Europe city hopping: Paris 2015

If you follow me on Instagram and/or Facebook, you might have guessed that Mr Goh and I went on holiday last week. We met up with my sister and her boyfriend in Paris and travelled together around the city of love and went to Milan as well before we parted ways.

Now where do I begin writing the blog posts? I’ve been so behind my travelogues (I haven’t even completed my honeymoon posts and now I kinda can’t be arsed to complete them anymore), so let’s just go through them briefly, ya? Anyway, I don’t think you peeps are interested in the nitty gritty details of my 9 day trip.

First off, costs. We paid just slightly under SGD1200 for our air tickets – Bremen-Paris via KLM, Paris-Milan via Easyjet. Bremen isn’t the most well connected airport, so our tickets weren’t as cheap as we had hoped. Our accommodation in both cities were kindly sponsored by my sister.
We brought 1000 Euro for the entire trip, and I think we exceeded it just a little, thanks to my Longchamp bags. 😛

From our Airbnb apartment (link here), we were able to walk to quite a number of attractions.

Here are the places we visited

  • Saxe-Breteuil market.
    I was extremely jealous that their weekend market actually sold fresh produce and especially seafood like whole fishes, oysters, prawns and mussels. We also gorged ourselves on food there as it was the first place we visited since landing.
    Saxe-Breteuil market, Paris Saxe-Breteuil market, ParisSaxe-Breteuil market, Paris
  • Eiffel tower.
    At the Eiffel, we were approached by a Bosnian woman who asked us to sign some petition for the “International association for the deaf”. After my sister signed, the woman asked us for money. Obviously, my sister declined since “you only need to sign” was what she told us earlier. In any case, my sister filled up fake information when she saw that there was a “amount” column on the paper.
    Eiffel tower, Paris, by day
  • Jardin du Luxembourg.
    We took a stroll through the park. It was huge but because I’ve been to Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin, both looked quite similar to me. But I liked that there were lots of chairs around for people to just ‘grab a seat’ in the gardens.
    Jardin du Luxembourg, ParisJardin du Luxembourg, Paris
    Jardin du Luxembourg, Paris
  • Pantheon.
    Honestly speaking, we went there because I saw it on the “must see sights in Paris list”. We didn’t have a clue what we should be looking at. Upon arrival, we saw a long queue at the ticket counter and promptly decided that we don’t want to go in. So we merely took pictures outside.
    Pantheon, Paris Pantheon, Paris
  • Notre Dame de Paris.
    There was some kind of a procession going on when we visited the cathedral. Not quite sure what it was but we saw a line of people, queuing up for blessings I suppose.
    Notre Dame de Paris
    It was quite crowded, and there was an area where you could feed the pigeons. I got out of there as soon as we were done taking pictures. Me and birds, not friends at all.
    Notre Dame de Paris
  • Arc of Triomphe
    Mr Goh wanted to see this, and I agreed because this was leading to the famed Champ-Elysees shopping street. Here, we realised that Paris is infiltrated by lots of Koreans. Everywhere we go, we hear Koreans. Somehow, it feels a bit like home. LOL

    Arc of Triomphe, Paris

    I didn’t know what this meant, but just took a picture of it anyway coz 11 Nov is a special date in my family! 😛

