and watched for a while before moving off to explore the rest of Montmarte and getting lost again meandering the small streets around Montmarte. Finally making my way out was a great relief.
Day 2: Palace of Versailles
Definitely a must go! Even with a huge crowd visiting, it was definitely worth the trip out of Paris to get to see all the architecture within the palace grounds. Listening to the audio guide narrate stories as I meandered my way around the main palace and the other buildings on the palace grounds made everything seem so interesting that time flew past so fast. I still had more places I wanted to visit but had no time to do so. It really gave me an exercise trying to walk fast to get to all the places that I wanted to within the palace grounds. It was HUGE!
Day 3: Walking through Paris city!
I didn’t really mean to do a walk around the city but it just so happened that way. I visited La Conciegerie (a former prison) in the morning and found myself walking down to Notre Dame Cathedral. Since I was on a budget, I contented myself taking photos and moved on. I stumbled upon their parliamentary building (which had super amazing architecture) and decided to continue walking along the Seine River with the Eiffel Tower in the far distance.
The architecture around the river was really fascinating to me, I even saw buildings with turrets on them, doesn’t this remind you of all the fairy tales that we’ve read about? Never a dull moment as I walked towards Eiffel Tower definitely.
Eventually I reached the bridge with the love locks and it just so happened that the building across belonged to the Lourve Museum! I totally didn’t expect that because I was not really planning to visit there but it happened so. Just the architecture of the building was enough to keep me occupied taking photos because it was just so beautiful, really gorgeous.
Day 3: Cycling towards Arc de Triomphe + Late for Eiffel Tower!
Weirdly enough, there were cyclists for hire around the Lourve Museum entrance and I grabbed an opportunity to rest my tired feet. I had been walking since morning and my feet was already protesting against all these exercise that I never do..hehe. Being a person who have not much of interest in cycling, I paid others to do so for me and sat back to enjoy the ride (although I did feel bad for the cyclist for having to exert so much effort for my weight..sorry! )
He cycled me down Champs Elysees towards the Arc de Triomphe where I then had to rush to get to the Eiffel Tower in time for my allocated time. Unfortunately, I was late for my timeslot because I got lost (again!) and begged pitifully to be let up the tower since I had already paid a lot for the tickets. The plus point is that I did not have to wait in long queues to get up to the elevators but I still ended up waiting for some time to get to the top of the tower. Eiffel Tower is now officially off my list. 🙂
Day 4: Shopping at Champs Elysees + London bound
I had a few hours to kill in the morning before my train to London so I walked around Champs Elysees to look around the shops there. Although I mostly ended up window shopping instead because the shops there were not exactly for those on budget..haha.
Sad to say, I only had a limited time in Paris which allowed me enough time to visit the usual touristy places. I was unabashedly going around travelling as a typical tourist, taking many many photos along the way. It also meant that I was always rushing to places, trying to take it all in. I do wish that I had more time to just enjoy exploring, take time to sit outside the cafe watching people (even though the weather was cold), exploring Paris away from the usual touristy areas. Ah, I shall content myself instead that I will have more to explore if I am ever able to visit Paris again.
Have you visited before? Is there any other recommendations to visit in Paris? Please do share! 🙂