Saturday - Arrival in Paris
Welcome to France! Pick up museum passes for your time here, have French-Japanese pastries, see a museum (a former railway station) featuring Impressionist art, and enjoy a Spanish tapas dinner featuring Iberico ham near the Eiffel Tower.
Go to Paris Tourist Office (25, rue des Pyramides 75001 to pick up the 4-day Paris Museum Pass for Tourists. This office is easily walkable from the Pyramides Metro stop.
Visit the Tuileries Garden (a big garden that used to be the private property of royalty; you'll see statues, arches, views of famous landmarks, and lots of people-watching)
Have a pastry break at Aki Boulanger Cafe, located in the "Little Tokyo" district in Paris (link: japanese pastries, bento boxes, curry, rice bowls) for a quick bite (or two!), then cross the river to…
[ - 18:30 closing time] Musée d'Orsay
- to enjoy French art of the 1800s and early 1900s: you'll see ++impressionist art (Manet, Monet, Renoir, Degas, Van Gogh, Cezanne, Gauguin)
- Useful facts:
- Used to be a railway station!
- Even though the closing time is 18:30 they start closing at 17:45
- Access: <18 yrs free; covered by Museum Pass
Enjoy dinner at Bellota Bellota, to enjoy Spanish tapas in a cave setting! Don't miss the Iberican ham served in translucent slices warmed by a lamp (link: the friendly waiters have lovely recommendations and will fill your table with sardines, wine, bread...)
Let’s explore old Paris history, see its architecture, and admire the art at the Louvre. Food will begin with pastries, lead to an oyster and white wine lunch, and end with a traditional Parisian bistro dinner. Before we end the day, an evening Seine cruise.
Boulangerie Eric Kayser Breakfast (link) try the lemon tarts, some of the best in the city, and admire or devour croissants, baguettes, financiers, you name it). The spot is a small one, designed for you to drop by and take out.
Walk to visit the Sainte-Chapelle (gorgeous stained glass; visit here first and early in the day to avoid the long lines), admire the Notre Dame, then cross over into the Latin quarter, Ile de la Cite; both museums covered by Museum Pass)
Huitrerie Regis Lunch: this is an oyster spot, enjoy with some sparkling white! (link: 12:00-22:00, the minimum order required to have a dozen oysters per person, no reservations taken)
Musée du Louvre (open 09:00-18:00; <18 yrs is free admission, the visit is covered by Museum Pass)
- “the Louvre is a full inventory of Western civilization. To cover it all in one visit is impossible.” -Rick Steves
- Specialties - Greek sculpture, Italian painting, French painting
Trocadero Gardens (park across from Eiffel Tower other side of Seine) + Eiffel Tower; relax in the gardens amongst Parisiens and tourists, sitting on blankets on the ground or strolling hand-in-hand.
Dinner at Au Petit Tonneau (link); a casual French bistro within sight of Eiffel tower. Try escargot here, or have duck breast (done medium), or perhaps veal stew. The tables are covered in red and white checkered cloths and feels very homey!
Evening Sightseeing cruise from Eiffel Tower by Bateaux Parisiens (Boarding pier no. 3 at Port de la Bourdannais. Check in 20 to 30 minutes before the departure - no booking required. Departures: Every 30 minutes from 10 am to 10.30 pm, no departure at 1pm or 7:30pm. Duration: 1 hr). Enjoy the slow cruise and watch for folks hanging out near the water; the cruise gives you a lovely view of the Eiffel Tower at the beginning and end.
Line up for famous Angelina’s hot chocolate, browse shopping districts (and buy a picnic train lunch for tomorrow's Versailles trip), take in Monet’s lilies, and buy pastries and sweets galore; a sunset view of Paris from a rooftop.
Angelina: breakfast (link 07:30-19:00, known for their very rich thick hot chocolate, try the mont blanc (chestnut cake), really big and really famous place, you might have to wait, but the line should move quickly, breakfast special is pretty big)
See Arc de la Triomphe and Avenue des Champs-Elysées from a distance, as it will probably take 2-3 hours to even just walk down the avenue because of so many tourists - mainly international big name brands along this famous shopping street; take a peek and move on to…
Musee de l’Orangerie (09:00-18:00, last admission 17:15, has Monet’s water lilies in a big white circular room!, covered by Museum Pass)
For shopping and a quite respite, stop by Toraya: Afternoon tea break and light lunch at Toraya (famous sweets shop from Kyoto); also has light Japanese lunch options
[10:00-16:30] Palais Garnier (lavish opera house, possible inspiration for Phantom of the Opera; 11 EUR pp, not covered by the pass but check out the gorgeous, twisting stairs)
Visit famous bakery Du Pain et des Idees for escargot pastry and crispy croissants. Explore The Marais region - artsy and trendy district. Lots of walkable shopping area near Saint Paul station. Buy eclairs at L’Eclair de Genie, or cheesecake at She’s Cake
For dinner, enjoy buckwheat crepes at Breizh Cafe (link) galettes (savory crepes), dessert crepes and cider, can try lait ribot also which is a fermented milk drink that is paired with galettes, the ham and cheese galette is really good also. The spot is small and cozy, perch on the bar-height stools and enjoy!
Sunset view from Montparnasse Tower (advance tickets allow for one entry at any day any time; 09:30-23:30; last entry at 23:00)
#paris #sunset #oysters #galettes #crepes #food #baguettes #bakery #bakeries