Weekend in Paris

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Hi folks,

I’m off to Paris for a long weekend this October. I’ve been a few times before so I’m not too fussed about schlepping round the big sights, but I’d love to hear your suggestions for unique museums/exhibitions/shops that would be worth a visit. I’ve heard the Rodin Museum is a lovely spot…

Also ideas for a special meal would be most welcome. Don’t mind if it’s a bit on the expensive side, but I’m not looking for anything too fancy!

Merci beaucoup

Alison Roberts 13/09/13    City tipsFrance Link Report

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I’d definitely recommend the Musee Rodin. I think the main building, the Hotel Biron, is still coming out of major renovations, but it still had an interesting selection of sculpture on display when I was there in the spring. It’s worth going for the gardens alone if it’s sunny, though. If you like modern art, check out the Musee d’Art Moderne and Palais de Tokyo.

I’d also recommend exploring a bit out of the centre. There are some fab Vietnamese restaurants in Belleville, great views from the park and a scruffy hipster bar I liked called Cafe Cheri(e). For shopping, I fell in love with everything in this boutique by the Canal St Martin: http://www.antoineetlili.com.

As for food, being there for budget research, I didn’t splash out too much. If you don’t mind somewhat of an ex-pat vibe, try Frenchie (or their no-reservations wine bar) for a modern mix of French-NYC-Brit ideas in a typically trendy bare-brick etc setting.

Septime gets rave reviews – it’s just been named as one of the world’s top 50 restaurants – but I can’t recommend it personally. Kicking myself that I didn’t make it there!

Have fun!

Eleanor Aldridge 13/09/13    Link Report

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Thanks so much for all your tips Ellie – much appreciated! The menu at Frenchie looks really intriguing – will definitely give it a try if I can get a table. Septime looks all booked up for October sadly, which is odd as they seem to have lots of free days in September…Belleville definitely sounds like it’s worth checking out too – might combine with a visit to Père-Lachaise. Thanks again!

Alison Roberts 16/09/13    Link Report

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Hmm, okay a bit of a challenge this one! It’s been a few years since I was in Paris last so I’m dredging my memory here! Definitely recommend the Musee Rodin though!

Unique sights or museums. I’m assuming you’re familiar with the catacombs and sewers? Well there is a fairground art museum that has a load of old fairground games, props and other stuff, it’s a pretty place and a good way to spend a couple of hours. You have to make reservations to visit though. http://www.arts-forains.com/ There is also the Museum of Eroticism which even made my list here http://bemusedbackpacker.com/2013/05/18/10-of-the-worlds-best-underrated-and-overlooked-museums/

As for nice places to eat we found this AMAZING family run Italian place. It was really small and intimate, only had a few tables and was run by an old Italian/Parisian couple. I’m really sorry I can’t remember the name of it, but it is on the same street as the Hotel Central la Defense which is at 99 rue du Capitaine Guynemer, 92400 Courbevoie, La Defense. The food was nice, but it was the intimate, romantic atmosphere and the friendliness of the old lady/cook/owner/waitress that made it a place to remember for us! Definately worth a visit if it is still there (I hope it is!)

Michael Huxley 13/09/13    Link Report

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Thanks for all your hints and tips Michael – very kind of you. I really like the look of the fairground museum – seems like there’s lots of interesting events going on there too. I don’t know if I’ll make it out as far as La Defense but I’ll give you a shout if I manage to track down the amazing restaurant! Thanks again, Alison

Alison Roberts 16/09/13    Link Report

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Dinky Travels 22/09/13    Link Report

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I had exactly 48 hours and the best people watching spot has to be as above. For an unusual place to visit read the the next post on dinky travels, hope it helps.

Dinky Travels 22/09/13    Link Report

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Thanks Dinky – I’ll take a look

Alison Roberts 24/09/13    Link Report

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It may be a bit expected, but Musee D’Orsay is still my favorite museum in all of Paris. I’m partial to the Van Gogh, Monet, Renoir scene and you can’t beat this collection. It’s also far less crowded than the Louvre in my experience.

If I’m in the mood to escape the bustle of the city, I love Jardin du Palais Royal. It’s central to many city sites but stays quiet amidst the hustle and bustle. Grab a bench and bring a book and you’ll have a lovely afternoon.

Also, have you made it out to Versailles? The palace is a bit ostentatious, but the grounds are marvelous.

The neighborhood of Montmartre is out of the way of most of the major touristy sites, so it’s easy to find a quiet corner cafe. There’s even a small vineyard…

I also like Bercy Village and canal St. Martin for little hang outs.

Hope you enjoy your trip! I’ll be there again in December myself and got excited just writing this. :)

Laura Pucik 24/09/13    Link Report

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Lots of great suggestions here – thanks Laura. Looks like there’s even some sort of wine festival going on at Monmarte’s vineyard around the time I’m visiting! I have to confess I’ve never been to the Musee D’Orsay – it’s about time!
Hope you have a great time in December too. Will let you know if I discover any more “must sees” on my visit.

Cheers,
Alison

Alison Roberts 24/09/13    Link Report

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Ooh wine festival! Now I’m jealous! And yes, Musee D’Orsay is not to be missed.
And definitely do let me know if you find any gems. I’m excited to be going back.
Have a great trip!

Laura Pucik 25/09/13    Link Report

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