After exploring Bern, I headed to Paris for a weekend visit with my dad, who happened to be in town for work. The train from Bern to Paris stopped momentarily in Lausanne, which is somewhere I wish I had time to explore. It was the cutest little Swiss town right on Lake Geneva. Because it was summer, everyone was out on boats just water skiing and enjoying living their lives right at the foothills of the Alps.
Once I arrived in Paris, I met my dad at the hotel after he was done with his meetings, then we wandered down some quaint city streets to find somewhere to eat. We walked around one corner and all of the sudden there was the Eiffel Tower, so obviously that’s where we chose to stop to eat.
The next day, my dad, who has been there more times than either of us can count, asked where I wanted to go. I had also been to Paris before and seen the main sites, but it had been a while so I wanted to see them again. I knew I would have one day at the end of my weekend to see the sites by myself after my dad flew home, so while we were together I wanted to go somewhere neither of us had been.
We decided on the Palace of Versailles. It was raining once again, so we didn’t explore the gardens, which I heard are absolutely breathtaking, but we were able to see some of them from within the palace. He’s not one for the grandeur of somewhere like Versailles, but it was much more stunning than either of us could have ever imagined. Everything was much larger, more sparkly or elaborate than necessary, but that’s the life of kings and queens back in the 1600s. How can you not be impressed? As you can see in the pictures below, we weren’t the only ones who wanted to tour this beautiful palace. There are many international tour groups that stop at Versailles, so be prepared for crowds, but it is definitely worth it the wait and close quarters. We made our way through each crowded room only to continually be more impressed each time and my dad and I both walked away in awe of the fact that it was once someone’s house. Obviously the kings lived very lavish lifestyles, but even to this day, nearly 400 years later, it is still much more lavish than anyone could truly imagine.
The next day, after my dad, I did the hop on/hop off bus to see the main tourist spots like Arc de Triomp, Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Louvre, France capitol building and palace, as well as Pont des Arts, the bridge famous for love locks. If you were thinking of heading to Paris to mark your love with a lock on this bridge, just know that they have begun to cut off some of the locks. It is a tradition known around the world now, thanks to Pinterest, and the bridge has become too heavy to remain structurally sound. Some tourists have started adding locks to the fence lining the side of the Seine near the bridge instead, while others have begun putting them on other bridges. Soon, I have a feeling that the city will make it illegal to put locks on any bridge fencing, so you should start your own tradition and choose a bridge more personal to you and your loved one.
On my last night in Paris, I went to the shop, bought some French cheese, a baguette, and a small bottle of wine. I took my goodies to the lawn in front of the Eiffel Tower and waited until dark, and just like clockwork, the light show began. This is one of my favorite sites in the whole world, especially when it is lit up. The way they can make it shine and sparkle is a amazingly beautiful and it is just such a landmark of Paris and even Europe as a whole. There’s a reason it’s the City of Love.