World Travel 2013-2014, France Wrap Up

  • Overall what we did: 10 days split into: 6 days in Paris, and 4 days in Chamonix from 17 April 2014 to 26 April 2014
  • Favourite part of France: The incredibly beautiful French Alps (could just relax and look at the view forever) and the delicious pastries
  • Key tip: Buy your bread, pastries, cheese and meat from specialist stores. Boulangerie (bakery), pâtisserie (pastry), fromagerie (cheese) and boucheries are everywhere and stock much nicer products than the supermarket, for not necessarily much more
  • Cultural points:
    • Language: Definitely attempt to speak some French. We tried to order everything in French whenever we grabbed food from bakeries, cafes and restaurants and never had an issue of people being rude. A smile and attempting to communicate in the local language where ever you are always goes down well
  • Highlights: Sitting at the top of Aiguielle du Midi and taking in the views of the French Alps. Absolutely spectacular. What’s not to love about this kind of a view:
  • Looking towards Grandes Jorasses, Chamonix, France

    Looking towards Grandes Jorasses, Chamonix, France

  • Best Experience: Relaxing in Chamonix with the other lovely guests at the B&B we stayed at, sampling various French desserts (well and truly sugared out now) and spending Easter in Paris!
  • Worst Experience: Arriving at our second hostel in Paris only to find that they didn’t ‘receive’ our booking. They were very apologetic, but we suspect that for some reason our booking was cancelled (hard to say with our limited French but we suspect we heard ‘cancelled’). Not only that, we had a second hostel do the same thing and tell us they had lost our booking even though they had my name written down on their check in sheet for the day. Yeah… sure…
  • Must See Attraction: Definitely visit the Louvre when you’re in Paris as well as the Eiffel Tower. Just try to avoid the queues if you can…
  • Most Over-hyped Attraction: Sacré-Cœur. Not worth visiting in my opinion as the view of Paris isn’t worth the hassle from the hawkers (personally hate the hawkers that try to grab your wrist), and the atmosphere isn’t very nice
  • Would I go back? Yes I would. Paris is a beautiful city and really took me by surprise with it’s wide sweeping streets and lots of room for pedestrians. I would love to visit other places in France as well and maybe even do some skiing in the French/Swiss Alps area. One day…

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