Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > Why can I not fall in love with Paris?

Why can I not fall in love with Paris?


Nov 9th, 2012, 04:42 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 616
Why can I not fall in love with Paris?

I've just come back from a couple of days in Paris and I've finally allowed myself to admit that I've never loved Paris and doubt I ever will.

To put it another way, I really enjoy going to Paris, but if someone (with an evidently incredible power over my life) told me tomorrow that I'd never be able to go back, I wouldn't actually be that bothered.

What does bother me is that I can't work out why. I've been literally dozens of times, from long stays to day trips, high end to low end and everything in between. I've done the big sights, the small sites and off the beaten track. Spring, summer, autumn and winter in every type of weather.

We even christened (well it was a parrainage republicain for any fellow heathens out there) our first-born child there - as his 'godmother' was living there at the time - but it just never gets its hooks into me the same way other cities do.

Am I a hopeless case or is there something I'm missing?

What can/should I do to change this? Or should I just accept that that's the way I've been wired?
Jay_G is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 04:58 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 14,853
I think you should live with it. I like Paris but LOVE all the little places we have found in France, I prefer the time that the French will give you to discuss things ourside Paris. I used to go on a lot of bike rides through the country and I've whiled away 15 minutes chatting to the baker or the cheesemonger talking about their products and discussing the political and industrial situation which is so rare in Paris. I also think the countryside of France is one of the inspirational things about the countryside, and apart from one little vinyard there is no wine made in Paris.

Paris, for me, is for the short stay and then get out and enjoy the real France.
bilboburgler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 05:24 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2,518
Just because many do love Paris doesn't mean you have to as well. Everyone has their own tastes, likes and dislikes. So don't worry about it. I hope you DO find somewhere you love being.
ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 05:38 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 20,309
I love Paris, but sigh for Italy. I'm in love with Italy. DH and I were starting to explore the more southern regions and, as bilboburgler above, I was sighing for those areas.

Where do you live now, Jay_G? Perhaps you're so happy there, everything else pales?
TDudette is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 05:56 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,323
I have been to Paris so many times ( easy, living 3hr TGV ride away) and enjoy it a lot, museums, architecture, general atmosphere, food, shopping, etc but I'm not in love with it. But I don't ask myself why and I wonder why you have to. I do have a stronger feeling (close to love?) about Venice and Prague.
kappa1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 05:58 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 11,248
I've never been to Paris. I have no desire to go to Paris. I even turned down a free week in Paris.

So clearly not everyone can be enamoured of the city, and just as well too. There are plenty of other lovely cities, and even better lovely towns and villages in the world, just waiting to be discovered and loved by you, so I wouldn't worry too much about it.
hetismij2 is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 06:04 AM
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 30,475
I wouldn't waste any time there if I felt as you do. Too many other cities out there and so little time.
Dukey1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 06:19 AM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,602
Okay, so Paris doesn't grab you.

Have you been elsewhere in France, not in cities but in small towns and villages and rural areas? That's where we found our true love of France. Paris is fine and someday, when they'll no longer rent a car to us, we hope to stay in Paris again. But for the time being, we're in love with the quiet parts of France.
Coquelicot is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 06:39 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,323
Is there any city or areas ( of France, Europe, or anywhere) you love?
kappa1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 06:48 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 12,820
You are not the only one JAY_G, my DH and my son both felt the same way although that they recognized that Paris is indeed a beautiful city.

At the other hand I was 18 the first time that I went to Paris and fell in love with that city ,of course Rome will always be my first love..
kismetchimera is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:01 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,187
I feel the same way about London. Every time I go, I decide that I don't like it and I don't want to go back. But about every year or two, I go back anyway. I used to love Amsterdam, but now I feel about it the same way as London -- except that I return there less often now.
kerouac is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:08 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 616
Thanks for all the responses.

I'll try and respond to the queries in no particular order;

I don't live anywhere particularly exciting (in Kent, about 20 mins train ride from London) so know it's not that.

I love France as a whole and have also travelled extensively throughout it, Europe and further afield. I love some other big, French cities (Lyon in particular), the rugged coastline of Brittany the sweeping hills of Provence and have a soft spot for odd little places as well, La Ciotat anyone?

