Bonjour mes amis! It has been a bit quiet on my blog and Facebook page for a while but let me fill you in…
The last few weeks I have been busy studying for an oral exam and since I’m not good at dealing with this kind of exam pressure I was so relieved when the day of the exam was finally over. And as if I wasn’t happy enough about this, I was also super excited to know that in a few days I would be sitting in a train to Paris, one of my favorite cities!
Paris was the perfect little getaway from the studying period, which basically consisted of sitting, reading and eating bad food. And since we had such a good time, I wanted to share some of the memories and Paris tips with you in this blog post today. Maybe you’ll find some inspiration for your own Paris trip one day.
We were a group of six and took the night train from Hamburg to Paris, which arrives around 9:00 am at Gare de L’Est. We stayed for 4 days, which turned out to be just the right amount of days. Not too little because there is so much to see, and not too many because after 4 days we were all really exhausted from walking around and also taking in so many impressions of the city. After a while I always feel like I need a break to process all of which I’ve been taking in. And this is what I’ve been doing this weekend. Relaxing, remembering and looking at pictures. Happy times…
I’ve always been wanting to try AirB&B instead of staying at a hotel and this was the first trip I actually stayed at an AirB&B apartment. We were very happy with our choice – a charming apartment in an old authentic building, with a great location in Le Marais (my favorite part of town).
Since the apartment had a kitchen with a large sitting area, we always had breakfast at home. We either had different breads from the bakery or made our own porridge with fruit.
My foodie friend and I were happy that our apartment was very close to a health food store…
…so we were able to buy some ingredients and even discover some new things, like the maroon pops in the breakfast picture and this delicious vegan chocolate spread. This one is probably the best I tasted so far! Sadly they only had two jars left (but a good reason to go back to Paris soon ;-))
And while I’m at it, let me tell you more about the food. In general my experience was that it’s easy to find vegetarian food options and when it comes to vegan options you’ll have to look a bit harder but find a lot too.
One of the places I really liked was the all vegetarian/vegan fast food restaurant called East Side Burgers.
You could choose between two daily burgers, with the option to have it all vegan (with vegan cheese).
I had the Forestier burger with mushrooms and caramelized onions, yummy!!
They also have some cookies and cakes to choose from.
We took home this vegan Carrot Cake and a Nutella Muffin.
One of the best things I ate in Paris came from this small lebanese market stand called Zaatar W Zeit on the Marché Bastille, a huge market with various foods and other things.
If you ever happen to find yourself here, you should definitely order the Sandwich Végétarien which is a sooo tasty falafel wrap and also the Thyms Manakish, which is a wrap with thyme and other spices. Both are super delicious!
Another lovely place was Sol Semilla – a vegan superfood shop/cafe.
It was very close to the trainstation Gare de L’Est so we essentially wanted to grab something to eat before we left the city, but unfortunatelly the kitchen wasn’t open yet, so we just had green smoothies.
I would have loved to try more here since it looked like an awesome place. Maybe next time!
Places to visit:
My mom is a huge Monet admirer, so we planned to visit the L’Orangerie. A small museum that exhibits some of Monets huge water flower paintings. Unfortunately it was closed the day we went but luckily we found a great alternative. On the internet I read about the Musée Marmottan Monet, an insider tip, exhibiting many of Monets paintings. They even have a special exhibition of Monets paintings until the 18th of January 2015 (just in case any of you visit Paris soon). Even though I am not so much the museum goer, these paintings made a big impression on me and I can only recommend to go see them. The way he captured nature, its movements and colors is simply beautiful. My mom definitely found her happy place here! ; )
If your not the museum kind of person, maybe you’d like to check out the Catacombs of Paris! I’ve always been fascinated with all of the history and old places you’ll find in Paris. I love to look at an old building and imagine how this place must have been like hundreds of years ago. One of the places that can really give you goosebumps are the catacombs of Paris. The whole city has underground tunnels and as if that’s not spooky enough, a part of these tunnels were used to transfer skeletons of the overcrowded cemeteries of Paris in the 18th century. This part of the catacombs is open for the public and so we went to see it. It’s literally 2 km long piles of skeletons that are creepy and fascinating at the same time. Definitely not for everyone, but if you like historical places, this one is pretty amazing.
But let’s talk about happier places again!!
One of the most beautiful places we saw, were the gardens of Versaille.
Even though it takes a 30 min train ride to get here, it was so worth it. I just wish we had more time here.
The gardens of the old kings palace are huge and simply stunning! You can even rent bicycles or little boats.
It was the perfect calm break from the hectic city life.
One thing I love to do when I travel (or any time actually) is visiting fleamarkets. Since we visited Paris during the week, there weren’t many options, since most markets are open on the weekends. But there is one nice market that is open every day, called Marché Aligre at the Place d’Aligre. This time I found a small lovely cake plate on my treasure hunt.
It might not come as a surprise that I’m that kind of person that smiles at every dog that passes by on the street. I have lost my heart several times on this trip and sometimes I honestly wish that I could take all dogs home with me. So the least I could do is take a picture of them! Look at these cutie pies…
You’ll also see a lot of lions in the city.
One time I got a bit too close.
Those were her last words. Au revoir from Paris!