Top 10 Places to Visit in Paris

Travel

Bonjour!

Off to Paris to fulfil your Parisian dream? What if you’re only staying for a couple of days? But also, you’d want to savor every bit of it? Like any good thing, don’t rush! Just come back some other time & make more memories. Narrowing it down for you. Here are a few places you wouldn’t want to miss!

1. Tour Eiffel

The iconic Tour Eiffel or Eiffel Tower (cried when I saw it), the confirmation you’ve reached your dream destination, a known symbol of Paris. Even Hitler had his photo taken with it! Although a lot say that when you get there, “it’s just a tower”, there’s more to it than meets the eye once you get to know its story.

Let’s time travel for a while. (But if you don’t really care or you’re convinced even without knowing about its history, just skip this part. Ha!)

Once upon a time in 1889, Paris hosted a Worlds Fair to celebrate 100 years of the French Revolution. Among 100 aspiring artists who were competing to build a monument in central Paris, Champ de Mars, the project was granted to Eiffel et Compagnie owned by Architect Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel, thus its name “Tour Eiffel” or Eiffel Tower. He also had a secret apartment all to himself at the very top at that time. But, you’d be surprised to know that this wasn’t his idea. It was engineer Maurice Koechlin, one of his employees who had the brains for the famous tower. It was completed in March 31, 1889, the making in two years, two months, and five days. Some time that year, Le Figaro, the French newspaper had their printing press at the tower.

The Eiffel Tower became the tallest structure in the world in 1889, standing 1,000 feet high made up of wrought iron. Until New York City’s Chrysler Building was built in 1930, then it wasn’t anymore. Paris was competitive. In 1957, a 65feet antenna was added to the tower, making it taller than the Chrysler Building. But then again, that didn’t match the Empire State Buliding so Eiffel had to stop at some point.

Years later, if it wasn’t made into a radiotelegraph station, the tower would’ve been scrapped. Also, during World War I, the tower was used to interrupt enemy radio communications & messages would be sent out from the top to direct the French troops to the front line. Although most of the French hated it when it was built, through the years Eiffel Tower has contributed to a lot of historic events & scientific discoveries. One of the interesting things about the tower was that in the late 1920s, it was used as a billboard for Citroën automobiles. No other brand has ever used the Eiffel Tower as an advertising medium.

What is its color? The Eiffel Tower was painted in yellow then red then brown. It is painted every 7 years for its maintenance. It is lit every night from sunset to 1am, 2am in summer. It also glistens every 5 minutes in every hour from the time it is lit. You wouldn’t want to miss this! Be part of the 7 million who visit the most visited monument in the world.

Tip | A toast of champagne at the top for celebrating would be lovely! And oh! The best place to see the lights & where you have your photos taken is from Place du Trocadéro. Experiencing it on top is another wonderful experience.

2. Place du Trocadéro

Now, it’s impossible to miss the best place to get a photo with the Eiffel Tower as the background! You’ve got to get to Place du Trocadéro. As mentioned, even Hitler took his photo there on June 23,1940. This place was named in honor of the Battle of Trocadero when the French, headed by Duc d’ Angoulême, captured Isla del Trocadero in Spain. He is the son of the King of France, Charles X. Here you will find Palais de Chaillot which houses the Musée national de la Marine,  Musée de l’Homme, Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine, Musée National des Monuments Français & the Théâtre National de Chaillot.

Around the area are stalls selling crepes, coffee, sandwiches & more. Take your time at the area, eat al fresco & enjoy the view of the Eiffel Tower.

3. Champ de Mars

On the opposite end of Place du Trocadéro right across the Eiffel Tower is Champ de Mars. This is another beautiful place to take a photo with Tour Eiffel, stroll &/ or have a picnic. Champ de Mars means “Field of Mars”, named after Campus Martius in Rome. Giving tribute to the Roman god of war in Latin. A part of the James Bond film, A View to Kill, by Roger Moore was filmed here in 1985. Also, come 2024 Summer Olympics that will be held in Paris, Champ de Mars will be used to hold one of the sporting events.

