Spring bliss

Paris in the spring is something of a cliché but it is a great time to visit! 

Spring comes early in the French capital. From late March, the green is bursting open all over the city, on the tree-lined boulevards, on balconies and in the gardens.

Parisians hit the streets and the river banks to enjoy the outdoors.  They squeeze around the tiny café tables on the sunniest terraces or stroll through the beautiful gardens. 

They sit, chat and mingle on the river banks to catch a warm ray and enjoy the spectacular scenery.

There is still a chill in the air and night comes early but after the winter months, who wants to stay inside? 

There is nothing lovelier than sipping a glass of wine or a coffee outside and watching the world pass by, right?

Between the end of March and late April, you can hunt down the cherry blossoms in Paris and immerse yourself under a canopy of fluffy pink flowers in the square behind Notre Dame. 

Less easy to find, there is that secret spot near the Eiffel Tower where everyone goes to take THE photo…

 

If you prefer peace and quiet, the central courtyard of the Petit Palais museum (free) has a magnificently decorated garden and a café where you can sit to admire the palm and the cherry trees.    

 

Hidden from the crowds in the heart of the city, the Palais Royal is where locals go to hang out. They come with their dogs, meet their friends or eat their lunch if they work nearby. It’s the perfect place to head to see the cherry blossoms.  

 

Last but not least, the cherry orchard at Parc de Sceaux is very much worth a visit. Only 3 miles away from Paris and easily accessible, it was created by Le Nôtre, the famous landscape architect of Versailles.   

 

Much less crowded than in Summer, take advantage of the season to see the lavish gardens in full bloom at Versailles. From April the statues are unveiled from their protective winter covers. The palm, orange and citrus trees are lined up outside the Orangerie. The enchanting Musical Fountain Show and Musical Gardens programs starts. A pure delight!

Spring is a busy season in Paris. It is impossible to list all the events. Therefore, here is a short selection:

Share a festive race the day before the Paris Marathon: the Paris Breakfast Run April 13, it will allow you to  discover the monuments that have made Paris: the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, the Pont Alexandre III, followed by an amazing finish beneath the Eiffel Tower!

Marvel at  Toutankhamon , the Treasures of the Pharaoh! From March 23 the exhibition celebrates the centenary of the discovery of the royal tomb by presenting a collection of exceptional masterpieces.  

Experience a unique art and digital exhibition Van Gogh, Starry Night. In a former foundry, a huge, high space. HD projections are accompanied by surround sound to incredible effect. Beware that due to its success, you need to book online well in advance!

Taste the best chocolates ever! Easter in Paris is when all bakeries and chocolatiers throughout the city decorate their shop windows with artful chocolate goodies. Some of them really stand out but all of them are delicious, chocolate has been a tradition in France since 1615 after all!

This is the only the top of the iceberg, contact me for more information about what to do in Paris this Spring!

In conclusion, Paris is always a good idea but it’s divine in the Spring! 

Photos credit: Personal Paris – My little Paris

Fun in the Sun

Summer post 1 personal parisParis gets even better in the summer when the sun doesn’t set until 10 pm, ideal for extending the day with a boat ride or long walks along the river banks at sunset. It’s a great time to explore the Parisian outdoors and to linger on its unusually deserted streets. Here are my best local tips and recommendations. Enjoy!

GO DOWN BY THE RIVER, it’s a must when the weather is hot. You can stroll along the Seine for miles on both sides of the river. A pedestrian zone is stretching from the Musée d’Orsay to the Eiffel Tower and beyond on the Left Bank, and from the Pont Alexandre III to the Bastille on the Right Bank. There you will find countless bars and restaurants for all budgets, sport and leisure activities, from child-friendly climbing walls to floating gardens. Enough to keep the whole family entertained. Jog, rent a bike, join a yoga class, roller blade, or lay back in a deckchair and read a book by the water, just a step away from the Eiffel Tower!

HIT Paris Plages From July 8 to Sept 3 the beach comes to the city with sun umbrellas, deckchairs, palm trees and everything you need to enjoy summer. Situated at 2 main locations: the river banks on both sides, and at La Villette canal basin.

DISCOVER THE GUINGUETTES  Eat, drink, dance in a festive, outdoor atmosphere by the river. Try the Bal de la Marine near the Eiffel Tower or La Javelle with its food trucks, concerts, cultural events and family activities, if you are looking for a cool outdoor hangout out of the beaten path. Check their website for more information.

