Plan a trip to Paris
Where to stay
Spending the day in Montmartre
Check out the Sacre-Coeur
Wander around the artist’s quarter: Place du Terte
Visit the Moulin Rouge
Have a coffee at the Café des Deux Moulins where the famous French film Amélie was filmed
I had a bit of a sleepless night worrying about trying to do the trains and metro by myself to Montmartre. I think also just the prospect of going into Paris, working out transport and sight seeing all by myself was too daunting for me. But thankfully all went smoothly and I realised that I had absolutely nothing to worry about. It is actually fairly easy to figure out and the system is so efficient that you will never wait longer than 20 minutes for something (but mostly it’s like 3 minutes).
Ah Montmartre. I have been to Paris once before with my family when I was 7. We spent only two days in the city-one of which was in Disneyland. So you can imagine how crazy it must have been trying to fit all of Paris into one day’s itinerary. The one thing that I will always remember about that time in Paris was when I wanted to get a caricature done in Montmartre but there simply wasn’t enough time for it if we wanted to catch our plane in time. Of course trying to explain this to a seven-year old is not easy and so it was something that I always held against my parents.
So this trip to Montmartre was very special to me as it gave me time to make peace with it.
I entered the bustling street leading up to the Sacre-Coeur and was filled with such satisfaction that I’d arrived and was doing this. I began the walk up to the beautiful white church on the hill. Every now and then I would turn around and stop to take in the gorgeous view of Paris below me. It was such a treat to just take my time and soak it all in.
And to make the scene even more romantic there was a musician playing Beauty and the Beast on a harp.
Next I followed my nose to the vivid and lively artist’s quarter: Place du Terte. The courtyard was lined with creperies and typical French cafes. In the center one could wind in and around the beautiful paintings and their creators. I just loved seeing these artists creating their beautiful works.
Next I grabbed a ham and cheese crepe and went to sit on the steps of the basilica to admire the view while savoring the warm and melty food.
I then walked back down to the main road and went in search of the famous Moulin Rouge. It’s in a neighborhood called Pigalle which is filled with more sex shops than you can imagine. Anyhow, I quickly moved on until I found the Moulin Rouge. Nothing really that special but at least I can say I’ve seen it!
So you may wonder after that time all these years ago, whether I finally got my caricature done in Montmartre. Well the answer is no. I didn’t really feel like having my worst features amplified and so instead bought a few beautiful prints of Paris.
This day was definitely my favourite day in Paris!
If you’re visiting more of France on your trip why not check out my French regional guides:
A winter skiing trip to Tignes