How’s everyone doing on this wonderful Monday? I hope you’re all doing fantastic! As for me, I’m recovering from an exhilarating weekend of fun. I had the opportunity to visit Paris over the past weekend, and it was absolutely incredible!

It all began last week when my cousin gave me a call and invited me to join her on a trip to Paris, on her dime. She wanted to take our aunt, who was visiting from Suriname, and without a moment’s hesitation, I eagerly said yes! It was just a one-day excursion, but who could resist such an offer? The last time I visited Paris was way back in 2004 when I attended a Madonna concert, so I didn’t really have the chance to explore the beautiful city then.

We set off for Paris by bus, and as a delightful surprise, my dear mother decided to join us as well! I had no inkling of her plans; I thought it would be just me, my cousins, and my aunt. You can imagine my happiness upon discovering that my mom would be part of the adventure. Both my cousin and my mom had kept it a secret.

Our journey commenced from Rotterdam in the dead of night, at 2:40 am on a Saturday morning. The bus ride was an enduring seven hours – quite a challenge!

We made two stops during the journey, one in Belgium and another in France, about an hour before reaching the heart of Paris. To be honest, the bus ride was far from comfortable; sleep eluded me, and the seats were as hard as a board.

We arrived in Paris around 10 am, and the sight of the historic buildings left me absolutely mesmerized. I was brimming with excitement, and the thrill was palpable as we passed by the Arc de Triomphe and caught a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower in the distance. Upon disembarking from the bus at the Seine, we eagerly set off to explore the city, with our first destination being the Eiffel Tower.

Regrettably, we didn’t ascend the Eiffel Tower; the line was interminable, and we were also on a budget. The entry fee was €15, which was a bit steep for us. Nevertheless, we managed to snap some photos beneath the iconic tower and then embarked on a pleasant stroll along Avenue Pierre Loti, which afforded us a splendid view of the Eiffel Tower.

My fascination with the Eiffel Tower was so overwhelming that it bordered on comical! But who cares? In a foreign city like Paris, no one knows me, so I decided to let loose and enjoy the experience. I even jumped around a bit!

We were fortunate with the weather for most of the day; it was akin to a beautiful summer’s day. However, things took a turn for the worse in the late afternoon. After our visit to the Eiffel Tower, my mom and aunt decided to do some souvenir shopping.

We continued our exploration of the city, and I was utterly captivated by the magnificent old architecture that Paris boasts. It was breathtaking and awe-inspiring.

There were moments when we all needed a breather and took a seat to rest our weary legs, well, except for me. I was filled with boundless energy and enthusiasm, as you can probably tell.

Maybe a tad too much energy, because at one point, I too needed to sit down and take a break. The sun was shining brilliantly, and I was soon perspiring profusely. Nevertheless, there was always time for a quick selfie or two.

While sitting by the Seine and people-watching, I couldn’t help but notice that many locals were incredibly fit. I saw more than a dozen people jogging and exercising, which was quite impressive. I also couldn’t help but notice the plethora of eye-catching individuals – let’s just say the French lads were exceptionally attractive. I didn’t know where to look; it was quite a sight, and I had a lot of fun observing!

At a certain point, my cousin and aunt decided to take an extended break, relaxing by the Seine while my mom, my cousin Marlon, and I continued to explore the Champs-Élysées and visit the Arc de Triomphe. But first, we paid a visit to the Lady Diana memorial at the tunnel where she tragically lost her life in 1997.

We then embarked on our journey to the Champs-Élysées and onward to the Arc de Triomphe. The walk was a bit long, but not too arduous, although my feet were starting to ache. Nonetheless, I pressed on – after all, there was so much to see. We passed by numerous high-end fashion boutiques, the likes of Prada, Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana, Yves-Saint Laurent, and many more.

Finally, we reached the Arc de Triomphe, which was truly a sight to behold. Numerous tourists were there, taking pictures, making it impossible to capture a photo without being photobombed, but I didn’t mind.

After snapping several pictures of the Arc, we retraced our steps to the Seine, where we reunited with my aunt and cousin. We then embarked on an hour-long boat ride on the Seine, and I had the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the Notre Dame as we sailed past it – a truly beautiful sight!

As the boat ride continued, the rain suddenly began to pour down heavily. We were seated on the upper deck, and everyone scrambled downstairs to stay dry – it was quite unfortunate. What’s more, my camera’s battery died at this point, leaving me utterly disappointed. I couldn’t take any more pictures or record any more video footage. It was a real shame, and my phone’s battery was also running low.

When the boat ride concluded, it was growing dark, and at 8 pm, the Eiffel Tower illuminated the night, sparkling with lights every hour. It was a spectacular sight, and I managed to capture a few photos and a video on my iPhone. You can check it out on my Instagram.

The long day of exploring Paris came to an end, and regrettably, I didn’t have the opportunity to visit The Louvre or Sacré-Cœur. However, at that point, I was utterly exhausted, and my focus was on getting some rest. The bus ride back home departed late at night; I can’t recall the exact time as my mind had virtually shut down, and my body felt utterly drained. We arrived back in Rotterdam around 5 am, where my dad was waiting to pick us up.

Upon returning home, I indulged in a long, hot shower and spent a few hours looking through the pictures I had taken. I had an amazing time in Paris, and I’m determined to return soon to explore more of what this beautiful city has to offer. There’s no denying that Paris is one of the most romantic cities in the world, and I absolutely love it!