Now that you’ve discovered all the historical, and more touristy parts of Paris in Part I, it’s time to start relaxing and immersing yourself into in the French culture and Parisian lifestyle.
Day trip outside of Paris:
Château de Versailles – Located just 13 miles southwest of Paris is one of the most massive displays of wealth in French history: Château de Versailles. Once home to famous French royalty Louis XIV & Marie Antoinette, the colossal estate is now a well-known attraction that gives its guests plenty to do. First time visitors can’t miss exploring the château, and seeing the spectacular display that is the Hall of Mirrors. However, if you’re looking to relax like the locals, layout a blanket and have a picnic somewhere on 1,976 acres that the estates gardens cover.
Monet’s Garden in Giverny – If you want a break from the bustle of Paris, I suggest heading to the countryside, and visiting picturesque home of famous French painter, Claude Monet. As a large inspiration for a majority of his painting in his later life, and his famous Water Lilies collection, the giant gardens and lily ponds attract thousands of visitors each year during its seven month season.
Where to Find the Best Food:
Le Mouff’tôt Mouff’tard – Located on Rue Moffetard in the Latin Quarter, Le Mouff’tôt Mouff’tard is one of the best restaurants to eat a traditional French three-course meal for a reasonable price. A favorite among locals and tourists alike, the small restaurant is always a buzz with laughter, chatter and people enjoying their delicious meals. I highly suggest trying the escargot, and French onion soup.
Oroyona Crêperie – If you have a sweet tooth after dinner, some of the best reasonably-priced crêpes in Paris are just a short walk from Le Mouff’tôt Mouff’tard. Oroyona is characterized by its teal, hole-in-the-wall exterior, and walk up window where you can watch as they make your a take-away crêpe. I suggest trying the Nutella, and strawberry crêpe.
Where to Dance You’re Whole Night Away:
Le Batofar – A restaurant by day, this floating establishment turns into one of the most popping clubs by night. In typical Parisian club fashion, cover is a bit pricey (14€), but the cocktails and service are impeccable. Hanging out at the bar to admire the views of the Seine, or head to the lower-deck to dance your evening away to any the local acts that play in the venue nightly.
Where Parisian Hang Out:
Jardins du Luxembourg – Located just down the street from majority university Institute de Catholique de Paris and the Sorbonne University, these gardens hold a special place in Parisian hearts. Between the lush lawns to sunbath on, museum with numerous impressionist expositions, and fountains in front of the beautiful Luxembourg Palace, there is plenty to keep locals entertained.
Basically any cafe – In Paris, cafes are considered cornerstone in the Parisian lifestyle. Whether you are meeting with a friend for a cocktail, need a bite to eat, or just want enjoy an espresso while people watching from the patio, a local cafe in your arrondissement (district) is the best place to do all these things. Also it’s one of the most Parisian things you can do while visiting.
Now that you’ve discovered some history through sight seeing, tasted some delicious french cuisine, and celebrated your time in Paris at a nightclub or cafe, you can call yourself an “unofficial Parisian.”