Where to begin. You know what I’m going to say – J’adore Paris! But seriously, there is just so much this beautiful city has to offer – I could just go through all of the sights I saw, the places I visited and the streets I walked – but there is more to Paris than its sights, its architecture and its history.
My first day was part walking tour, part Cinders own tour. I joined the back of a Sandemans tour, a great way to see the sights of Paris, or many other cities – but not for me. I ditched the overly theatrical, slightly bossy tour guide at the Lourve and began wandering, joined by two American girls I befriended on the tour. The cold damp weather, didn’t stop us – from the Louvre we walked through Jardin des Tuileries, up to Place de la Concorde then back down the river to have lunch in Odeon. On our way down the river we passed the Lovers Lock bridge. I had a quick look for the lock(s) Dalke and I placed in 2012 – but no luck funnily enough. Walking along the river was pretty surreal, I remembered my way around which was a surprise in itself but it made me feel quite cool in front of my new friends who were first time Parisian travellers.
I did it!
For those of you who haven’t taken the plunge and ventured off in to the world of solo travel – I highly recommend it. Yes it’s hard, yes it’s scary – yes it’s worth it.
I expected to feel lonely, to get bored, to feel embarrassed about being alone – and to be perfectly honest, at times I did. At least at the beginning anyway. But that’s part of it. You can see it as lonely, boring and/or embarrassing – but on the flipside, when else do you have no one to answer to, no one to report to and no one knowing your face or name? Kinda exciting really. My first morning was scary, my phone didn’t work (no google maps?!), it was raining and I wasn’t in the safest of areas…but I gave myself another pep talk and trouped on; heck – you can hardly complain about having 3 days in one of the most beautiful cities in the world! Time for a reality check, alone or not – Paris is Paris! Continue reading
After 2 hours and 15 minutes of me, myself and spotify I arrived at Guare du Norde, iPhone at the ready to direct me to my hostel. At 10pm local time I wasn’t about to wander the dark Friday night streets without my friend google maps.
“No service” seemed to be more of a permanent fixture on the top left of my phone than I had hoped – so wandering the streets, pop out map in hand it was. Thankfully the hostel was only 3 minute walk away and I didn’t need to rely on my map reading skills – or lack there of.
My first night deserved a toast so I ventured down to the hostel bar. A band was up in a hanging cage playing covers, the lights were dim but the brightly lit bar ensure the atmosphere wasn’t dim. With a G&T in hand, I stood at the bar and coached myself… “I can do this”. Continue reading