My traveling schedule is pretty cool – it keeps me running, literally from one trip to the next one. From a blogging perspective however I tend to run behind my travel posts. Sometimes as late as a month – like in this case! I spent a summer weekend in Paris mid June and believe it or not, while you’re reading these lines I am in – you guessed right – Paris! If you want that instant travel feeling, come over to Instagram to follow along. Here on the blog I have prepared five travel tips for a summer trip to Paris – so if you happen to plan a visit of the French capital, you might want to bookmark some of these tips (admittedly most of these can be done at any other season too…apart from tip number five I guess LOL). Here we go!
1. Brunch at Flat Iron
Paris is Paris but Paris has a special relationship with New York City. Or is it the Parisian who have that relationship? Supposedly, Parisians can not imagine to live anywhere else but in Paris. That is apart from New York City. The Big Apple seems to exert an irresistible attraction to Parisians so it comes as no surprise that a slim corner building in the 10th arrondissement carries the name ‘Flat Iron’ and serves delicious brunch in a very Parisian atmosphere. After all, they can’t escape their impeccable bistrot atmosphere! Go and enjoy!
2. Inspiring walk at Rue Sainte Marthe
Walk off the brunch calories right there in the 10th arrondissement by descending the charming and colourful Rue Sainte Marthe. This street is typical Parisian with white washed facades and colourful shop fronts. Take in the Paris atmosphere and don’t forget to snap an Instagram pic there – it seems to be the ideal place! Oh and at the end of the street (coming from the restaurant’s direction) you will see a building with a trompe-l’oeil facade with painted windows. Very fun!
3. Cactus shopping at Les Succulents Cactus
Trust me, a plant is a better souvenir than yet another plastic Eiffel tower key chain! My favorites are succulents or cacti sourced in the various cities and countries that I visit. Now Paris is not in the desert nor on the Mediterranean, but if you like the prickly plants you will love the small boutique ‘Les Succulents Cactus’ in the 3rd arrondissement. This boutique is run by a charming lady and cactus expert and has been in the hear of Paris for more than 10 years. And it is so so hip right now – it was packed with people buying cacti and succulents when I was there. Of course I bought one too – this one. Happy shopping! Oh and after shopping just stop over at the Marché des Enfants Rouges, a tiny market with excellent food places to have bite or two. By the way, just around the corner you will also see the famous Statue of Liberty from NYC in its smaller Parisian version. After all she is a real Parisian and here we go again with that magic Paris-NYC liaison.
4. Get lost in the Villas de la Mouzaïa
The word ‘villa’ has a sort of double meaning in French. You will often spot small streets named ‘villa’, which refers to narrow alleys flanked by small houses with tiny gardens thus creating a sort of village feeling. The ‘Villas de la Mouzaïa’ can be found in the 19th arrondissement just above the famous Parc des Buttes-Chaumont (metro stop Botzaris) and here Paris looks so different from the usual look with broad boulevards and impressive and representative buildings. Here you can feel that this part used to be way out of Paris and got incorporated in the metropolis later yet managed to preserve its countryside feeling thanks to the villas. Just roam around and get lost!
5. Soak up the sun in the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
The famous Parc des Buttes-Chaumont in the 19th arrondissement is green, hilly, beautiful and pretty hip these days. It is one of the largest parks of Paris and features grottoes, waterfalls, a little lake and even an island. Moreover, it is the getaway destination on sunny days for the neighboring arrondissements and it hosts a very popular bar named ‘Rosa Bonheur’ attracting a very colourful crowd. On a sunny weekend do not expect to go there and relax in divine tranquility. Instead expect lots of people watching, flamboyant guys, good drinks and loads of fun. Dare it!
Happy summer weekend & keep cool!
Photography by Igor Josifovic