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New Years Eve in Paris and so much more….

We had all agreed that it would be rather special to celebrate the New Year in Paris and so we allocated 5 days to this fabulous city to do a little sight seeing but mainly just enjoy ‘living Paris’. We caught the train which took 3 hours.We had all been here a couple of times so the big tourist things were not on our radar.

<p>No matter how many visits you've had, seeing the Eiffel Tower Sparkle is always a must...</p>

No matter how many visits you've had, seeing the Eiffel Tower Sparkle is always a must...

<p>Only in Paris would you see a dog walking another dog....</p>

Only in Paris would you see a dog walking another dog....

We stayed at a fabulous hotel in the heart of St Michel Place overlooking a lovely view of the Seine River – Hotel Albe.

Our fabulous view of the river Seine from our balcony.

Our fabulous view of the river Seine from our balcony.

With each of us having our own agenda, we decided to split up for the first day. The girls enjoyed a day of retail therapy through Galleries Layfaette, onto the Champs Elysee and through to Ille St Louis while Mike spent time at the Citroen Museum and Pete wandered through the Le Museum National D’Histoire Naturelle (Natural History Museum). This is a fantastic museum that really doesn’t get a lot of airtime in Paris. Well worth the 9 euro and the 4 hours….

Natural History Museum building

Natural History Museum building

Inside the fantastic Museum overlooking the animals of the savannahs of Africa

Inside the fantastic Museum overlooking the animals of the savannahs of Africa

We spent time walking along the Seine, Mike and Leonie enjoyed the 3 hour walking tour while we lined up for the Notre Dame. We checked out some smaller art galleries and made the most of French dishes or a coffee break in one of the many delicious Boulangeries’.

One of the amazing boulangeries in Paris.

One of the amazing boulangeries in Paris.

Another creme brulee to add to the website. We love these things in case you couldn't tell.

Another creme brulee to add to the website. We love these things in case you couldn't tell.

Apple tartin was a close second to the Creme brulee.

Apple tartin was a close second to the Creme brulee.

The famous escagot aka Snails.

The famous escagot aka cooked garden Snails.

Pete was the only one of us who indulged in the local snails.

Pete was the only one of us who indulged in the local snails.

Then before we knew it, New Years Eve was upon us…

New Years Eve was booked for dinner at Café Du Commerce. And it was fantastic!!!

Inside the restaurant

Inside beautiful Café Du Commerce

Enjoying NYE

Enjoying NYE

For 92 Euro per person we enjoyed an incredible 5 course meal with a selection of wines. Some of the richest dishes were served which included amazing seafood canapés, a poisson dish for entrée, filet de bouef for main,  followed by cheese platters and apple sorbet and just when we thought dinner was over dessert arrived – handmade chocolates filled with a stunning chocolate mousse.

Entree

Fois Gras

Main??

Entree: Poisson

Main?

Main: Filet de Boeuf

Dessert: Hand made chocolate filled with rich chocolate mousse

Dessert: Hand made chocolate filled with rich chocolate mousse

Barely able to move, music started and everyone in the restaurant hit the dancefloor in preparation for the countdown.

Mike and Leonie boogying in the New Year.

Mike and Leonie boogying in the New Year.

Leonie and Elissa dancing with the waiters.

Leonie and Elissa dancing with the waiters.

So dinner finished up around 1am however when we realized finding a taxi would be impossible, we arrived at a station in time for the last train and was back at our hotel by 3am. It’s no wonder Mike and Leonie didn’t surface until 11am the next morning and New Years Day was a fairly quiet day.

Jammed packed Metro on New Years Eve, at 3am....

Jammed packed Metro on New Years Eve, at 3am....

But no rest for the weary as late that afternoon we were back out looking at the Christmas Markets set up along the Champs Elysee and also near the Eiffel Tower.

Mike and Elissa in front of the Eiffel tower

Mike and Elissa in front of ice skating ring near the Eiffel tower

That night we jumped on a bus and enjoyed the Paris Illuminations Night Tour which is a 2 hour bus ride through the city admiring how dressed up Paris looks at night. We very much recommend this tour especially at this time of year where there are even more stunning light displays than usual.

The lights of Paris and the Seine River from the river cruise.

The lights of Paris and the Seine River from the river cruise.

The tour also included a ferry cruise along the Seine. Pickup point is at the Eiffel Tower and no matter how many times we saw it sparkle that night, we loved every bit of it.

With one day left in Paris, we got to Sunday Mass at Sacre Coeur – a very special way to spend Mass for the first Sunday of 2011. We then enjoyed the Artist Markets nearby, lunch in another cute café and then made our way to the Jewish and Latin Quarters.

Sacre Coure

Sacre Coeur is an amazing Cathedral with an amazing and different (as opposed to Eiffel Tower) view of Paris.

Artist markets near Sacre Coeur are well worth a visit. The experience gives you a real sense of 'Living Paris'

Artist markets near Sacre Coeur are well worth a visit. The experience gives you a real sense of 'Living Paris'

We can’t forget the stop at the Bvlgari Exhibition at the Grand Palais, where some of the finest jewellery was on display for mainly Leonie and Elissa to enjoy. Including the late Elizabeth Taylor’s incredible collection.

Bvlgari at the Palais

Bvlgari at the Grand Palais

Bvlgari jewellery features in a lot of films. More recently the James Bond films.

Bvlgari jewellery features in a lot of films. More recently the James Bond films and Liz Taylor always wore her own Bvlgari gems on set.

Some of this jewellery is priceless, literally.

Some of this jewellery is priceless, literally.

As you can see Mike really enjoyed the exhibition!!!

As you can see Mike really enjoyed the exhibition!!!

And that was how we spent 5 fabulous days in Paris…….

We hope there are some ideas for your visit to Paris. Also see our visit during the warmer months of October.

Check out more photos in the gallery:


  • Marlene and Rainer

    Hey Elissa and Pete,

    we also wish you a happy new year 2011!! Good to hear that you enjoyed your meals in France.
    As we remember you will be in Africa soon, so hopefully we will see you there;-)

    Greetz from Cape Town!
    Marlene and Rainer

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