Getting the Most out of Your Travels

Paris - Guide Books Lack Originality

 

Over the course of accumulating a number of travel guide books, I have come to this conclusion: information repeated and no originality.  For example:

THE HALL OF MIRRORS - PALACE OF VERSAILLES

This magnificent room is described as the mirrors being the awe of all who see it. Yes, the mirrors and the sun they capture from the opposite side is beautiful.

the hall of mirrors

But a little detail no guide book will "guide" you to is the ceilings.  These intricate ceilings are spectacular.  The richness of the colours and all the details of the ceilings and chandeliers are a true example of how much there is to notice that usually gets very little attention and popularity.

At the end of your tour of the Palace, stop by the gift shop.  I picked up this adorable key chain with a scented little sack-like triangle.  It has the most unique smell - a mix of lavender and gardenias.  

lavender scent

Fun Fact:  Marie Antoinette's favourite scent was lavender!   

NOTRE DAME

Guide books tend to focus on how to get your tickets to see the inside of Notre Dame. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but wouldn't you like to experience this beauty in a unique way?

notre dame tours

How about seeing it sitting across the river where Paris started some 2300 years ago. Imagine how a little village on a tiny island became one of the most magical cities in the world.

I haven't come across one guide book that will suggest this most romantic way of seeing the Cathedral:  from a houseboat turned bar-restaurant, La Nouvelle Seine. For an even more magical view, come at night time to see the lights sparkle against the Cathedral's windows.

PARIS RESTAURANTS

There are countless of recommendations that can be found leafing through tour guide books.  Not many though will tell you about places locals frequent - probably because they are less frilly and fancy than the overpriced ones that they do recommend.

Try a hidden gem where the locals dine such as Bouillon Chartier.  The simplicity of their menu, the honest French cooking and the traditional old world decor is what makes this restaurant unique.

Whether in Paris or in your own backyard, look further than what is presented to you. There is so much more to see and experience....just leave it to your imagination...❤

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