Three Days in Paris // Travel Diary + Tips & Recs

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Eiffel-Tower fashion blogger pics
For those who follow me on Instagram, you’re probably MORE than well aware that I recently got back from a weeklong trip to Europe with my mom and sister. Our girls trip expanded 2 countries and 3 cities and consisted of 4 train rides, 5 hotel stays, and literally thousands of photos. We had a fantastic time eating and sight-seeing our way through Paris, Brussels, and Ghent — and then back again. In a nutshell, it was magic. 

All three of us had been to Paris before (see my first and second Paris posts from two years ago here and here). This time around, we were in the City of Lights for 3 ½ days of our getaway, which is what I’m detailing below. 

Before we get started though, let me just say how much I LOVE PARIS. This gorgeous, historic city is almost unreal, and my heart truly lights up when I’m there. We ended up bookending the Belgium portion of our trip with Paris, and that turned out to be perfect. So we started in Paris and ended in Paris — I mean, can you even think of a better vacation?
Arc de Triomphe in Paris blogger pics
Day 1: Exploring / Balmain Hair Salon / Champs Elysées
Paris outfit ideas for spring
My journey began with an overnight plane from New York’s JFK to Paris’ ORY. I landed on Sat. April 6 at 9 am (and hit the ground running). I’m mentioning the exact date here because Spring can be a tricky season to travel in in terms of weather. It was an average of 52 degrees during our entire trip, but it was warmer than that the week before we were there, and then significantly warmer the week after we left. 

The outfits I wore did keep me warm, but as you can see, I did need heavier jackets, turtlenecks, and layers. Our last day was actually the coldest and I honestly could have worn a hat and gloves!
Paris city guide for spring
Paris marais cafe
After freshening up at our hotel, Hotel Des Comedies, which is located in the Le Marais neighborhood of Paris, we grabbed lunch at a nearby cafe and ate outside in the sunshine (this was the warmest day of our trip). After that, we walked around the neighborhood snapping photos and enjoying the cherry blossoms that were in full bloom. 

The concierge at our hotel was then nice enough to, at our request, book hair appointments for us at the Balmain Hair Salon located along the Champs-Élysées. I know right, *lands in Paris and immediately books hair appointment* — talk about an eye roll. But this is actually one of my best travel hacks. Getting your hair done will save you so much time and energy in the mornings, and it’s so worth it to not have to worry about your hair looking good while on vacation.
Paris long weekend travel guide
Paris cherry blossoms in april 2019
Paris fashion blogger city guide
At the salon, my mom and I got blowouts and my sister got an actual cut, which she desperately needed ;) and our experience was nothing short of memorable. The Balmain salon is just as glamorous and chic as you’d think, and we were treated like royalty, which is always a plus!
Balmain hair salon in Paris, France
Best hair salon in Paris on the champs elysées
Next, we ventured to the Arc de Triomphe where we took an embarrassing amount of pictures (which you’ll see is a theme during our trip, ha)!

For dinner, we ate at a buzzy outdoor cafe along the Champs-Élysées and watched the sun set over the Arc [insert dreamy sigh]. I ordered one of my favorite things to get in France, which is also super affordable — a Croque Madame. The waiter was slightly offended when I asked for it without ham though (#vegetarian), so I just took the meat off when it arrived and handed it off to my mom.  
Paris spring travel guide blogger
Paris France dessert
Day 2: Picnic / Eiffel Tower / Le Palais Royal / Angelina's
recommendations for fromagerie in Paris France
We got an early(ish) start on day two, beginning our morning the same way we began every morning in Paris — at a boulangerie! My sister speaks French (it’s one of her majors) and I took French for six years (...doesn’t mean I’m good though lol), so we always try and find the most authentic French spots, and luckily — when I’m with her — we have no problems communicating with shop owners. 

It was a Sunday and not everything was open, but we found a cute place not far from our hotel and, just like everything else in France, it was fabulous! Boulangeries are more abundant in Paris than Starbucks are in New York, and they’re typically just walk-in places where you order breakfast or lunch on the go. 

And yes, Parisians actually DO walk around carrying and eating baguettes (and yes, it is kind of adorable)!
Paris long weekend ideas
Eiffel Tower photo shoot locations
After exploring the 7th arrondissement of Paris, which is a “quaint yet sophisticated” neighborhood encompassing the Eiffel Tower, we decided to picnic beneath the Eiffel Tower for lunch. For supplies, we stopped by the Rue Cler Market, which is almost like a farmer’s market that features little shops and cafes. We bought fresh cheese and bread from a fromagerie, and were on our way.
Eiffel Tower picnic of bread cheese
Eiffel Tower blogger pics
For me, the photos I take while on a trip are my souvenirs, so making sure to shoot at specific locations is a high priority on my list; I view it not as just simply taking photos, but making memories. We shamelessly took hundreds of Eiffel Tower pics and had a lot of fun doing it. I wish I could provide an exact location for where some of them were shot, but we really just wandered around and happened to stumble upon some really cool views.

