Paris has always been considered a very romantic destination, we don't doubt that it is indeed one but don't you think it is much more than just a couple's holiday thing? We all loved seeing Rani (Kangana Ranaut) going on a solo Europe honeymoon trip after she is stranded by Rajkumar Rao. We saw her cry and the Eiffel tower haunting her but in the end, she comes back stronger.
I am Varda Choudhary, a first-year master's student from Manipal Institute of Communication. I have interned with a newspaper called The Pioneer where I was a reporter. Apart from this I have also worked with an NGO called Seeds. Currently I'm working in capacity of a general news editor at The Manipal Journal & a reporter in Manipal Blog. I really believe Paris is much more than just a honeymoon destination, it has so much more to offer & explore. I really wish to take a solo trip to Europe and especially visit Paris on my first such adventure.
It is 11 in the night; I just had a heavy meal in one of the restaurants and am now walking on the cobbled street along the seine. My eyes witness the beautifully lit buildings of Paris city and Notre Dame dancing across the river, and I can feel the slight breeze in my hair. As I continue walking, I spot a couple passionately kissing each other. A little further is another couple in their 20s laughing and drinking away the night. It is indeed the city of romance. As I continue to walk, I see two men playing the guitar as people gathered around to listen. After walking a little more, I finally spot the Eiffel Tower sparkling against the dark sky. There were people, it was lively, and yet as I stood there soaking at the moment, my heart has never been so much at peace. It feels like a dream. A dream that I would someday want to be true.
Now, as much as I would have loved to be sitting right now in some cozy French café eating croissants with a glass of wine, I have no other option (thanks to the pandemic) but to pen down my dreams of witnessing the surreal beauty that Paris is.
Paris, the word screams elegance, sophistication, magic, beauty, and L'amour (love). With its everlasting charm and culture, how can one not fall in love with this city of romance?
I was 15 years old when I watched Gil and Gabrielle walk in the rain by the seine at midnight and at that very moment I fell in love with Paris. The movie ‘Midnight in Paris’ was my first intimate introduction to the French capital with its artistic opening montage. What followed is watching lots of travel videos and vlogs made in the city. Being able to walk through the streets of Paris on warm evenings, sit at the banks of the seine and watch the sunset or witness the Eiffel tower beautifully lit up during nights, vicariously through the anchors gave me immense pleasure and further strengthened my love for the city. Ever since visiting Paris has always been a dream.
We all know that Paris because of its romantic atmosphere and culture has attracted tourists from all over the world. Home to some historic landmarks, one cannot help but obsess over them including me. As somebody who has been dreaming of visiting Paris for more than half a decade now, it will not come as a surprise when I tell you that I have every detail planned.
When in Paris, in addition to my walk along the river Seine, following are some of the iconic landmarks that I would visit & I believe you would love them too!
1) Top of the Eiffel Tower- The most popular landmark, Eiffel Tower is a synonym for Paris. Looking voluptuous covered in sparkling lights during the night, it is a dream to go on top of the tower with my loved one and enjoy the view from 324 meters above the ground. A picture In front of the tower is obviously a given. After all, have you really visited Paris if you don’t Instagram a picture of yourself with Eiffel in the background?
2) Stroll on Champs-Élysées-
One of the most beautiful avenues, this cultural hotspot is a paradise for your senses, be it the smell of French food coming from the restaurants, melodious tunes playing in the streets, and picture-perfect boutiques, the avenue has it all.
Home to various restaurants, theatres, shopping stores, and exhibitions, this 2km stretch is always bustling with people. I for one cannot wait to get caught in the excitement of the festivities of the avenue and devour on macaroons from Ladurée.
3) Louvre Museum- As someone who loves visiting museums, Louvre had to be on my list. Bringing artifacts from different time periods and cultures closer to you, the museum has around 35,000 artworks including some masterpieces such as “The Raft of Medusa” and Vinci’s “Mona Lisa”. With its royal legacy and beautiful architecture, the museum makes you feel like a royal.
4) Disneyland Paris- I have added Disneyland Paris to my list for a very simple reason and that is I love roller coasters. Taking up one full day with its two theme parks, resort hotels along with numerous roller coasters, I cannot wait to let loose the inner child. With ice cream in hand and bunny ears on the head, this Walt Disney-inspired paradise is perfect to give yourself a little break. Don’t miss the fireworks.
5) Seine river cruise- Running through the length of the city, Seine is the fifth largest river in France. While walking along the seine is extremely romantic and gives you a glimpse of true Paris with people gathering along the seine having their rendezvous, walking the complete length can obviously be tiring. As an alternative one can take the Seine cruise and admire Paris from the waters. The ride takes you through some prominent spots such as Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre Museum, the Town Hall along with many others.
6) Moulin Rouge- Opened in 1889, Moulin Rouge is one of the world’s best-known Cabaret and brings to you the perfect Parisian nightlife. This two-hour visual treat should definitely be on the list for its astonishing dancers in their pretty feathers in sequins as they transform you into a world of luxury.
7) Notre Dame Cathedral- The lady of Paris was constructed between 1163-1334 and is a popular tourist spot for its Gothic architecture. Facing the Seine, get ready to get lost in the mystic architecture of the cathedral.
8) Montparnasse Tower Observation Deck- Located as high a 210meteres, the observation deck provides one of the best views of the city. There are two parts to the tower, the 56th-floor interior and the terrace that gives a panoramic view. One can see as far as 25km and overlook attractions such as Eiffel Tower. What awaits is the Paris skyline along with the beautifully lit buildings and breeze in your hair.
While these are some of the symbolic landmarks that the city is popular for, Paris has a lot more to offer that not only adds to the charm of the city but also makes your trip more exciting and memorable.
In between my trips to the historic landmarks, I also want to get lost in the old artistic lanes of the city, taste every cuisine that the rich food culture has to offer, sit in some cute little French café at a roadside, and have crepes and Creme Brûlée, drink coffee like a local, pick up books from second-hand bookstores and drink and dance away the night. I want to experience the untouched and unexplored glimmers of Paris that move beyond the Eiffel Tower.
One of the many reasons why my obsession with Paris started in the first place is because of the many things that Paris has to offer. With a little faith and determination, I hope to end up there someday. As Audrey Hepburn says, “Paris is always a good idea”.