Get real Japanese dishes prepared by Japanese cooks in the heart of Paris. Rue Saint Anne is a short walk from the Opera and is the Japantown of Paris.
The central pond of the Luxembourg Garden is where budding sailors and pirates meet to race wooden model ships. A few people bring their own toys, but most rent traditional sail boats from the mysterious man. He appears every spring and disappears as the cold weather sets in.
La Cité de la Musique (the City of Music) is yet another Grand Projet (Great Project) that fits perfectly within France's tradition of building massive state sponsored cultural landmarks. Unless you are tone deaf, you will find something to like at this sprawling complex inaugurated in 1995 and still expanding at the edge of the City of Paris.
There are literally dozens of holes in the walls, caveaux (vaults or burial chambers), minuscule nightclubs and wine bars on rue de la Huchette and rue Mouffetard. Some open overnight to fold the next morning. You do not usually have to look hard to find lights, music and revelers in the Quartier Latin.
Nowadays, jours de marché (market days) mean added hustle and bustle as Parisians fill up on fresh produce, clothes, fashion accessories, and other bits and bobs. And oh yes, catch up on the latest about the quartier...
As the home city for some of the world's best known luxury brands, Paris offers some very expensive shopping opportunities for those used to sophisticated eau de toilette, fine leather satchels or traditional printed silks.
From Abbesses, one the deepest metro stations in Paris, walk up the Butte Montmartre. Along the way, rest at a bench in the small planted garden of Square Jehan-Rictus, as you attempt to decipher “I love you” written in over 300 hundred different languages. Windmills, washing boats and countless impressionist scenes await as you meander towards the mysterious Mist Alley (“Allée des Brouillards”).
The Sacré Coeur Basilica, sitting atop the Montmartre Hill, has one of the best vistas in Paris. It is a bit of a hike up the winding streets and the 222 steps. But you’ll be rewarded by beautiful houses, churches, parks and even a vineyard in Paris! This walk provides opportunities to sample caricatures by the local artists. Who knows, you might even have time to stop for a drink and a show at the Cabaret Le Lapin Agile.
Discover the Paris village of la Butte aux Cailles with its low rise houses and laid back atmosphere. Cobble streets and passageways wind their ways from quiet villas to local restaurants, bakeries, brasseries and family run shops. From small public gardens, to old buildings such as the Romanesque Byzantine Church Sainte Anne, or the Place de la Commune de Paris where the 1871 Paris uprising was fought, history quietly accompanies your steps far from the tourist crowds.
Left bank (rive gauche) or right bank (rive droite) of the Seine River? This long walk (or jog) will take you from the Eiffel Tower across Paris, all the way to the Latin Quarter. Cross bridges to discover imposing palaces, museums and gardens as you discover the riverside of Paris. From the Tuileries gardens, to the National Assembly, rest along the banks as tour boats and stately barges sail by.