Back in July 2003 Mr C and I celebrated my birthday for the first time as a couple and we headed off to Paris on a Eurostar train for what was then our first holiday together. Since then, before children, we travelled extensively together (at least 20 different countries and going right around the world for our honeymoon) and we loved those trips to foreign cities where we’d explore on foot, stopping for a beer or glass of wine in a bar and people watching when ever we got tired.
We both really miss travelling now that we’ve got kids and often we’ll talk about the trips that we’ve taken in the past and where we’d still like to explore. A city break with kids as young as ours sounds like a recipe for disaster (if you have managed it please please tell me how) and organising to go anywhere without them is a bit of a tall order.
So, you can probably imagine how I felt when this message popped up on my phone one Tuesday morning whilst I was at playgroup.
Paris. For my birthday. A rare child free day. Pretty much eleven years to the day since we last went. It goes without saying that I jumped at the chance.
So, a week on Saturday we’re booked on the first Eurostar out of St Pancras and back on the last one that night. We arrive at Gare de Nord before 10am and then leave again at 8pm. So 10 hours to explore and enjoy Paris.
But what do you try and squeeze in when you only have 10 hours? And what about when you also want time to relax in a local bar and cafe and just enjoy time as a couple for the first time in over four years?
It’s the first time in years that I’ve been allowed to buy a guide book and plan a trip and I’m really going for it on this one. With much of my planning also done online I’ve actually pulled together a Pinterest board of ideas of places I want to visit.
Having learnt a bit about it at the Pinterest session at BritMums Live! I’ve also made use of their map function meaning that I can plot each of my pins on a map (along with an extra pin for Gare de Nord where we’re travelling to and from) and it is an excellent way of planning a trip. At a glance I can see where everything is located and whether it’s possible to do everything in the day or not. I will definitely be using this to plan future trips as it’s just so handy and easy to do.
So please take a look at my board and tell me where else I should be visiting. Any hidden gems that you know about? I’ve had a few different recommendations for lunch, but we’d love to find some little bars or cafes where we can stop and linger for a while.
In the meantime I’m off to dig out a French phrase book and see if I can still remember to order a glass of wine.