Paris Journals

My Own Little Paris

A February 2007 trip to Paris by Mandan Lynn

Arc de Triomphe Photo, Paris, France More Photos
Quote: Everyone writes about Paris, and probably has more to say than I do, but I couldn't resist sharing my findings, anyway.

My Own Little Paris

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Overview

From Within These Gates Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
We were in Paris for only 3 days, but they were a lovely three. Paris was bustling with locals and tourists alike, despite it being the middle of February.Cafés are a culture in Paris. It's almost always possible to eat outside. We enjoyed choosing restaurants and having long, lingering meals, just watching people come and go.Of course, you can't miss the Eiffel Tower lit up at night, or a walk along the river, or a day (or six) in the Louvre. Paris has something for everyone.Quick Tips: You can go to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but the view from the Arc de Triomphe is just as good—and it costs less. Plus, you can see the Eiffel Tower from there, and it's sort of cool to see ...Read More

Hotel Hermes

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Hotel

Hotel Hermes Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
Hotel Hermes is sufficiently out of the city center—luckily, there is an end-of-the-line Métro stop on the corner, so it's no problem to get everywhere you need to be. There is free parking on the street surrounding the hotel on the weekends. If you're there during the week, though, you'll have to pay. Try to find parking on the street anyway, but it might be tricky. Try to avoid the 25 euro for 24-hour parking garages—though I think parking is pretty pricey all over Paris.This is one of the cheapest hotels we could find without staying someplace really crappy, and it's cheaper yet if you book through an agency! Strange, but true. We only paid €50 per night. The prices listed on the hotel webs...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Hotel Hermes
22, rue Baudin
Levallois-Perret, France 92300
+33 (147) 599600

La Fregate

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Restaurant | "Fregate"

Quote:
We stopped at Fregate for a quick lunch after we went to the Musée d'Orsay. It is a delightful, cozy, classy place with quite a crowd at 1pm on a Sunday. The waiters were friendly and quick to seat us—and take my coat.There were a couple of set menu options, but, like I said, we just wanted a quick meal before continuing with our day. I ordered the onion soup, which seemed a little pricey at 7,50 euro, but it was really, really good. Don't be surprised that it's full of bread. I've had onion soup before, but never with the soggy bread. Apparently Americans don't go for that in a big way. I thought it was maybe just the way this particular restaurant does things, but I ordered onion soup at ano...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

La Fregate
Rue du Bac
Paris, France

Buci (Le)

Restaurant | "Le Buci"

Quote:
Le Buci was the site of our first meal in Paris. It was a tight squeeze, which at the time was sort of surprising to me, but as we stopped at more and more restaurants I started to realize that that's just how it is in Paris!The menu was fairly small. Appetizers cost between 4 and 10 euro; meals were around €10. I ordered the chicken and ended up with half a bird, a small salad, and a bunch of french fries. (Don't be afraid to ask for ketchup, but try to resist the urge to eat them with your hands.) Ruud ordered a salad, which he could barely finish—it was huge. Steak and soup are also available.The waiter brought my water in a small pitcher, and it was free. The Coke Ruud ordered, how...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Buci (Le)
52 rue Dauphine
Paris, France
+33 (1) 4326-6752

Quote:
We stopped at the Café des Beaux-Arts for a drink after our dinner elsewhere. I didn't look at the food menu, but it didn't seem very long.It was about 9:30 on a Friday night, but it wasn't very busy. I ordered cappuccino—6 euro! "Welcome to Paris," Ruud kept saying, but that's still a little ridiculous. Even his tea was €4,50. It was so-so cappuccino. My friend says one mark of good cappuccino is if the sugar you add sits on the top for a while before sinking. It fell right through in this cup. Very disappointing, for €6.We enjoyed our time here, however. The view from our window seats was delightful, and the waiters were friendly.But it comes down to that price. Yes, food and...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Café des Beaux Arts
7 Quai Malaquais
Paris 75006
+33 01 43 54 08 55

Aux Artistes

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Restaurant

Quote:
This is my favorite of the restaurants we visited in Paris!It's a bit out of the way, but with the convenience of the Métro, it's no problem. The walls are covered with American license plates, photographs, and paintings. It's so cozy—and, again, cramped. The tables are very close together. We were there early, but it filled up quickly. If you plan to go later, be sure to make a reservation.The waiters were young and fun. They give you the menu and a piece of paper; after you've decided what you want, you write it down and hand it back to them.The menu is handwritten and extensive. The set menu costs 13 euro, and that's what we ordered. For that, you get an appetizer, m...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Aux Artistes
63, Rue Falguière
Paris
+33 01 43-22-05-39

Musee d'Orsay

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Attraction

Quote:
I had heard that the Musee d'Orsay has a phenomenal collection, and indeed it does. It is housed in an impressive building - you enter into a grand hall filled with sculptures. To the side are rooms filled with paintings. I came across Delacroix's "Chasse aux lions" and couldn't move. It was glorious. It's now on my list of favorite paintings.It's a bit difficult to navigate - you'll probably end up missing some things if you're not careful. It's also a bit of a maze, especially when you throw the upper floors into the mix. I ended up getting ahead of my travel partner, and even though I stopped in front of "Chasse aux lions" for a good long time, I still had to embark on a major search for hi...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Musee d'Orsay
62, Rue De Lille
Paris, France 75343
+33 (1) 4049-4994

Musée du Louvre

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Attraction

Musée du Louvre Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
No self-respecting art lover can visit Paris without visiting the Louvre. Close your eyes long enough to get past that pyramid and you're in for a treat.It's overwhelming, no doubt. You just have to resign yourself to the fact that you're not going to see it all, or even close. In most museums, I don't pay much attention to the floor plan, but in the Louvre you'll want that map handy. Wandering around aimlessly leads you to rooms housing small sculptures and artifacts - not what I was there to see. I wanted paintings! So I pulled out the map and followed the roads leading to painting-filled rooms.The first stop for most people is the Mona Lisa. My travel partner, Ruud, mentione...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Musée du Louvre
99, rue de Rivoli
Paris, France 75001
+33 (1) 40 20 51 51

Arc de Triomphe

Attraction

Arc de Triomphe Photo, Paris, France
Quote:
Both Ruud and I had already been to the top of the Eiffel Tower on previous trips to Paris, so this time we decided to ascend the Arc de Triomphe. It was an excellent choice. The views of Paris were every bit as lovely as they are from atop the Eiffel Tower, and getting to the top of the Arc is a less expensive process.There are lots of spiral steps to climb, so if you have any health conditions you might want to be aware of that before you buy your ticket. Once on the top, you can check out les Champs-Elysees, the crazy traffic, and the Eiffel Tower.Back on the ground, you can see the eternal flame at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.If you've never done the Eiffel Tower thing ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 13, 2007

Arc de Triomphe
Place Charles-de-gaulle
Paris, France 75008
+33 (1) 55 37 73 77

Quote:
When we got to the top of the Arc de Triomphe, I caught sight of two love birds in the midst of a serious make-out session. I mentally rolled my eyes. Okay, okay - this is Paris, you can see a long way from up here, it's a bit cold, it's almost Valentine's Day, there are a dozen other romance factors at play, but come on. I couldn't even see their faces - both were hidden behind the hood of her jacket.Ruud and I chatted a bit, and I glanced back at them. Yep, still at it. We walked past them and stopped to admire the Eiffel Tower. I swear I didn't mean to look at them again, but my eyes accidently fell on them - but this time they weren't kissing. Instead, he was on bended knee, slidin...Read More