J’adore Paris Travel Diary

Paris Travel Guide Eiffel Tower Allison McNamara

It’s a simple choice really–Paris is easily my favorite city in the world.  There’s an undeniable magic that runs rampant through the City of Light that’s inexplicable. Beyond being the most charming and romantic city in the world, Parisienne culture is truly inspired.

I’m forever charmed by the Parisienne way of life–everything from the delicious foods they indulge in, to their inimitable style, music and their beauty secrets–the French have it seemingly all figured out. And yet, they still manage to regularly eat gluten and get drunk on a good red.

I hadn’t been back to Paris until just a few weeks ago since I studied abroad there in 2008. Paris changed my life. It changed the way I viewed other people, the unknown, and the world… and it forever instilled in me an unwavering sense of wanderlust.

Just shy of 10 years later, I found myself back in my favorite city and I immediately felt like I was greeted by an old friend. An intangible warm hug rested around me the entire five days we were there. It was pure joie de vivre. I’m happy to report my Paris hadn’t changed much–there were more people, more tourists, and Le Marais was way more happening–but those points aside, the beauty of Paris remains in it’s ability to stay the same. Below, everything we did while soaking up the most in the city of light. And my dear Paris, I promise I won’t wait as long this time to return.

Paris travel Guide

Paris Travel Guide

Paris Travel Guide


We stayed at a quaint AirBnB in Le Marais. We had the most idyllic location that was close to everything. I highly recommend taking this route, as hotels can be very expensive and small. If it’s your first time in the city, you might want to stay in Saint Germain, my second fave arrondissement, because it’s strategically close to all of the museums.

Paris Travel Guide AirBnb paris


The French know food, and it’s hard to go wrong here. The best advice I can give is stay away from the super touristy areas when it comes to meal time.


Les Philosophes

This was hands down our favorite breakfast spot (we also did dinner there!) right next to our AirBnB. Worth it even if you’re not staying near by, this is a organic, farm-to-table restaurant with insane ham and cheese omelettes. I’m salivating.

Les Philosophes

Cafe de Flore

It’s nice when a must-visit tourist spot has great food. This is definitely one of them! Any meal here is good, but breakfast is exceptional.

Cafe de Flore Paris travel Guide


Monsieur Bleu

Recommended by a friend, this place, housed at the iconic Palais de Tokyo, is a must go! The food is exquisite, as is the dashing view you get of tour eiffel. The spicy beef is fantastic, and I wouldn’t miss out on the tuna tataki. Make sure to make a reservation ahead of your travels.

Le Relais Entrecotre in Saint Germain

I have been to this restaurant twice before, but both times I was a strict vegetarian, and since there is quite literally only steak and frites on the menu, I left hungry. I was excited to finally try this place and boy was it worth it! The green steak sauce is heavenly. Make sure you get there 15/20 minutes before the restaurant opens as the queue gets very long.

Relais Entrecotre Saint Germain Paris Travel Guide

Las de Falafel

You can’t go to Paris without indulging in the international food. The falafel is some of the best in the world, and you really should go to Las de Falafel in Les Marais, even for a late late night bite.

Other places I love: Lou Lou, L’Avenue, Hotel Costes.



We came across this place after attempting to grab a glass at the George V, but even the bar was full! This place is stunning.

Les Etages

A cute dive bar in Le Marais. Very cool atmosphere, we hung out here a few nights and it was so fun.


Brezih Cafe

You’re most likely going to have to wait, but it’s so worth it! The best crepes place in the city with everything from savory to sweet. Go hungry!


Even though we have Laduree in the states, nothing beats the charm of the Bonaparte location. Ravishing navy velvet walls and tables and chairs fit for a fairytale, this place is everything. Get the hazelnut dessert, it’s my fave.

Laduree Paris Travel Guide


It was Cassondra’s first time in Paris, so we spent a majority of our trip hitting up the must see tourist attractions. I’ve outline all of my favorites below, along with a few others that we didn’t do this trip but are worth it.

Louvre – Go for the Mona Lisa, stay for the Napoleon apartments which are not to be missed.

Napoleon Apartments Paris Travel Guide

Arc d Triomphe- Fun for a photo

Tour Eiffel – You really can’t miss her! Definitely make Trocadero your first stop to get great photos, then walk down to Champs de Mars and take in the beauty, even better at night.

Jardin du Luxembourg – It was a bit sad and dreary when we went. I used to do all of my homework in this garden, it’s beautiful in the spring. Same with the Tuillieries. You can skip them in the winter.

Notre Dame – A pretty quick walk inside on the way to the right or left bank will do.

Notre Dame Paris travel guide

Walk through Saint Michele at night – if only to see the impressively slim cobblestone hallways.

Rue Moefftard – Such an underrated street in the Latin Quarter. Perhaps I’m biased because I used to live here. Go check out Hemingways house and walk down to Salle Manger for brunch.

Rue Vieille du Temple – the main street in the Marais. Lots of great shopping a restaurants.

Pont Des Arte – at night, with a bottle of wine. Or at dusk with wine and cheese watching the sunset. We went here for NYE.

Ile Saint Louis – just because, it’s an island in the Seine and has a great view of the water at night.

Moulin Rouge – Because you have to! The 10th arrondissement is becoming my favorite–also go up to Sacre Coeure for the best views of the city.

Also check out: Musee L’Orangerie for 40 ft long Monets, Musee Rodin for beautiful sculptures and a gorgeous garden. D’Orsay for classic art and Diegas ballerinas. Centre Pompidou was underwhelming this time. Also check out the Ritz in Place Vendome for utter elegance and do brunch there (if you don’t mind spending 130 euros haha.) A show at the Crazy Horse is worth it if you’re into tasteful burlesque!

Well that about wraps up our trip this time! I hope you enjoyed my travel guide. Paris, I’ll see you soon. xx

Paris Travel Guide Allison Mcnamara Eiffel Tower

Got a questions about Paris? Ask me below!



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