  • Disneyland Paris.
    It’s my first time to a Disneyland and oh wow, it’s super fun! I’m not a fan of rides and so I didn’t take them but the whole atmosphere at Disneyland is just so different. It makes me excited and happy just recalling the day we spent there. My sister is still mildly annoyed whenever I sing the parade song. Oh, and the staff at Disneyland are so friendly, very different from the rude Longchamp staff we met at the Champ-Elysees store.
    2015-11-05 22.55.54
    My husband is now planning to make me watch Star Wars episode 7 when it releases in December. I need to start catching up on the previous 6 episodes now.
  • Lourve museum.
    Again, we didn’t enter the attraction. Frankly, our time in Paris is very short, and we didn’t want to spend too much time at one particular attraction (Disneyland and the outlet village excluded). We went there at night around 9pm I believe. The place was almost deserted since the museum has closed for the day.
    DSC00929There, we met a Korean couple (again!) taking pre-wedding photos. I snuck behind the photographer and saw the kind of photos he was taking. Breathtaking! So much feel and makes me want to take my wedding photos again. Earlier in the day, we met another Asian couple taking photos against the Eiffel. I tend not to like such photos because I think the focus is taken off the couple. But the “Lourve photographer” made use of the lighting and didn’t emphasize the museum that much, so the focus stays with the couple. I like!
  • La Vallee outlet shopping.
    Mr Goh and I didn’t really enjoy this place since we were not really in a shopping-holiday mood. Well, maybe if I was working, then I would be. But I’m not working now, and living the life of a housewife, so shopping for branded clothes, bags and shoes isn’t exactly on my mind. Still, I bought a Polo Ralph Lauren pullover for 45 Euro.Most of the things sold there are past seasons and/or leftover stocks so you could imagine gaudy colours and odd sizes. But strangely enough, the Chinese tourists could still buy a storm! I’m not sure how expensive authentic Samsonite luggages are in China, but 90% of the Chinese tourists we saw all bought at least one Samsonite luggage.
    2015-11-05 22.55.30
  • Sacre Couer.
    If you’re following me on Instagram, then you will know that I boo-booed this place because we were cheated by touts. I regret not reading up on tourist traps and not being firm enough with myself and my husband. We were stopped by a group of men who tried to tie some ugly string onto Mr Goh’s wrist. He resisted at first, but he stopped resisting when one of the men just grabbed his wrist and proceeded to tie. When it was all over, they asked him for money. He gave a 2 Euro coin, and they asked for more, saying that they could hear more jingle from his pocket (= more coins). BASKET. My silly husband ended up giving 5 Euro in total. I was mad pissed at my husband, but more with myself for not pulling him away. I ended up having to console him by saying “just treat it as we ate an expensive crepe which didn’t taste good”. -_-
    DSC01077 DSC01079
  • La Madeleine.
    I really wanted to go to this place because of the supposed Greek architecture, but didn’t manage to since it wasn’t on the way on our “walking tours”. Strangely, we chanced upon it one of the days, and just stopped in the middle of the road to take pictures of the place. I made Mr Goh promise to bring me to Greece for the real thing. Haha.
  • Boat cruise.
    By recommendation of Joyce, we took a boat cruise in the evening during sunset. I reckon it would be lovely, if it was in summer or spring. But we are approaching winter now, and it’s super cold anywhere near the water. We bundled ourselves up and used the heatpacks and just enjoyed the ride. After 4 days of walking tours, it felt good to just sit down and relax for a little bit. Though I wished I had a cup of hot chocolate with me.

We ate:

  • Falafel.
    Having tried falafel at the Bremen Freimarkt just one weekend before we went to Paris, I was excited to see that this is on the must-eat list when I googled. Sadly, the famous L’As du Fallafel was not open, so the queue hopped over to the shop opposite it instead, Mi-Va-Mi. It was still fine, but I really wanted to try the “authentic” falafel. Glad that I asked the staff if the falafel contained fava beans (no, it doesn’t), so my G6PD-deficient husband could eat it too.
    DSC008162015-11-05 22.50.34
  • Macarons.
    No, we didn’t try the famous Laduree or Pierre Hermes but we tried Le Notre, out of convenience. It was located at the 2nd level deck of the Eiffel tower, so I just bought a box of 8 to try. I was never a fan of macarons anyway, so it wasn’t really on my ‘must-eat’ list. That said, the macarons were pretty decent. Some flavors weren’t too sweet (Mr Goh’s choice of coffee was spot on), and the shells didn’t stick to the teeth.
    2015-11-05 22.54.56
  • Lots of pain au chocolat.
    I don’t really enjoy plain croissants, because why have it plain when you can have it with chocolate?? So when given a choice, I would always go for pain au chocolat. And we had that for breakfast quite frequently.

    French pastry. Pain au chocolat.

    French pastry. Pain au chocolat.

  • Quiche.
    This is also one of my favorites, especially quiche lorraine. Since young, my mum used to buy quiche lorraine for us for breakfast quite frequently because picky eaters would hardly say no to eggs, cheese and ham. Heh.
    Quiche lorraine
  • (supermarket) Sushi.
    I was quite surprised to see a sushi deli counter in the middle of the supermarket (it was a huge one, like the old Carrefour in Suntec City). What was more surprising is that they actually offer free samples of the sushi. The sushi master just made a few rolls and served it on a tray, not just the cooked type, but raw salmon sushi rolls too. An ang-moh couple at the counter was gorging themselves (free dinner, score!) while we just took a couple of pieces and then decided to buy a pack for 15.50 Euro. Expensive, but I reasoned with Mr Goh that there’s no way we can get cheap sushi in Bremen too, so there’s no point comparing prices with SG anymore. Or we will not be able to eat sushi when we are in Bremen.
  • French food
    Throughout the trip, we have been preparing and bringing our own food out (since we went Disneyland and the outlet village), and breakfasts were usually pastries from the bakeries. So we decided to splurge on one dinner and went to this restaurant near our apartment (La Salle à Manger).
    2015-10-27 21.02.10
    We ordered a 2 course dinner for 21 Euro each. I chose a seafood terrine starter and a grilled steak. The steak was tough beyond words, but I think it was because I wanted medium well, but the wait staff didn’t really understood me and gave me well done. The seafood terrine was excellent though.
    If you have a chance to visit this restaurant, please do. The food is excellent (just don’t make the same mistake as me!), and the wait staff is super friendly and funny.

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