4. La Siene

La Siene or Siene River is a famous river in Paris with a stretch of 777 Kilometers. With this, there are 37 bridges all over Paris and more outside the city. Some of the well- known bridges are Pont Alexandre III where you see four gilt-bronze statues of Fames & Nymphs of the Neva reliefin in the middle. Have you seen the film Me Before You starred by Emilia Clarke & Fin Claflin? Pont Alexandre III is where we see Louisa (Emilia Clarke) crossing towards the end of the film. Another famous bridge is Pont Neuf, the oldest standing bridge across river Siene in Paris which dates back to 1607. This is where the couples place their love locks. You may book a tour where you can ride a boat, cruising around La Siene.

5. Louvre

First of all, if you want to make it worth your time aaaand money, make sure you make time to visit the Louvre for one whole day. It is after all the world’s largest art museum! It has an area of 72,735 square meters exhibiting approximately 38,000 objects from prehistory to the 21st century.

The Louvre or Musée du Louvre is a historic monument in Paris which is divided into eight curatorial departments: Egyptian Antiquities, Near Eastern Antiquities, Greek, Etruscan and Roman Antiquities, Islamic Art, Sculpture, Decorative Arts, Paintings, Prints & Drawings. With a lot of things going on, make sure to choose top things to see like the Mona Lisa, before wandering.

In the late 12th century, the Louvre was originally built as a fortress under Philip II. In 1546 it was converted into the main residence of the French Kings by Francis I. However in 1682, King Louis XIV moved to live in the Palace of Versailles making Louvre as a place for the royal collection from 1692 & collections of ancient Greek and Roman sculpture. It was during the French Revolution, where the Louvre was decreed to be a museum which opened on August 10, 1793. Since then items increased under the reigns of Napoleon, Louis XVIII and Charles X, and during the second French Empire.

It is the world’s most visited art museum having about 8.1 million visitors annually so make sure to buy tickets ahead & be early for a head start!

Tip | Make sure to visit Angelina for lunch or a quick bite while you’re there!

6. Arc de Triomphe

The Arc de Triomphe Paris is a triumphal arch honoring those who fought for France particularly wars led by Napoleon Bonaparte. Here you will see engraved names of the generals who fought for the said wars. This famous arch was built between 1806 to 1836. Here lies the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I where the Memorial Flame burns. This have made the Arc de Triomphe Paris a celebrated patriotic site. Since November 1923 when the flame was ignited for the first time, it has been done daily at 6:30pm.

This majestic arch stands 49.5 m (162 ft) tall, 45 m (150 ft) wide and 22 m (72 ft) deep which is hard to miss when you’re at Champs-Élysées.

Champs-Élysées

Shopping, strolling or simply having an espresso by the streets. Champs Elysees has got to be part of your itinerary in Paris. This avenue stretches 2 Kilometers from Place de la Concorde till Arc de Triomphe & is one of the famous streets in the world. Here you will see restaurants, cafes & top brands like Hermes & Cartier. If you’re a tourist & would want to make most of your time, Champs could be last on your list since shops close late & are open on Sundays which isn’t common in France. And if you’re into sports, particularly a cyclist, no doubt this will be on your list since this is where the famous Tour de France race start.

Tip | Make sure to visit Ladurée & have a heavenly bite of their famous macarons while strolling around Champs-Élysées.

7. Palais Garnier

The Phantom of the Opera is hhhhhheeeeere! Among other things, Palais Garnier is famous for the setting of the movie, The Phantom of the Opera starred by Gerard Buttler, Emmy Rossum & Patrick Wilson. This opera house has the capacity of 1,979, built from 1861 to 1875 which is the most renowned opera house in the world. Its name comes from its  architect, Charles Garnier. This place is every ballerina’s dream. The Opera House is now mainly used for ballet.

8. Notre- Dame Cathedral

Notre- Dame Cathedral or Notre-Dame de Paris is a medieval catholic cathedral which has a magnificent French Gothic Architecture. One of its distinguishing designs is having gargoyles, not just a few but about 102 of them. Why? They look so scary & they’re in a church! Well, it has been believed that they scare off evil & practically divert rainwater. Other interesting things about Notre-Dame, here you’ll find some important relics, including the claimed crown of thorns, a piece of the true cross, and one of the holy nails. Also, this got more popular because of the animated movie by Disney, Hunchback of Notre Dame.

9. Montmarte

Montmarte, aaaaah, the life of old Paris. Here lies at its peak the famed Sacré- Cœur Basilica. It is also known for its artistic history as many artists lived or worked here like Pablo Picasso & Vincent Van Gogh. Several films have been shot here as well like Moulin Rouge & Beauty & the Beast.

