First things first. Hate is probably a strong word, but there are few things that I dislike in this City of Lights. However, it doesn’t matter what I say or anyone else. If you haven’t been there you should go. Don’t even think about pros and cons. Paris is a place everyone should experience on their own. It is the world most visited city and there is a reason why. I was there few times, but I will never forget a moment when I found myself standing in front of the Eiffel Tower for a first time. I had my own vision of Paris and I bet many of you have. Part of me is really romantic and I like those old school things. Things that you can see only in the movies these days unless you are extremely lucky. I imagined Paris as a city of love, picnics, dates, flowers, letters and of course if you add Disneyland to all of that what else could you ask for? It was a very special place in my imagination and ,despite few things that I really dislike, after few visits still it is.
Things I don’t like :
What can destroy some beautiful place more than a rude people living there ? Parisians have a reputation for being rude and trust me, I didn’t expect some miracles. I didn’t expect people to be warm as they are in Spain, Portugal, New York or Florida. Of course that I didn’t expect compliments from random people on the streets, actually I found that extremely weird in the countries I mentioned above, but I expected some politeness. So, if you are coming here don’t be like me. Learn few French words and don’t expect anything. Mostly they don’t speak English and if you ask them something on English they will look at you like they had never heard that language before. If you make some effort and ask something on French, maybe you will have a better treatment or maybe not. This is probably the only city in the world where customer is never right so do not expect waiters to be polite, do not expect maids to be polite, do not expect hotel staff to be polite…. with one word do not expect politeness from Parisians. I don’t like to generalize especially because I know one extremely nice and generous Parisian lady (I hope you will not offend if you see this), but this is how I see vast majority.
CROWDS AND TRAFFIC
This is a problem with every big city and somehow I got used to it. Paris has millions of its own citizens and if you add to it millions of tourists you can’t expect to enjoy anything just for yourself. Rows for main attractions are huge and you will spend hours waiting in the line. I have been three times in Paris before I actually climbed to the top of the Eiffel Tower and I probably wouldn’t even then, if we didn’t come there 20 minutes before closing and there were just few people so we took the opportunity.
Traffic is a story for itself. I lived in Milan and I always thought that Italians drive crazy, but this is completely new level of craziness. I never saw something like that except maybe in India, but there you can say it’s funny and in Paris is life-threatening. Every time you sit in a car or a taxi you will feel like you are part of some dead race so don’t even think about renting a car in Paris.
I think it is enough about bad parts of this city. Probably you won’t even notice those things when you arrive here for a first time. I didn’t because I was impressed with thousands of others. I could write ten new posts about beautiful parts of Paris, but I will skip the main attractions because you can google them and I will give you a few reasons why you should visit Paris.
Okay, if you read any of my previous posts you already know how important is this part for my perception of some new place and France rocks if we speak about food. Prices are high almost everywhere, but food is great. I like their traditional dishes as Escargots (snails cooked in garlic), Confit de canard (duck cooked in its own fat), macaronis in all sorts of flavours, croissants, baguettes, cheese, pancakes…. List of food to try in Paris is endless.
Restaurants, coffee bars and eateries are everywhere. You can smell warm, fresh croissants in the air, bakeries and pastries have amazing range of delicious treats. It’s hard to resist all the temptations here.
One advice : Try to avoid tourist traps and use TripAdvisor to find the best places to eat.
Paris is known as city of love and you can feel some good positive vibe as soon as you get close to the Eiffel Tower or some of the beautiful parks. This is how I imagined it and there is no doubt. Paris is a city of romance, more than any other I have been in. It is filled with stunning parks. You can see couples, friends or families having picnics everywhere so get your picnic blanket ready, take some delicious food with you and enjoy the company of your better half. Call me crazy, but I think there is no better way to spend a day.
Even if you know nothing about fashion I’m sure that you heard about Parisian Chic. Paris is considered a leading fashion capital and people living there, really know how to get dressed. They are true example of style and elegance probably because they were raised in artistic environment under the influence of many amazing designers such as Chanel, Celine, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Givenchy and others. If you love fashion you will enjoy this city, and of course don’t expect stylish people around the main attraction. Here I think on real Parisians, not tourists which are mostly dressed comfortable.
Also, Paris is a great destination for shopping. You can find everything here (big stores, markets, boutiques, souvenir shops…). Two places that you mustn’t miss even if you are not interested in brand clothes and jewellery are Champs Elysees (most famous shopping street in Europe) and Galeries Lafayette. This building is just stunning especially in the Christmas season.
There are few places near Paris where you can go for a day trip and Disneyland will always be my favourite. That is the happiest place on Earth, world of imagination, dreams and fairy tales, filled with laughter . Don’t even think that the place is just for the kids. It is amazing and you will never be too old for Disneyland.
There are so many beautiful places in Paris and you can spend weeks exploring it. I just mention few things that I like and dislike about Paris so you can know what to expect before the first trip. I hope you like the article :)
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