So I'm currently sat in the airport waiting for my flight home. I only got here Friday afternoon but I've squeezed so much in since then that it feels like forever ago! I planned this solo trip around 2 months ago after buying a new camera and realising I wanted something beautiful and interesting to photograph - Paris seemed like the perfect place.
I landed at 3pm on Friday and after the longest taxi to the gate ever I was let loose in Paris. I found my way onto the RER easy enough but when I reached Gare du Nord, the signs confused me so much I eventually gave up trying to make sense of it and just found the nearest exit. This was my first mistake. It took me a good while to get my bearings and find my way en route to my hotel in the 9th, add to that the temperature and I was feeling extremely flustered when I did reach my destination - Hotel France Albion on Rue Notre-Dame de Lorette. The hotel was great, nothing fancy but clean and nicely decorated and the staff were very nice and accommodating.
After settling in I set off to cover some ground. I took the metro from Peletier to Cite, passed Notre-Dame and ducked into Subway for something quick to eat (having not eaten since 10am I needed an energy boost). I popped in to Shakespeare & Co. and made my first purchase of the trip - a book called 'The Vagenda' about how women are portrayed in the media. It had been on my list for a while so it was lovely to buy it from such a beautiful bookstore. I journeyed south and slowly started ticking off places on my list - Rue Galande, St. Etienne du Mont and Rue Mouffetard.
By the time I'd reached this last street the sun was starting to go down and I was eager to get up to Sacre Coeur for the sunset. I journeyed back north, planning on getting back on the metro at Cite, but as I crossed the Pont des Arts I was stopped by a young French man who had jumped up and followed me to tell me how beautiful I looked! I was a little blown away. We got talking and we ended up walking together all the way back to my hotel. It was like having my own personal tour guide. After exchanging details with my new French friend I said bon soir and popped up to my room to freshen up before taking the metro from Saint-Georges to Abesses.
Now can I just say, there should be a warning about the stairs at the Abesses stop. I was blissfully unaware of what awaited me when I began to climb, and then I hit the 7th lot of stairs and I was panting and hating myself for taking the healthy option over the lift. When I finally reached the top, my legs already aching from exploring the 5th and walking a good two hours to my hotel, I then foolishly climbed the mammoth flights of stairs up to the top of Montmartre. I have to say when I've read about these stairs on this forum, I didn't think I'd have a problem, being young and agile but I was very very wrong. Once at the top I walked around to the front of Sacre Coeur to see the basilica lit up and the beautiful view of the city. I hung around and snapped some photos, watched the tower sparkle at 11 and then began my descent back to my cosy bed to rest my legs for a few hours before doing it all again the next day!
I'll post about Saturday and Sunday when I get home tonight, and will add a link to my photos when they're edited and ready to be viewed. I hope this is somewhat interesting to read!