5 tips for a successful trip to Paris
Paris is BIG and there is a long list of popular attractions to visit inside this romantic city. Here are five simple tips from my recent trip to Paris to help you through some of the most well known and widely visited spots:
1. Reserve your Eiffel Tower tickets in advance (and I mean more than a week in advance!)
I thought I was ahead of the game by getting on the official Eiffel tower website a week before we were set to visit, but I came to find out they were already sold out for the day.
Now this doesn’t mean you can’t still climb the tower. However, it means you have to stand in line to do so which for us meant 3+ hours total line standing to make it to the summit! Other option is paying extra to be in a tour group for ticket access or if you have the big bucks you can enjoy a fancy schmancy dinner at the restaurant inside the tower on the second floor which includes a wait-free private elevator ride.
2. The Eiffel Tower stairs option
If you don’t score reserved online tickets, do yourself a favor and DON’T take the stairs if you plan to go all the way to the summit. The exercise part of it was welcomed, but when you purchase tickets for the stairs it only takes you to the second level (out of three). From there you will have to stand in line once again to buy tickets to the summit. If you get tickets to ride the elevator from the start (17,00€), you can choose to purchase the summit tickets at that time which will end up saving you a lot of time standing in line. I would only recommend the stairs if the line was significantly shorter than the elevator line or if you didn't plan on going to the summit.
3. The Louvre tickets
Similar to the Eiffel Tower, you will want to reserve tickets online to access this world famous museum on a time slot basis. We booked our tickets on my phone about an hour before we entered (in July on a Saturday) and couldn’t figure out why there were tons of people waiting in line for tickets. We walked right in with zero wait time. The vast majority of people enter the Louvre to see the Mona Lisa and then they leave. I’d recommend to make a B-line to the Mona Lisa if it is on your list (why wouldn’t it be?!) while you have the energy to fight the crowds and then you can spend the rest of your visit leisurely strolling through the rest of the museum.
4. Enjoy the cuisine
France has some of the best cooking and baking in the world. Do yourself a favor and try some of their famous eats. My favorite is simple, but delicious: the chocolate croissant. Find a bakery in the morning and enjoy it hot from the oven. Other favorites: colorful macaroons and beef bourguignon. Down it all with a bottle of champagne!
My favorite French home cooking restaurant in Montemarte, walking distance to the Sacre Coeur: Www.lanversdudecor.com
5. Splurge and see a Moulin Rouge show
Topless ladies dancing is typically not my thing. But if you are even slightly interested in dressing up to see a super entertaining show in a historic, glam venue, then trust me and do it. I'll be honest, the dinner was just decent. Definitely not the best meal we had in Paris. However, being there for the dinner allowed up-close seats because after the dinner is when they open the doors for those who only bought the show tickets and they fill in the leftover seats in the back. We lined up before the doors opened for dinner seating and scored front row seats. The dinner comes with a bottle of champagne to be split between two people so that was nice to sip on throughout the show. The moves were not scandalous in ANY way and the entire thing was extremely classy and professional. There were acrobatic acts in between the dances that were absolutely jaw dropping and some of the best I have ever seen. Seriously. There were times my party looked at each other in disbelief that such feats were happening. The show was the highlight of my trip and worth every penny. There is no point paying for the “tour group” to see it as it is much cheaper to buy the tickets directly from the official website.
Enjoy the adorable cafes lining the streets, walk along the River Seine, and admire the beautiful architecture.
Leave a comment below if you have any other tips for visiting Paris from your experiences. I know there are so many other wonderful sites to see in this great city & I hope my tips help your visit go a little smoother.
Ciao Bellas e Bellos xoxo,