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When you think of this “City of Lights”, you think of romance, arts, delicious French Cuisine, and for some – it’s the place to fall in love. While many might say the city is “overrated”. Well, I think the city is very well lives up to its reputation. It’s one of a kind city.
Paris, as many of us know, is full of attractions – the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, and Notre Dame are just a few examples. Sure, when we travel, we want to see the most talked about destinations but what funny is most of the times, we are mesmerized by the lesser known, hidden spots.
The fact is there is so much to see that sometimes visitors tend to overlook these great details about Paris – the places, which in my case, made my top 3 best Paris experience.
You can be a fast traveler, but the truth is one simply can’t visit Paris in one day. Museums such as the Louvre and Musee D’Orsay can easily takes a day to enjoy. True, most visitors do go to these museums, but the “go” they’re talking about is to just take pictures from the outside.
Believe it or not, this is actually a pretty common mistake. First and foremost, the point of these wonderful museums is for everyone to see the world class arts – from up close. However, if you happen to have a time constraint and able to be in the city for only a couple of days, try this: go to the Louvre if you have a deep interest in arts reflecting in Medieval, Roman, and Renaissance history.
Also home to the world-renowned Mona Lisa painting, the Louvre contain more than 35,000 works which means you might want to start prioritizing which ones you really love to see from the rest.
On the other side of the Seine, Musée D’Orsay, a train station turned museum, covers the whole spectrums of arts from Impressionisms, Neoclassical, Art Nouveau, Naturalism, photography, cinematography, to urban planning and more. If you are a big fan of Monet’s paintings, this might just be your heaven.
Being a lovely artistic area outside the Paris’s center, Montmartre is home to the beautiful basilica, Sacré-Cœur. This is where one of my best Paris pictures was taken – it was on the steps in front of this stunning place on a sunny day.
To get there, take a metro to Abbesses station and walk alone Rue Yvonne le Tac and Rue Tardieu, then walk up its steep steps. Please note that this is not the closest route but it gives you a chance to appreciate Montmartre and its surroundings.
Interested in having your portrait drawn by a local painter? Look for an artist who actually has the works showcased in their own shop and pay more for the painting, instead of letting a passerby asked to paint your picture for 30-40 euros (or more!) because you will simply end up paying ridiculous amount of money for a drawing that your 8 years old niece could probably do a better job at.
Paris Dinner Cruise
Though many guidebooks suggest a Paris architectural cruise as part of the day time sightseeing, I, on the other hand, think the Paris dinner cruise has everyone’s heart. The cruise we took was run by Bateaux Parisiens. They offer different types of tour, though the Paris Illuminations is the one not to be missed.
What is a better way to see Paris at night than to hop on board of a glass-encased boat, sampling traditional French Cuisine, listening to live music while this gorgeous city is just outside the window? At approximately 8:30 pm, the cruise departed the dock near the Eiffel Tower. From there, it will pass Les Invalides, La Cathédrale Notre-Dame, L’Hotel de Ville – just to name a few.
This is truly an amazing way to see Paris transform from day to night. As the matter of fact, Bateaux Parisiens’s dinner cruise was my best Paris experience. My suggestion: take the cruise, and you will dicover why this metropolis is nicknamed the “city of light”.
Other notable places worth visiting: Place des Vosges, Jardin du Luxembourg, and Latin Quarter.