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Saturday, January 12, 2013

My Paris Wish List

So, it's no secret that I am looking forward to going back to London and Paris later this year. In fact, I told you all in my last blog post that listed my Travel Goals and Resolutions. I've been collecting ideas for a while on what I want to see and do on my trip back to Paris. On our last trip, we only had a few days and it definitely wasn't enough time, especially since one day was spent at Disneyland Paris - which we'll be visiting again - and that wasn't enough time there either.

Mushroom crepes
I know you think that Paris is an expensive destination. It can be, but that doesn't mean you can't do it on a budget. On our last trip, we crammed some interesting stuff into the few days we were there:
  • Disneyland Paris
  • Pere Lachais Cemeterie
  • Wandered along the Seine
  • Enjoyed the view of the Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame and the Louvre (where we also took in the sculpture garden)
  • Eiffel Tower - we weren't going to miss this
On this next trip, we are going to hit some of the same, but we are going to stay longer and slow down a bit. With a true plan of attack for the city, we should be able to see more and do it better. The only thing left is to figure out where we're going to stay and how to get the best deal on the things we're going to do.

Disneyland Paris - One day was definitely not enough time to see all of Disney, which has two  parks and a Downtown Disney district. The best (and oddly most affordable) way to see the parks is to stay on the property at a Disney hotel. It includes your lodging, park tickets and shuttle service to and from the front gate. 

Disneyland Paris Photos
This photo of Disneyland Paris is courtesy of TripAdvisor


The Catacombs are mysterious, creepy and totally awesome looking. I am dying to get down underneath the city to see this amazing labyrinth of bones. I'm sure there will be an eerie feeling down there of being watched, but I can't imagine going back to Paris without taking a tour. There is something somewhat sinister about Paris, which is fascinating to me. 

Photos of The Catacombs (Les Catacombes), Paris
This photo of The Catacombs (Les Catacombes) is courtesy of TripAdvisor


Unfortunately, on our last trip to Paris, we only had the chance to view the Arc from a nearby cafe (which wasn't even a good cafe). I am looking forward to climbing to the top...and also finding a good place to eat on the Champs Elysees.

Photos of Arc de Triomphe, Paris
This photo of Arc de Triomphe is courtesy of TripAdvisor


What's a trip to Paris without trying some famous macarons? Obviously, I did this wrong last time. Laduree is said to have the best macarons in Paris in addition to other deliciously decadent desserts. I'm not saying no to that!

Photos of Laduree, Paris
This photo of Laduree is courtesy of TripAdvisor


Two days in Paris and we visited no museums at all, or at least the inside. In a city that is full of art of all kinds, the Louvre can be crowded and overrated, but the Salvadore Dali Museum is off the beaten path and delightfully weird. It's also more affordable than those other big and popular museums. We're there!

Photos of Espace Dali, Paris
This photo of Espace Dali is courtesy of TripAdvisor


Is there a better way to see a city than with someone who lives there everyday and knows all about it? I don't think so. Paris has volunteer tour guides that offer to walk you around the best the city has to offer for absolutely FREE! You just tip them at the end and enjoy your tour.

Photos of Sandemans New Paris Tours, Paris
This photo of Sandemans New Paris Tours is courtesy of TripAdvisor


Yup, I love a farmers' market. The Marche Raspail has some of the freshest produce in Paris and allows you to eat locally on a budget. Yum, yum, yum!

Photos of Marche Raspail, Paris
This photo of Marche Raspail is courtesy of TripAdvisor


Not sure I will have time - or money - to enjoy a show at the Moulin Rouge, but I would at least like to see it with my own eyes. This building is a huge part of Paris history, so we will try to squeeze it into our budget and also have an excuse to dress up and splurge on a proper French dining experience.

Photos of Moulin Rouge, Paris
This photo of Moulin Rouge is courtesy of TripAdvisor

The Seine is beautiful from the side streets and bridges throughout the city, but a lovely cruise down the river would be even better. It would certainly give us a new view of Paris, plus, you can have lunch or dinner on board. Multitasking! I also believe this is included in the Paris Pass

Photos of Bateaux Mouches, Paris
This photo of Bateaux Mouches is courtesy of TripAdvisor

As much as I'd like to go hog wild at some of the brand name stores in Paris, I know that my wallet could not handle such a thing, so I decided to mash my love of souvenir shopping with my husband's love of estate sales and check out the Porte de Vanves flea market where you can find some crazy awesome finds for great prices. Nothing beats finding a fabulous vintage piece for less. 

Photos of Marche aux Puces de la Porte de Vanves, Paris
This photo of Marche aux Puces de la Porte de Vanves is courtesy of TripAdvisor

One of our biggest regrets is that we didn't take the time to find out where the Statue of Liberty was in Paris. We tried to scope it out from the top of the Eiffel Tower, but since it was dark out, it made it twice as hard. This year we will make a point of visiting it...and maybe one day we'll make it to France's gift to the U.S. in New York.

Photos of Statue of Liberty, Paris
This photo of Statue of Liberty is courtesy of TripAdvisor



Have I left out anything on my list? If you've been to Paris and have suggestions on what we should see and, more specifically, where we should eat on a budget, I'm all ears. Leave a comment and help us plan our trip!

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