If you truly want to become a citizen of the "City of Lights", skip the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. Real Parisians haven’t visited those places since a field trip in elementary school. If they do have the urge to see the sights, they are comforted by the fact that those monuments will be there indefinitely, and they can go visit them at anytime. Don't get me wrong, the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower are absolutely stunning and worth a visit, but it’s impossible to see the entire Louvre in one day, unless you run through it in nine minutes like in the film Bande à Part.
In the morning, rise early and take a run through the beautiful Butte Chaumont park. The most avid runners of this city take a lap around the lake, the view is better than what any gym membership could offer.
After a bit of exercise, find a nice café, sit "en terrasse" and watch all the busy businessmen rush to work while you have a croissant and a shot of espresso. It’s difficult to find an English breakfast here as many Parisians cannot bring themselves to eat until around lunch time. But the croissants are so delicious, you won’t miss your beans and eggs on toast.
Then, take a stroll down Rue de la Verrerie and hit up all the fabulous thrift-shops, like Kilo Shop and Free P Star. You should never come to Paris with a large suitcase full of clothes-- let Paris dress you.
Once you are feeling "on fleek", it’s time to have lunch. Go to le Marais and have a fallafel sandwich at L'as du Fallafel. There is usually a line around the corner, but don’t worry, it’s worth the wait.
After lunch, grab a Velib’ and ride over to Musée Jacquemart-André in the 8th arrondissement. This is the most “Parisian” museum in Paris. What started as a private collection has now turned into one of the largest collections of Italian Renaissance art in all of Europe.
By the time you’ve finished your museum tour, it’s probably the hour of goûter. "Goûter” is an afternoon snack, and it’s taken very seriously in Paris. Every day at 4pm, without fail, Parisians sit down to have what most consider to be the most important meal of the day. If it’s nice out, have some nutella (yes, really-- it’s a Parisian staple!) and a warm baguette "au bord" the Canal St. Martin.
Speaking of food, the Parisians are “très fan.” Meals in general take up so much of their time, and are not only for nourishment, but also for socialising and for family time. It is not uncommon for a Sunday lunch to be accompanied by three hours of great conversation, followed by a sharp cup of espresso. We suggest finding a nice brasserie along the canal to satiate your appetite. Why not try Chez Prune?
And finally, once the day has come to an end, there’s only one thing left to do to become truly Parisian: go to the theatre! And of course, we’d recommend coming to see a show with us at Theatre in Paris. We have comedies, classics and musicals, and we break the language barrier by translating the best plays in the city for you, and then projecting our subtitles just above the stage in real time. Book your tickets at theatreinparis.com today!
by Michelle hair
An American Living in Paris
To read more articles by Michelle, visit hairquarius.com