|Me with my Contiki girls (Tara,Sharni,Rachael and Tamara) outside the famous Louvre entrance|
Welcome to my blog about the sexy and sophisticated city of love and lights!Paris was a city that I definitely wished I had more time to spend as there were so many famous sites to see and things to do. I spent the first two days of my trip on Contiki in Paris which was a pretty stylish and amazing start to the trip. Here are the happenings of Karissa and the Contiki crew in Paris....
As soon as we arrived on the outskirts of Paris we got handed a rooming list as we did at every new place we stayed and we were able to write down who we wanted to sleep in the room with. Contiki allows couples to stay together (our only couple was Leanne and Adam) but had boys and girls rooms the whole trip. Rachael and I decided we would room in a two bed room of course lol which was only one of the two places that we were able to stay with the two of us the whole trip. We checked into our motel where we would be staying for the next two nights. Mia did all of the organising of keys, room numbers and talking to the motel staff so it always made it easy checking into the places we stayed.
We got into the room and it was tiny but at least it had our own bathroom and blankets which was a luxury on the trip little did I know ha Rachael and I both had Kathmandu backpacks, hers was a maroon colour and mine was blue/black. From the moment we both saw each other struggling to get the bags onto our backs by ourselves I decided we would be called 'Team Snails' lol From the moment we got into the room Rachael started sprawling her stuff all over the place and was whipping out her power board, hair dryer and many other girly things. If anyone knows me they know how neat, clean and organised I like my room,car,classroom and every other aspect of my life to be ha I was like omg this is going to be a long trip sharing with people!But Contiki among other things taught me to be able to share tiny spaces and sleep listening to people snoring (SHARNI!). It also taught me how to get ready with 4-6 other girls cramming to use the one tiny mirror in a room, in the space of sometimes 10 minutes because we were too drunk to set an alarm the night before!
Anyway Rachael and I got ready and headed down to the restaurant to meet the rest of the Contiki group. I remember feeling under dressed and wished that I had brought at least one pair of the 30 odd high heels I have at home with me when I saw some of the girls dressed up!Oh well the joys of backpacking :( lol We ate at Le Sultan for our first group dinner and mingled and got to know some of the other people on our tour. Everyone was so lovely and keen to get to know each other.
After dinner we got back onto the Contiki bus to go on a guided night tour of Paris with Mia and Profirio. We were so excited to be heading into the famous city of Paris and seeing the one and only Eiffel Tower!We got to see the crazy traffic of Paris at night which reminded me of Bali at times because they don't have marked driving lanes and cars cut in from every angle. We stopped for a group photo outside the amazingly huge and beautiful L'Hôtel national des Invalides which is an amazing comlex of building containing museums and monuments. Napoleon Bonaparte's tomb is also housed in the L'Hôtel national des Invalides.
|Our Contiki group outside the amazing L'Hôtel national des Invalides (Me in the middle with the cross on my shirt ha)|
After our group photo I remember getting shivers and so excited along with the rest of the bus when the top of the Eiffel Tower came into view!!I among many others had only dreamt out seeing the Eiffel Tower and it was surreal for it to become reality. The Eiffel tower is 324m high, it has 10,000 tonnes of iron and 2 million rivets!It was built in 1889 and is named after it's designer Gustave Eiffel. The gardens around the tower were so pretty and it was like I was in a dream walking up to it at night time. We were lucky enough to see the Eiffel Towers night time sparkle display where at a certain time the tower starts it's light show!So cool!
|Me,Rachael and Sharni outside the amazingly beautiful Eiffel Tower!|
After our stop at the Eiffel Tower we drove down the famous main street of Paris the Champs-Elysees. This strip is known as the road of diamonds and ruby's due to the cars and break lights at night. It leads up to the Arc de Triomphe and is famous for it's expensive and designer shopping. Profirio drove us around the Arc de Triomphe so slowly, twice even I think, when we got to the roundabout surrounding it.
|Me walking up to see the Arc de Triomphe|
We also got taken to a cute little French restaurant which was a suprise from Mia. We got to try Escargot which is a dish of cooked snails, usually served as an appettizer in French restaurants and we sipped on French champagne. It was the weirdest experience trying snails for the first time but I will try anything once!They were covered in herbs and garlic so they were actually quite nice, however it did take me awhile to scrape them out of the shell and bite into them!lol
|Me eating Escargot in a French restaurant on the Champs-Elysees|
After our amazing night tour of Paris we headed back to the motel where we had the option to go down to where we ate dinner and have some drinks or go to bed. I was so tired from the trip so I stayed in and got an early night as I didn't want to be hungover for our day in Paris. This smart way of thinking didn't last long throughout most of the trip however!lol Rachael the party animal went out and I remember thinking omg I hope she doesn't bring anyone else back to the room and have sex infront of me baaahaa I was safe that night however Sam was not.......lol
Paris day two to be continued.....
Love from the Paris loving backpacker