Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Trip to Paris 1/7

This is going to be my first post about the one week trip to Paris I went on with my friend Maria. I was going to hold them back a bit more but since I'm going away to a con this weekend (wohoo!) I thought I'd give you something to read during my absence.
Some of the days we did more than others so naturally - some posts will  be a bit long.
It was a really great adventure though and I hope I will be able to do our days there justice.

By the end of every post I will list tips and important things to know when going there. Although you could just skip to that part I'd suggest you read the whole post. C'mon, don't be a lazy bum ^o^
Now to the post!

The first day of our trip began early in the morning.

Instead of flying CPH (Copenhagen, Denmark)→HAM (Hamburg, Germany)→CDG (Paris, France), my dad drove us to Germany to let us save both money and time. (Thank you dad!).

Since none of us had been to HAM before we decided that online check-in would be a good idea so that, once we arrived in the airport, all we'd have to do was to drop off our luggage. 

Airports can be such stressful places and for people like me who aren't too fond of them, even the slightest change of tone or unfriendly comment from the people working there can change the experience for the worse. But unlike that irritating(!!!!) woman in Heathrow who kept accusing my mom of having a knife and a grenade and thereby almost making us miss our plane, the people in HAM seemed way more relaxed.
The lady in the information stand was helpful, the guy at the baggage drop-off was joking around and asking about our trip, and the lady at the security check actually apologized to me for speaking German instead of English to me when she found out I was a foreigner (even though she really didn't have to).
Awkward selfie before taking off

All in all I was very satisfied with HAM although they don't have as many stores as CPH. I wouldn't mind flying from there again. 
The flight was only 1½ hour and soon we found ourselves in Charles de Gaulle airport. It took a while before our baggage came but it was okay, there were a bunch of pretty french boys to look at eheheh (⌒ω⌒;)

The airport (which is HUGE by the way. Like an entire city!) was 23 km from our hotel. To get there we jumped on a Roissy Bus and got off at the Opera. From here we weren't sure where to go so I approached a girl with an orange cap with "information" written on it. We showed her the address to our hotel and she told us how to get there and which buses we'd have to take (to be honest it was a little confusing with all the names but her English was good). However, we knew that the hotel was less than 1 km away so we stood there planning our route until another boy came up to us and helped us. He told us how to get there by metro but when he figured we preferred to walk, he told us it was far away but showed us the route anyways. It really wasn't far, maybe we're just used to walking further? We did end up getting a little lost and decided to take a taxi, just this once. 

Our hotel was located in a side street to the left
The entrance to our hotel Hotel Villa Boheme
I know these pictures are bad but I couldn't back away more! It was so small
 The door was to the left of the mirror and the other opening in the right side of the picture is the bathroom. This picture was taken from the other corner of the room
And the bathroom! I really liked the make-up mirror. Again, sorry for the bad pictures. The bathroom was small and I couldn't back away more
Despite our room being MUCH smaller than we thought, the hotel was like in the pictures. Everything was clean and the receptionists always said bonjour (good day) and bonsoir (good evening) when we went out. 

It was now afternoon and we headed out to see the city and later on find a place to eat. Not even 5 minutes after we went out the skies parted and it started pouring dogs and cats. We did bring an umbrella but not even that could protect us (or Maria's feet only covered by her sandals). We sought cover with some French people and at some point a girl came over and asked us directions in French! (Before we left I read somewhere that if you blend in well enough with your clothing and appearance, people might ask you directions and you should take that as a compliment).

When the rain finally stopped we decided to be lazy that day and go to a McDonald's. We're students. Don't judge. This MCD was a biiiiiit different from all the other ones I have ever seen. Instead of telling our order to a person we had to do it on a machine. It was hard to figure out how to handle the machine and in the end it refused to take our cards (--") (It wouldn't take cash). Eventually the people working there figured we were tourists and we paid by the counter. 
Enemy #1

In the evening we went people-watching at Starbucks.
Parisians are fabulous. Don't forget that. And there were sooo many model-like people ohmygosh. 
This was taken through the window right beside me. Great location and look at all the scooters! You'd see people in suits ride those all the time
This was a picture I took on our way back to the hotel. I don't think we ever learned what it was but the building itself was just so pretty

Tips and things to know:

  • Flying early in the morning or late at night might make your tickets cheaper (Of course this depends on which time of the year you're traveling and what your destination is)
  • Flying on a Sunday, right as a new work week is about to start, might also lessen the cost of your flight ticket (Again this depends on time of the year and destination)
  • Online check-in in the airport is easy and will spare you time and trouble. You can have your boarding pass sent to your mail, in a text, or print it at home or in the airport. 
  • The Roissy bus is a great way to get to the Opéra (near centre of Paris) and costs 10.50€ (Which is MUCH cheaper than a taxi). When you get off at the bus stop there will be guides to help you find your way. 
  • Taxis in Paris are expensive and from 20.30 (or something like that) to 6.30 you'll have to pay double price.
  • If you happen to take a taxi you should have the address written down. Not all taxi drivers were easy to understand. The first one we met didn't speak English at all!
  • Many of the Parisians were well dressed. Pack your finest summer clothing to blend in.
  • Parisians people are fabulous. Get it into your head. They look great even when running! (Sorry, I know I'm generalizing much but I meant it in the best way!)
  • A french girl who visited my class earlier this year told me that French people in general will be more positive towards you if you approach them in French or try to say a few words. The picture below probably isn't completely correct but it is a great help to learn some useful basic expressions.


    1. Jeg har altid gerne ville besøge paris! Lyder som om I havde en skøn ferie ^^
      Jeg har nomineret dig til liebster awarden på min blog ^^

      1. Vi havde en helt fantastisk tur så jeg vil helt klart sige Paris er et besøg værd hvis du overvejer det en dag! ^o^
        Uuuuh hvor nice! Det har jeg altid gerne villet prøve, mange tak! :3

    2. Lovely pictures and post, Lucy! The picture of the basic French expressions would be quite handy if I ever got to visit France, so thank you for sharing that!

      1. Thank you so much, Molly! :)
        And you are very welcome! The French expressions sure came in handy for us as peoples' attitudes seemed to change a bit in some situations but it's really just a bonus :)
        Thank you for stopping by my blog, have a great day ~


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