Nora Fatehi was on a quick trip to Paris last week and has a few thoughts on the city of love, cheese, wine and more.
Paris will always have something new each visit. But a few things remain constant like the Louvre, the Sacred Heart and the Eiffel Tower of course. These three need to be seen because they tell a story of a different time.
Here’s a list of things Nora recommends you to try out in order to feel like a total Parisian.
– Find the little café and bistros on the street corner:
As a traveller the first thing on Nora’s mind is to try the local food, considering how she admits to liking the idea of experimenting with dishes and enjoy trying out what the locals have to offer. There are so many restaurants that these websites talk about but the best and the biggest surprised are the little bistros and cafés all over the place. One might struggle a little with French but don’t let that get you down. French food is diverse and has something for everyone, find what interests you and devour it. A favourite – Steak Frites and delicious buttered fish with Radish, an unlikely combination but as delicious as it gets. She recommends the Bistro 25 right on the Champs Élysées Avenue for its location, food and ambience.
– Do the touristy things but in a different way:
Don’t just go to see the Eiffel Tower. Relax on the Champ De Mars, find yourself a quick bite, walk to the lush gardens around the Eiffel and take in the beauty of this massive structure. There is a lot to see and do in five days, but the point of a holiday is to relax, what better way than on the grass, watching a huge monument, with the River Seine nearby, nothing gets better.
– Desserts Desserts Desserts:
When in Paris, indulge always in desserts. Try the pain au chocolate, a quick easy fix between meals. It is basically a puff pastry stuffed with chocolate and is delicious with some coffee or hot chocolate. Don’t miss the lemon tart, the éclairs, these delicious chocolate and pistachio rolls (They call them escargots too), stand in line and have a Financier, it is an almond tea cake and they are AMAZING. Go and find nice gelato and ice cream places, don’t miss the macarons and crepes, lots of places online where they suggest getting them. Also, try these amazing little desserts called Profiteroles; you will not be able to eat just one. Paris is the best place to indulge your sweet tooth and you definitely should.
– Moulin Rouge:
While you might have spent the whole day seeing the Louvre, it does take the whole day so don’t skimp out on it. But once done there are two night shows one cannot miss. The Moulin Rouge is the original cabaret of Paris; it is where the Can Can dance form originated. It is scintillating and unforgettable and as someone who loves dance and is a dancer myself, I was mesmerized by the talent and the production. Go to the one near Montmartre, Blanche station. That is the best show there is. If you can’t get tickets to Moulin Rouge, try and catch a show of the Cirque Du Soleil.
Nora confesses that she is a typical tourist when it comes to one thing and that is shopping. Vacations are taken only to shop and she truly believes that there is no harm in spending on yourself after working hard the whole year. Paris, like Japan, gives you a lot of tax back on your shopping. So buy the brands you’ve been meaning to buy and get some money back in the process. Don’t forget to ask before if they are a tax saving shop.
Paris is beautiful but there are parts of it that are unsafe, so be careful. While Nora has faced her share of pickpocketing, it’s a city that she revisits and is always safe about it.