Leaving Brussels and Paris Day 1 and 2 :)
Thanks for coming back to my blog, I'm still in the process of updating about my wee travels I did about 3 weeks ago! Can't believe it's been 3 weeks already, time sure does fly by!
So, The day we left for Paris, our bus wasn't until 2.30pm. After a hearty breakfast we checked out at 10am, then stayed in the hotel lobby until around 11.30am! We didn't want to carry our bags everywhere, and it was much cooler in the lobby. We headed straight for the Wings Tavern (again-we went every day!) and stayed and had lunch until our coach to Paris.
The coach journey was 5 hours long, luckily it was air conditioned, it was a long journey, I slept for a little bit, but the guys that were next to us were so loud. Even through my ear buds. One guy was quiet but the other was so loud.
Anyways, we reached Paris at 7pm, and headed straight for the hotel by metro. I got the hotel location wrong though. I thought it was in a place called Porte de Montmartre because it had "Ibis Montmartre" on the sheet...but nope we were redirected to Porte de la Chapelle. It was 8pm by this point and we were starving, so we headed for a kebab shop. It was a dreadful area, full of homeless people...etc. But the kebab shop were so nice and friendly.
They advised us which way to walk, but in the end we decided to get a taxi which was only 8 Euro. We stayed in the hotel that night, the area was the same as Porte de la Montmarte...a trash, full of homeless people, and it smelled. We didn't want to get a metro back into the more popular spots.
The hotel was nice though, "Ibis Budget".
After a lovely sleep, decided to to all the sight-seeing attractions. Well not all, we had a map which had some landmarks marked on it. We went past some restaurants that were full of seafood, it looks so nice!
Some of the architecture was fantastic, there was so much detail in some buildings
We found our way to Notre Dame, it was difficult using the metro system, because we had no idea where it was. We decided to start there and work our way to the Eiffel Tower. There were two stops with Notre Dame in the name, so we just picked the furthest one and luckily was right.
We decided to stop for a bite to eat, I get very grumpy when I don't eat! So, found a little restaurant and had a few nice things.
I had the Gazpacho, cold! It was so good. I'm going to attempt to make this at some point! It's basically a cold tomato soup.
David had the terrine, each layer was something different, I forget what. It was so light, and tasty.
We both had the Cabonara for mains. For a 2 course it was 13 Euro each.
On the way to the other attractions we came across a pet shop, they sold puppies! But sadly, they had the puppies locked in cages...I didn't like that and I hope they were sold quickly!!
We also came across the love bridge! But didn't put a lock onto it, I was tempted, but there were so many "lucky lucky men" selling simple lock and keys for around 10 Euro...um no!
We did SO MUCH walking! It took up most of the day! But eventually we arrived at the Champs Elysees! Passing the Louvre on the way.
After more walking, walking around the back streets of Paris, we got to the Eiffel tower. No way was I going up it! I'm scared of heights and just looking up gave me vertigo!
The view from the top must have been amazing!
Enjoying the sun, and atmosphere. There were lucky lucky men selling bottles of champagne and beer! Strange, no one would buy them, they're extortionate.
We decided to head back to the hotel area for something to eat. It was much cheaper eating in the outskirts of Paris, BUT it was full of weirdos and homeless people, so a bit risky. We popped into a random pub, it was scary at first but the waiter was friendly and put us at ease.
I had a steak baguette, well about 1/4 of it, I ate all the chips and David's chips.
David had something cheval. He thought it was horse, but after looking on the internet, it's just steak with an egg on top. It was tiny and he doesn't eat chips! So I gave him 3/4 of my baguette for his chips....top girl friend or what ;]! Kidding!
So, after dinner, we went back to the hotel, and had a good nights kip!!
The next morning, we opted for breakfast at around 6 Euro each.
It was the last day of our holiday, but our bus wasn't until 10pm! We decided to get the overnight bus back to London.
We got the metro to Montparnasse, and left our luggage there! Luckily, I didn't want to trek my bag everywhere.
We walked through one of the big parks, it had the Jardin des plants, and history museum in it. I forget the name of the park! We were headed towards the famous cemetery, which kept Oscar Wild and Jim Morrison. It was a long walk. My god. I was dying by the end of it. What was worse was that the cemetery was uphill!
Not sure why this is here? Anybody? Gum stuck onto this tree by fans...
This was really morbid!! They had their daughters name etched onto this before she has died!!! I know it's a family plot...but COME ON! It's crazy. She would only be in her 60's too.
At around 5pm, we decided to head back to Montparnasse, and go for food. We went into one restaurant but the waiter was so rude. He chucked me about 5 menus-I'm not sure whether he was being mean or what....but he didn't come back to our table. The bastard. We left, and popped into another restaurant which was so much friendlier.
There was only one old man working the front, and he was so nice and accommodating, even offering us another table because of the smoke! The restaurant was called La Consign. Such a friendly waiter!!
To start we had:
French Onion Soup! This was gorgeous!
Escargot! I hated it when I tried it in the UK. But these were fantastic!
Mains, I opted for something risky, but wanted to try it!
I had the Steak Tartare! It was lovely. The portion was huge, no way could I have eaten it all, I had about half, which was enough. It was so tasty, I would get it again, but not in the UK.
David had veal escalope, it tasted like turkey...but great still! It came with pasta! YAY! No chips!
Anyways, after a lovely meal, we grabbed our bags and ventured back to Porte de la Chapelle and waited ages for the bus. Luckily we were first and got to sit at the front! Yay!
The bus journey was LONG. And you couldn't sleep. Well I slept for a bit, until the ferry port. But we had to get off and go through security. The french security and the British Border control...it took forever to get through border control.
Some American girl decided to travel before her visa started! WHY!!?? You know you'll have trouble. Her visa for the UK didn't start until 2 days after and they kept her for ages at least 30 minutes, questioning her. What an idiot.
Anyways, they decided to do a full security sweep on our bus. We had to remove ALL our belongings including our bags in the under storage. It was a nightmare...and eventually made it through. But had an hour or so wait until we could actually board.
Once on board it was NOISY again. Full of french kids SINGING! It was a nightmare. I have them all evil stares. They had no respect for fellow passengers. One of them tried to shut them up, but they just kept going. I almost wanted to punch one girl because her voice was annoying and she could not sing but kept singing!
Anyways, got some sleep at last when they moved, and I couldn't help but laugh at them all when we got off, because they were all sitting on chair looking tired as hell. That's what you get for using up all that wasted energy, and then crashing.
The bus from Dover to London was a quick one, I fell asleep the whole way. We had to wait around and hour and a half for our bus to Newcastle, but guess what, it was delayed by an hour! Such a waste of time.
Finally got on the bus to Newcastle, and after 6 hours, our journey ended :)!
Our holiday was amazing, a good experience and I urge you all to try it! Maybe not by megabus...but it was the cheapest way to see all three countries :)!
I hope my travel chat hasn't bored you!
'till next time,