Leading up to this trip, I gave myself a crash course in Paris and French. I listened to Coffee Break French every day I drove in the car. I read David Leibovitz's book "The Sweet Life in Paris." (Note: I JUST realized David did a book signing at La Cuisine on Bastille Day when we were in Paris. Two thumbs down for not checking his blog while we were abroad.) I studied maps and researched restaurants. I prepared my digestive system for croissants, wine and cheese. I collected blogs about the city. I bought a great pair of walking shoes.
We stayed at an apartment on quai aux fleurs which overlooked the Seine. At night, we'd open the floor to ceiling windows, let the cool breeze in and watch the boats float by. The accommodations were quite possibly my favorite part of the trip.
Our first few days there were spend exploring on foot. We saw Notre Dame, the Louvre, and the Eiffel Tower. We at croissants, macarons, street crepes, and a few three-course, fixed price meals from menus we didn't wholly understand. And wine. There was a lot of wine.
On the third day we were there, we visited Le Marché des Enfants Rouge, which is an open-air food market, and one of the oldest in Paris. We picked up cheese, vegetables, bread, eggs and yogurt so we could make some of our own meals.
We were lucky enough to experience Bastille Day in France. We even got to see fireworks over the Eiffel Tower!
... Part II: French book market, Pompidou, river tour.