Paris: The City of Lights

Yesterday marked our first full day in Paris, and what a full first day it was! We saw nearly everything that we had anticipated and despite the sub-par weather, we did an insane amount of walking. Our first stop of the day was the Louvre. Usually when you’re traveling in groups, it’s relatively hard to decide upon sights that everyone wants to see. Our trio is pretty cohesive and we all have similar interests so that’s rarely an issue for us. With the Louvre, it was a no-brainer. We all wanted to see the world’s most famous museum up close and personal and made a point to see it first thing in the morning. For a mere 9.50 euros, we each had an admission ticket and began our exploration.

Metro Station

The fact that the tickets are only 9.50 seriously boggles my mind. The museum is massive. Not only is it large, but the pieces are spectacular. Mona Lisa? Venus de Milo? Winged Victory? Check, check and check! We saw all of those plus some… definitely checked off a major must-see in life.

Tiff & I with Winged Victory inside the Louvre

After checking out the Louvre for a few hours (we knew we couldn’t see everything, so we just picked our top few must-sees to check out) we headed to the famed Notre Dame cathedral for a glimpse of the church’s facade. We decided to skip the queue and save the inside for another day since the line — and the rain — were a bit on the excessive side.


After hitting up the Notre Dame, we headed down to the Latin Quarter, an area that I had been dying to see. Though we only meandered through the streets, the area was quaint and we decided that it was on our agenda to see more in depth before departing the City of Lights. Since we were on the south side of the Seine (Left Bank East), we decided to head down along the river to see the Eiffel Tower up close. After passing the Musee d’Orsay and Les Invalides, we finally arrived at the famed Eiffel Tower, arguably Paris’ most iconic element. Although I swore to my dad that the structure was 315 feet tall (he argued that it was clearly larger than that), I discovered that it was actually around 315 meters tall. Close, right? Feet, meters… practically the same?

Eiffel Tower

By the time we finished checking out the Eiffel Tower, it was evening and we decided to head back home to Montmartre. We jumped on the metro and arrived back at Anvers station about 20 minutes later to find my dad wallet-less. After scouring his pockets and jacket, it was nowhere to be found… pick-pocketed! Money, credit cards, souvenir tickets and the lot were all gone. Talk about putting a damper on the trip… luckily my dad is ever the optimist and tried to make my sister and I feel better about the situation. Naturally, we were upset about the whole situation (I mean, really… pick-pocketed in Paris?! Bleh!) but tried the make the most of everything. We finished up the night with a casual dinner in Montmartre relaxing and chatting about life before heading to the local boulangerie to grab a baguette and night-time goodies from a neighborhood bakery.

After a long, rather mixed day, our feelings about Paris are still rather mixed. Hoping for some experiences to re-invigorate our Parisian excursion!

xoxo from Paris,

More about Shannon Kircher

Shannon Kircher is the founder and editor of The Wanderlust Effect. Founded in 2009, she has continued to document her international escapes as an expat in Europe and the Caribbean. Additionally, Shannon is the founder of Compass & Vine, a luxury boutique travel design firm, and is the Director of Marketing for the Frangipani Beach Resort. Shannon holds an MSc in Social Policy and Development from the London School of Economics and is a current candidate for WSET Level 3 in Wines & Spirits.