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My 2011 Trip to Paris

Four days in Paris gives you plenty of time to enjoy the city. With the help of a Lomo camera, some sneakers, a map, and good company, I had a great time in the French capital.

I’d already been to Paris 15 years ago. An end of the year trip that took us to the French capital, Amsterdam, and Brussels during a 10-day route. More than 16 hours by coach and several nights en route to see the city of lights with my classmates. A schedule with some free hours so they could take us sightseeing to the different tourist attractions…from coach!

Fifteen years later, carrying a map, a pair of sneakers, and a Lomo camera, I returned to Paris. I wanted to wander around the streets, and I really wanted to get to know it better.

Photo by sye

We were really nervous while we were waiting at the airport.

DAY 1:
We woke up in Paris and the first thing we did was visit the Eiffel Tower, just so we don’t miss it. An iron structure designed for the Universal Exposition 1889. Being 330 meters high, it is the symbol of both France and its capital. As we left everything for the last minute, we hadn’t bought our tickets beforehand, so we had to wait…
Tip: If you are short on time, it is strongly advisable to buy the lift tickets online. You will save yourself more than an hour of waiting in line.

We walked from Place du Trocadéro to Arc de Triomphe. From the top of the Arch, you can enjoy one of the bests sights of Paris. Two-hundred-eighty-six steps that braid a spiral staircase towards an observatory in the middle of Avenue des Champs-Élysées. The Arch was built by Napoleon in order to pay homage to his armies, which has astonishing dimensions and on its walls, victories won by Napoleon’s armies were written.
Tip: Take a deep breath and walk upstairs.

To finish the day, there was nothing better than a walk down Avenue des Champs-Élysées to catch the subway to the Lomography shop, which by a matter of chance was just next to our hotel. But we were late and it was already closed. We swore we’d return.
Tip: with a Lomography shop nearby, you will always have plenty of film guaranteed!

Photo by sye

DAY 2:
Walking to Montmartre, Paris’ most charming neighborhood. La basilique du Sacré-Coeur can be seen at the top of the hill.
Tip: Take a good look of the mosaic.

Walking to Du Tertre Square, where countless painters show their works.

We got into the neighborhood

Photo by elenagm

Following Amelie’s path .

We saw the Moulin Rouge…

Photo by sye

and we ended up in the I love you wall .
Tip: get lost in Montmartre: every street, every square, every corner has its own charm.

We entered the bowels of the Earth walking down Abesses railway station stairs.

On our way to Notre Dame, we got off at Paris City Hall station so we could look at that unique building.

Photo by sye

We crossed the bridge to Île de la Cité*, surrounded by the waters of Sena, in search for Paris’ kilomètre zéro. Legend says that if you step on it without noticing, you will return to Paris. I was on it when our guide explained this 15 years ago.
Tip: step on it, jut in case.

Photo by sye

From kilomètre zéro look up. That is Notre Dame, one of the oldest Gothic French cathedrals (1345).

Get inside and enjoy more than 700 years of history.
Tip: don’t leave without climbing the tower. Nearly 400 steps worth the suffering.

Did you know that there are two Lomography shops in Paris? That day we had enough time so we got there on time. We needed to get more ammo.

We finished the day with a walk around the neighborhood before going back to the hotel.

DAY 3:
Decathlon was the first tourist attraction of the day.
Tip: don’t go to Paris without a coat or a jacket, even in May.

We sent some postcards to the family before the walk.

Photo by sye

l’Opéra National

Photo by sye

and Paroisse de la Madeleine…

Photo by sye

which led us to the Obélisque de Louxor. More than 2000 years of history in this 23-meters high Egyptian obelisk.

Jardin des Tuileries is right next to it. Twenty-eight hectares in the center of Paris with countless statues that lead the way to Musée du Louvre.

You need more than one day to see everything. And as we didn’t have much time, we crossed the city by subway towards Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile.

Photo by sye

DAY 4:
Last day in Paris. During the morning we went back to the painter’s neighborhood. This time in a much more relaxed mood.

And in the afternoon, much to our regret, we returned home. Au revoir París!

Photo by sye

We missed Eurodisney and Playmobil FunPark. We will have to get back.
Tip: travel to Paris!

written by sye and translated by bernizt

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The original version of this article is written in: Spanish.