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A PASSION FOR PARIS

The favorite city of romantics, the City of Light always fires up our imagination.

 

 

As Charles Dickens once wrote, “What an immense impression Paris made upon me. It is the most extraordinary place in the world!” That pretty much sums up how we feel about Paris, too.

 

 

Once there, it’s easy to see why travelers from all over the world flock to Paris. Not only is it where you can find the Louvre, the Eiffel, Notre Dame, macarons and those famous Parisian flea markets, but everything about Paris seems chic and intriguing, and it IS a city to fall in love with.

 

 

WHERE TO SIGHTSEE: 

I’ll admit, every major landmark attraction in Paris is worth a visit, but you probably need to narrow down your list of “must sees.” My current two favorites:

 

 

The Palace of Versailles.

Visiting Versailles is worth taking a whole day for.  Not only is the palace gorgeous, with the Hall of Mirrors, Kings Apartments, the Grand Chandeliers, and so much more, the gardens are the most beautiful in Paris.  Book a private tour guide which will show you the best areas in the palace sans crowds, and you can skip every line!

 

 

Be sure to go outside to the gardens after this. There are bikes {or golf carts} you can rent to help you tour the garden, because it is huge!  There are a few restaurants dotted around the garden and by the lake, so you can eat there too.

 

 

Arc De Triomphe:

I love the Arc De Triomphe, you can see the city from above. Often overlooked, It’s stunning both in the daytime and the evening when the lights twinkle.

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP: Everywhere! Okay, just kidding.

Aside from the famous Paris flea markets, Clignancourt and Vanves. there are lots of other little flea markets and beautiful vintage shops. But they can be pricey. Very pricey.

My favorite “secret market” is actually the Marché d’Aligre, a farmers market with a flea market in the center of it {you knew it had to have antiques in there somewhere, right?} that’s open Tuesday through Sunday until the early afternoon.

 

 

A traditional farmer’s market, French style, with fine produce vendors sandwiched between flower stands. This is where Parisians shop for their daily fresh produce, and it’s a joy just to wander around and drink in all the Frenchness of it! There are brick and mortar shops around the perimeter that sell olive oil, sausages, cheeses, wine and so much more that you could shop there every day and have a different meal each time.

 

 

 

The flea market, is somewhat of a “hit or miss” as far as fabulous finds go, but the price, when you do spy that one piece you love enough to carry home, is extremely affordable! {this is where a lot of the dealers in the tonier flea markets shop.}

 

WHERE TO EAT:

Paris has so many classic brasseries and bistros, that it is difficult to choose just one.

 

 

I love the little places in Montmartre, Le Progres is a favorite. It has great wine, delicious food, huge windows, a retro vintage interior, and a authentic Parisian atmosphere.  Order the cheese board and a glass of wine, and you will happily talk and relax a la Parisian! It’s on a bustling corner near the Sacré-Cœur, you will love people watching from here.

One of our favorite memories we have is of the first time we sat and watched in amazement as Parisians “parked” their cars in this crowded area where parking is at a premium. {read=impossible to find!} They simply “bump” the car in front of them over a few meters with their own car and repeat with the car behind them until there is a parking space big enough for their own car.

 

 

 

WHERE TO WALK:

The Seine:

The Seine River flows right through the heart of Paris, and a walk along it’s beautiful banks captures the very essence of Paris. I love to walk by all the small book stalls along the Seine, you can find antique, vintage and new books, as well as gorgeous prints, sometimes paintings there. It’s very hard not to buy every single thing that catches your eye.

 

 

 

The Luxembourg Gardens.

The place where Parisians relax, and take their children to sail their pond racers, the gardens are a refreshing respite in the middle of the day, or any time.  They do serve drinks at little stalls {another memory of the world’s tiniest coca-cola bottles my girls wanted because they were dying, dying of thirst. They cost $10. each!}

 


 

WHERE TO TAKE PHOTOS:

Montmarte.

Montmartre is basically a large hill in the 18th arrondissement, Montmartre has been the favorite of the some of the most famous creatives of the early 20th century, like Renoir, Degas, Van Gogh, Monet and Picasso.

 

 

You can still see a thriving art scene, as well as hidden gems such as vintage shops, patisseries, and incredible places to snap your photos.  The Sacre Coeur is there, and endless walkways, stairways and more, each more beautiful than the next!

I hope you are able to visit Paris, and take in all the beauty and inspiration.

And if not, don’t worry – I’ve shopped the markets and antique shops for you!

 

 

à bientôt

 

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13 Responses to A PASSION FOR PARIS

  1. I feel like a just took a mini tour! I always love your photos,Lidy, but the wine and cheeseboard are calling me for lunch today!

  2. Thanks for this fab info, Lidy! We are visiting Paris in October and cannot wait – my first time visiting! Best, Karen @figandscallion

  3. Versailles is on my list….and the Luxembourg garden was truly amazing….we ate at a quaint bistro within walking distance…I cannot wait to go back there…not enough time spent in the City of Lights….

  4. It’s all glorious , isn’t it Shirley? I love everything else about Paris too!

  5. Paris never gets old for me! We have been a handful of times, but have not really explored Versailles or Montmartre, so I think it’s time to g back!

  6. Oh mon Cher , Lidy!
    Thank you thank you thank you for lifting my heart and soul this morning! M

  7. Oh Mary, so happy to have you join me in my love for Paris!! Happy morning to you, dear friend. xoxo

  8. Best pictures and info I’ve ever seen on visiting Paris. Now I’m salivating and emailing my friend your post and asking to go there with her and her husband on our next foray. Yes, we will shop. Thanks for this gorgeous post.

  9. Went to Paris 3 times with my sister in law. She had been in the Foreign Service as a young 20 something year old with Paris being her first assignment. She lived in the Montmartre area so it was quite a walk down memory lane for her when we travelled there about 15 years ago. She walked with a cane and so it was slow going. So we savored it a little more than most tourists. She has passed so the memories of our trips hold more meaning. I loved Paris!!!!

  10. Oh Donna! What sweet memories you made with your dear sister-in-law. I am sorry she has passed, and I’m sure you miss her, but so happy you got to make such wonderful trips together.

    I am sure you ladies had a blast!

    xoxo

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