Paris. The city of love. One of the most romantic cities in the world and one I fell in love with myself when visiting.
Not only can you stop and indulge in freshly baked pastries in bakeries on every corner (which is alone enough to entice me into visiting), but down every street there’s somewhere new to explore or something new to see. Along with the main attractions that this city is known for – the Notre-Dame, the Arc de Triomphe, The Eiffel Tower – the undeniable style and sophistication of Parisians, and their gorgeous boutiques, cafes and restaurants, has made Paris a city I’ve wanted to explore for some time (finding a half marathon to run in the city was just an added bonus).
You could visit this beautiful city a million times over, and continue to fall more and more in love with it each time.
So if you’ve only got a small handful of days in the capital, how should you spend them?
CLIMB THE EIFFEL TOWER
If you only do one thing while in Paris, make sure it’s climbing to the top of The Eiffel Tower. No lifts allowed. Climb the stairs to the very top… Or at least as high as you can before you have to take the elevator.
The wind at the top may be ridiculous. But the view is incredible. Pick out everything else you want to do for the rest of the trip from above, before facing the descent back down to ground level.
VISIT THE LOURVE
Head to the Lourve and getting lost in its many joining rooms. Each room is dressed top to toe in artworks, paintings and sculptures. Even if you’re not the biggest art lover, you’re sure to find something that takes your fancy.
Be sure to work your way around the maze of rooms to find Mona Lisa too. But be prepared to queue (read: push your way to the very front) to get a good look.
Cross the Pont Neuf, the new home of the thousands of padlocks placed by the hopeless romantics who have visited the city of love previously, and you’ll find the French Gothic cathedral of Notre-Dame. Standing alone on its own private island in the centre of the city, the building is a beautiful piece of historic architecture with its religious statues and stain glass windows.
WALK THE CHAMPS-ÉLYSÉES TO THE ARC DE TRIOMPHE
Window shopping along the Champs-Élysées is probably more likely than shopping for real for most travellers. Designer brands line the street and are sure to make a massive dent in your bank balance if you wander inside.
If you didn’t already know, and not many people do, one of the most famous monuments in Paris which stands at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, actually allows visitors to see the city from above. The view from the top of the Arc De Triomphe is one you’ll only truly appreciate when you’ve seen it for yourself.