When Van and I visit a new city, we like to take some sort of small group tour. Like the time we took the Holocaust tour through Amsterdam, or the belly bursting Taste of Prague tour, or even our small sailing group from Mykonos. We've never been travellers who like to take the big group tours. They seem so impersonal. And while the smaller group tours are more expensive, I think they usually are worth every extra penny!
While in Paris, we decided to do something a little out of the ordinary. Still a small group tour, actually, the smallest group we had ever had....just Van and I. While searching for tours in Paris, I came across Cedric's CV Tours, which had outstanding reviews. So I emailed the company and booked us in for the night tour. The tour would be conducted from a vintage Citroen CV complete with a bottle of champagne for Van and and I to share throughout the 2 hour tour!
Cedric met us at a predetermined bar since we were slightly out of the center zones of Paris (we stayed in Montmartre). Unfortunately, the main tour car, Laura, was sick that night and Cedric had to get her backup, Louise, in shape before picking us up to begin. Of course, we weren't bothered by the change! Actually, I think it really opened us up for the tour...Van was a mile a minute with questions about the car and what kind of engine, blah blah blah....man talk.
|Cedric and "Laura"|
So after we got settled into the car, we took off for our tour of Paris at night. And let me tell you, Paris is a stunner at night. Everything is lit up and just absolutely sparkles. The tour took us past the most famous sights in Paris and some not so famous. I was so happy we booked this tour because as I was sick, it was the perfect way to see the sights-not walking and cozied up in a car!
We stopped in front of Palais Garnier which was buzzing with opera patrons ready for the show. It was gorgeous and made me wish that I had booked us in for a ballet performance, or really anything! Cedric explained to us that there is actually a "lake"(basically a reservoir) underneath the structure. If I had ever been a Phantom of the Opera fan, I may have known this, but as I am not this was news to me! Cedric is a firefighter by day and said that they actually have some underwater training for firefighters here....Interesting!
We kept on driving through Paris. Seriously, writing this now, it feels like it was straight out of a movie. Do you ever have those moments when you are thinking about your travels and you think...wow, that really happened. I really was there!! Amazing. Ok, anyway, we hit up a few more sights and learned a little history at each....including, the Vendome Column (which is being refurbished), the Louvre and the Bibliotheque Mazarine.
Our goal was to make it to the Eiffel Tower for the light display, which kicks off on the hour, every hour. On the way, Cedric took us to a very well preserved medieval like area in Paris. Rue Chanoinesse, I believe, was the street we went down. Being in our tiny little car we were able to make it down the tiny little streets. I think that is what is missing in Paris for me....the tiny windy streets that you don't mind getting lost in. Sure, Montmartre does have a bit of that but not like many other European cities that I love.
Anyway, we passed Notre Dame and headed towards the Eiffel. We passed so many things and learned so much.
And then we made it to the Eiffel. I was so excited because we hadn't made by the landmark yet due to my mystery illness and I was hoping it would be a romantic occasion. Well.....there is hoping and then there is reality. As soon as we stopped, Van asked Cedric to 'pop the hood' on the car....he had to get a look at the engine. What?! Oh, Van. Get it together. Geesh.
Just look at these two.....ruining my dream romantic moment :)
How do you capture the Eiffel Tower? It's hard. Selfies are even harder (selfie stick would be key here). But no matter what, it is a stunner. I loved just standing there and taking it all in. sparkly light show and all.
Such a beauty...
Other places we visited were Les Invalides, Champs Elysees, Arc du Triomphe, Grand Palais and Petit Palais and many more. We even drove through the 12 way roundabout around the Arc du Triomphe. Score!
I love this Place de la Concorde trifecta....the Luxor Obelisk, the Fountain and the Eiffel Tower. Le Sigh.
After the amazing night, Cedric dropped us off at our apartment and we said our goodbyes. I think there was a little bit of a bromance brewing on MY date night. Haha! The tour was just what we needed on this adventure in Paris. Cedric speaks perfect English...I actually thought he was American when we first met! But alas, he is a very handsome French firefighter. So this little tour is perfect for a date night (the men will love the car) and even for a girls night!
If you are looking for a tour with some sparkle and fizz, you have found it here with Cedric's Paris. He even offers other day time tours that I would love to return and take. And get ready to feel like a celebrity....people will be snapping pictures of you cruising down the street in this sweet little ride. And if you are wondering, we paid full price for the tour....no advertising here....we just loved this tour and you need to take it!!
Thanks Cedric for a fab night in Paris :)
Linking up with Treasure Tromp for Treat Yo'self Thursday