Today we said goodbye to England and made our way across the channel to Paris. We started our journey by stocking up on Nutella packets, muffins, and apples from the hotel breakfast buffet (thanks Ibis!), and made our way to the metro. We had fortunate timing, as we hopped on the train within 4 minutes of arriving and the following train was delayed by 27 minutes. In a short few stops we arrived at St. Pancras station and navigated our way to the Eurostar area. This part really reminded me of an airport. We had to wait in line, show passports and tickets, walk through a metal detector, and they scanned our bags. However, unlike most airports, this was rather quick and easy.
Our journey to Paris was a short, scenic 1.5 hour train ride. We nabbed a window seat and got a great view of the English and French country sides. Our ride under the English Channel caught me by surprise. It was so quick I didn’t even have time to register that we were under water. When we arrived in Paris, we decided to walk to our airbnb since it was only 1 mile away, but in 95 degree heat, that was quite a hike! We arrived drenched in sweat and definitely looked like hot messes.
Our airbnb is in a wonderful location. Many sites are a 10-15 minute walk, and the neighborhood seems fantastic. After checking in, we walked to the local shopping area and bought a baguette (hot from the oven) from the boulangerie, cheese (a smelly soft cheese and an aged Gouda) from la fromagerie, nectarines and figs from a fruit stand, and wine, because France.
Then after dropping our food off at the apartment and resting a bit, we decided to grab some dinner in the same shopping area. We both could not believe how this neighborhood had changed since just a few hours prior! What used to be a cute shopping area with local stores was now a lively, fun dinner, drinking, and dancing scene. Restaurants had speakers set up outside blaring club music, live bands were playing on every corner, and people were dancing and drinking in the streets. C’est incredible!
There was a festival all over Paris to celebrate the solstice! Live music was everywhere all across the city. – Shelby
After taking it all in, Shelby and I stopped at Le Bois Bois for some dinner. Shelby got duck with cheesy potatoes, and I got one of the biggest things on my French food bucket list: beef tartare. I’m not going to lie–I was apprehensive about eating raw beef. However, it was delicious. It tasted like seasoned beef sushi. I would totally get this again.
I have to say, Paris is nothing like any city I’ve experienced. And I love it.