This blog post has been a long time coming, I was actually meant to write about Paris when I went last year but I didn’t get round to it but maybe it’s a good thing because now after visiting it 3 times I can say a lot more about it.
People travel for different reasons; to escape the reality of their 9-5 job, to find themselves, to meet new people, to discover new cultures, to experience new things, the list is endless. I was always fascinated by traveling, and I would love getting postcards from my friends’ travels. The rise of social media, especially Instagram allowed a lot of people to share their travels with others and make a living out of it. It’s the dream for a lot of people to be able to travel all the time while getting paid for it. I don’t think I see myself traveling all the time, but I would love to be a freelance writer and have the flexibility of working from anywhere in the world if I wanted to.
So, why do I love going back to Paris so much? Paris will always have a special place in my heart for many reasons. First of all, it was the first place that I visited. As a child, I never really went on family vacations or traveled anywhere so the school trip to Paris was my first taste of freedom. I was fascinated by everything I saw, the architecture, the people, the language. It was as if my eyes were opened to this whole new world, and I knew that I will definitely come back again when I’m older. The second time visiting Paris was as significant as the first time or maybe, even more, as when you visit the city with someone you love it makes you see it differently. My favourite moment when I went the second time was definitely going to Disneyland and seeing the illuminations show, it’s just one of those things that everyone should experience at least once in their lives. It was one of those moments when I felt overwhelmed with happiness.
I’ve visited Paris 3 times so far, in spring, summer, and winter. Spring was probably my favourite season to visit as it’s the perfect temperature for exploring the city, as summers can get really hot there. Unfortunately, a lot has changed in Paris since the first time I’ve been there, and not necessarily the city itself as such but the atmosphere. Sadly now whenever entering any famous landmark you need to go through security, all the area around the Eiffel tower is secured with tall fencing, police, and military are to be seen everywhere and any sort of thing that happens is treated as suspicious and with extra care like even something like someone leaving their bag on the metro can cause chaos. It’s extremely sad how the events in Paris in recent years have affected the city, the last time I visited I couldn’t help but think of the people that have lost their lives in the reckless acts of violence in the last few years but also how the people of Paris didn’t let those events affect their lives and carried on going out for food and drinks and they claimed back their city.
Paris is just one of those places that will never cease to amaze me, especially now that I’ve ticked off all the famous landmarks I can actually enjoy the ‘real’ Paris not just the touristy side of it. Nevertheless, I will still go and see the Eiffel tower on every trip because there’s just something magical about it especially in the evening when it lits up, looking at it is definitely breathtaking and one of those moments in your life that you will probably never forget.
My favourite moment of the recent trip to Paris was definitely sitting near the top of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica, with a book in my hand, the sun shining on my face and just enjoying the moment. A few moments later, an older lady joined me on the bench and even though she didn’t speak very well in English we made conversation with me trying to explain most things using my hands. When she left I thought about all the people out there, all over the world and all the amazing stories they carry and as I sat there overlooking Paris, it hit me; this is it, this is why people travel.
If you haven’t yet been to Paris then I can’t recommend it enough, it’s the perfect city break and as little as 3 days will be enough to explore a large part of the city. If you do decide to go; Spring is probably the best season to go in, buy your metro tickets in bulk of 10/15 from a shop or kiosk as it’s cheaper and more convenient, as much as you probably want to do as much as possible in your time there definitely sit down at some point to just be there without rushing anywhere.
This is my first travel post so please let me know what you think, I would love to write more about the places I travel to in the future!