One day in Paris

meintheraininparis If you only had one day in Paris how would you spend it?

As we woke on Sunday it was  pouring with rain but we had Paris at our feet, and 24 hours left. 

We opted out of touring the Louvre and headed straight to the Musee de l’Orangerie. It is hidden inside the Tuilerie gardens close to Place de la Concorde and I absolutely love their floor dedicated to Monet’s waterlilies. These canvases are so enormous that you will need to sit down for a while just to fully appreciate the details. meandmymonet pastelsOn the second floor of the museum is a small range of rare artworks from Picasso to Matisse, as well as a seasonal exhibition. roadsignsAfter two hours inside the museum we walked up the Champs Elysees towards the Arc du Triomphe. My friend Gemma had heard that the view on top of the Arc was not only better than the Eiffel Tower, it was also far less crowded. parisfranceEven though I’ve lived in Paris, climbing to the top of the Arc du Triomphe was a first for me and I’ve got to say I loved it. The views were stunning and you even get to have the Eiffel Tower behind you. meandtheeiffelAfter we caught our breath on top of the Arc (ladies you better be fit or keen to develop those butt muscles),  we walked down to the Eiffel Tower. As we crossed the river the sun started shining for the first time and suddenly Paris became like it is in the movies. Birds singing, children playing, tourists being ridiculous. meandtheeiffelhandstand flowers parisisbeautiful Parissign Just as you imagine Paris in Summer!One thing that you must tick off your list of things to do in Paris is go to a Patisserie and order everything in sight. Between two people we ordered five desserts and proceeded to find the closest park so we could devour them all. meandmypastriespastriesinabix Our first course were the lemon tarts, which had a creamy and not too bitter filling. pastrieslemonFollowed quickly by a white chocolate mousse with raspberry sponge. I honestly have no idea how a lady ought to eat this without cutlery so I just unhinged my jaw like a snake and went for it.meandmyraspberrytartraspberrytartcaughtBusted! It was absolutely worth all the mess I made- flavour savers for the train ride back in my opinion. I really think that if you are going to do Paris in 24 hours then this is the best itinerary for you:

  1. Musee de l’Orangerie
  2. Champs d’Elysee
  3. Arc du Triomphe 
  4. Eiffel Tower
  5. Patisserie Julien

If you don’t take the train around Paris it does mean that you’ll be doing a fair bit of walking but I feel that only justifies the need to order a third dessert even more. 

Please share with me your favourite places to eat, shop and be a tourist in Paris.

New York Round Up

It’s official I have left New York and am back in London. Moving there was hands down the best decision we’ve ever made and New York is now the second city to have my heart. Paris being the only other place where I swooned from the moment my feet stepped off the plane. 

So here is a round-up of the best restaurants and museums in no particular oder. (Do you realise I ate at over 40 places all together!?! I also gained four and a half pounds in the process. )

Best brunch atmosphere and mimosa’s: Beauty and Essex

Who to take: Your girlfriends or tourists. This speak easy sums up what’s fantastic about New York. 

Tip: Book way in advance and make sure to boogie into the late afternoon upstairs. 

What to order: Lobster Taco’s and the cheese dumplings in tomato soupthefishtacos2Best seafood: Mermaid Oyster Bar

Who to take: A date. Its low lit and very romantic. Plus you know what they say about oysters!

What to order: Prawn corndog, lobster corn fritters with truffle honey and lobster rolls. The first two dishes you won’t find anywhere else in New York.

Tip: On Monday’s oysters are $1 and the bar menu is open all nightlobsterhouse2Best restaurant worth it’s very long reservation waitlist: ABC Kitchen

Who to take: A date, but they also have huge wooden tables that would perfectly suit a group of 6 friends. 

What to order: Crab toast, pumpkin and hazelnut salad, fried chicken, popcorn sundae

Best ramen: Totto Ramen

Who to take: Anyone hungry

What to order: Miso ramen with avocado on top

Tips: Arrive with stretchy trousers on and an empty stomach because the portions are huge. Order avocado as an extra with your noodles – it’s aways worth the extra dollar. ramennoodlesBest indoor food stands: (TIE) Luke’s Lobster and Los Tacos No. 1

Who to take: Anyone who likes lobsters and Mexican. 

What to order: Lobster Roll at Luke’s and Chicken Quesadilla’s with all the dressings. 

Tips: Los Tacos. No 1 has no seats so either stand like everyone else does or wonder around Chelsea Market and find a tablechickencornBest Pizza: Lombardi’s

Who to take: Anyone, not the right first date atmosphere though

What to order: Any pizza with a tomato base is going to be the right choice. 

Tips: You can customise your order so the sky is the limit.

Best dessert and best place to take a date restaurant: (Tie) ABC Kitchen and The Dutch

Who to take: Date

What to order: ABC- Crab toast, pumpkin and hazelnut salad, fried chicken, popcorn sundae. The Dutch- Foie Gras, spicy seafood pasta, banana crepe. 

Tips: Make a reservation early for both and arrive before your reservation time at The Dutch so you can enjoy cocktails at their bar.dessertbananaBest art museum: MoMA

Who to take: Anyone who loves modern art

Why: They had such an impressive collection of famous artworks from Pollack to Duchamp, I was completely blown away and could have easily spent a whole day admiring their curation.

Tip: They have a variety of restaurants and cafes. If you want simple, Italian fare in an upscale cafeteria go to level 2. meandpollocjBest museum: The Natural History Museum 

Who to take: Anyone who loves history, animals or planets

Why: The museum might be a bit dated in some parts but the dinosaurs are definitely the favourite amongst visitors young and old. We also loved the space and planetarium section, which is a real must-visit while you are there. 

Tip: Luke’s Lobster is just around the corner, so you can make a food and cultural day of being out in the Upper East.