I was about to right Paris off..
Trip Start Apr 01, 2011
22Trip End Apr 27, 2011
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Where I stayed
The Plug-Inn Hostel
As far as a city goes.. Paris is a lovely place. The historic buildings.. the cobblestone streets.. the smell of incredibly good food everywhere.. it would be all we could ask for.. but the Parisians (in general) let this place down!
We went the all the typical sights.. Arc de Triomphe.. Eiffel Tower.. the Notre Dame.. La Basilique du Sacré Coeur.. and at every place we visited we were continually accosted by beggars and scammers. It was a neverending barrage!
Trying to speak to anyone in the city is next to impossible unless you speak the lingo.. which we don't.. which means we got snobbed quite a lot
We spent a whole day taking trains on the underground subway (called the Metro) from spot to spot.. and quite a bit of walking around looking for metro stations! By the end of the day we were exhausted.. and with all the drama we've endured I had had about enough.
There was one place we went though that was absolutely amazing.. the Catacombes. Basically, it's an underground tunnel system filled with tens of thousands of dead Parisians. Some time ago the cemeteries of Paris were full.. so the local government exhumed all the remains and neatly stacked them in the underground tunnels. It's an experience you will not get anywhere else. Truly worth the 8 euro entry.
Back in our hostel room.. beers at the ready.. we were going to chill out and have an early night.. but we decided to go for a night walk. We went to La Basilique du Sacré Coeur for the second time.. but this time it was special. We sat on the grass drinking our beer and enjoying the views of Paris at night.. just like a couple of hundred other people were! There was music playing.. a party vibe.. and it was obvious that it was mostly a local crowd. We met a French couple who were very friendly. We immidiately thought we were being swindled.. but they were actually genuinely nice people.
At the moment.. I thought perhaps the younger generation of Parisians were trying to change the general arrogant perceptions they are unfortunately famous for.
On our way back we stopped in at a French cafe for some food.. well.. Andrew had some food.. I needed to satisfy my sweet tooth! Food in France is awesome. Apart from the odd McDonalds.. you can't go wrong.. no matter where you go. The French pride themselves on their talent for serving great food!
It's on the Switzerland now. I'll tell you all about it in the next post.