GO TO A GARDEN  like the posh, hidden from the crowds, Palais Royal or the Tuileries with its terraces, ponds, statues and central vista running down the Grand Axe from the Louvre to the Place de la Concorde. Ideal after an exhausting visit to the museum to refuel and admire the  view on the Eiffel Tower.

ENJOY A PICNIC  Like Parisians do, laze in the shade of the Eiffel Tower at Champs de Mars, in the backyard of the Louvre at the Tuileries (again!) or anywhere along the river while enjoying breathtaking views of the city. 

DRINK ROSE WINE and eat goat cheese like locals do in the summer, not to forget fabulous ice-creams! 

COOL DOWN at the posh Piscine Molitor, an amazing swimming pool, part of a 5-star hotel, spa and restaurant. It will take your breath away and whisk you back to the roaring twenties.

EMBRACE PARIS SUMMER WITH PRE-DINNER DRINKS at one of the many rooftop lounges with eye-catching views of Paris landmarks or at a beautiful terrace. I will give you a whole list.

DANCE ALONG THE RIVER  On hot summer nights the riverbank turns into an open-air dance spot as people of all ages gather. 

BRING THE WHOLE FAMILY TO A TRADITIONAL FUNFAIR at the Tuileries (I know… I love the Tuileries!) the Fête Foraine -from June 24 to August 27- offers spectacular views over Paris with its legendary fairy wheel and attractions, not to forget its cotton candy, pancakes and candy apples!

CATCH A FILM AND SING ON A BIG SCREEN AT AN OUTDOOR CINEMA FESTIVAL while sitting on the grass at nightfall at the Parc de la Villette  -from July 18 to August 18- one of the most popular outdoor film festivals.  Get ready for La La Land July18!

FOR FUN AND FANS like me, Game of Thrones, is coming to Paris with an all-new interactive exhibition. Enter the center of the Seven Kingdoms. and immerse yourself in the world of the cult TV series. From props to sets and never-before-seen content, you will explore recreated sets of famous cities like King’s Landing -from June 1 to Sept 2-  at the Porte de Versailles exhibition Hall.

MARVEL AT AN OUTDOOR SHOW AT NIGHTFALL La Nuit aux Invalides The magnificent Invalides courtyard buildings are transformed into a stunning sound and light show. Watch French history unfold before you in surround sound (rent headsets to hear it in English). Free for kids under 7.  And stay after the show for a night promenade lit by 1000 candles in the amazing Dôme Church! From June 27 to Sept 1

HEAD TO VERSAILLES for the Fountain Night Show, the magnificent gardens  are transformed to offer a stunning visual and musical treat as fountains and groves come alive with colorful and dramatic lighting effects before an amazing fireworks display at nightfall in front of the Grand Canal. Every Saturday from June 16 to mid-September.

Personal Paris summer post events

PARIS BIG SUMMER DATES:

 

June 21  ENJOY A MUSICAL EVENING with the FETE DE LA MUSIQUE. Music will be played everywhere in Paris to celebrate the day of the summer solstice. It’s a large, free, popular event open to all musicians. 

 

June 27  Start of the SUMMER SALES . So if  you time your visit to Paris right you will be able to shop till you drop. Contact me and I will give you my best tips and recommendations.

 

July 14  CELEBRATE BASTILLE DAY -called 14 Juillet in France, with the biggest firework display of the summer launched from the Eiffel Tower and the Jardins du Trocadéro at nightfall. Head out early to grab a spot or climb aboard a beautiful glass-walled boat and enjoy a breathtaking view of the fireworks from the river! The program for the national holiday is packed with events. In the morning the military parade on the Avenue des Champs-Elysées takes place, heading all the way down to Place de la Concorde. Cast your eyes skyward for the military fly-by, always a thrilling spectacle. In the evening, it’s party time with the firemen’s balls held in a number of fire stations all over Paris.

 

July 29  EXPERIENCE THE TOUR DE FRANCE FINISH Experience the excitement and adrenaline rush first hand in Paris; secure yourself a spot on the Champs-Elysées avenue and cheer on the  as they ride in on the final stage of their race!

FALL IN LOVE WITH PARIS! Experience a dinner cruise and the most romantic evening you can imagine with French cuisine and wine and a breathtaking views. Or, rent a boat for a private event and add a touch of glamour to your trip. Paris is amazing from the river, Contact me if you are interested.

 

Creating precious, memorable moments is my business!