Paris is the city of love. People may ask themselves, why the city of love? Because Paris is beautiful, inspiring, nostalgic, attractive, and mysterious and any person that visits the city will be drawn to fall in love: fall in love all over again, fall in love for the first time, fall in love with the city, fall in love with possibility, fall in love with your soulmate, your friend, your kids or yourself. We've put together some ideas to make the most of your trip and where to stay in Paris with our favorite hotels.
To stroll around its cobblestone streets, visit one of its many beautiful parks, or museums or take a walk by the Seine River is an experience that is not quickly forgotten.
Paris is an important cultural center of Europe; it is home to some of the most important artwork in the world.
It is the fashion capital of Europe and is also one of the most important economic centers in the European Union. The population of the greater Paris region is more than 10 million people. The city is laid out into 20 quarters (arrondissements) and each quarter has its own identity and makes the city feel like a series of small villages coming together. It is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world. However, it still retains some of the charm that makes smaller cities so appealing to travellers. Visitors will find Parisians love going out for Sunday lazy brunches and visiting local markets. On the other hand during the weekdays you can feel the rush of a major city.
What to see in Paris
There are so many things to do in Paris that travelers should devote a significant time of their travels to get to know this amazing city. Take a stroll across the Pont- Neuf where the view from the top of this bridge is hard to beat! To one side you can see the Ile de la Cite and to the other side the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. Take a moonlight stroll along the banks of the Seine River. The monuments light up and it’s like walking in a fairytale, without a doubt one of the most romantic walks anyone can experience.
Visit one of Paris’ many farmer’s market across the city. Soak in the tradition of visiting these covered and open air markets that go back centuries. Rub elbows with Parisians and breathe in real city life by plunging into these rowdy places and buying some of the local fresh foods. Fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses, and other goodies abound. Be aware of local rules of “etiquette” and avoid touching the food as vendors prefer to select it themselves.
No visit to Paris is complete without enjoying a coffee at a sidewalk café at sunset.
Parisians meet up after work to enjoy a drink and chat about their days at work. Side walk cafes are an important part of Paris’ social scene.
Writers, philosophers, thinkers and revolutionaries have enjoyed passionate discussions in these cafes and now Parisians have made this tradition their own and it’s a very important tradition in their social life and you will be part of it!
Paris, being the fashion mecca of Europe, is an incredible place for people that love to go shopping. The Champs Elyses is filled with flagship stores from the most important designers. However, if you love fancy shopping of high fashion brands or don’t mind just window shopping head over to the area known as Fauburg St-Honore. This area’s tradition with the city’s wealthy dates back to centuries ago. Today the rue du Fauburg St-Honore is host to such brands as Hermes, Dior, Chanel, Gaultier, Louis Vuitton and chic brands. Do not forget to bring your cash!
A visit to Paris is not complete without a visit to a ballet or an opera.
There are two main stages for these performances the majestic Opera Garnier or the modern version the Opera Bastille. The Opera Garnier is home to the Paris Opera Ballet one of the best of its kind in the world. The Opera Bastille is France’s largest opera house and has both opera and symphony performances in four concert halls. Dress up as Parisians do to visit the opera.
Every person that visits Paris should take advantage of the magnificent museums this city offers. Travelers have many museums to choose from but the one’s that we are recommending are: Louvre Museum, no visit to Paris is complete without a visit to the smiling lady (Monalisa), The Orsay Museum
that hosts breathtaking impressionist art work, and the Rodin Museum that is home to sculpture’s genius Rodin. Our personal favorite and some might not think of it as a museum but we love a visit to the Versailles castle. Try to spend a summer day at its gardens!
Of course every traveler that visits Paris for the first time should visit the Tour Eiffel. We have all seen it in pictures and know how it looks, but that doesn’t beat its splendour in person. Take pictures at sunset, at night, with your love, by yourself! These photos will bring great memories of your first visit to the City of Love.
Paris – Parks
For its 105 km2 area, Paris’ offers a lot of parks. They are well maintained and people looking to run, boat, walk or cycle will not be disappointed. Our favorites are: Parc de la Villette (offers films at its lawn during the summer), Jardin de Touilleries (offers its visitors one of the nicest strolls in the city especially in the summer where the rue Rivoli ends), Jardin de Luxembourg which is a must for visitors with kids who will enjoy its pony rides, ice cream stands, puppets shows, metal swingboat and the merry go around.
Best places to stay in Paris
Paris is divided into beautiful districts, each one with its own personality. Here we have summed up the best neighborhoods and what to see in our favorite places of Paris.
This area has one of the city’s most emblematic churches the Sacre Coeur. When you visit take in the view of the city from above
, take pictures and then get away from the crowds and wander around this very special neighborhood. Its cafes, winding lanes and windmills make it a great neighborhood to spend an afternoon exploring.
The Ile d’ Saint Louis
This quiet, small island beside the Notre Dame church is one of my favorite areas in the city. I enjoy strolling along its streets, an ice cream and window shopping at its stores. It has so much charm and is one of the best spots to enjoy Notre Dame’s grandeur.
