Packing For London and Paris: How to do it all in a carry on

What’s up!   Long time no talk! I have a fun post for today.  The hubs and I have been planning a trip to London and Paris for about 8 months and we are a week and a half away from leaving!  Anyone who knows me, remembers what happened last time I packed for a big trip.  It was my honeymoon, 2 weeks in Italy from Lake Como to the Amalfi coast during October.  I packed it all in a carry on.  You heard me, ONE CARRY ON BAG FOR TWO WEEKS IN ITALY IN THE FALL.  It was insane and I was literally packed 4 months ahead of time because I am a crazy person.  Because of this, I have had a bunch of people ask me to help them pack and figure out what to wear for trips.  Since this is my first big trip since the Honeymoon I thought I would share some tips with you all.  So here we go!

First I should let you know the itinerary and the coordinating outfits I picked to go along with it.

Friday: Fly out of Chicago to London on an Overnight Flight (wear leggings and comfy top)

Saturday: Arrive in London at 8:25 am. Land, check into the hotel, change clothes, eat and then head to the British Museum from there, go to the British Library for the rest of the afternoon.  Then dinner at the Thirsty Bear (a burger pub).

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Sunday: Tower of London to see the crown jewels, do a beefeater tour then go to the Temple Church and possibly see Buckingham Palace after that.  Then dinner with friends that evening.

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Monday: Visit Westminster Abbey and Churchill War Rooms. Then see the National Gallery and Trafalgar Square followed by dinner with another friend.


Tuesday: Get up early and go to St. Pauls Cathedral and climb the Dome.  Then head to the train station for Paris! Then spend the evening in Paris.

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Wednesday: Walk to the Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysees then walk to the Musee L’Orangerie, grab a bite to eat then head to the Louvre then finish at O Chateau for a Tour de France wine tasting with cheese and charcuterie.

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Thursday: Leave the hotel early and begin at the Orsay Museum then walk over to the Rodin Museum.  After that, walk to the Army Museum and take a tour.  Then walk along the Rue Cler and have a tour at the Eiffel Tower followed by dinner near the Eiffel Tower

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Friday: Do the Rick Steves Audiotour of Historic Paris and see Notre Dame, Archeological crypt, Deportation Memorial, Latin Quarter, Sainte Chappelle and the Conciergerie.  End at the Pont Neuf bridge.  Take a Siene River Cruise then walk along the left bank and have dinner.

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Saturday: Versailles all day and then dinner in Paris

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Sunday: Walk around the Montmartre area and see the Sacre Couer and the Moulin Rouge.  Then hang out around town and eventually find a spot to watch then end of the tour de france on the Champs Elysee.

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Monday: Fly Home 😦

So here is everything I am bringing:


Let me tell you how I did it, there are a few essentials you need to do this.

Travel Steamer

Great Carry On

Lightweight Fabric Tote

Compression Bags

Flight 001 Underwear size SpacePak

Now see how the magic happened:

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Everywhere you go, there you are

I have always had a traveler’s heart.  I just never really travelled.  Like REALLY travelled.  I had been places, I had seen things, I lived in New york for a hot minute, I moved to Chicago after school but I really hadn’t been anywhere in Europe or out of the country. During our honeymoon in Italy.  I got bit by the travel bug.  Once you have a taste of it you can’t stop! I even learned how to pack for two weeks in Italy with one carry-on suitcase.  IMG_2108

For the next few years, I really want to get all of the travel out of me.  There are places in America that I really want to visit and then there are places around the world that I really want to go. So here is the master list of where I want to go in the next 3 to 4 years:

1.) San Francisco and Napa:

Spectacular San Francisco Famous Downtown Land...

English: Nappa Scar Hamlet

I am going to go with my mom at the end of this month and I can’t wait because I have always wanted to go there.  I hear that San Francisco is a little like Chicago.  It’s a big city on the water, it’s definitely my kind of town.  We are going to go see the Redwoods in Muir woods and take a day trip to Napa.  I cannot wait!

2.) Paris: 

Paris Exposition: Champ de Mars and Eiffel Tow...

I want to stay in St. Germain, and eat pastries and drink coffee.  I want to walk along the Seine and see the Moulin Rouge and try all of the different French wines.  The Winged Victory in the Louvre has always been something I really wanted to see. But mainly, I just want to walk around Paris and find things to love about it.  I seriously can’t wait to see the Eiffel Tower, I want to take a photo of it and hang it up in our place.  It has been one of the things I have always wanted to photograph.

3.) Hawaii:Hawaii

Hawaii looks like one of the most beautiful and romantic places on Earth. My Grandparents honeymooned there in the 60’s, my parents renewed their vows there, my husband went for a few weeks to visit a friend, essentially everyone has been there but me.  Luckily, we have friends who live there or who have a home there so the possibility of us being able to go is pretty high.  I definitely want to try surfing, and if there is anywhere that I would do outdoorsy things it would be Hawaii.  I would totally go on a hike there!

4.) Munich/ Berlin/ Prague:Reichstag building seen from the west, before ...

My sister-in-law lives in Munich and I have always wanted to see Germany.  I love places with a lot of history and Germany obviously has an abundance of it.  I have also always wanted to see the Christmas Market there and have German hot chocolate. I am crossing my fingers that we get to go in the winter time on year!

5.) Istanbul:

English: Ortaköy Mosque, along the Bosphorus, ...

Turkish delight, the Haija Sophia,the Blue Mosque,  the Grand Bazaar, I love the exotic feeling of a place like this.  Good friends of ours went their for their honeymoon and ever since they have come back, I have been fascinated with the place.  It just seems like such an adventure.

More places I would LOVE to see:

  • Ireland
  • Moscow and St. Petersburg
  • India
  • Africa
  • Martha’s Vineyard
  • New Zealand
  • Spain
  • Denver
  • Peru
  • Boston
  • French Countryside/Riviera

If you could go anywhere, where would you go?