After we left Sweden, we wanted to have a break before heading to Brittany for a few weeks. A bit like a buffer, where we could realize what happened to us but also what’s coming next. We’ve had a few options on where we should go, and Paris happened to be the “easiest” one. We could easily fly there from Stockholm and then hit the road to reach Brittany. Of course, with the current Covid situation we were not sure if visiting Paris would be worth it. We decided to give it a try, and here are our thoughts on this short gateway in the French capital!
** Please keep in mind that we’ve been visiting Paris at the end of September/early October, therefore before the latest lockdown announcement.**
Before writing this article, Erikas and I have been discussing the question, and we’ve had quite different views on the topic. Of course, we went there at the same time, but we’ve had different feelings in given situations. The overall feeling for me (Héloïse), was quite positive. We were there to relax and do all kinds of touristy things. If this is also the purpose of your trip, then you might identify yourself below.
Visiting Paris when there is nobody else around, is awesome. There are no tourists, therefore no queues. We got to go on top of the Eiffel tower, and while climbing up the stairs, we have not seen anyone else. No queues either at the elevator (to go up or down), and no pushing to see the view. It was also super easy to keep the social distance from one another.
On a less touristy note, we enjoyed walking around, stopping anywhere to take photos without being disturbed by a crowd. There was also no need for us to book anything in advance. You want to get some dinner, just head to the restaurant and a table will be there for you. And we’re not gonna lie, but when there are fewer people around the customer service is overall better! We’ve had (almost) only good experiences, whether it was in restaurants, hotels, or in various attractions/points of interest.
While this is what I (want to) keep in mind, and I tend to think that the positive overwrites the negative, there are, obviously, some negative points to traveling in the middle of a pandemic. Here below, we are listing some of our thoughts on this. But please note that we have been there only for a few days – therefore you might experience something different based on the place you’re visiting and/or the length of your stay!
Visiting Paris in 2020 also comes with its new set of rules and regulations. Coming from Sweden, where many things are not applicable, this has been the most difficult to adjust to. Mostly because we are not used to it and so we need to learn and remember all these new rules. I have no idea how many times we’ve asked each other “do you have your mask?”… While we fully understand and follow these rules, it took away a bit of the pleasure of traveling.
The next thing we wanted to mention here is that the city does not feel alive. For me, Paris has always been a buzzing city, with a ton of things going on, a lot of people around and so much to see and do at a crazy pace. During this stay, we discovered a sleepy town, where some areas remind of a ghost town. As much as we know the situation is not favorable to travel, we found it sad to see a city like this. This goes without saying that there are a lot fewer exhibitions and other cultural events to attend.
Overall, traveling (pre-lockdown) and during this pandemic, has its pros and cons. I believe we all prefer traveling “as it was before” but while this is just not yet possible, we have tried to make the most of our trip to the city of lights. Supporting locals in this type of travel and gateways is also important and while not everything was opened, we could still visit and explore around.
⇒ We hope you have enjoyed this short article! And please let us know what are your thoughts on this topic? Do you think that visiting Paris (or another city) in 2020 is worth it?
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