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[EUROPE 2015] Amsterdam – Paris Day 4 (Part 1): Thalys Train (Amsterdam-Paris) / Hotel ibis Paris Gare du Nord TGV / Luxembourg Gardens / Angelina Cafe / Church of Saint-Sulpice / Patrick Roger Chocolate Paris

We bid our farewells to our Airbnb houseboat and Amsterdam as we were off to the next leg of our Europe trip! As usual, I left a small souvenir for our Airbnb host to thank them for their hospitality!(:

Bye Amsterdam Houseboat!

The struggle is REAL to get out of the houseboat with all our luggages though HAHHAHA!

1,2,3,4 and 5 luggages were carried out by Wx and his brother up. It was fortunate we had guys on the trip or it would be a real struggle!

Amsterdam to Paris

Lugged our luggages towards Amsterdam Central. The route was already so familiar to us having gone past the same route for the last 4 days but this was for the last time

We took the Thalys high speed train from Amsterdam Central station to Paris Gare Du Nord station. This is the fastest/comfortable and more expensive option compared to the regional train (8 hours 30 mins!) – but with limited time to spare; it was worth it.

Tickets were bought at least 2-3 months in advance as I tried to grab the best deals and good timeslots lol. Train ride is approximately 3.5 hours for your reference.

We went through immigration first and it was very swift and smooth. Relatively lax compared to airport security but perhaps security has been tightened since our last trip in 2015 (:

Thalys First Class

For this leg of the trip, we bought the Thalys first class tickets (comfort 1) as prices were comparable to the second class tickets when I booked in advance. Plus it includes a meal if the train ride is over 45 minutes.

First class was a plush and comfy affair – quiet with loads of legroom! Seat configuration is 2+1 per row!

We were served drinks and light snacks (1 each per person) to start off our journey to Paris!

Selfies onboard cos we were bored!

There were only 2 lunch choices if I recall right. Doesnt it kinda remind you of airplane food (with a little class)? Tastewise was very average though.

Chocolate snack to end off the meal!

The scenery was lovely as we sped past the rest of the Netherlands.

Until it started to reach France/Paris and it got kinda meh.

Hello Paris!

Our first sight of Paris were these graffiti walls. Not too impressed especially coming from a beautiful and clean place like Amsterdam!

Gare Du Nord Station

Got off the train at Gare Du Nord station!

There was absolutely no security or immigration as you step out the ticket gates. We were like huh?! as you are free to walk out of the station immediately after you get off the train. Not sure if this has changed since then as my trip was in 2015!

Just to share..please be careful when you are the station as it is pretty seedy. If any girls were to head to the toilet there, make sure she doesn’t go alone. There are alot of suspicious looking people around the area and the sense of safety isn’t very high even with the police officers patrolling around. It gets worst at night.. In general, stick with your group and keep your belongings safe.

Hotel ibis Paris Gare du Nord TGV

Anyway, was not able find an Airbnb that was walking distance to Gare du Nord station so I settled on booking a nearby hotel – Hotel ibis Paris Gare du Nord TGV which was a mere 2 minute walk away from the station. It was lucky our hotel is so close to the station so we could quickly walk back to safety at night

We took 2 rooms where Wx and I shared a double room while the 3 of them shared a triple room with a double bed and single (2+1)!

Here’s the lift at the hotel with the smallest passenger capacity I’ve ever seen (even by Hong Kong/Japan standards!) = max of 2 pax!!

Lol it was way ridiculous so we rather take the stairs everyday instead!

The hotel corridor’s – messy as they were doing cleaning that day!

Entrance to our room with a swipe card slot!

More photos of our room below! It’s very clean and basic but has everything we need for a good night’s rest!(: Price is very reasonable at 450 euros for 2 rooms and 3 nights too!

TV, plush hotel bed, mirror, work station, luggage area.

This was the only leg of the Europe trip where we had our own private bathroom. Awesome to not share 1 bathroom amongst 5 people like our houseboat hahaha! Toilet is clean and comes with towels, a showerhead and basic toiletries/amenities too! It is small but not an issue for us (Japan is even smaller!).

Moving on to the triple room shared by Wx’s mom/sister and brother! The room is much bigger as you can tell with a double bed and a separate single bed. They have a big closet/room to place their luggage and the toilet comes with a bathtub! Not baddd!

Overall, pleased with our stay at ibis Paris Gare du Nord TGV!(:

Gare du Nord to Catacombs of Paris

Headed back to Gare Du Nord station once again to take the RER train to our next destination. Paris is relatively easy to navigate and you can plan your train journey in advance(:

Bought a carnet package of 10 Ticket t+ (single trip tickets) at 15 euros from the GREEN or BLUE ticket machines (avoid the YELLOW).

Then we were looking out for the RER station (Line B). Just follow the signs!

