European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal: Paris, France

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European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal: Paris, France

Entry No. 5: Paris

Continuing with CB's European Honeymoon-Inspired Travel Journal series, this entry is all about the glorious City of Light. J and I traveled to Paris for Valentine's weekend this year and I must say, it was the best Valentine's since 2004 {when my love proposed! ... Little hard to beat that!}. Even though I had been to Paris several times before, this was the first time I had visited with my husband and it was even more beautiful and romantic than I ever remember.

Hope you enjoy the photos I snapped and scroll down for some of my top tips for visiting lovely Paris!

One of our first stops upon arriving was, predictably, the iconic Eiffel Tower. I'm not sure if it was an early morning haze in the sky or just heavy pollution {:-/ let's hope for the former} but I loved the greyish cast that seemed to drape the city. It was so moody and felt oh-so-Parisian - oh, can you spy Sacre Couer atop the hill on the left?

I think I enjoyed walking the winding streets of Montmartre more than anything else. That area has always spoken to me and I feel like the neighborhood possesses such a creative vibe and a magnetic personality. After climbing the steps to Sacre Coeur, we came across a lovely little square filled with talented artists selling their gorgeous paintings. Almost immediately, my eyes settled on a collection of sepia-drenched acrylics that depicted the square we were standing in ... they all had Sacre Couer peeking out from behind the shuttered buildings ... my heart melted. And the artist was such a kind and passionate man ... even kinder for giving me a steep discount on my favorite piece of his. So, I can finally say I own an original work of art now and I love the story I have to go along with it.

Left: Our view from the hotel | Right: Perhaps my favorite shot of the trip ;o)

I couldn't visit Paris without a stop to Ladurée! We walked about a block from our hotel and arrived at the beautiful Ladurée along the Champs-Élysées. While waiting in the long line inside, I snapped a few photos.

I think I first heard about Ladurée on a blog about four years ago so it only seemed right to share a photo indulging in my first bite of a Ladurée macaron! ;o) It didn't disappoint! Très, très yummy. Favorite flavor? The bright green - Pomme Granny Smith! The one in the pic above was pétales de roses - divine, too.

This smattering of photos really only highlights a small portion of everything we were able to do and see in such a short amount of time. We had such an incredible time but I can't wait to come back and finish checking off all of my to-dos in the City of Light - namely, visiting Le Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen in Montmartre {the largest flea market in Paris!!} ... a trip to Musée d'Orsay and a long and leisurely visit to Deyrolle {I am so fascinated with good taxidermy!}.

But, as I was able to experience some wonders of the city, I'll share my faves below ...

CB's Top Tips for Paris:

- This should be a no-brainer but do take the ride to the very top of the Eiffel Tower. It's super touristy but the views are so worth it. We went up in the early morning but I think a late-night visit would be uber-romantic and beautiful, too.

-  Find a cafe/bistro with a killer view and stake a table out near sunset. My love and I found a streetside bistro with an unbelievable view of the Eiffel Tower and we sipped on artsy-sounding drinks while watching the clouds turn glorious shades of pinks and blues and purples. Oh, and when the sun finally went down and the Eiffel Tower lit up, it was all kinds of amazing.

- Do the tip above again ... only this time, enjoy a long meal with lots of people watching. Out of all my European travels, I'd have to say Paris is no. 1 for people watching. I really do think the most beautiful and stylish people in all the world inhabit this darling + dreamy city. :o)

- Ummm, the Louvre. How can you not? I didn't share any photos of our visit but we scurried through every last exhibit and it was wonderful. Oh, we also enjoyed a quick lunch at the cafeteria in the Louvre - have to say, it was incredibly healthy fare and incredibly zesty and flavorful. Definitely recommend.

- Please do not skip Montmartre. The winding streets, artsy vibe, street musicians/performers, wine bars and cute bistros will make you *almost* feel like you're a local. We had the most fun here and I would love to come back and explore this area more. Plus, you can score original artwork for pretty fair prices. I splurged big-time on mine but I love it to pieces and it was my only Parisian souvenir, which I love.

I could keep going but I thought it might be more fun to open the floor and let you guys share your favorite tips for Paris? Any tips for my next visit? ;o)

If you have any tips, insights, suggestions or comments, I'd love to hear them! Hope you enjoyed this installment of the European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal! And I promise, up next {really this time} is Luzern, Switzerland! ;o) Happy Honeymooning! And to catch up on my other European travel entries, just click here.

{All images by me}

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