A girly weekend in Paris
A few months ago, my girlfriend Dot and I, rather impulsively decided to head to Paris for a girly weekend. Over dinner and wine (once we received our respective husbands' go ahead), we bought our train tickets and booked our hotel.
One of my favourite things about living where we live is our proximity to this iconic French city, which still remains one of my favourite cities in the world. It takes a mere three hours by train from Karlsruhe to Paris, which makes me wonder why I don't make the journey more often! Oh yeah, I have kids. And as much as I love Paris, it is certainly not the easiest city to navigate with a double stroller in tow!
|View from our hotel room at the Hyatt Etoile Paris|
|A chicken Panini and a glass of wine at the Montmartre|
|Basilica di Sacre Coeur|
|Time for a selfie|
|What an amazing cathedral!|
|View from the Basilica di Sacre Coeur|
|Calamari, Mussels and Anchovies!|
We had dinner at Leon of Bruxelle's where Dot introduced me to deep-fried anchovies, which were utterly addictive! If you're hankering for mussels, Leon is also apparently THE place to go, judging from the many pots of steaming mussels that were making its way from the kitchen to tables.
Unfortunately, I didn't want to risk unsettling my just-recovered tummy, so I settled for some delicious but not-very-French Fish and Chips instead.
|Arch de Triumph|
After dinner, we took a short walk to the Arch de Triumph, where there were hundreds of people (looking like little bugs from where we stood at the bottom), standing atop the iconic structure! One day I'll have to check out the view from the top for myself!
|A statue of Louis XIV|
The next day was all about Versaille. The train to get there from Paris takes about 45-minutes, but it took us nearly an hour and a half because we caught the wrong train connection. Nevertheless, it was worth the early morning and the mistake, because the palace and its gardens were simply breathtaking!
|Queue to visit the Versailles Palace|
We'd wanted to walk around the gardens before meeting our tour guide in front of the palace gates after lunch. We ended up waiting in the queue for an hour and a half before finally talking to someone and realising that we could have just gone a different way directly into the gardens, and then come out again to go for our guided tour without being in the queue at all!
|Bye, bye, queue!|
|In front of the Versailles gates|
Thankfully, the restaurant Ore by Alain Ducasse is located right at the entrance to the Versailles Gardens, and we immediately headed there to fill our tummies and indulge in some much needed wine!
|Ore by Alain Ducasse|
|We deserve a treat!|
|A light and delicious lunch to carry me through the day|
|Portrait of Marie Antoinette and her children|
|Us at the Royal Courtyard|
|Such beautiful and intricate designs|
The castle and its majesty and beauty far surpassed my imagination. The guided tour was so worth it, and I'd highly recommend going this route to anyone wanting to visit! Not only do you not need to be caught in the hours-long queue, but for only a few euros more, we were able to see rooms that were not available to the general public, as well as learn with more depth the history, architecture and stories of how these rooms came to be.
|The Porcelain Dining Room|
|The Opera House|
|Hall of Mirrors|
It is easy to see why most people spend about two days visiting Versailles. If you think the palace grounds is huge, the gardens are even more vast and breathtaking!
|One of many fountains in Versailles!|
|How beautiful is the landscape at the Orangery!?|
|Confit De Canard|
Dinner was a simple but oh-so-delicious Duck Confit with creamy mash potatoes, at one of the many restaurants in front of our hotel because we were both practically falling asleep while walking there. It was a comforting and heartwarming end to a tiring, but oh-so-wonderful day!
|Breakfast at Paul|
|One of the best Patisseries in town!|
|The signature Mont Blanc at Angelina|
|Au Revoir, Paris!|
Until next time, Au Revoir!