Sightseeing tour: 10am
My favorite and most iconic site of the day: The Moulin Rouge
Day 2 started with a rather relaxed morning, despite an early alarm I fell quickly back to sleep and gave myself some time to sleep in. I knew that this day would be full, and I would need a lot of energy.
There is a lot to see in Paris. From the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Notre Dame, the Latin Quarter to Moulin Rouge. Much more is available. It is all spread out and to see all the sights by walking is possible but it is a big task. We opted to purchase a 24 hour ticket for the ‘City Sightseeing’ bus tour (others are available too). This meant we could hop on and hop off the bus at any of the main sights, explore each area without completely exhausting ourselves out.
We started the day with energy we walked from the Eiffel Tower, past the Les Invalides (the old army hospital), crossed the river and made our way towards the Lourve Museum. This was about 2.5 miles and took us the best part of 30 minutes. It was a long walk, and looking back now – I don’t know why we did this. But it was a good option to get some of that Parisian air.
After spending some time outside the Louvre, taking some photos we hopped on the tour bus. This took us back towards Paris center, through the Latin Quarter – by Notre Dame. It took us back towards the Eiffel Tower before heading out towards the Palais Royal area. We then switched buses, to hop another route taking us outside of the center and towards the Moulin Rouge.
The best thing about these tours are the flexibility they offer. You can hop on and hop off at any stop. You can choose what to explore and you can stay on the bus for as long as you like. The latter point was great for me, as I began to feel tired during the afternoon, the bus meant we could ride through Paris and see the sights without having to move a muscle. Is that lazy?
During the tour, and for lunch we grabbed a McDonalds – not your typical Parisian cuisine but we wanted something quick and I also wanted something that I knew I could eat to minimize the risk of urgently needing the bathroom. I have to admit, toilet options were very few and far in between.
We made day 2 our exploration day. We wanted this trip to give us a break and a chance to relax, which is exactly what we did with the remainder of our time. Travelling with a chronic illness is all about compromise – there is no reason for you to not get adventurous and you should explore the sights. But making sure you have plenty of time to rest up is very important to.
Once we hopped off the bus tour, at our final stop we made our way back to the hotel for approx. 4pm. Disclaimer: I napped for 2 hours. It was needed.
As I woke, it was beginning to go dark out and the Eiffel tower was close to lighting up. We showered, got changed, made ourselves up and headed out for our evening meal.
Tips for making a city break work with a chronic illness:
- Use a sightseeing bus (where possible)
- Try to dedicate 1 or 2 days to sightseeing (again, where possible)
- Remember to rest – a city break is meant to be a break for you
- Plan a route – think about what sites you want to see
- Stay hydrated and use well known restaurant chains for bathroom breaks (they are usually pretty clean, in the grand scheme of things)
Here are a few of my favorite photos snapped on day 2📸: