Finally booked my flight and starting my world travels ($600 roundtrip from NYC!). I am a young female traveler and will be solo, flying to Paris for 8 nights in late September. I am all about doing my research and love to plan, but I don't even know where to start - I definitely need some help getting started. Here are some things to keep in mind, I'd love advice:
1. I don't speak French. I am excited to learn a little bit, but I'm not confident I'm going to have a great grasp on anything before I go. Any resources or ideas on this are appreciated. I've heard it's not that important (not in the disrespectful sense, I just hear that it's definitely 'doable'). I am a smart girl though, and I tend to be intuitive and wouldn't travel alone if I wasn't confident I won't have many problems.
2. I fly into Paris, am there 8 nights, alone. Very excited about being alone and can definitely entertain myself, however, I am super social as well. I look forward to meeting as many people as possible, whether locals or tourist. I of course would rather err on the side of caution though. Curious how careful I should be when it comes to meeting and hanging out with men, if I should avoid it at all.
3. I am on a budget - not college kid, but I would like to be thrifty. I have no idea where to stay, I'm thinking I'll likely do Airbnb or something similar (staying with a friendly local in a room sounds ideal). I don't need any luxuries at all as far as where I sleep, just a comfortable and safe place, I don't plan to be in the room except for sleeping. I will take location over everything else, I'd rather be able to do things at night, walk around, and be safe. Also I love to walk - I have no problem putting in 10+ miles a day.
4. My focus will be wine/food/nature. Want to hit the museums but not a huge museum junkie, I get bored easily (sorry). I do LOVE to be outdoors, I love the nightlife, and I love to be around the water. I plan on being a walking freakin' cliche - hanging by the Eiffel Tower, river, eating pain au chocolat, drinking tons of red wine, enjoying the sights and sounds.
5. I'd love to do an overnight trip since I'm there 8 nights - feel like I shouldn't spend every night in Paris. I love the idea of Burgundy and wine country. I've heard to take trains to Beaune or Dijon? I don't want to rent any car while I'm there - so how should I go about making an overnight wine trip to this region? Again, I don't know anything or where to start - I'd love to know where to stay, if I should do a tour, if I can get everywhere by trains, etc. Tours sound like they may be an expensive option.
6. Also can't decide if I should go to Lyon or Versailles, heard both.
7. I'd love to be out at night, not late partying, but lots of wine and conversation. What's the best and safest way to go about this in Paris?
Hopefully I'm giving enough information. I'll take any advice I can - I think my next step is to figure out an itinerary for the whole trip, and then book places to stay. Next will be how to get around.
ANY help is super appreciated. I don't even know where to start, I'm so overwhelmed. But I'm incredibly excited. Apologies for the incredibly lengthy post.
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Paris, 8 nights in September, first time to Europe, alone - young female