Is a day trip to Paris worth it? Can you see Paris in one day? Here’s our review of the Eurostar Chunnel to France.
DAY 5 OF OUR LONDON TRIP – EUROSTAR – ONE DAY IN PARIS – IS IT WORTH IT TO DO A DAYTRIP TO PARIS FROM LONDON THROUGH EUROSTAR?
When planning our trip to London, England, my husband and I thought we would spend our 5th and final day in England exploring the white cliffs of Dover or heading out to Leeds castle. Some kind of day trip! Then my husband suggested we get out of England and so it came down to either Scotland or Paris.
Scotland was (I believe) around 4/5 hours away by train and Paris was only 2, so Paris it was! (This was the husband’s choice) I was iffy about Paris because you know… Terrorists. There was actually an incident the WEEK BEFORE WE LEFT so that was not comforting.
Is it worth it to spend one day in Paris through Eurostar? I researched this questions vehemently on Pinterest but couldn’t find an answer that satisfied me. Many people said yes, others said “You cannot do Paris in one day!” and to this, I said: WATCH ME! (Stay tuned: will this come back to bite me?)
We booked it so that we had a solid 8+ hours in Paris.
Booking through Eurostar cost us about $250 Canadian for the two of us. Ouch.
That’s at least a “working” one day in Paris! We arrived around 12:45 in the afternoon (Paris is one hour ahead of London time).
The “Chunnel” was great. It had plugs for you to charge your phone and devices under the seats. Just don’t be ridiculous like us and forget to take your European adapters!
We made our way outside of the train station and decided to walk to the Louvre (about 30 minutes on foot) so we could see the city through a Hop on/Hop off tour. We also stopped for lunch along the way.
We did not get the “rude” French service we were warned about. In fact, the waitress spoke perfect English and was very nice. I got a blue cheese dish and my husband got an expensive steak.
Upon arriving at the Louvre we decided to opt for an (expen$ive) hop on hop off bus tour by L’Open Tour. It was 33€ a person! But it was the easier option since it would be more time effective than a boat and we could get on up to 5 different bus routes through different parts of Pars. This seemed like the best bang for your buck.
We scrambled to the top of the roofless tour bus and were given sealed headphones to plug into the bus. They played beautifully French music until we would reach a point of interest, in which the pre-recorded and perfectly pleasant “tour guides” would give us plucky information and funny stories about the monuments.
Our ride was about 2 hours and we eventually hopped off at the Eiffel tower. There were no lines to speak of and we made our way to the tippy top of the tower and took some beautiful pictures.
After our time at the Iron Lady, we had just enough time to do a little bit more of the tour bus and then grab dinner.
We got bruschetta, I got a DELICIOUS (one of my favorite meals abroad) spinach ravioli in a cream sauce. Yum. Yum. Yum. Did I mention they serve everything with a basket of sliced baguette?
Paris is the most beautiful city, like ever. Unlike London, Paris’ architecture and cityscape lived up to the fantasy. It was all seemingly plucked out of the 18th century without an ugly or modern building in sight.
It was stunning. I definitely recommend doing the day trip to Pairs if only for the gorgeous scenic views. BUT! I would only do it if you are extremely organized and are able to get there early.
We were blessed to have found that hop on/off bus tour when we did, otherwise we never would have been able to see as much of Paris in such a short time. It’s definitely a tourist trap in terms of the price, but in this case, it was very worth it.
Notes about Paris:
- The drivers are IN-SANE. They don’t seem to care about smashing themselves into the lanes. Oh, wait. Lanes? What lanes? They just drive wherever they want, and unlike in Canada and the USA, pedestrians do not have “the right of way”. So, those on foot, beware you don’t get smushed!
- Everyone in Paris smokes. Everywhere all the time. I don’t know if Canadians smoke less or if I’m just not out and about enough to notice but… Everyone in Paris seemed to be holding a freakishly long cigarette. We did not appreciate this, especially not at our romantic outdoor café lunch.
- Get macarons (not to be confused with macaroons!) they are amazing and will change your life. Or, at least, make your taste buds very happy.