Things to do in Paris when you're four | Modern Mummy

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Things to do in Paris when you're four

Paris is, quite honestly, one of my most favourite cities in the whole wide world.

Ever since I visited it for the first time with my A-Level art class in 1997, I've had a thing for it. We'd stayed in Pigalle and spent four days visiting every art gallery and museum in the city - and three nights drinking beer and smoking vogues in bars around Montmartre. 

Since that first trip I've been back many a time and my love affair hasn't waned one little bit. It's just such beautiful and vibrant city to spend time in. I love the culture, I love the food, I love the wine, I love the people.

Daisy and I made plans to do Paris in a day; we booked ourselves onto the earliest Eurostar we could manage out of St Pancras and the latest one home that wouldn't leave Daisy too exhausted.

I'd already told her about all the sights there were to see, and asked her which she'd like to visit on our trip and we decided we'd go to the top of the Eiffel Tower (something I'd never actually done before), take a boat trip along the Seine and pay the Love Lock Bridge a visit (that one may have been my idea!)

Just choosing three attractions meant the day was entirely relaxed; there was no bombing it around on the Metro to try and cram in as much as possible. The boat trip also meant we got to see a lot of the famous landmarks, from the outside at least. (We'll have to go back again when the girls are a bit older and pay all the galleries and museums a proper visit!)

The Eiffel Tower.

Every single time I've been to Paris, I've visited the Eiffel Tower, but I've NEVER been up it before. I've wandered around underneath it, and looked lovingly at it from afar, but never actually ventured any further. I'm not frightened of heights or anything; I think I always thought it would cost too much and take forever but do you know what? Neither is true.

I tried to book online the day before we travelled but you have to do so at least twenty four hours beforehand so I was just too late. Knowing we only had three things on our itinerary, this one being the most important to Daisy, meant that I allowed us five hours there, which it turns out was completely unnecessary!

Admittedly it was a Wednesday, and during term time too, but the queues were tiny - and I was so impressed that it only cost €15 for an adult and €9 for concessions to travel all the way to the summit (under fours are free).

There was a bit of disorganisation when switching lifts from the second floor to the top as there seemed to be two separate queues and a lot of fellow tourists were getting increasingly irate but in actual fact this was the longest queue we encountered all day - and we were only in it for thirty minutes. 

The view from the top was utterly amazing. Daisy loved looking through the telescope at everything that was going on, on the ground below. I honestly can't believe I'd never done it before and am now desperate to go back and do it at night!

Because I'd allocated so much time for us to spend going up the Eiffel Tower, we were able to really enjoy the gardens surrounding it, plus we had an ice cream and a go on the carousel too!

A boat trip along the Seine.

Oh my. This was such a treat. Daisy had never been on a boat before and was just SO excited. We got to see a lot of Paris whilst on it, and I thoroughly enjoyed being out on the water and in the sunshine too. The trip we chose lasted an hour and started (and finished) at the Eiffel Tower. Other operators also offer a hop on/hop off service, but that would have taken away the fun and relaxation of an hour long boat trip for me!

Visiting the Love Lock Bridge (aka Le Pont des Artes).

This was something I'd wanted to do, although Daisy really got into the spirit of things when we bought our own padlock to add to the bridge's collection.

The idea is that by locking your (personalised) padlock to the bridge and throwing the keys into the river your love will be eternal.

We created a Dial Family love lock (we bought a padlock from a street seller for €4) and Daisy and I fixed it to the centre of the bridge before throwing the keys to the bottom of the Seine.

The whole trip was honestly such a special one - and it was such a treat to get to spend some quality time with Daisy. We're already planning our next trip! xoxo

My top tips for doing Paris in a day?

- Take a boat trip, rather than an open top bus tour. The former cost just €14 for me, and €6 for Daisy compared to €29 and €15 respectively for the latter! There is so much to see whilst travelling along the Seine too; the Louvre, Musee d'Orsay, Notre Dame to name just a few. It  was Daisy's first boat trip ever and she LOVED it - and it was bloody lovely for me to be able to catch some rays from the top deck too ;)

- Buy a carnet to travel around on public transport. Its €13.70 for a book of ten tickets which can be used on the metro, buses and on RER trains. A full price single ticket costs €1.70 so by buying in advance you save about 20% but it also saves heaps of time and, as they were so cheap, Daisy used them too. (You can buy children's fares slightly cheaper but to save time and stress, and knowing we would only be making four or five separate journeys, I planned to do this in advance).

- GO UP THE EIFFEL TOWER! I can't believe I waited seventeen years to do it. It's something I'll remember forever! 

- Use the Eurostar if you live close to London. You can read all about our wonderful experience with Eurostar here.

DISCLAIMER: Daisy and I were given return tickets for the Eurostar. All thoughts are entirely truthful, and my own.


1 comment

  1. Oh wow, what a fabulous day! I'd never think of popping to Paris for the day, but I suppose it is entirely do-able. I love Paris, too, and I have been up the Eiffel Tower!


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