A year after our honeymoon, I can say wholeheartedly that this Hemingway quotation rings true. Just selecting these images for this blog post caused me to turn to Nick constantly, asking, “Do you remember when … ?” There is an intangible romance in the air, a beauty in the gardens and in the museums that I wish I could see every day. I loved the bikes lined up side-by-side, the bustling bakeries, the signpost of the Seine.
Paris was an incredible place to begin our marriage, and although the trip itself wasn’t seamless, I wanted to share some of these favorite snapshots. A lot of these photographs aren’t perfect, and even just a year after taking them, I find my perfectionist heart searching for the ways I could’ve captured these moments & monuments better. But I love a lot of them and treasure them most of all for the connection to these first days of marriage in a favorite city.
If you’re planning a trip to Paris, reach out, and I’d love to tell you some of our favorite meals, museums, and memories!
Our red-eye landed us at promptly 5am Monday morning. We were determined to stay awake to adjust to the new time zone, so we scheduled a bike tour through Airbnb! It brought us through some of the lesser-known areas of Paris, down narrow alleways and into hidden treasures. We ended the evening with a meal to celebrate Nick’s birthday, at a Michelin star restaurant.
Versailles! Although it was difficult to leave paris so soon after arriving, we took an incredible bike and walking tour through Versailles, again booked through Airbnb. The sheer opulence both inside and outside the palace is just breathtaking. I was especially drawn to the details around the doors and windows – carved doorknobs, velvet embroidered curtains, reflections on the spotless panes.
After touring inside, our guides took us around the areas of Versailles few tourists take time to see – the acres and acres of paths, fields, and hidden treasures among the grounds. We stopped by a local market for a wine tasting and to grab cheese, more wine, nuts, and fruit for a picnic lunch overlooking the palace. Marie Antoinnette’s Hamlet was a treasure to explore – the autumn leaves were glowing in the afternoon light, and the wine made our feet light!
Rick Steves ruled this day! We downloaded Rick Steves’ walking tours to our phones and listened to these most of the day as we walked miles and miles – Notre Dame, the Left Bank, Sainte-Chapelle, Musée d’Orsay, & the Louvre are just a few of the spots below. we also enjoyed some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had from Berthillon, on the glamorous Île Saint-Louis. I can still taste the speculoos!
It would take a lifetime to fully savor all that these museums and streets have to offer, and I feel so privileged to have feasted my eyes upon them even for just a day, especially the spires & stained glass of Notre Dame.
Gardens and museums! Oh, the Tuileries. l’Orangerie. Musée Rodin. our love for impressionism was satisfied this day. I think Nick could have stayed in the Musée de l’Orangerie with Monet’s water lilies all day (we wish we could have made it to Giverny, but next time!). He is a thorough museum visitor and has such a tender heart for art.
After watching the sunset from the top of the Arc de Triomphe, a nighttime stroll along the Champs-Élysées brought us delicious macarons and one of our favorite paris meals: falafel from a streetside stand.
Just steps outside of our hotel was Rue Cler, a pedestrian street brimming with small markets specializing in everything from cheese to wine to flowers and fruits. The perfect spot to collect picnic supplies to enjoy under the shadow of the Eiffel Tower! Such a dreamy experience. We followed this with another romp with impressionism at the largest collection of Monet’s works at the Marmottan. Then a glass of wine at the rooftop bar of Printemps, a fun department store, where we saw the Eiffel Tower twinkle at dusk.
Our last day! We began with an incredible breakfast in le Marais district, followed by shopping at Merci (basically a parisian anthropologie)! we scurried to the Catacombs, which were incredibly fascinating & sobering. Watching the sun set on our time in paris from the top of Sacré Coeur was breathtaking. We enjoyed golden hour resting over the whole city, pointing out buildings and areas we remembered and saying our own goodbye to the city. The artistic streets of Montmartre were a blast to explore, and just like that – it was over.
We dream of returning, of course, and I hope that this was just one international trip of many in our lifetime. It was such a privilege and such a sweet gift from my husband to me. I hope you each get the chance to visit! À bientôt!