10. Palace of Versailles

In the Île-de-France region of France, 20 kilometers from the French capital, lies the Palace of Versailles, Château de Versailles, or simply Versailles. Its history dates back in the 11th century when it started out as a small village, today, however, it is a wealthy suburb of Paris & a very famous tourist attraction.

In 1682 during the reign of King Louis XIV, Versailles was the seat of political power in the Kingdom of France until the royal family returned to the capital in 1789. This happened within three months after the French Revolution begun.

The Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versallies having 357 mirrors is a tribute to the political, economic and artistic success of France where paintings depict the successes of King Louis XIV during his reign.

I wonder how long the palace was built when every part & corner is a work of art.


I stop here. There are a LOT more places to wander in Paris which also depends on your priorities or preference. Hope this helps & may you make your Parisian dreams come true.

Au revoir!

Reminiscing our First Travel as Mr. & Mrs. B: Singapore

Travel

Singapore Travel Essentials: Map of Singapore, Cap, Shades, Cameras, Water, Identity Bands & our wedding bands- just flaunting ’em!

Exactly 3 months ago, Reel & I entered into marriage. The day after, was my birthday, which was our flight going to Singapore. Our first travel as Mr. & Mrs. B.
A double celebration is an understatement. A minute of pause before I continue to tell you about our first travel. Just really want to give back the glory & love to God for his endless favour, relentless love & unending grace. All of the things I’ll be sharing wouldn’t be possible without his hand working marvellously in our lives. So horray to the adventures of Mr. & Mrs. B!

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I’ve held on to the darkest nights, now let’s live through the night with the brightest lights. Quality time with Mr. B.

 

The first of the many ADVENTURES.

 

 

 

 

 

We arrived at dawn & was greeted by the wonderful Changi International Airport. Changi in itself is already a destination in Singapore. The place is just world class, it’s like a mall with so many perks, free massages, areas to sleep & lounge, a variety of food choices, good deals to shop and not to mention, clean carpets & toilets!

 

You’ll never get lost in Singapore, signs, maps & instructions where to go are everywhere.

Kopitiam Restaurant

Before heading to the hotel, we decided to grab a quick bite to one of the restaurants at the airport. We saw quite a lot of places to eat but we were looking for Singaporean food. Well, you’re already in another place, immerse. KOPITIAM it was. We had their signature Kopi, toast with kaya jam & eggs!

Then off we go!

Riding the subway is fast & easy too. Just follow the map & the line where you’re supposed to go to. Their subways are air-condition, so altogether it’s convenient & comfortable.

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Checking Google Maps

Marina Bay Sands Hallway

 

 

Our first stop was at the Marina Bay Sands. It’s probably the best hotel in Singapore & we felt really blessed to be able to stay there.

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Marina Bay Sands

 

After saying that we were on our honeymoon, they let us check- in at 6am, without charge. Talk about favor! And this was the lovely view that said hello to us.

 

Hello to this lovely view outside our hotel room!

The Marina Bay Sands Experience

There are so many things you can do at the Marina Bay Sands. Here were the things we enjoyed doing.

1. Swim at their boat- shaped pool while enjoying the view of the Marina Bay.SG4

2. Relax & take a dip at the Jacuzzi.

3. Spend some quality time at the room.

You’re at the Marina Bay Sands, don’t be so quick to go out & explore, explore the hotel first. So hey! Your room is part of that.

4. Wander around the viewing deck & take breathtaking snaps!

Snaps at the Deck by day

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Snaps at the Deck by night

Around the area, you could already go to a lot of the must- see places in Singapore.

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Magnificent Structures around Marina Bay

The Merlion

Singapore Flyer

Gardens By The Bay

Helix Bridge

 

 

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Art Science Museum

The Shoppes At Marina Bay Sands

You can get a good spot outside the Shoppes & watch the lights show by the bay in the evening.

And while you’re roaming around, don’t forget FOOD TRIP!

There are a lot of CELEBRITY RESTAURANTS at the Shoppes where you can indulge to gastronomic delights but if you’re on a tight budget, no worries! There are a lot of good hawker places around. Just go back to SG solely for the celebrity restaurants next time.

