Earlier this month we were invited by Eurostar to join them in Paris as part of their 'Stories Are Waiting' #WhenInParis campaign. It had been over ten years since we were last in the city so we jumped at the chance to return on the Eurostar this time and rediscover Paris in a crazy fun filled 24 hours.
Having returned from Spain the night before and with little or no time to plan our adventure we set off for Paris from King's Cross St Pancras. Our previous visit to the city had been a school trip and as such our time was spent visiting all the sites you might expect to see as a tourist in a new city, the Eiffel Tower, Sacre Coeur, The Louvre, you know the sort of touristy things we are talking about. After checking into our hotel we put social media to work and put a call out to our Hookedblog twitter followers for suggestions and must sees in the city. Knowing our love of street art our followers responding in force with some fantastic suggestions.
We would like to thank our followers @LunaPark @HSoteriouWrites @chilledoutco @bablu121 @Ju_liiea for taking time to get back to us with their fantastic #WhenInParis recommendations. Our 24hour adventure was shaped by their suggestions, some of which we managed to check out and others we missed but led to us discovering other hidden city gems.
It would seem that all were in agreement that we had picked the right 24hours to be in town as the annual NuitBlanche festival was taking place that evening. To be honest we had never heard of the annual all-night arts festival before we arrived in Paris but we were right in the middle of it and not about to miss it. With only 24hours in city who needed sleep we thought, Paris was on fire and it felt like New Years Eve in the city with crowds of Parisian enjoying themselves everywhere.
We headed north to Belleville to grab some food at La Cantine de Belleville before checking out some of what was happening for NuitBlanche. The place was super busy with a fantastic atmosphere and from the looks of it we were the only non locals in the place, but this made the experience more enjoyable. Food, wine, desert, coffee, conversation and more wine we somehow managed to spend nearly three hours in this place before we took to the street of Paris.
On leaving the restaurant it became apartment that the Belleville district was also somewhat of a magnet for street art and graffiti and it wasn't long before we were seeing trucks, shutters, paste-ups stencils and stickers featuring some familiar names and some we had not seen before. Horfee, Invader, Jef Aerosol, Vhils, Fred Le Chevalier, Monsieur LeChat, EMA, Kid Acne and more. We wandered the streets for a few hours checking out the art on every corner and taking in the sights and sounds of the city before grabbing some street beers and heading to the Time Out Paris bus, who were throwing a street party! Dancing, music and some Ginger Rum cocktails in a nearby cafe we partied into the early hours of the night crawling back to our hotel just in time for breakfast and check out!
You've read the first part of our #WhenInParis story, now Eurostar want to hear yours! Head over to the Eurostar website and share your Paris stories with them for the chance to win tickets for two to Paris or Brussels! To enter the competition, share you Paris story over on their site here. Good Luck and stay tuned for Part02
Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for additional photos and news.