We booked the Eurostar to the centre of Paris during one of their sales and managed to get the return journey for £59 each. All children under the age of 4 can travel for free if they are willing to sit on your lap. They currently have a sale on now, so make sure you check out any offers, Eurostar. Also from May they are starting trains to the South of France, so this is definitely something we will look into later on this year.
Our train was departing at 8.31am so we new we needed to stay as close to St Pancras as possible as we didn't want to contend with attempting to travel across London during the peak morning rush to work. I have to say the thought of doing that with the suitcase, pushchair and Eva really wasn't very appealing in the slightest.
We booked to stay at the Premier Inn St Pancras which is a fairly new hotel. http://www.premierinn.com/en/hotel/LONSTP/london-st-pancras. It cost £130 and it was well worth the money. We didn't arrive until 11pm at night (we had to drive from Cardiff to London after work = nightmare) and by this point we were desperate to get a good nights sleep. When we arrived the staff were super friendly and so helpful. They attended to us as you would expect to be attended to staying at a 5 star hotel. They helped us use the self check in machines (very easy) and supplied us with all the information we would need. I honestly haven't come across such nice hotel staff in a long time.
The room itself was perfect. Stupidly I didn't take any of my own pictures (probably due to how late it was) but it does look exactly as it's shown on the website. We booked a double with a cot. The room was quite large which is great when you are traveling with little ones as let's face it, you need all the room you can get as their stuff tends to take over. There was a tv and tea and coffee making facilities (always a bonus!!).
We'd run out of milk for Eva, so Arwyn went downstairs to see if we could get some. Again the staff were attentive and very efficient and got us some free of charge.
The location of the hotel is absolutely perfect for travelling from St Pancras as it is literally on the doorstep. It probably took us about 4 minutes to walk there and that includes walking with the suitcase, pushchair and waiting for the traffic lights. The entrance to the station just so happens to be right infant of the entrance to the Eurostar. It couldn't have been better. We will use this hotel every time we travel on the Eurostar as we were so impressed with the experience and value for money.
The Eurostar is the ideal way to travel especially when you have children. Check in is usually fuss and stress free. The only thing you have to contend with is slight queues. Eva loved the journey. She loved being able to look out of a window (we played eye spy quite a bit). She also loved the fact that she wasn't constrained to such a small area and was able to walk through the cabins when she was getting bored. This is one of the positives of train travel over an aeroplane. We packed the iPad, books and colouring materials also to keep her entertained.
The train we took arrives in the Gare De Nord but you can get one that goes directly to Disneyland. It's normally slightly more expensive to go straight there. We wanted to go to the christmas markets that are at the start of the Champs Elysees. If you are ever looking for a christmas market destination, Paris would be a high recommendation from me. It's simply beautiful and i'm sure there are many others across the whole of Paris.
To sum up we were so happy with how Eva behaved during travelling and would recommend the Eurostar and Premier Inn St Pancras to anyone. We can't wait to use both again.
Have you ever been on the Eurostar? Can you recommend any small products to entertain toddlers? Any recommendations for how best to pack hand luggage for Eva when we fly long haul to Dubai and Australia in April? Let me know by leaving a comment below.
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Love Kerry and Eva xx