As I sit here drinking my afternoon coffee – I glance out of the window and see a horrible grey sky, wishing I could be somewhere else. In hope of transporting myself somewhere else – flicking through old photographs seems to be the best way.

Two years ago I visited a friend who had moved to Paris after dropping out of Uni. She had been studying French and thought it best to further her learning by moving to the capital of France.
Naturally I jumped at the chance of seeing my darling friend with the added bonus of seeing the beautiful capital that is Paris! I had never been before and was so excited to finally see what all the fuss was about. When I can honestly say I truly fell in love with the city.

I felt like I got to see the true Paris, finding the hidden gems of the city amongst the usual tourist attractions. I visited during July at which point the ‘Paris Plages’ had been set up, transforming the city into one huge resort. If you are thinking about going, I would definitely recommend waiting around for this! It usually starts the end of July and lasts for four weeks.

During my week in Paris, I tried to cram in as many day trips and attractions as I could.

I went to see Sacre-Coeur. (The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris) is a Roman Catholic Church and the highest point in Paris on the hill of Montmartre. It was quite easy to get to by Metro then either walk up the hill (a million steps) or take the tram. I was feeling brave that day – so we walked.
But it was worth it. From the top, you have an amazing view of the whole of Paris. We were lucky, as it was a very sunny day and the views were breathtaking.

Whilst at the top of Montmartre, we walked to ‘the old artists corner’. A cubby place full of talented artists selling their work in a secluded market. I was in heaven. All types of art were being displayed, from contemporary oil on canvas to – water colours. It felt like the heart of Paris, full of culture and bursting with talent.

One of my favourite days was when we took a short metro ride to The Marais which has also long been the focus of the Jewish community. The Marais in recent years is known for being one of the ‘hippest’ areas of the city; packed full of hotels, vintage boutiques, restaurants and bars. It’s also prime territory for art lovers, with a vast concentration of art galleries and museums.
For me I ventured to The Marais in search for the vintage boutiques and thrift shops! The small cobbled, alley streets were the perfect location to find some hidden bargains. Even though it felt like we were at the back and beyond of Paris as the street were off main roads. I wrongly assumed it would have been very quiet! The small streets were packed. It was a bustling neighbourhood of culture, bargain hunters and art lovers.

As we wondered through all the shops, having a nose in each one, naturally we needed a lunch time pit stop. Being the Jewish area it was, there were falafel stands on as many corner streets as you could see (which were perfect for a quick bit to eat). All of which had a queue of about 20 people in each. I loved this hustling bustling atmosphere that you don’t see on the main roads. If you want to see some really quirky vintage shops, take a trip to The Marais!

Amongst other things I visited on my trip to Paris, some of the best moments were the simpler things.
Have a coffee in a small, quiet café on the terrace, underneath an umbrella, catching up with one of my friends.

Some photos of the best bits…

Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights Paris - The City of Lights

I cannot wait to go back!

Have you been to Paris – what were your favourite parts?

Advertisements