🗼 And we’re in Paris! Sam and Simon have joined us, after their stint in Iceland. Apparently it was much colder for them, so they got snow while we didn’t. Not fair!

We’re staying in a really nice hotel, which is where the river cruise leaves from. It has a great breakfast!

On the day before Sam and Simon arrived, we went to see Versailles, which was very gold. It was amazingly extravagant, but we especially liked the gardens, with all the cool little unique places. At one point we got to a pretty boring looking lake, only for it to erupt into a big fountain display complete with music!

Then, with Sam and Simon in tow, we did The Great Montmartre Food Tour - run by a very enthusiastic French guy called PJ. We went about picking things up for our lunch, like bread (lots of types of traditional baguette), meat (all sorts of animals, I enjoyed all of them), and cheese (I did not enjoy all of them, although I did at least try most). Oh and wine of course.

As we went he was telling us all sorts of cool French history and things like the fact that if a place has “Boulongerie” signs up, then it means that they legally have to make the bread on site. I also learned that the way they make salami is stolen off the Egyptians (it’s basically mummified mince).

Once we had our supplies, we went to a little hotel bar, which had some sort of historical significance… But I was more excited about the food at that point and wasn’t listening properly. We tried all the sorts of bread and meat and wine and cheese (I even had a little bit of Roquefort! It was just as disgusting as I remember - I think Sam took a photo of me eating it).

Then we went for dessert at a crêperie, then a chocolate and macaroon shop, and also a little place that makes profiterole things. Dessert was great, although we were all a little full by that point. At the end of the tour we headed up to sacré cœur for a bit but then started feeling sleepy and went home.

The next big exciting thing was the Eiffel Tower! I missed going up the last time I was in Paris, so this was going to be my first time! Sadly, Sam had developed a rather nasty ear infection, so her and Simon went to a doctor’s, instead of coming with us. We had to go up with a tour group, since all the regular tickets were booked out, but the tour was actually pretty good. I bent the rules a bit and brought up my big NZ flag, which proudly flew from the tower before it was hidden away again. The views were, of course, amazing, and on the way down we took the stairs, which was much nicer than the cramped lift up.

Also, my main tip for Paris-goers: Go when you’re under 25! You get free entrance to so many things! We got into:

  • Versailles, the gold-covered palace
  • The Arc de Triomphe, which was very close to where we were staying.
  • Napoleon’s Tomb, which was interesting. Apparently there are 8 progressively smaller tombs inside it, all made of different things. The outer one is huuge, but we thought it rather ugly.
Cheese! Eeew! The four of us up the Arc de Triomphe! The NZ flag having it's moment of glory. The tower at night.

All in all it was an awesome day! Next up is the river cruise