My mother and I are nonetheless buzzing from our Paris journey final week — it was her second time visiting since she lived there 4 many years in the past, and the town was even lovelier than she’d remembered. Right here’s a recap of the place we stayed, ate and walked in case you’re planning a visit (or simply wanderlusting, as one does), and naturally please add your insights within the feedback…
My mother arrived barely later within the week, so for the primary few days, my buddy Claire and her eight-year-old daughter Elle had been my journey companions. We rented a two-bedroom within the Marais, with picket beams and massive home windows. Our place was splurgy, however it’s also possible to discover fairly spots within the space for lower than $175/evening, together with a beautiful walk-up, a sunny flat and a comfy studio; or you possibly can hire a personal room in somebody’s house — like this and this — which I’ve executed a number of instances earlier than, together with in San Francisco this previous December and it has at all times labored out nicely. (Simply ensure to test for constructive critiques!)
The primary day, we took a looooong lovely stroll alone the Seine. Paris is such a stunning metropolis, it’s such a deal with to only ramble and soak it up. We additionally went to the Tuileries, the place Elle jumped on the cool in-ground trampolines (and I started recognizing Rivedroite baggage, haha).
At evening, we had dinner with Claire’s good buddy Cassi, who has lived in Paris for many years. She introduced us to Le Sq. Trousseau, a neighborhood bistro proper throughout from a small park. We sat right down to radishes and butter on the desk, then shared escargots and cheeseburgers with comté. We performed tic tac toe on the brown paper tablecloth when the youngsters obtained stressed, however everybody was thrilled when the chocolate mousse arrived — it was decadently wealthy but by some means gentle?
The subsequent day, we wandered across the Marais, which has nice boutiques, together with Papier Tigre, St. James, Ailleurs, Bonton, Rendez-Vous, and — one neighborhood over — Landline. The dependable crowdpleaser is Merci, a three-story boutique with garments, dwelling decor, magnificence, and items. How cool are the fruit and vegetable candles? In addition they had sizzling canine candles and grapes cleaning soap (should you, like me, get weirdly delighted by food-shaped issues).
We then strolled over to L’As Du Fallafel. Their signature sandwich — silky eggplant and crispy falafel with cucumber, cabbage, and tomato tucked right into a heat pita, then doused with tahini — has a cult following; the road took 20 minutes however was value it. That stated, some CoJ readers and David Lebovitz insist that Maoz and Miznon are even higher, however we didn’t have time to test, so possibly we must always all return and do a style check. #falafelwars
The Marais is vigorous and enjoyable and buzzy, and we had a good time.
After a pair days, my mother arrived!!! We moved to a three-bedroom house throughout the river, within the sixth. (Different fairly spots within the space: an enthralling studio, a candy rooftop house, and a well-reviewed personal room.) The household who lived there had youngsters, so the house was crammed with board video games, toys, books and magazines, which is at all times a deal with. The constructing additionally had a terrifyingly small elevator, which, for sure, I didn’t take.
(Nonetheless, it was not as small because the elevator final time I went!!!)
My mother was shockingly not drained regardless of not with the ability to sleep on the in a single day flight, so we headed to the Luxembourg Gardens, one of the crucial magical locations in Paris. You may chill out on inexperienced chairs across the fountain and take heed to folks chatting and birds chirping and really feel the solar in your face.
Elle rented a ship to push round with a stick (if it floats farther into the fountain, you simply anticipate the wind to push it again), and I beloved this picture of preteen boys subsequent to very-much-an-eight-year-old!
That evening, we handled ourselves to an old-school connoisseur French dinner at Allard, full with a mustardy cucumber salad, crusty bread and butter, frog legs, and duck with inexperienced olives. VERY scrumptious.
One bonus of touring with a bit of woman is having somebody who’s equally enthusiastic about lipsticks and reminds you to reapply!
The subsequent day, my mother and I walked a couple of blocks to…
…the Musée Rodin, the place we noticed the well-known Kiss and, in fact, the Thinker. I beloved what Rodin stated about him: “What makes my Thinker suppose is that he thinks not solely together with his mind, together with his knitted forehead, his distended nostrils and compressed lips, however with each muscle of his arms, again, and legs, together with his clenched fist and gripping toes.” The toes! Watch out, they might break your coronary heart.
Since one among the very best elements of journeys is typically doing nothing, one evening we had a picnic dinner at dwelling and watched The Fugitive, which is such a enjoyable thriller. (As Lindy West stated — unironically — in her good guide Shit Truly, “Objectively, there’s just one good film, and it’s The Fugitive.”)
However one restaurant we reserved manner forward of time: Mokonuts, a gem of a spot within the eleventh, run by a pair with two daughters. They’re open just for lunch as a result of they head dwelling at 5 p.m. to be with their children — “whereas this could be uncommon in New York or Los Angeles, it’s radical in Paris,” says the NYTimes. The meal was seasonal, imaginative and completely pleasant — the one greatest chunk we had in Paris (all of us agreed) was the labneh above, with olive oil, za’atar and lettuce, with comfortable bread.
On our final morning, my mother and I walked to the legendary cheese store, Barthélemy. Run by Nicole Barthélemy — a cheesemonger from a protracted line of cheesemongers — the shop smells gloriously pungent and options cheeses of all shapes, milks and sizes. You would possibly as nicely spin in a circle and level; you possibly can’t go flawed.
Our remaining evening, we took a ship journey with Inexperienced River Cruises, which had been advisable by CoJ readers (thanks!). We introduced cheese and bread and grapes, and so they served chilly white wine, and we embarked down the Seine previous Notre Dame and Jardin des Plantes and the Eiffel Tower. What a technique to finish the journey. My mother was in heaven, and the night — and entire week — felt like a present.
Since I at all times love seeing what folks carry dwelling from holidays, right here was my haul, haha. (Pasta blocks and a child’s costume from Bonton, a toddler’s striped sweater from Petit Bateau, cleaning soap from Merci, a mug and baguette pens from Marin Montagut, candies from Alain Ducasse, and little toys from Landline.)
A couple of different Paris spots we love, however aren’t pictured: Chez Janou for SUCH a enjoyable dinner spot (make a reservation over the cellphone or present up earlier than they open at 7 p.m.); Benchy for very cool sandwiches; Dreamin Man for good espresso and a laid-back scene; Free Persephone for great massages and manicure/pedicures; the Bourse de Commerce-Pinault Assortment for paintings; and the long-lasting sights just like the Louvre, Musée D’Orsay and Eiffel Tower.
Thanks a lot for studying! I promise I’ll cease speaking about Paris now lol. Please share your recs under, should you’d like…