During our honeymoon in 2018, we spent a very quick 24 hours in Paris. While there was so much we enjoyed, there is a lot that we would like to do-over, and hope to visit the city again with more time and less pressure. Below is a look at what we were able to do, as well as what we would like to do in the future:
We left St. Pancras International Station at 10:30 a.m. on the Eurostar headed to Paris! The journey is a little over two hours, extremely enjoyable and easy. We left all of our luggage besides our carry-ons at the Excess Baggage Company for 40 pounds to avoid lugging them all over Paris, which was definitely the way to go.
After reaching the city, we checked in to the Hotel Louvre Saint-Honore, which is within walking distance to the Musee du Louvre. After quickly dropping off our bags, we spent the rest of the day exploring the Louvre until it closed. We barely scratched the surface, but every recommendation you’ve read to avoid getting up close to the Mona Lisa are true.
The next morning, we were up brightly and early to head to a place I had dreamed about my entire life: the Louis Vuitton flagship store on the Champs Elysses. The experience in the this two-story, stunning store was better than I could have ever imagined. A review on the bag and wallet that I purchased will be coming soon, but I will cherish both pieces for the rest of my life.
After our shopping trip, we walked over to lunch at Laduree. The menu was fantastic, on top of the macaroon sampler that we partook in. The restaurant is beautiful and should definitely be one of your stops.
After lunch, we made the walk over the Seine to the Tower Eiffel. Since the tower was under construction, we just snapped a few pics and were on our way. After a quick Uber ride back to our hotel, we picked up our bags and headed back to the station to head to London.
In February 2018, we went on our belated honeymoon to visit the two places I had dreamed about my entire life: London and Paris. After months of planning and research, we spent a total of eight days traveling, exploring and admiring these two incredible cities. Below is a look at what we did, what we loved, and what we want to do the next time we’re in my favorite city of London:
Day 1: We finally made it!
After traveling for over 24 hours from DFW to JFK, we finally landed at Heathrow. We took the Heathrow Express into the city for 44 pounds and after getting very quickly accustomed to the Tube, we got off at Victoria Station and walked to our first hotel, The Rubens at the Palace. The hotel was fantastic and I would HIGHLY recommend. With a great location, fabulous view of the Royal Mews and the friendliest staff, you will not go wrong with a stay at The Rubens. We dropped off our bags, stumbled over in a delirium to the Shake Shack in Nova Victoria (our first Shake Shack experience and it was everything we ever dreamed of), then went back and collapsed into a blissful slumber until the morning.
Day 2: Tower of London
We woke up bright and early to start our day and had breakfast at Sourced Market. I still dream of the custard muffin and mocha I had for two mornings in a row. Tyler and I also heard Leon Bridges’ “Home” as we sat and planned our day, officially stamping our seal of approval forever. We then went and got in line to be the first people into the Tower of London, and were actually able to see the Crown Jewels twice since we raced over there first. After exploring all the Tower has to offer, we then hopped on the train from London Euston to Watford Junction, then grabbed an Uber from the station to head to the Warner Brothers Studio Tour.
Easily our favorite part of the trip, the Warner Bros. Studio Tour – The Making of Harry Potter, was worth every penny. We loved every minute, the true Harry Potter fanatics that we are, and would pay to go all over again, even with it being our most expensive and touristy outing on the trip. We ate a quick lunch at the cafe inside, which was actually quite good, and then took photos and bought souvenirs to our hearts’ content.
We finished the evening off after getting back into the city at the British Museum, as the museum stays open later on Fridays. Another must on our list, the museum is absolutely incredible and has so much more to offer than the few hours that were able to wander through it. We then capped off our crazy yet amazing day with dinner at Steak & Lobster.
If I’m honest, I think touring Windsor Castle may have actually been my favorite part of the trip. After traveling from Paddington Station to Windsor & Eton Central (then back via Slough to Paddington), we stepped off into the beautiful Windsor Royal Station then hopped across the street to the castle. We learned so much, the Queen was at Windsor that day so the flags were flying proudly, and we were able to tour St. George’s Chapel only a few months before the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were married there, (and we also walked over the grave of King Henry VIII in the chapel aisle and I almost passed out from excitement). We then stopped into Jo Malone on our way back into the station and bought one of my two treasured souvenirs, a Peony & Blush Suede fragrance that reminds me of our trip every time I wear it, then headed back into the city to explore. We walked past Buckingham Palace, then went on to Knightsbridge to stop in to Harrods, grabbed a quick coffee, then drooled over the McLaren showroom. Headed back towards our hotel, we had dinner Sticks’n’Sushi, then finished off our evening at Vagabond people watching and trying many a different wine.
Day 4 and Day 5: PARIS! Stay tuned for Saturday’s post. 🙂
Day 6: Kensington Palace & Tea @ Sketch
After arriving back in London on the evening of our fifth day, we checked in to The Queen’s Gate Hotel in Kensington to try out a different part of the city. After dropping off our bags, we had an amazing dinner of fish & chips, a pint for Tyler and a Granny Smith cocktail for me, topped off with splitting a sticky toffee pudding and a cheesecake for dessert at Bumpkin. The next morning, we set off for our tour of Kensington Palace, where we once again learned so much on our tour, then went downstairs to see the beautiful, and quite emotional, exhibit dedicated to Princess Diana. After that, we went to Sketch, where we spent the entire afternoon at our Tea with Bubbles reservation, drinking champagne and copious amounts of delicious tea, while eating ourselves sick along the way. Another experience that was completely worth the money, but be prepared to book well in advance and to pay a pretty penny.
Day 7/8: Back home we go!
After getting ourselves and our bags on the Tube to Gatwick, we sit down for burgers at Jamie Oliver’s Diner in the airport and wait to head back to JFK, where we then stay for a few hours in a hotel in NYC, then back to La Guardia at the crack of dawn to head back to Texas.
Ah, Dallas, Texas. The yin to Fort Worth’s yang. (Pro Tip: Do not confuse the two with a Texan, especially someone from the DFW area. Familiarize yourself accordingly.) Dallas has always been the Big-Big City in my mind, representing big nights out to a concert, sporting event or shopping for that special something. It is beautiful, never short of anything to do or see and, of course, iconic. The below just scratches the surface, but I have lots of Dallasite friends who can help me fill in the dots with any questions you may have.
My husband Tyler and I moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in May of 2019 to pursue an awesome promotion opportunity for his career. Thankfully, one of my best friends is from Memphis born and raised, so she, her husband and their families have helped us transition and feel loved and welcomed in such an amazing way. The friends that they have introduced us to are ones that we know we will have as life-long relationships, as well as the friends we have made at work. With that being said, the way that we have bonded with all these new people in our lives has been through the best things to do in Memphis (and anywhere, for that matter): eat and drink!
When planning a trip to Memphis, always refer to I Love Memphis, Choose 901 and Cara Greenstein’s @caramelized Instagram and blog for the latest and greatest information!
Below are some of my favorites, as well as new places that we want to try and experience (placing a star besides the restaurants I think you HAVE to try on a long weekend getaway to Memphis):