Our view from the hotel balcony! 
When we first started talking about where we wanted to go on our honeymoon, Europe was the first choice for both of us. When I was about 12, my parents to me and my siblings to Paris, London and Spain. Being that I was 12, I don't remember much of it and I'm sure I didn't appreciate it. So, while I've technically been to Europe before, its a whole different ball game when you're at an age when you can fully appreciate experiencing a different culture and country. Mike had never been anywhere in Europe, so it was pretty much decided from the start.  We both loved the idea of going to Italy and since we were going to go through the effort (and expense) of getting all the way over there, we figured we should add another country as a "stopover" on our way. We landed on Paris, after going through a few other options with our best ever travel planner, Heather, and we're so glad we did!

Knowing that Paris would be our first stop, we didn't want to have too strict of an itinerary while we were there. We were looking forward to having some free time to explore on our own. Heather booked us a hotel that was within walking distance of most everything - restaurants, shopping, the Eiffel Tower, the River Seine, the Louvre, etc. We ate at cafes and strolled the streets and said to each other, "can you believe we're in PARIS?!" probably about 100 times. What I loved so much about our time there was that I felt like we really got a feel for French (specifically, Paris) culture and lifestyle. Oftentimes, we'd find ourselves being some of the only people who were speaking English at a cafe, which was very different from our experience in Italy (more on that coming!). Everyone we met and interacted with was kind and gracious with us - we knew how to say "hello" and "thank you" and that's about it.  We both enjoyed our time there so much. While I feel like I don't need to go back to Italy again, I would love to return to Paris someday!

Where we stayed:

How long we stayed: 
3 nights

Our favorite thing we did:
Lauren: Take a really long lunch at a café, sharing a bottle of wine and soaking it all in
Mike: Visiting The Louvre Museum

Best thing we ate:
L: Croissants and onion soup
M: Nutella crêpe from a street cart

What we did:
Walked to the Eiffel Tower, visited the Musée de l'Armée (army museum), walked through the Louvre, spent time at Montmartre, ate way too many carbs, walked through Le Jardin du Luxembourg

What I would do differently next time:
This goes for any country I visit, I'd take a couple days or a week to learn some basics of the language! While we were never in a situation where we couldn't communicate at all (nearly everyone we interacted with knew some English), I would have enjoyed being able to speak that native tongue. I would've also done a bit of research on cultural things, like tipping at restaurants. We had no clue that it's not like we do in the states, so I wish we had done our homework from the start!

She's even more beautiful lit up! 

Parisian architecture is so beautiful. Every building looks straight out of a dream. 

Crossing over the River Seine on our walk to the Louvre 

Pre-dinner baguette on the street in the middle of a downpour

The view of Paris from Montmartre 

The Basilica of Sacré Cœur 

Nutella crépes should be a separate food group. SO GOOD. 

Our first day walking all around the city

My favorite cafe's were the ones that served popcorn with your drinks! 
Other posts about our Honeymoon:
Honeymoon Review: What I Packed For Our Long Flights