The Latin Quarter
Head over to the Latin Quarter and stay away from the crowds on rue de la Huchette, stroll around the streets of its historic student quarter near the universities on Rue Erasme. Visit the delightful food shops on Rue Mouffetard and the beautiful Jardin des Plantes.
This is an area that has a vibrant student life.
St. Germain-des- Pres Quarter
It has a lively artsy atmosphere. There is a wide array of art galleries, antique shops and some of the city’s best small art museums.
Its charming streets, bakeries, patisseries, wine shops and cafes make this an absolute paradise for travellers that enjoy food, shopping, and coffee. Two of the most famous cafes in the city are located in St. Germain the Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots
Belleville Arrondissement 19 & 20
Belleville could be considered the hipster mecca in Paris. It is a working class neighborhood home to different ethnic communities. This part of the city has become the spot for aspiring artists and entrepreneurs. Prices are a bit lower than in other spots, the food selection is outstanding and there are lots of small, interesting shops in the area. It is well worth a visit to see how Paris is evolving from old world traditions and artistic masterpieces to the trends of modern times.
Where to stay in Paris
Hotel Mandarin Oriental Paris
This upscale luxury hotel is located just 2 blocks away from the Tuilleries Garden
and 1.3 km away from the Louvre museum. All of its rooms are finely appointed with flat-screen TVs, high-end linen and Nespresso machines. All of the rooms have street, garden or free city views and offer free Wi-Fi. Some of the higher end rooms have terraces or balconies and their contemporary suites have separate living areas. Travellers that want to dine on premises can visit their gourmet restaurant, or the French eatery and for dessert-lovers there is a cake shop right at the hotel. The spa is spectacular and offers beauty treatments, as well as massages in private suites. If you are looking to stay in shape, the Mandarin Oriental in Paris offers an indoor lap pool and fitness centre.
Shangri - La Hotel Paris
This luxury hotel is the former home of the Bonaparte family and is set amid historical sites in the 16th
arrondisement. Travelers staying here are within easy walking distance of the Palais du Tokyo art museum. Rooms feature marble bathrooms with heated floors, minibar, tea and coffee- making equipment and flat screen TV’s. The more luxurious suites offer balconies or terraces and views of the Eiffel Tower.
Amenities include upscale French restaurant, casual eatery, refined Cantonese dining and a cocktail bar. The hotel features and indoor pool, gym and treatment rooms.
Adagio City Hotel
The Adagio City Aparthotel is a modern, efficient, well-run “aparthotel.” Although not all of the rooms offer the same views, some of the rooms in this hotel have beautiful views of the Eiffel Tower. Each room includes a kitchenette area which makes this hotel feel like an apartment. It is a great option for travelers visiting the city on a longer term basis or on a tighter budget. Staff is great.
Close to supermarket and shopping area.
Plaza Athenee Paris
This hotel is one of the city’s most legendary and luxuries hotels.
It is located an easy 7-minute walk from Avenue des Champs-Élysées. Their deluxe rooms feature flat screen TV’s, and multiple pillow options. Add-ons include extra bedrooms, dining areas, kitchens, balconies with Eiffel Tower views etc. For dining options there are 4 restaurants in the hotel; including one featuring cheff Alain Ducasse, a seasonal courtyard, and a cocktail lounge. The hotel’s amenities are limousine service, meeting spaces and a grand ballroom. Travelers that choose to stay at the Plaza Athenee will be treated like royalty and probably will be surrounded by royalty. Make sure you have your iphone ready for it!
Powers Hotel- Paris
Location, location, location!
This hotel is located just a block away from the Avenue des Champs-Élysées and an easy stroll to the Arc de Triomphe. Travelers staying in this hotel are an easy walk from many of the touristic destinations in the city. Its well-appointed rooms feature flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi and some of them have balconies and whirlpool tubs. Breakfast is offered at an additional charge. The hotel offers its guests a sauna and a bar!
Hilton Paris Opera
This luxurious hotel is located in the Champs- Elysees district.
It is within a walking distance from the Palais Garnier opera house. All of its rooms have a fabulous decor and offer custom- designed beds, flat-screen TVs, and minibar and coffeemaking facilities. If you wish to upgrade your stay separate living areas are offered for some rooms as well as private-lounge access and breakfast and evening appetizers. Room service is available in the hotel. Amenities in the hotel include a “happening” bar, an upscale brasserie, a fitness room, 12 meeting rooms and a 24 hour business center. Both leisure and business travelers will enjoy their stay at this well established hotel in a great location.
What to see outside Paris
We always like to recommend a visit to the surroundings of our top destinations. In this case, if you have an extra day, visit the Versailles Palace. It's a stunning palace with gorgeous gardens that will take you back in time to the days of royalty and majesty.
Wander.io will be available for booking your hotels in Paris in the fall of 2016. With your hotel reservation at competitive prices you will be able to help the social cause close to your heart, at no extra cost.