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Old 01-23-2013, 02:09 PM   #16
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You've really packed a lot into that first day. Great photos.
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:56 PM   #17
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Paris - Day 2

I better get on with this report - so much for a quick intro to our trip before Disney. I'm having alot of fun recounting everything though...

Day 2 in Paris was another long one. We headed straight to Montmartre on the Metro. We looked at a closed Moulin Rouge, before walking through the streets to the Finiculaire railway, which took us up to Sacre Coeur.









This was pretty amazing. We walked through inside, and then went down into the crypt. My husband decided he would climb to the Dome, but i took the easy way out and sat on the steps in the sunshine enjoying the view. He said it was an amazing perspective from the top.











From Sacre Coeur we walked down the hill this time, returning to the Metro. We stopped briefly for a look at Galeries Lafayette, which was quite stunning.









Back to Champs-Elysees where we decided we'd spend the rest of the day taking the open air sightseeing bus tours of the city.

Before we departed we made a very poor choice for lunch. Wanting to get moving on the bus tour, we walked into the closest sidewalk cafe. It was bad - extremely over priced (understandable for the location) but the food was just BAD. Absolutely tasteless and poor quality.



We'd already seen much of the sights on our own, and the pre-recorded commentary wasn't all that fantastic, but it was a relaxing way to spend the afternoon. We managed to do 2 and 1/2 of the 3 loops before the evening came.









That night we were a bit lazy and headed to a restaurant right by the hotel for a late dinner - of all things it was American cuisine! Oh well, it was quick, cheap and low effort.

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Old 01-24-2013, 03:58 AM   #18
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Wow you did a lot Most people collapse for the first day or so claiming jet lag

Re the Eiffel Tower - When you came it had still work ongoing on the lifts so people were unable to reserve their places in advance and that's why the queues were really really long. Normally they would have been half that

As you found out never eat on the Champs Elysées ever... it's over priced and bad quality and service as they know they can get away with it.

Always go a few streets off it and you will find much better prices/food/service.

Really enjoying your report and I love the photos, it's always nice for me to see Paris through visitors eyes
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Old 01-24-2013, 04:20 AM   #19
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Love the shots of Parisienne life. Makes me want to be there!
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:05 AM   #20
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Wow what an amazing sounding trip you had!! Looking forward to hearing about Disney of course, and Malta as we are off there this summer! Photos of Paris are great
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Old 01-24-2013, 06:58 PM   #21
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Paris - Day 3

This was our last full day in Paris. We felt content with what we'd seen in the city, so we went ahead and visited Versailles this day.

We walked to the closest station to our hotel which was on the RER line to Versailles and caught a train. It was so easy. Once we got off at the end of the line, we grabbed a coffee and it was not even 5 minutes walk to the edge of the carpark, and couple more minutes to the gates.



We were there just after opening, so it wasn't TOO crazy inside to begin with. We walked through the Palace and marvelled at the amazing rooms.







Once outside, we ventured back to the garden. Standing atop those steps looking out over the garden was amazing. I'd been told it was big, until i stood there looking out, i realised i'd had no idea.





We walked down through hedge mazes, around lakes on tracks and ended up at the Trianon Palaces.









Through a mix up of my own, we didn't have admission tickets to these buildings, so we walked around the outside of them, and then ended up catching the trolley back up to the main Palace.

We caught the train back to Paris, changed to Metro and exited at the Louvre. It was mid afternoon at this stage. The museum was mobbed. I had been before and spent a whole day here, but my husband hadn't so we were on a mission to see a few highlights in a short amount of time.







A couple of hours in we were absolutely done from all the walking, and caught a train back to the hotel. We then spent the evening packing, so we'd be ready for our early Eurostar train ride to London the next morning.

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Old 01-24-2013, 07:01 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie_Cat View Post
Wow you did a lot Most people collapse for the first day or so claiming jet lag

Re the Eiffel Tower - When you came it had still work ongoing on the lifts so people were unable to reserve their places in advance and that's why the queues were really really long. Normally they would have been half that

As you found out never eat on the Champs Elysées ever... it's over priced and bad quality and service as they know they can get away with it.

Always go a few streets off it and you will find much better prices/food/service.

Really enjoying your report and I love the photos, it's always nice for me to see Paris through visitors eyes
Ah, that's so interesting about the Tower and the lifts - it makes alot of sense! I too love hearing about tourist experiences in my home city, it's so interesting to see what people get taken with!

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Love the shots of Parisienne life. Makes me want to be there!
Ah i know the feeling... i'm hoping next year we'll be back!

