Paris, the city of love and romance, needs no introduction. It’s famous the world over for its fashion, landmarks, history and culture. To get there from Britain is also super easy – take the Eurostar from London and be there in around 5 hours, take a boat to any of the ports in the North of France, or even fly to Charles de Gaulle, an airport with hundreds of destinations worldwide. Look out for cheap deals on the Eurostar!
Paris’ most famous landmark is, of course, the Eiffel Tower. This was built for an exhibition in the Victorian era, and then served as a radio tower for a while. Today, it’s one of the most popular landmarks in the world, and queuing for the lifts can take over an hour. If you don’t want to wait, you could be brave and take the stairs, but I wouldn’t recommend it if you’re unfit! On the first and second levels, there are restaurants and gift shops. The top levels have excellent views of Paris, and you’ll want to tell your friends how awesome it is up there. Look out for the Arc de Triomphe!
Paris is also known for its museums and art galleries. The Louvre is known for containing the Mona Lisa (which is tiny, and there are always crowds in front of it), but there’s so much more to see there than just that one painting. It has jewellery, paintings, sculptures, artefacts and beautiful things galore. The building itself is worth seeing, as it’s a pretty palace combined with a glass triangle pyramid. There’s also the Musee d’Orsay, which has lots of Van Gogh paintings. This one is built in an old railway station, so the interior is huge.
Take a walk along Paris’ version of the Thames – the River Seine. If you’re feeling lazy, a boat tour will also take you past many of the main sights along the river. See many of Paris’ famous river bridges. You’ll also sail past Isle de la Cite, which has the incredible Notre Dame cathedral. Don’t miss Notre Dame. Go inside it, have a look around, and you can even go up some of the bell towers. You’ll have to pay a small fee, but it will definitely be worth it. The Cathedral is also in a beautiful part of the city, lined with blossom trees in the spring, so enjoy a coffee in the Cathedral square.
Paris is also famous for its shopping, if you have the money. The Champs-Elysee has some of the most famous designer stores in the world, so it’s worth going window-shopping. If you can’t afford that (i.e. most people), there are also big brands like H & M along the street, so you can actually afford to buy something on the most famous shopping street in the world.
If you’re into art, and love the feel of a bohemian area, then go to Montmatre. This is where Moulin Rouge was supposed to be! Right in the centre of this district is the Sacre Coeur church, an incredible white building that looks like a cross between the Taj Mahal and a wedding cake. Like Notre Dame, the interior is spectacular. Sit on the steps on a beautiful day with some ice cream – you’ll feel like a true Parisien.
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