Paris – the city of love, light, and art. It is one of the most visited cities in the world. Rich in contrasts and the largest metropolitan area in Europe with 12 million people. It couldn’t pass the eye that some of these people are the best dressed ever. It is after all, one of the most important fashion centers on the planet. 🙂
Part of a schedule – In Paris for seven days. A unique experience since we were driving 2000 km to get there. It was a hell to move through the traffic jam, missed a couple of streets but found our way after ten minutes. A good GPS is a must-have. After the arrival at the hotel Holliday Inn, we got stunned with great service and a pretty good location for our needs at the time. A short walk was on a menu, but I really only wanted a couple of sleeping hours after a long drive. The next day was for fun and exploring. Used Uber to get to the center of Paris and was amused how someone can make three cars put on one driving track, all fighting for a primary pass. Only in Paris and Greece, you can see this. You’ve got to have a lot of nerve to drive in this kind of city. Respect. 🙂
When you reach the downtown, beauty begins to erase all bad images (if you had one), and to load the good ones into a memory. 🙂
Place de la Concorde, Eifel Tower, Arc de Triomphe fulfilled the first day of sightseeing. Visiting these places, history, architecture, and many, many pictures were enough for the first day. Afterward, we went to the restaurant Le Petit Cler, in the street (rue) Cler that has a great atmosphere and serves perfect food. 🙂 It’s a street well known for the good restaurants and cheerful atmosphere. I deeply recommend!
The Louvre, Notre-Dame de Paris, The Avenue des Champs-Élysées, The Grande Mosquée de Paris, La Madeleine made our second day exhausting. Try not to see all this in one day because it’s impossible. We had to renounce waiting in a long row for the entrance to some places, but we learned that two days would be perfectly appropriate for seeing this next time.
The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris – This is the place where I really wanted to go, so we dedicated all day to this. It has the inspiring writing at the entrance- “…Here, day and night, someone prays to Lord…”. A truly magnificent place from where you can see Paris like on a palm. And in its closeness are located the best chocolatiers ever with all the strange flavors. Oh, it’s a sin, I know! Couldn’t help it. 🙂
Save one day especially for the Disneyland! Of course, how could you miss the sweet smell of vanilla on every corner, and all those masks with smiles that built up our personalities from immature to never grow up! 🙂
All these places filled us with fascination and blissfulness. There is so much more to see in Paris but we only had that much time for sightseeing. Personal experiences were positive more than negative – stunning views and ”I’m in Paris” feeling fulfilled every second, even though we really felt unsafe in some moments. For example, there was a gunshot close by, but from the behavior of people, it’s a usual situation in Paris. I can’t say that I liked that part of visiting this city, and I couldn’t just ignore it. That’s the one and only con. Everything else is too famous to scribe about it. And yes, it was worth the effort, but I must admit partly because we’ve seen ten towns on the way. One of those dashing places was Strasbourg.
Strasbourg – a mix of French and German style, natural habitat of storks, in the historical region Alsace, widely known for its beauty. A place very special for the possibility to walk around at 00h without fear. It is one of the safest cities in Europe since a great number of International institutions are located here. The entire city center, The Grand Island, was classified as a World Heritage site by UNESCO. One of the top destinations for me at any time.
The city center is well known by its cathedral, during the summer it changes color from sand to red in the sunset. You can enjoy this view for an hour approximately until the Sun goes down. There can be no list of places to see in Strasbourg because every corner is worthy of your attention. So just take your time and enjoy as much as you can, since the only flaw of this place is that it’s a bit pricey. As soon as you leave the city center, possibilities are multiplied, for the same amount of money.
Food in Strasbourg was superior compared to Paris, or we just had more luck in finding a good place for eating. Anyway, the restaurant I would love to recommend is Arnaud & co. The food, the service, and the prices were very satisfying. I could swear that we went out from a restaurant with a couple of kilos more than we entered with! 🙂
I decided to make a comparison between these two magnificent destinations through my experience. Both are beautiful in a different way, but the tourists should know what to expect if they have to choose where to spend a weekend. 🙂
The accommodation was much easier to reach in Strasbourg than in Paris, where the traffic jam is unbearable if you go by car. That’s why most people use the subway. Uber in Strasbourg is a good option if you’re new to the city. Just for the record, if you try to use Uber in Paris you’ll need the same amount of time to get to the city center as if you were going on foot. Not joking! It’s an acceptable option if you’re going in the other direction, away from the center.
Luckily in Paris, we have cousins who gave us a crazy drive from north to southern parts at one o’clock after midnight, looking for cakes. I must admit it wouldn’t feel very pleasant to walk alone in Paris. On the contrary, in Strasbourg, we felt like home even though we don’t know anyone there. It is the only city where we saw four kids, evidently from three different religions, driving bicycles together, by night. This warmed my heart. Also, all the other people were acting as if it was ten in the morning. It made me feel totally relaxed abroad, and that doesn’t happen a lot.
In Strasbourg German influence in architecture is obvious, but the language is the same old sensual French, and it would be good to know it before you go there. They really don’t want to speak English. We used Duolingo to learn basics of French. I must say that it was good enough to get food or to get us to the right place. This is a great application for learning languages, especially if you’re a traveler who loves to know a couple of new words and phrases before visiting one country. 🙂
The speed of life in Paris is five times faster, it’s where the magic happens. Now you only have to decide which gear you are in and pack your bags.