Walking through #likeaboss

We took the Line RER B to Paris Denfert Rochereau, a 20 mins ride away to reach our destination.

The plan was to visit the Catacombs of Paris (10 euros per person + 5 euros for audio guide), a 2km walk (45 – 60 minutes, no toilet). We expected a queue of 1-3 hours+ to get in AND it really was that long a wait – too ridiculous!! Didn’t buy tickets in advance as I wasn’t sure if we could make it in time but oh well. At least I snapped a photo outside the Catacombs

Since I already anticipated a wait, I already had an alternative plan in mind just in case. So we headed back to the station to take the train to Luxembourg Gardens (1 train station away) instead!

Luxembourg Gardens / Jardin du Luxembourg

Luxembourg Gardens aka Jardin du Luxembourg is a beautiful 17th century garden/park where you can find many locals relaxing and chilling at! It’s quite a big park and we took some time to stroll, breathe in the fresh air and snap photos all around.

Here’s the map of Luxembourg Gardens as seen below! The plan was to view the Fontaine Medicis and Palais du Luxembourg before heading to Musee du Luxemborg where you can find the famous Angelina Cafe to pick up some hot chocolate and Pain au Chocolat.

Loads of statues and greenery all around to snap photos of and admire.

After walking around for abit, we spotted the Luxembourg palace with a HUGE fountain in front of it!

Many Parisians were dragging random chairs and seated all around the grounds. Not a sight you would commonly see in Singapore!

Kids rented or brought their own sailboats to play as well!

More photos of the Luxembourg Palace! Not sure if it is open to visitors but we didn’t go in anyway.

All the other statues and random photos taken around the garden grounds!

Angelina Cafe @ Luxembourg Gardens

Eventually we found Angelina Cafe tucked at one corner of Luxembourg Gardens!

For your reference, here’s the menu at Angelina (2015). Must tries are the hot chocolate and chocolate au pain.

Similar to Laudree, Angelina also sells macarons!

Unfortunately they ran out of chocolate au pain/hot chocolate so I made do with trying their macarons instead – salted caramel and vanilla! The macaroons were superb – havent tried anything better (even Laudree!)!

We exited from the other end of Luxembourg Garden and proceeded to make our way to Mabillion Metro Station which was a 10-15 minutes walk away!

Church of Saint-Sulpice

Along the way, we passed by the Church of Saint-Sulpice, a church made popular thanks to the movie – The Da Vinci Code!

Patrick Roger Chocolate Paris

We also passed by a Patrick Roger chocolate shop – apparently one of the best chocolate you can find in Paris!

The chocolates were delicious and we bought a few boxes home as souvenirs!

Random photos that I took along the way to the station!

Will be splitting this into 2 posts as the 2nd post is EXTREMELY photo intensive! So stay tuned for the Part 2 of Paris Day 4 coming soon!

Don’t forget to stay tuned to my blog / like my blog’s Facebook page / follow me @mitsueki on Twitter & Instagram for the latest updates!

Till later,
♥ mitsueki

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Author: mitsueki

Hello! I'm mitsueki aka Daphne and I blog at mitsueki.sg! Follow me on IG for more updates too!

7 Comments on “[EUROPE 2015] Amsterdam – Paris Day 4 (Part 1): Thalys Train (Amsterdam-Paris) / Hotel ibis Paris Gare du Nord TGV / Luxembourg Gardens / Angelina Cafe / Church of Saint-Sulpice / Patrick Roger Chocolate Paris

  1. Hello, thanks for sharing this great blog. May I please check if the Paris Gard Du Nord station is luggage friendly? Is there any escalator or lifts at the stations for bulky luggage? 🙂

    1. Hellp G! Unfortunately I don’t really recall cos this was 3 years ago but am pretty sure there are escalators and lifts around! Don’t rmb struggling with the stairs (:

      1. Thank you for your reply! How is the area around the hotel? A friend told me that the neighborhood around the train stn/ hotel is a kind of dodgy.. do u recommend staying for female solo travel? Thanks!!

        1. yes i agree that the area ard the train station is VERY dodgy especially at night. i was out with a group so it wasn’t that bad but if you are a solo female traveller, do be wary and don’t stay out too late. i dont have that solo travel experience before in Paris so i can’t really advice you. however, the hotel IS very near to the station (especially for Hotel ibis) so the convenience can’t be beaten. just be careful(:

  2. Hi! Just curious, when buying the 10 Ticket t+, what is the different between getting it from the green, blue, or yellow machine?
    and why did you recommend not buying it from the yellow one?

    Thanks! Such helpful post about the Thalys experience 🙂

    1. Hello! Oh dear..I really don’t recall why I recommended the yellow one as this trip happened back in 2015 (4 years ago) sorry I can’t help in that but I hope the other posts helped regardless! Have fun in Europe 🙂

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