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Paris in 48 Hours – Her Campus’ Guide to the City of Love

Paris is known as the City of Light, La Ville-Lumière and it is also the City of Love. It is best known for being the number one destination for couples in love, but I have discovered that Paris has much more to offer than waiting to be proposed to on the top of the Eiffel Tower.


I have explored all 20 arrondissements of Paris and each quartier has something special to offer. Paris cannot be explored in 24 hours but if you have a 2 day time limit then this is what I would recommend to do.


On arrival at the Gare du Nord, close your eyes and put a peg on your nose. This station is not the nicest welcome to Paris but do not let it ruin your trip. Jump in a taxi outside or if you are without luggage then brave the metro! I would recommend staying on the Rive Gauch; the Left Bank includes the well-known St Germain des Près and St Michel areas and offers views of the Notre Dame as well as being home to the Jardins du Luxembourg, my favourite garden in Paris. The location is perfect and both hostels and hotels are endless.


At the corner of Rue Saint Séverin in St Michel there is a lovely boulangerie/salon de the. Start your day there before walking along the River Seine towards the Notre Dame. The Notre Dame is the most famous cathedral in Paris and well worth a visit, although expect queue times as bad as Space Mountain at Disney! Ile de la Cité is one of the two islands in Paris, but actually Ile St Louis is nicer to explore and slightly less touristy due to its lack of the Notre Dame. The Berthillon ice cream on Ile St Louis is a must and again there will even be queues there! As you cross the bridge, Pont Neuf, walking north you will arrive at the Right Bank. Pont Neuf translates to New Bridge, despite being the oldest standing bridge across the Seine.


The Rive Droite also has a lot to offer including a lovely walk, which follows the metro line 1. From Chatelet metro in the 1st arrondissement you can walk to the Louvre, through the Tuileries gardens and arrive at Place de Concorde. At this impressive square you will have a view of the Seine, the Eiffel Tower and Madeleine Church, depending on which direction you are looking. You are not far from the start of the famous Champs-Elysées, which is meant to be the crème de la crème of shopping, but in fact it is far from it and has become more of a tourist attraction. It is home to Louis Vuitton, Cartier and Abercrombie & Fitch but on the other hand you can also find McDonalds and H&M.


At the top end of the Champs Elysées stands the Arc de Triomphe, which is very symbolic to Paris, and under 26s can climb to the top for free, which is always a bonus. If you walk down George V, just off the Champs, you can finish your busy day with a lovely dinner at Paradis des Fruits, which has an exciting menu, filled with diverse salads and smoothies!


If you are still full of energy and fancy a night out, Andy Wahloo bar in the 1st is a hidden gem and the espresso martinis are out of this world!




Sunday morning and brunch at Eggs & Co in St Germain des Pres is incredible. You can get brunch for 25 euros if you are super hungry/hungover and fancy an omelette, pancakes and fruit, plus a perfectly presented cappuccino. Personally, I love the eggs benedict!



Rue Montorgueil is a lovely road to walk along, even on a rainy day, and everything you could possibly want to sample is available.  Although post brunch at Eggs and Co, you may just want to walk it all off! There are food shops: epiceries, chocolateries, fromageries, boucheries, boulangeries and anything ending in “eries” to be honest. It’s Paris in one fell swoop; at least in the eyes of devout foodies! It almost resembles a food market but it is less hectic and crowded.


For the ladies who want to shop, you have to visit Galleries Lafayette. The panoramic view from the top is fabulous and definitely worth the battle through the store! You can see for miles, and you can pick out the rooftops of lots of major sites: lots of church spires and of course the Eiffel Tower.


Sunday evening spent by Canal St Martin, especially on a summer evening is bliss. Groups of friends bring picnic blankets, a bottle of wine and typical cheese and bread snacks and spend the night relaxing along the Canal. Or if you fancy taking the easier option, Chez Prune is a very popular restaurant along the Canal!



Bon Voyage!

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