Neil Barnes – travel blogger

Every other week, Discover Walks will share with some great insight from Travel bloggers from around the world who fell in love with Paris. They will share their favorites addresses and things to do while in Paris. Because genuine advice and stories are so important to us, in addition to our born-and-raised Parisian tour stories, we now bring you real advice from fellow travelers.

Bonjour Neil, can you tell us more about who you are?

So I’m Neil, a 32 (soon to be 33) year old Londoner. Hi!

Why did you start writing backpacksandbunkbeds?

The blog actually started as a series of emails back home during my travels during 2005. Eventually I moved on to blogging via a travel agency site profile, and then in 2010 I took the plunge and set up my very own blog. It’s come quite some way, but essentially it’s primary purpose has always been a diary, that it can help other people with their own travels is a bonus!

Why did you start traveling?

Erm, is boredom an acceptable answer? Before 2005 I’ve lived and studied in the same town, never experiences any kind of travel outside of a 2 week family break or mates week in the sun. I wasn’t hard done by in any way, I was lucky, but by 21 and having finished by degree my feet were well and truly itching and I was ready (desperate) to try something new. On a whim I logged onto the my super slow dial up internet and booked myself a 5 week volunteering sports coaching project in South Africa.

What’s special about your blog?

To be clear, while I love my blog and am quite proud of it, I am also very aware that there are far better writers, photographers, videographers etc out there. To call my blog special might be going a bit over the top (in my modest British opinion), however I think my budget reports are my USP. A lot of blogs tell you how to travel on the cheap, but I do not see many others do detailed cost breakdowns like I do.

What would be your top 3 things to do in Paris?

When last visiting Paris I really loved my visit to Jardin d’Acclimatation, that was a really fun and relaxing afternoon. Walking around Montmarte via Sacré-Cœur was great into to Paris upon my first visit. Food and drink wise, a little pizza place called Pizza Da Vito. While pizza is a massive draw for me anyway, this was a pizza place with a difference, a secret if you will. I don’t want to give it away, so maybe I’ve peaked your interest enough to delve a little deeper yourself.

Your favorite landmark in Paris?

It’s hard to look past the Eiffel Tower isn’t it?  So iconic, and amazing looking when all lit up after dark.

What is your favorite neighborhood in Paris?

For the cobbled streets and tiny galleries I think it has to be Montmarte. I would love to visit and explore Paris further though, I’m sure I could discover up with a new favourite if given the chance :)

Could you give us your recommendation to first timers in Paris?

It may sound (and look) a bit silly, but going on a segway tour was a really fun way to see a large number of the sites and get our bearings at the same time. I get that Segways aren’t for everyone and are viewed as majorly touristy, but the geek in my loves the technology and how much more fun they are than a walking tour.

Thank you so much Neil, keep on enjoying Paris!

Merci beaucoup :-)

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