Sandwich ice cream by the streets for only $1.

Hawker at the food courts.

 

Day one & we’ve done a lot of things already! Day two & the rest of the days left, we went to the Orchard as it is already in the middle of the other spots to go.

Orchard is where you do shopping & discover more eats! You could do a lot of things there but our time wouldn’t really permit us to do EVERYTHING. So, besides shopping, here were the things we did around the Orchard & the places nearby.

Dine at Marché

Swiss at Singapore? If it’s worth it, why not?!

 

 

 

 

 

Eat more of those delicious & veeeery affordable sandwich ice cream.

More KOPI & KAYA TOAST!

Toast Box cafes are just around the corner, dig in to their kopi & toast with kaya jam while you’re in SG.

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National Museum of Singapore

Learn how Singapore came to be. They’re actually a young country yet a very progressive one, interesting how they started from scratch! Had a lot to do with their leader- Lee Kuan Yew.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out their MOVIE THEATERS
Although it’s really just the same movie, we found it really cool that they give away their 3D glasses plus, they have clip- ons for those who are wearing eyeglasses. Sorry, we don’t have that where we come from. So yes, we were very happy.

Other places nearby where you can go are Clark Quay & ride the slingshot. Ride the subway & you go to China Town & Little India.

Clark Quay

China Town

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And of course, our Singapore trip wouldn’t be complete without going to Universal Studios in Sentosa. We’ll probably go to the Night Safari & the rest of the places in Sentosa when we have kids. It’s best that you buy your tickets ahead online to cut to the lines. We got there early but the line to the tickets were reaaaaaaallllly long, gladly we got them ahead & lined up with the rest who already got their tickets. Imagine if we hadn’t. And we got free Universal Studios glasses for purchasing the tickets online!

So, as soon as the gates were opened, we conquered the giant! Our first ride was the Battlestar Galactica, both the HUMAN (red) & CYLON (blue). Fortunately (maybe unfortunate for me bec. I was too scared) we only waited for about 5 mins. because most of the people would probably go to the less scarry rides first.

That’s right! We rode this giant, first. SCARED to the moon! But made our Universal Studios trip worth it.

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Us, after the crazy ride! A rightful selfie with the Battlestar Galactica.

 

Then we watched the WATERWORLD show.

Before you get in, they give you flyers to the map & schedules so that you’ll be guided. And they have lockers where you can place your items before going to the rides. Food stalls & restaurants are in every section too, nothing to worry about once you’re inside. Just have fun fun fun!

A piece of advice though, bring a menthol inhaler. You’ll realise when you get there. Haha.

It was truly a very entertaining show. Our next stop was visiting THE MUMMY. Still a scary ride, although it was mostly dark you could still feel the fall of the ride plus the fire & sound effects. It was very effective then & waiting for an hour & a half was worth it!

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The last ride that we wanted to try was the TRANSFORMERS but the line would probably be too long & that would take away all the energy that we have left. Saving the best for last, we checked the other sections of Universal Studios.

FAR FAR AWAY

We watched the 4D movie show of Shreck, Fiona & the gang!

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MADAGASCAR

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JURASSIC PARK

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NEW YORK

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We watched LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION by Steven Spielberg. It was an empty soundstage with the setting of a category 5 hurricane that would hit New York. So that’s how they do it! Cool.

Watched the parade & took more photos before the Transformers!

“Promise me something Katie. That you’ll take a lot of  pictures. You’ll only regret the ones you didn’t take.” Safe Haven

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Parade

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THE DOCTOR IS IN… VACATION

A few photos taken by Mr. B

Then, down to our last ride- the TRANSFORMERS. Waited for another hour, even more… then it was our turn!

That ends our Universal Studios experience & a few more hours till we kiss Singapore goodbye. Back to our first destination, Changi. Last sip & bite of kopi & kaya toast!

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Singapore was enchanting but it wouldn’t be the same, without my prince charming.

I could go to any place & would feel as thrilled for as long as I have Mr. B holding my hand, the destination doesn’t matter because we are each others destination.

And with that, we can conquer the world. Till our next travel!

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Special thanks to our Godparents, JP & Cielo Villegas for the mugs & friends, Wilma & Chen for the map.

 

#Singapore #travel #travelwithtara #taraforreel #Blessed #TYL