When you think about a honeymoon, most tend to lean towards a secluded white sandy beach, or a wooden hut on stilts with a butler. Others are a little more cosmopolitan and choose a penthouse in New York City, with dinner dates and the theatre. Romantics at heart opt for the cliché of ‘Paris in the spring’. Although I would have loved to gone I the spring, our wedding was in September and so we went in the fall.
I love everything to do with Paris, and we actually went for my 18th birthday, which is in the winter. It was still beautiful but I hate the cold damp weather!
Since we were in the UK for our wedding, we decided to take advantage and book our honeymoon a few days after. Everywhere in Europe is so close. We flew from Bristol Airport to Charles De Galle and it took 55 minutes! I didn’t even have time to scroll through all my photos on my phone!
We opted to take a taxi to our Airbnb. If you are staying north of the Seine, to and from the airport is a flat €50. There was also a bus that takes you right to the Arc de Triomphe from the airport.
I spent a while searching for our place to stay. I wanted something truly Parisian. Lots of the homes were teeny tiny and had a sofa bed instead of a real one. My husband is a tall 6’3” so needs more space than the average person. Others felt too clinical and modern. Lots of solid plastic chairs and odd wall hangings. We also wanted to be close to the action, and then I found it!
An entire apartment! The Arc de triumph is a 5-minute walk as is the supermarket and metro line. It had a fireplace, real bed, ornate ceilings, wifi, large windows and a beautiful view. Needless to say we booked immediately!
The hosts were amazing and spoke English too which was great. They left house instructions, a mini map of Paris, and their restaurant recommendations which was super helpful. Being the world travellers that we are, we dropped our bags, headed to a supermarket and bought 2 frozen pizzas and had those for dinner! We didn’t want to peak too soon.
Our first full day was perfect. It started a little overcast but cleared up and was beautiful. We had booked lunch at Laduree on the Champs Elysees before we left and I’m glad we did. It got very busy after we were seated. Lauduree looks like, if for some reason a fairy godmother turned me into a building, I would be this. Its, covered in gold, mint and pink with traditional marble fireplaces, chandeliers and ceiling murals. I was like a kid in a candy shop. The food was insane! A little pricy but we were on our honeymoon and we were in Paris!! Jonathan’s only criticism was he paid $15 for a Coke, but who has Coke in a place like that?! I think it was priced as a deterrent!
We had nothing planned for the rest of that day so purchased a box of macarons and wandered down towards the Eiffel tower. As with most tourist spots, there were a lot of selfie sticks! Also lots of people trying to sell you small souvenirs. We didn’t make eye contact with them and they seemed to leave us alone. I think it was also due to the fact we didn’t look like tourists. We didn’t have a backpack, we weren’t in a group and we looked like we were locals, at least we thought we did.
Day 2 we had booked a cooking class with La Cuisine Paris for the afternoon, so again decided to set off early and walk there with the intention of stumbling upon some landmarks in the process.
We passed Le Grand Palais, Le Palace de la Concorde, and le Louvre and had the best ham and cheese baguette EVER!!! We shared one but looking back I would have demolished a full one.
The class was 3hrs long and we had 8 people total in our group. It was taught in English and everyone was so helpful and friendly. We made dinner rolls, baguettes and pizza breads and got to eat them all!!!! I would for sure take another class with them. One of our highlights of the trip!
After the class we walked over to the river to the Notre dame with our freshly baked bread. I also bought some fresh flowers and couldn’t have felt more Parisian! We also stopped off in the Jardin Des Tuileries which was beautiful. Paris has so many public gardens, which are full of statues and perfectly manicured hedges. Exhausted from all the walking, we decided to have a very French dinner full or carbs and wine!!!
Day 3 we had booked a bicycle tour with Fat Tire Bike Tours around the Palace of Versailles gardens. Again we headed off early and decided to try to take the metro. Off to a bad start as we took the wrong line, but a very smartly dresses French gentleman helped us and we got a taxi to their offices. We both decided to wear striped t-shirts for this trip because we are married and when in Rome!!! I packed for Paris, so that being said I only took cute clothes, so all the people waiting for the tour had runners, sweatpants, coats with pockets and small backpacks. We rolled up in our matching t-shirts, and I had flip-flops and my gold Michael Kors bag. Needless to say, by the afternoon, everyone was wishing they were me as it got very, very hot and I once again, looked like a local.
Our tour guide was so knowledgeable and was giving us little history lessons on the way. We took the metro to the town of Versailles and got our bikes from their office there. We rode to a local market to get food for our picnic. The guide told us the best places to buy cheese and fruit etc and it was so amazing. Again we bought all the cheese, bread, ham and Pâté. We rode to the Petit Trianon, which was home to Marie Antionette and saw the Grand Trianon, which is made of pink marble! Gasp! And made our way to the Grand Parc which is in the gardens of Versailles. We had a beautiful lunch by the water and a well-deserved rest as it’s a lot of cycling! Our guide told us about the revolution as we ate and drank and watched people in white rowboats on the water. We rode back to the office to drop off our bikes and walked up to the Palace. After that we were free to do as we wished. We took our time to wander around and take in all the lavish rooms! I don’t think you can go to another country without learning and seeing its history. I Loved it!
Day 4 we went to Montmartre on the metro and rode it like pros this time! We saw the Moulin Rouge and walked up and down the hilly streets. We stopped at a local bakery and had pastries for breakfast, sat outside and watched the world go by, only to purchase more baked goods. That afternoon we took a boat cruise down the Sein, which was fun. The only criticism as that there was no guide so we were just floating down not knowing what we were looking at, but it was all so pretty I didn’t really mind. After we walked up to the stairs where everyone has their photo taken in Paris and took a couple obligatory shots to end out trip.
I would have liked to have spent a couple more days exploring and taking some other tours and eating at more restaurants. But I couldn’t have wished for a better way to unwind after a fantastic wedding!