I dreamed of visiting Paris in the same way that most travelers do; it’s a bucket list hot spot. Even though I’d dreamed about it, because my expectations were so high, I was concerned that the reality would fall short. Scotland pleasantly surprised me, but that was not going to be the case for my trip to Paris since I held such high expectations.
Thankfully, the majority of the trip was as magical as I could have ever hoped.
Here are the parts of Paris, in my opinion, that were every bit of the dream I had, and the parts that maybe fell a little short.
Could have been better?
The sparkling Eiffel Tower was everything a tourist could want. The first time I saw its hourly sparkle, I stood without blinking just staring at it for the full five minutes. For anyone who’s been to Paris, it might seem regular or boring, but seeing that is a must for a dreamy first-timer.
However, in the daylight, to quote a friend who lives in Paris, it looks like a bunch of scaffolding.
As an English student, Shakespeare and Company was worth the visit. And right outside was the most adorable artist market. Books and homemade jewelry are two things that I will never regret buying in Paris.
The Louvre Museum is overwhelming in basically every way, which for me made it not as incredible as some other more simple things. Only seeing a small fraction of the works and feeling like I was getting lost the whole time took away some of the magic. (And I swear the Mona Lisa is a fake).
Would not miss it
Walking through the city is a must. I am used to London, which is a hodgepodge of old and new building all kinda smashed together in artistic madness. On the other hand, Paris is all preplanned; the streets are wide, bridges are on every block, and buildings are all sisters.
The two cities are like two different genres, and Paris is the poetry. Nothing feels out of place.
Even the rats that live under food truck and in garbage cans feel like they were made to be there. Although I was not immediately thrilled about the rats crawling around as I was trying to eat my crepe, the Parisians have a fondness for the rats and even refuse to have them eliminated because even the rats are part of the city.
While I had to hold my bag a little tighter while I was in Paris, I could walk the miles between the Grande Arche de la Défense and the Arc de Triomphe de l’étoile and never tired of it, and I think most Parisians feel the same way. They love their perfect city, and I did too.