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Wow what an amazing sounding trip you had!! Looking forward to hearing about Disney of course, and Malta as we are off there this summer! Photos of Paris are great
Thanks so much, we certainly did have a great time. Malta was fantastic, i'm sure you will love it there! I wish we lived that close...
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Old 01-25-2013, 08:50 AM   #23
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Great trip report cant wait for the rest.
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:16 PM   #24
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WOW amazing how much you managed to do! Tired just reading your report! Your photos are amazing.......really looking forward to the rest of your trip report
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Old 01-26-2013, 03:25 PM   #25
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Loving your trip report so far! Can't wait for more!
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:00 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamatutu View Post
Great trip report cant wait for the rest.
Thanks so much

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Originally Posted by Disneyfanswicklow View Post
WOW amazing how much you managed to do! Tired just reading your report! Your photos are amazing.......really looking forward to the rest of your trip report
When i look back i actually can't believe how much we crammed into 3 weeks... i'm sure my husband wishes i was the sort of person who could lie on a beach for a week, i'm not

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Loving your trip report so far! Can't wait for more!
Thanks so much!!
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:18 PM   #27
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Paris to London

By this stage it was Thursday morning, and we were headed to London! I was super excited about this day, as i had never been on the Eurostar, and also we were going to London to see my family. When i went to Europe as a teenager, i remember liking London more than Paris. After the amazing few days we had spent in Paris, i wondered whether London could top it this time. In fact, it didn't

So i woke up early, and went to a nearby patisserie for our last round of French pastries - yum!



We caught a taxi from the hotel to the nearby Gare du Nord station to check in for the Eurostar. We didn't have alot of time before departure, so we were soon on the train. I had researched seating arrangements, and we had seats forward facing in the carriage with power outlets.







The trip was great, very quick. I just enjoyed watching the scenery pass by. I thought i would have a little claustrophobia in the portion of the tunnel, but it turned out to be a complete non-issue to me. I also made a trip to the snack car to pass some time.



We arrived at St. Pancras station, and went outside to get a taxi. The driver was not very impressed as we were only going about 1.5kms to our hotel at Russell Square - the Mercure London Bloomsbury. However, with so much luggage we really had no choice.



The hotel did not have a room ready for us, as it was only about 11:30am at this stage, so we stored our bags, and went for a walk. We walked down towards Leicester Square, then onto Piccadilly Circus. At that stage we spotted a Wholefoods and had to stop for lunch. We love these places!



From there we walked up Regent St, along Oxford St and back to the hotel. We were then able to check into our room. This is another hotel i would recommend staying in. We loved the location, so easy to walk most places, plenty of public transport and a really comfortable hotel. The room we were given was quite large, and the bathroom was very modern.













That night we were to meet up with my Aunt, and go to meet my cousin for a pre-wedding dinner. My cousin who got married is Australian/Polish, his now wife, American. It was quite a multi-cultural dinner with all families combined! I didn't take any photos, as i had left my camera at the hotel.
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:42 PM   #28
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Great updates!

It's funny.....as a kid, I think London holds more appeal because of the stuff we learn about England being Aussie. But as an adult.....Paris is so much more exciting and romantic.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:26 PM   #29
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London Day 1

It was Friday morning, and one of only 2 full sightseeing days we had to ourselves in London. We began the day early, catching the Tube to Notting Hill, and walking back to Bill Granger's restaurant - Granger and Co. My husband had been keen to eat in one of his establishment's, and today was the day.



DH knew exactly what he wanted to try, so he ordered and we split two meals. It was fantastic!





After filling up on breakfast, we joined another hop-on hop-off bus line in Notting Hill, and sat up top seeing the sights of London. When we arrived in Trafalgar Square, we disembarked. There was a live site for the Olympics here, and it was fun checking it all out.









We then walked down Whitehall, past Downing Street and onto Westminster Abbey. I loved walking around the outside of the Abbey, and there were so many people around!









It was then across the Thames, to view the London Eye and Big Ben. The weather was so amazing for our whole trip to Europe, but it was particularly appreciated in London. I believe it was mid to high 20's each day - and this was September.





We boarded back on the tourist bus, and looped down the river, across Tower Bridge. It was really hard to take photos on the bus that didn't have someone's head or hat or hand in the frame.










Once we were back up near Buckingham Palace we got off again. I had really wanted to see the Buckingham Palace shop, as i had been to a conference where the woman who heads up their whole retail operations had spoken. She was a wonderful speaker, and i wanted to see everything she had spoken about. It was a really great shop. Purchases in hand, we wandered around the front of the Palace, and then down the other side bordering Green Park.









We were now on our way to Harrods, but first, we spotted a Pret and had to stop in for a late lunch. I wish we had something comparable that was as widely found in Australia as these shops!



We continued on walking to Harrods and went inside. I had forgotten how big this place was. We spent hours wandering around. We ended up at the Ice Cream Parlour, where we shared an exorbitantly priced sundae - but my gosh, it was worth every penny!



We were still not finished on crossing things off our list to get achieved today, so back to the Tube it was. We caught it out to Shepherd's Bush to visit the Westfield shopping centre. There is a Lego store here, and we wanted to visit one while we were away. We didn't really buy much on this shopping trip, and we were tiring fast. Back on the Tube to Euston, and back to the hotel it was. We met my Aunt for dinner at a nearby cafe that night, and had an early night before the big wedding the next day! I have no photos from the time we left Harrods, so must have been a little too weary to think about it.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:33 PM   #30
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Loooove the picture of the Harrods sundae. Yumm!!
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