There are many bloggers who are getting flack about sharing their love of travelling solo. It isn’t for everyone – but then neither are berets. It shouldn’t be a rite of passage shoved down the throats of unwilling accessories (see what I did there?), but simply another tool in the wanderlust arsenal.
I have to say that as much as I adore my cheeky husband, I also love the chance to revel in sheer unadulterated ‘me’ time. Wandering through art galleries for hours, indulging in freshly baked patisserie and taking. as. many. photos. as. I. want. (For the record, in a 10 hour window I took about 800, ridiculous I know.)
Cue a day trip through to Paris. I began the day in my own London bed, took in a world famous gallery of Impressionist art, made sure the Eiffel Tower was still in it’s usual spot, nibbled Macaron, visited my favourite chapel in the world and fell back to sleep with my very own cat tucked around my feet.
In the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, I also drank a cappuccino with a bright pink straw and I think it mentally scarred me for life.
The joys of learning about new cultures, huh?
I hopped on the Parisian metro and popped out for a quick wander at Trocadero for a leisurely study of the Eiffel Tower, before meandering my way into the cultural centre of the city. I had booked a ticket to admire Monet’s Waterlillies at L’Orangerie (tip: if you book in advance you can jump the queue) for the fourth time of self-indulgence. Displayed in a specially designed circular room which enfolds the senses with his expressive paint strokes, every time I go I simply swoon.
I kept wandering, peeping through the wintery branches at the Eiffel Tower as I made my way along the Seine River’s famous Left Bank.
It was chilly, but rugged up in a thick coat I simply meandered along.
Heading along the length of the Jardin des Tuileries I briefly stopped outside the Louvre deciding not pop in (or run a repeat of running out of camera battery in front of Mona Lisa) considered popping in for a nose at the ‘dots, spots and splodges’ of the Impressionists at the Musee d’Orsay, and even a hot chocolate at Angelina, but was enjoying people watching far too much.
The weather was overcast and foreboding for most of the day, but the dove grey skies made for a gorgeous pastel backdrop to the magnificent stone lintels of central Paris. Literally a silver lining.
Even my appetite clamoured for attention, and shivering from the cold wind, I whipped out Googlemaps for somewhere nearby friendly and delicious.
Discovering the cute little bistro Les Antiquaires, I had a ridiculously un-#girlboss moment. I walked past the busy restaurant at least 4 times, fretting about the staff propping me up at the bar as a solo diner. It’s not that I’m embarrassed to dine alone, far from it, it was simply that I hate being singled out when far more comfortable tables are available.
Reminding myself that I have circumnavigated the globe several times on my own, I took a deep breath and wandered into the rustic chic. Welcomed with a sweet smile by the waitressed, I bonjoured and was taken to a lovely little table in the corner.
My starter was a slab of fois gras served with crusty bread and piquant cherry jam, followed with perfectly cooked steak and a glass of dry white wine. Perfection for warming the cockles.
Setting off again, I made my way along the riverbank spotting Notre Dame…
…before arriving at my next favourite Parisian spot, the Palais de Justice Law Courts. I joke of course (though it is interesting to visit) the glorious Sainte Chapelle was my destination.
It barely even needs words.
Though a shoefie is of course necessary!
After lingering in amongst the crowds and picking up another coffee (sans pink straw) with a backwards glance to the city, I made my way back to the Gare du Nord to hop on the train home. Languid, beautiful and all too fleeting. Next time, it needs to be at least 48 hours so I can also visit the castle dotted countryside again
Do you enjoy Paris? Do you enjoy solo trips occasionally?