Day 81 (Paris, France)
I spent last week in London with a friend who managed to get a flight to London for work related reasons. I stayed in his hotel for the time he was in London and then stayed in a hostel for the last 2 days as the couch I had setup kinda fell through at the last second and it’s hard to find last minute couches in London. I probably could have stayed with one of the people I stayed with last time but I was just there a month ago and didn’t want to keep asking them for favors.
London was still fun the second time through, at this point I have spent nearly a month in London total. I showed my friend around a lot of the places I saw when I first visited and we did a bit of clubbing which I did not do my first time through. We stood in line for a place that was gonna be 20 GBP per person cover but we could not get in anyway as we arrived to late. The hostel I stayed at was called Phoenix Hostel and was actually pretty cool as it had a lot of people there and was only 8 GBP per night. The person who was suppose to host me actually helped pay but only because I did not have money on me, I WILL be paying her back and she knows it.
Then I took the Channel Tunnel to Paris from London via Eurolines on the 17th of May. It was actually a fast trip I felt, abut 6-7 hours on a bus which is not bad in my books. As soon as we got into France I had trouble with the language but still managed to take some money out and get myself some food at a rest stop before we hit Paris. Once I got to Paris I knew I would have to find a hostel as I had trouble finding a CS host in Paris and the one I was planning on having host me since NYC was not going to work out because I arrived in Paris about a month to early.
I figured out the subway without problem as it is actually similar to the London Underground except everything is in French. I went directly to the Eiffel Tower as it just seemed like a cool place to go and I like to see big attractions when I first get into a city. After seeing it I decided I needed internet so that I could find a hostel. The idea was to find a McDonalds in 10 minutes as I figured they were everywhere. I was wrong and it took me 2 hours to find one. Once in I also ordered a “Royale with Cheese” because you just gotta I think. It was easy to order from here as they speak English, also they have this sauce called Fry Sauce or something that is really good, it’s like McChicken sauce but better even.
So I searched for a hostel and it turned out almost everything was booked up except one hostel at the end of the 7 line on the Metro. So I booked it for 2 nights which was the minimum and got on the 7 line towards the place. Sadly once I arrived I had no idea where to go and it was the middle of the night. I walked around for probably 2 hours trying to find the place before I just called a taxi and had him drive me there. I of course was instantly ripped off by the taxi as he decided to charge me from the time I called instead of the time he picked me up so it cost like 17 EUR for a 4 minute ride which is insane but at that point I was to lost and tired to care. The hostel was pretty cool and I met a bunch of Canadians traveling around Europe. They have free breakfast and supper but neither was anything special and I could have done without if it had made the hostel cheaper as it was 28 EUR per night which is rather high in my opinion. 2 days past and I needed a hostel again which sucked because almost nothing was available now. Luckily the person who was going to host me originally was able to convince the roommates in his current apartment to let me stay and that is were I currently am now and hopefully until the 24th when I leave Paris.
As for things I have seen and done in Paris. I have done a good chunk of the usual stuff already. Seen the Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame and so on. Checked out the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo in the Louvre. I am taking a rest day today as I have been doing to much walking lately (7-9 hours per day for weeks) and need a break. Tomorrow I will take another tour which will go to Moulin Rouge and other attractions in Paris that I have yet to see. There is quite a language barrier to get over here which does make certain things difficult but in general you can get along in Paris just fine.
I booked my tickets for the next 2 legs of my trip. I am going to Barcelona, Spain for 6 days starting on the 24th arriving on the 25th via an overnight bus which will count as my accommodations for the 24th. Then arriving back in Paris for a few hours starting on the 31st and arriving on the 1st, also using the overnight bus as accommodations for that day as well. While back in Paris I hope to pick up a cell phone and SIM card I ordered online and am having shipped to my current hosts address, with this phone I will be able to receive free calls almost anywhere in world and the cost to caller is just whatever a call to the UK would cost. Also you can call the US number that I will get also and it just costs me a one time connection fee per call of $0.39 USD. Then I leave Paris for good and onto Brussels, Belgium for probably 2-4 days before likely moving onto Amsterdam, Netherlands.
As always I will try and update these posts more often but it can be hard on the road especially when I am walking so much per day. Thanks for reading!