But somehow Paris always leaves me slightly cold. The rest of my family loves it. My sister lived there for a year, which allowed me to explore it in greater depth and yet, it doesn't excite me as I know it does others.

I feel the same way about San Francisco. Seeing the Golden Gate bridge for the first time was one of my Taj Mahal moments (in that it more than lives up to expectations) but the rest of the city I can take or leave. I travel there (and to Paris) regularly on business so will go back, but don't feel the surge of excitement that others clearly do.

Dukey - I'll respond to your query individually because it sort of gets to the crux of the matter;

I never feel as though any trip to Paris is 'wasted' which is why I'm finding it so hard to reconcile my feelings on it. I will take my children there (again and again) because I know it is a great city, and know that their lives will be richer for having visited it (as will mine), but we've got places on our 'to do' list that I'm so much more excited about.

The funny thing about Paris is that for some reason I want to love it.
Jay_G is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:24 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 5,111
"Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart and the senses."
(Lao Tzu)

"The heart wants what it wants. There's no logic to these things. You meet someone and you fall in love and that's that."
(Woody Allen)
stokebailey is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:36 AM
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 7,552
Well I see nothing wrong with not being in love with Paris, I am of course, but I get that its not for everyone. Sometimes its quite simple, you may not be a "big city" person, so while recognizing some of the big city benefits like tons to see and do, you likely prefer smaller cities and towns for vacationing( your comment about San Fransico is a bit of a tip off).
I have similar issues with places like Rome, sorry, not in love, even after 3 visits, I just consider ok, even when blown away by the history and sites( and yes, I would go again, but its not a huge priority for me)

The one post I find odd is when somoene said they had never been , would never go, and even when offered a free trip , refused it .
I give everywhere a chance.. I never felt the pull to visit London, until about 10 years ago I was offered free accomadation for a week, so off I went, figuring well I.m not out much ( just airline ticket). Turns out I was wrong, I loved London
Same with Spain, absolutely no desire to go, finally went this year as my bf desperately wanted to visit it, and I allowed 6 days out of 26 days in Europe for the visit , once again, i was wrong, wish I had allowed alot more time, but interestly, I did not like Barcelona at all, but loved the small town we spent most of our visit in .

Don't beat yourself up, we all like different things, for different reasons.
justineparis is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:46 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 616
Very apt stokebailey.

My problem is my heart wants to love Paris. Paris just won't let me.

I've had some of the most memorable moments of my life in that city.

Just last week, my night ended at about 3.30am, on the balcony of my hotel room, sharing bottles of red wine and eating Ferrero Rocher with a band from New York I'd met in a bar an hour prior.

These are the kinds of moments that even when they're happening, one knows that they're going to be memorable. The fact that it happened in Paris, makes the telling of the story more interesting but for me doesn't make it any more special. I'm just trying to work out why that is..
Jay_G is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 07:55 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 616
Hi Justine - it's funny but I do love big cities.

London and New York are some of my favourite places on earth and having visited many other large cities, I am in fact a city person and am as happy (if not happier) holidaying in amongst the dirt, grime and grit of a large city as I am in the country or on a beach in the Caribbean.

I realise this is turning into a public, group therapy session, but I'm grateful for the input!
Jay_G is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 08:04 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 11,248
Justine, I am not a city person, so wouldn't normally visit a city anyway. Paris just holds even less appeal for me than most cities I'm afraid.
I was given the choice of Paris or the Mozel. The Mozel won. And would every time given that choice.

I grew up in the suburbs of London, but never went into Town. New York is not on the wish list either, nor Berlin, or Rome. I did, reluctantly, go to Barcelona. Can't say I'd rush back there again either.
hetismij2 is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 08:30 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,551
The fact that you travel to Paris regularly on business may well be a factor in your lack of love for it, and the same may be said for San Francisco.

Although this argument might be less powerful if you also travel regularly on business to New York, which you say you love.
Nikki is online now  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 08:30 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 12,820
We all have different likes or dislikes and thanks heaven we are not all made from the same mold otherwise life would have been boring.

Some people prefer to visit big cities while others feel more comfortable in smaller but cozier places.
kismetchimera is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 9th, 2012, 08:48 AM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 12,936
I love big cities and keep going back to Paris, Madrid , Barcelona and Berlin.
Not to Rome or London,though.
Don't know why.
danon is online now  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 02:20 PM.