High points? Don't miss experiences?


Apr 30th, 2000, 02:11 PM
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High points? Don't miss experiences?

Will be in Paris for 1 week at the end of June. We are overwhelmed with all there is to see and do. What SPECIAL experiences do you recommend to truly get a glimpse of the people, culture, daily lives, local restaurants? We have already seen the major tourist attractions on a previous trip, but we missed all the daily life, outdoors, and insider's insights. Thank you!
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May 1st, 2000, 01:07 PM
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Head for the neighborhoods less traveled: the 12th, 13th, 14th, 16th, 17th and 20th. Skip the first-tier museums and sights and go for the smaller museums (Jay-Cognac, e.g.) and churches (like Ste Germaine Auxerrois or St Denis). Bird market on Sundays; street markets like rue Mouffetard; check the Paris calendar for street fairs, carnivals, etc..

What are your interests? Gardening - the Jardin des Plantes. Coin collecting - Musee de Monnaie. Government - tour the Assemble Nationale. Murder and mayhem - the Crime Museum. The Arab Institute is beautiful, you can even take a steam. Go shopping at the BHV or Tati.

For restaurants, get out of the tourist areas and look for menus in French, no English translation. You'll find more of these in the neighborhoods mentioned above than in the lower-numbered arrondissements; make sure you have a dictionary with you so you know what you're ordering, 'cause the waitstaff might not speak English.

Go shopping at Samaritaine in the housewares department; visit the Bois de Boulogne or Vincennes and rent a bicycle.
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May 1st, 2000, 03:53 PM
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Sandy, we happened to be in Paris last year during the museum workers strike, so we spent a great deal of time just walking around the city and visiting the parks. Jardin du Luxembourg was close to our hotel and a nice way to spend an afternoon among Parisians. Many activities, lots of families, beautiful setting. My husband is an avid chess player, so he observed some games for a while and then politely challenged some of the locals who were playing in the park. They were very friendly and happy to have a new player. We spent the afternoon talking and laughing with them.

Elvira's suggestion is a good one. Follow your interests and go from there.
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May 9th, 2000, 04:55 PM
Sherry Hill
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My husband and our two young adult sons (20's) were in Paris for the Easter holidays this year. We are Episcopalians and went to church at the American Episcopal Church on Avenue George V. It is a beautiful classic cathedral and it is an American church--not an Anglican. Anyway, the layreader (lay person who read the Scriptures) for the day happened to be Olivia de Haviland (American actress, best known as "Melanie" in Gone With the Wind). It was special to hear her beautiful voice reading the Word. She is a long-time resident of Paris and member of that church.
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