Being a travel companion and FMTY escort is the most fun — I mean, when someone says, ‘would you like to join me in Paris for a few days’, the only possible answer is a resounding oui, merci!
What is a FMTY companion? Find out more here!
Of course, I wouldn’t want to be disloyal to my beautiful London, but Paris is just such a pretty city, isn’t it? The architecture, the elegant tree-lined boulevards, the Seine, and it’s always sunny when I’m there! And is there anything better than waking up to a coffee and a croissant? I love finding a sweet little café for breakfast and people watching. C’est tellement parisien!
I am such a sucker for a city with a charismatic river, and the Seine doesn’t disappoint. The bridges, the art galleries set just off its banks, the way the streetlights sparkle off the water — c’est magnifique, non? That view from the Pont Neuf when the sky is dark and the city is bright... it’s just lovely. And the other thing that Paris has: little islands! I love sipping wine on a square on the Ile de la Cité, while locals play games of boules and pétanque.
Another of my favourite things to do in Paris is wander through Le Marais. Romantic cobbled streets, cosy wine bars, little galleries — I could spend forever here.
Speaking of galleries, Paris is practically unmatched. On this trip, I opted to go to the Louvre, as I haven’t been since a school trip a very long time ago. The collection is, of course, superb, but the building itself is so vast that I always find it a bit of a mission to march through! I think you could easily spend the best part of a week there and still not see everything. This time, we made sure to see Venus de Milo, Théodore Géricault’s absolute masterpiece, The Raft of the Medusa, and, of course, a certain Miss Mona Lisa by... some unknown Italian. The gift shop at the Louvre is good too, although I do think it could be a bit bigger!
My other top arty things to do in Paris are the Rodin Museum, for The Thinker and the gorgeous sculpture gardens; the Musée de l’Orangerie, chiefly for the calming, bright white space of that Monet room, but also for the beautiful walk there through the Jardin des Tuileries; and my very favourite place, the Musée d’Orsay, which holds the world’s largest collection of Impressionist work and, being an old train station, is one of the most spectacular buildings you could see.
And you know the other thing I love about Paris? The Eurostar! It’s such a great way to travel to Paris from London, and I just love a train journey. The trains are so frequent, you go straight from King’s Cross, and you don’t have to faff about getting liquids out of your bag at security. (Another of my favourite train journeys is from Boston to New York — such a pretty view of the coast along there.)
Like France? How about Italy! Check out my Italian city wishlist.
A little further from the centre, in the 14th arrondissement, is the Catacombs of Paris — a must for any history fans, or anyone interested in the Paris of times (thankfully) past. The eerie underground labyrinth is truly a unique experience, and is chilling in more ways than one. Ghoulish, unforgettable.
When it comes to food in France, I just can’t get enough of French cheese and wine. Boeuf bourguignon is one of my favourite dishes; I love croque monsieur (or madame), steak frites, anything with a French sauce. Garlic, butter, herbs — sign me up. I have to say that the one thing I’ve never fancied trying is escargot. But I’m here for the rest of it!
And as much as I enjoy being pushed outside my comfort zone and experiencing new things, I also love to be in a place where I know the language — did you know I speak fluent French? I can be your interpreter if you get shy!
So what do you say — meet me in Paris? I’ll hold your hand if you get scared in the catacombs...