Paris Eiffel Tower photo shoot locations
Something I really wanted to do during this Paris trip was visit Le Palais Royal, which is a former royal palace located opposite the Louvre. The Palais-Royal now serves as the seat of the Ministry of Culture and the Constitutional Council, but honestly we were just there for the beautiful scenery — and to see the famous striped columns! There’s also a gorgeous garden there that you can walk through and sit in. It’s a little piece of paradise in the bustling city.
Paris Le Palais Royal blogger pics
Paris streets spring 2019
Most people who have planned a Paris trip before, know about Angelina’s. Angelina’s is a famous tea house located in the 1st arrondissement of Paris that’s primarily known for its almost pudding-like hot chocolate. Said hot chocolate should be a national treasure — it’s that life-changing. 

While at Angelina’s, we of course got three hot chocolates and then couldn’t resist also ordering some pastries, because France. This ended up being our dinner, as we had an early wakeup call the next morning for our train to Brussels. 

As we walked back to our hotel, we watched the sun set over Paris and took a few street photos along the way.
Pastries from Angelinas Tea House in Paris
Paris street style spring 2019
Day 3: Best Boulangerie / The Louvre / Tuileries Garden
Paris marais neighborhood pics
As I mentioned earlier, boulangeries were our jam while in Paris, but our favorite by far was the one we visited on the morning of our last full day. It’s a famous one called Du Pain et des Idées (in English, “Some Bread and Some Ideas), and my sister had been insisting we go. It turned out to be a true gem, and I still think of their unbelievable fruit rouge escargot, which I wish I were eating right now! 

We had to wait in a line to even get in the door, but it didn’t take too long and it was SO worth it. Not only was the inside gorgeous and quintessentially French, but the people were so nice and the pastries lived up to the hype. 

My sister made it clear that we shouldn’t be shy about getting EVERYTHING we wanted, and I really took that to heart. We left with seven treats!
Du Pains des Idees bakery in Paris
Best boulangerie in Paris
what to do in paris over a long weekend
Is any Paris trip complete without a visit to the Louvre (aka the most visited museum in the world)? According to my sister, that’s a hard no. She’s currently studying French and Art History at Notre Dame, so obviously the Louvre is one of her favorite places in the entire city.

Although my mom and I had been before, we hadn’t been with HER, which is a treat in itself because she can act as our own personal tour guide. But of course before entering, we had to take a plethora of photos ;)
Louvre glass pyramid blogger pics
Paris Tuileries Garden spring 2019
After a few (and by “a few” I mean four) hours in the Louvre, we walked around, enjoying the streets of Paris. During my last visit, the Tuileries Garden was one of my favorite spots, and this time we felt extra lucky to see the gardens in the springtime, as the cherry blossoms were in full bloom. It was breathtaking!
Tuileries Garden Paris April 2019
Tuileries Garden April 2019
For our last dinner in Paris, we ate dessert first, starting with this fanciful pastry from Pierre Hermé’s (pictured below), which, if you can believe it, tasted even better than it looked. It’s called an ispahan and it can only be described as heavenly. Pierre Hermé’s is the best place to get them, and they’re essentially a giant cake-like macaroon filled with fresh raspberries and cream and adorned with a rose petal. 

For dinner, we went to another neighborhood in Paris, Montmartre. My sister had a recommendation for a trendy French restaurant there called Bouillon Pigalle, and let me tell you, it was hopping! We waited in line for over an hour to be seated, but it was so busy for a reason. The best part is that it wasn’t touristy at all — it was clearly a Friday night Parisian hangout and everyone around us was speaking French. We enjoyed an amazing (and authentically French) meal on the roof, and ended our time in Paris on a major high note.
ispahan from Pierre Hermes Baker in Paris
Bouillon Pigalle restaurant in Paris
Bonus: African Food / Indian Speakeasy
Baranaan Indian Cocktail speakeasy in Paris
During the “½” of our 3 ½ days in Paris, we went to a casual dinner at a local hotspot called Osè African Cuisine. I’d describe it as a Chipotle but with fresh African food (think beans, rice, meats, vegetables, and sauces). It was satisfying, delicious, and unlike anything we have in the states. It was also not touristy AT ALL and the people who worked there were very friendly. 

After dinner, we went across the street to an Indian restaurant that has a speakeasy in the back called Baranaan Indian Cocktail. I drank out of an actual coconut and, get this, the theme of the place was Bombay’s prohibition era. The inside of the bar was decorated as if you were on a train. How cool, right?
Paris street style April
As lengthy as this post is, refraining from adding even more photos and tid-bits was actually a challenge! So if you have any questions or want more info, feel free to reach out to me via the comments section, email, or IG :)


Next up, a 4-day Belgium guide featuring the cities of Brussels and Ghent. Stay tuned!

3 comments:

  1. Wow, just love it. I wish I can travel to Paris one day.

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  2. So so glad you were able to visit. Your pictures are spectacular! It looks like such a beautiful city to explore and enjoy!
    the-creationofbeauty.blogspot.com

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