Paris – France | Part 1

This was my first time visiting the old continent, and I was really excited. Diego had been there in 2002, but obviously wanted to go back as well. We just wen for 10 days, and included Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels. We chose these cities because they’re close enough to each other that you can easily go by train – and with a 7 month old, we wanted places that didn’t require a long trip.

We arrived in Paris around noon after sleeping just a couple of hours during our flight. According to our plans, we went to the RER station, which is the long-distance train from the Metropolitan Area of Paris. We soon realized Paris is not well prepared for strollers, as we had to go up and down lots of stairs to make it from the airport terminal to the train station.

We do not recommend taking this train if you have a baby, at least not coming from the airport. We were squished by lots of people coming in and out of the train. Anyway, we arrived at Gare du Nord station and from there, we took a taxi to the hotel, which we had already decided before. Ufa!!

We took a quick shower and already went to enjoy the rest of the day. As a tip, the best thing to do is to endure the day and go to sleep at the regular time, so you get rid of the jet lag on the first day. It was already 5pm when we left the hotel. But since it only gets dark around 10pm, we had plenty of time to do some exploring.

We took the metro from our station (Porte de Clichy), after endless stairs with the stroller, and stopped at the Station Champs Elysees. The subway system in Paris is easy, but it’s normally really full.

Tip: we found that the first and last cars of each train were less full, so it wasn’t that bad when we realized this.

Petit Palais and a stop for a snack at Champs Elysées
L’Arc du Triomphe

The next morning, full day of touring. Subway again and stop at “Les Invalides”.

Les Invalides in the background
Musée D’Orsay
Interior of the Musée D’Orsay

Soon after lunch, we took the RER to the Château Versailles. The day was beautiful and I guess everyone decided to go there as well, which made the inside completely overcrowded.

The visit to the gardens is free, unless there is some show (of waters) happening in the period. And that’s what happened.  Then access is only released with the purchase of the ticket or after 6 pm, when it is reopened free of charge to the public. Access to the interior of the castle is always paid for. It is also necessary to go through security and it is not allowed to use baby stroller inside the castle (that’s why Alice is there hanging on the kangaroo).

Château de Versailles
Looking at the gardens
The famous Hall of Mirrors – beautiful but overcrowded

Soon after visiting the castle from the inside, we decided to walk to the Trianon, which are auxiliary (less formal) buildings/castles in the domain of Versailles.

Grand Trianon, Walking to the Trianon States and Grand Canal

From beyond the Trianon, we took a little train to the lower part of the Versailles gardens. We decided not to go to Marie Antoniette’s estate, where Marie Antoinette lived and such, for lack of time and I will not deny, energy in the legs to walk more. We walk through the gardens of Versailles, towards the castle where the exit is, contemplating the beauty and immensity…

Green carpet, Petit Trianon
Back on top…
Bye Versailles…

Well, that day was full. Straight to the hotel we went, after taking the RER back to Paris and another metro to the hotel.