Paris is a city made for walking. The metro makes it convenient to hop around, but staying underground means you miss out on most of the beautiful architecture and side streets of Paris. Nowhere else can you get as much visual bang in such little time. This is especially true for the walk between Tuilleries and Luxembourg, two of the most famous gardens in Paris.
The walk in between the gardens is about 35 minutes without stops, but if you take the long way, you’ll be able to see the Pont des Arts and Notre Dame. You can also take the metro; both gardens are on the M12 line.
Does it count as tradition if you’ve only done it twice? If so, we have a tradition that involves the steps of the Musée d’Orsay and a sweet treat and latte from a nearby shop or bakery. Stuffed full of sugar, we head into the museum to view Monet after Delacroix after Manet. Not too shabby for an afternoon’s work.
The Musée d’Orsay is open Tuesday to Sunday from 9:30am to 6:00pm (9:45pm on Thursdays). Admission is €11. Photos are not permitted but this rule is not strictly enforced, unlike most other museums (ahem, I’m talking about you Guggenheim!). To create your own little world, put in headphones with a favorite playlist and cruise through the crowds. I recommend stopping to enjoy the views from the museum windows. They include some of Paris’ most famous sites, including the Louvre and Sacré Coeur.
I can count on one hand the times my husband has surprised me.
But when he does, he goes all out. Like the proposal I wasn’t expecting, or a birthday dinner with my family just after we moved home from Nicaragua. This time? It was two days in Paris gifted to me over a quiet anniversary dinner. With no sign of nerves, no hint or warning, he suggested a trip I’ve wanted to take for most of my life; Paris in spring. With tickets to see Yo-Yo Ma live. Definitely the most romantic thing he’s ever done!
So we spent two long days strolling the streets of Paris. We’ve been before, and checked most of the big touristy things off our list, so this trip was about eating good food, spending time together, and enjoying the sunshine. The perfect break from work!
We flew RyanAir from Dublin to Paris Beuavais, then took the shuttle bus into the city. It was a bargain for both the flight and bus, and relatively painless, despite the variety of complaints we found online. We stayed in Hotel du Petit Louvre, booked on Hostel World. The hotel is across the street from the Dupleix stop on Metró Line 6, and we could see the tippy top of the Eiffel Tower from our window. Most of the tourist attractions were a 15 minute walk from the hotel. The interior was dated (about a 2 star), but for the location and price, I would definitely stay again.
From every angle, the Eiffel Tower is a marvel, keeping watch over Paris as tourists come and go. Meanwhile, Parisians go about their business, oblivious to the charming lady in the center of the city.
The view of the Tower is free, but entrance tickets to the top range from €9-15. For more information, and to schedule your own visit to the Eiffel Tower, visit the official website.
The island appears and disappears in the distance as our boat rises and lowers with the swells. An offshore storm has made conditions just rough enough to make the journey to Skellig Michael feel adventurous. We’re unable to land on the island, a disappointment after waiting for so long. Still, the view of the island from the base is beautiful.
As we turn towards Little Skellig, the screams of 45,000 gannets can be heard over the sound of the engine. I’m speechless as I realize that the top of the island isn’t white because of the color of the rock, but because of the amount of bird droppings from the thousands of birds that call it home.
Boat tours operate daily from several different towns, including Portmagee and Ballinskellig. Prices vary from €25 – €50, based on whether you can land on the island or not. Skellig Michael is open from mid-May to fall every year. Before visiting the island, visit the OPW website for information about dates of opening and safety details.
Hello! I'm a freelance writer and photographer living in Kilkenny, Ireland. Honeysuckle Life® is my creative outlet for my adventures in my home, kitchen, and travels. I'm available for hire, so if you would like to see a portfolio, please contact me!
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