Looking to plan a trip to Paris and unsure where to start?
I have got you covered.
Last month, I took an impromptu trip to the city of love (and croissants) and spent 4 magical days exploring the city and making the most of my time.
What I learned? Paris is MASSIVE.
Seriously, there are a million different neighborhoods and areas to get lost in and you really need a WEEK minimum to see all the highlights.
But if you are like I was and working with only a couple days.. I am going to breakdown what I did, where I stayed and most importantly - what I ate.
Hopefully this will help you better plan your trip and you'll be able to see some of my highly recommended favorite spots.
Where I stayed
View from our cute balcony
This hotel was fairly affordable, compared to many other places I looked into. Unfortunately for me, I was booking during the MIDDLE of Paris fashion week so things were incredibly expensive and very sold out.
I came across this hotel by accident and when they had spare rooms available, I decided to take a risk and just book it - and I am so happy I did. It is a simple hotel but if you are looking to not spend an absolutely fortune on accommodations in Paris... stay here.
The rooms run around $250/night and while they are very small (most are in Europe), they are plenty spacious for 2 people and clean, cute & cozy. I am a tough critic when it comes to hotels and I was pleased. Pro tip: you should absolutely request a room with a balcony because it instantly elevates your experience and the balcony looks out on the most beautiful street view.
Beyond the room, there is a free breakfast (score) and my favorite part - the hotel is incredibly walkable. I was a quick 12-15 minute walk from the Eiffel tower and a 5 minute walk from the cutest street full of coffee shops, markets and all sorts of restaurants.
Unsure how I stumbled upon this place by chance? But hey, lucky girl syndrome!
Dinner at Dandino
This is a newer restaurant and was recommended to me by a friend (Hi, Portugal Chris!) who knows the owner personally. Y'all. Go! It's so good, especially if you like pizza or Italian food. It's got a great vibe + atmosphere & if you feel like sitting outside and people watching... the location is perfect for that.
Lunch + cocktails at Peruche rooftop
This was a place I stumbled upon via my social media stalking skills and it seemed to be quite the hot spot. It's recommended to have reservations before going, but I was solo and had no problem snagging a table (I also went on an off time).
The food is rather expensive but THE VIEW. You are paying for the view. It's unbelievable! I recommend going for a cocktail and a snack, skip having a full blown meal unless you want to drop quite a bit of cash. For the girls wanting a good instagram photo.. this is a great spot for that (and you get a view of the Eiffel Tower).
Dinner at Chez Julien
Another recommendation from a friend and this was probably my favorite place we ate during our whole entire stay in Paris. The restaurant is truly BEAUTIFUL (try to sit outside and enjoy the patio if you can) and you must try the truffle risotto & brioche perdue dessert. Omg. I still have dreams about these two.
Beyond the food and insane decor, the staff was truly amazing and so friendly. You know how people say that the French are rude? My experience at Chez Julian completely changed my mind on that.
Pro tip: make sure you go upstairs and check out the bathrooms. A total vibe. Maybe you will even have a little impromptu photoshoot like I did...
Today was a jam packed day and if you feel like following my itinerary and walking 25,000 steps (in heels!) - here you go!
Coffee walk + breakfast at Kozy (by Eiffel Tower)
our favorite street to grab coffee on
Grab a coffee to-go at any cafe and take a stroll to the Eiffel Tower. After that, stop by Kozy (about a 10 minute walk) for brunch. Heads up, there will probably be a line but it moves quickly! A great, casual + yummy spot (that is also affordable). The avocado toast is 10/10.
Grab a croissant and walk to The Promenade Marie de Roumanie for the best photos with the Eiffel Tower
If you want THE PERFECT photo with the Eiffel Tower (we all do) and don't want hoards of people in the background... I found the best location!
It's in the middle of a gorgeous park and worth the stroll. Snap your photos, then take a seat on one of the benches and enjoy the view of the city.
Lunch at L’Avenue (must make rez)
If you want to SEE and BE SEEN... You have to go to L'Avenue. A Paris staple. You will feel like you're transported directly to a high fashion runway show and it's just a really fun experience. You absolutely must make a reservation well in advance (the line is insane and there's no possible way to get in without one) and while the food is nothing special, I still would recommend going here just for the atmosphere. We split an entree and enjoyed a cocktail, and it was the perfect afternoon pick me up.
Pro tip: go for a late lunch, it's more affordable and less crowded. Also! Try the snails ;) A delight.
Dinner at Chez Ming (or Il Sorrentino) for Eiffel Tower view
If you want to eat dinner with a view of the Eiffel Tower (seriously you are a block from it), check out Il Sorrentino! If you are like me and didn't make a reservation + can't get in... go next door to Chez Ming and enjoy some pretty fire Chinese food.
Drinks at Danico cocktail bar
You must check this place out for an after dinner cocktail. It was ranked one of the TOP cocktail bars in the WORLD and the drink are truly... out of this world. We didn't have a reservation and were able to be seated easily upstairs at the bar! It was so good, we actually came back the next day for dinner (and more drinks).
Breakfast at Zia
Another quaint + cute breakfast spot that was absolutely delightful (and affordable) and close to the Eiffel Tower. Again... get the avocado toast and thank me later.
For my fellow retail therapy lovers. You can't miss out on this area. Even if you don't buy anything... it's fun to window shop while you sip on a coffee.
Lunch at Loulou + walk around the Louvre
If I had to recommend where to make reservations WAY ahead of time... L'Avenue & Loulou. Another Paris staple, LouLou is right outside the Louvre and truly 'Paris' at its' finest (in my opinion). You can sit outside the museum and have the most incredible view of a sprawling park while enjoying pasta and wine - a dream.
I wasn't expecting the food to be anything special. but I was actually blown away. The pesto pasta was incredible and big enough for two to easily split! Again... not the most affordable place to eat but worth it for the experience.
Dinner at Daroco
The restaurant below Danico (the famous cocktail bar) and probably the BEST pizza I have had in a long time. It's definitely more of a "vibe" and was incredibly crowded when we were there... so definitely get a reservation ahead of time.
Pro tip: if there's a wait, just head to the bar and enjoy a cocktail while you wait!
Paris is truly a magical city and I cannot wait to go back and explore more - there is SO much to see and do. You truly cannot do it all in only 4 days (or even a week), but I hope this blog post helps you pick a few spots. Enjoy!
If you do end up going to any of my recommendations, make sure to send me a message on Instagram so I can live vicariously through you!
Until next time...