About a month ago I visited Paris with my mom and sister. It was a girls vacation. My mom and sister had never been to Paris, and I was itching to go back. I visited Paris four years ago, and it was the most magical experience I had abroad. This time around was a little different. I felt like the first time around I romanticized everything. This time, I planned and led everything which made me see a different side of a vacation…the more stressful side
One major lesson I learned from this trip is that it doesn’t matter how well you plan something — anything can go wrong, and I guess a good lesson for me, in this case, was not to get too upset and stressed out.
The start of my trip was a little rocky. I planned this trip back in February I had the flights, and our AirBnB booked. A week our trip I spoke to our host. He was very kind and informative which put me at ease. Two days before our flight at 8:30 am EST I received a message through my Airbnb app. It was our host’s sister in law. She was supposed to be the one meeting us at the home because our host was going to be away.
In her message, she said that our host had passed away a couple of days before she reached out to me and that she had to cancel our reservation.
I was in total shock, and my heart sank because I had no idea what had happened to our host. I felt paralyzed and read the message over and over again to make sure I wasn’t making it up.
Of course, she had to cancel the reservation — I am not sure I’ve ever heard a story like this before, but I guess it’s possible it’s happened to others?
Anyway, I reached out to Airbnb. They really do not have the best customer service strategy. I had the worst experience trying to get through to them. When I initially called — the person I spoke to reassured me that everything would be taken handled. I waited 8 hours before I heard from someone else and had to call and talk to 3 people before I reached my case manager who informed me that my situation was not urgent.
Oh, okay. Someone died, and it’s a 48 hours before my flight and 56 hours before I have to check in. I remember going to a nail salon with my mom and sister and not remembering getting my nails done because the entire time I was on the phone and crying from how frustrated I was with Airbnb.
My sister ended up finding a new apartment, Airbnb gave us a 10% discount, and I booked the place.
Everything after that was okay. Our flight was smooth. Getting to the apartment was relatively easy. We stayed in the 5th Arrondissement right next to the Pantheon and surrounded by all the colleges in France. Our apartment was cute and in a central location. We were surrounded by cafes, restaurants, bakeries, markets; you name it we were near it. I loved the convenience of our place so much.
There’s probably a lot of details I’m going to miss but here are some of the things we did:
- Walked to Sainte Michelle
- Walked inside Notre Dame
- Climbed to the top of Notre Dame (crazy workout/highly recommend for the views)
- Visited Shakespeare & Co.
- Jardin Du Luxembourg
- Père Lachaise Cemetary
- Visited the L’Atelier des Lumières Gustav Klimt Immersive Art Exhibition
- Visited the Palace of Versailles and the Garden (I recommend exploring the Garden more than the palace also there is no guillotine — my sister was super disappointed)
- Eiffel Tower (has a huge ugly fence around it which made me sad)
- Arc de Triomphe
- Catacombs – we walked to them and found out that the workers were on strike so it was closed
- Musèe Rodin
We ate at a some amazing restaurants and others not so great…one thing we noticed is that some restaurants do not season their food. At all! My favorite meal was from a place called Kodawari Ramen. We waited in line for 30 minutes before we were seated in the cutest/divey/authentic Japanese restaurant.
We didn’t shop too much — we purchased some sourvenirs, chocolates, haribo candies, and thrifted a little.
The two vintage shops we visited are called Hippy Market and Kiliwatch Collection. My sister got a decent haul of clothes and I have become way more picky with my purchases and opted for one vintage shirt that my mom chose and some sunglasses (eventually I’ll do an outfit post with them 😉)
All in all our trip was lovely. We experienced kindness, rudeness, frustration, and happiness. I wouldn’t change a thing about this trip. The trip was a way for us to escape our daily lives and spend mother-daughter time together.
Also, I didn’t end up taking many outfit pics because I was a little busy being jet lagged as heck and trying to navigate us through the city.
I’m glad I didn’t too because I was having too much fun sightseeing with my mom and sister. ❤️