A winter weekend in Paris! Read: cozy heated terraces, interesting museums and fresh walks along the Seine.
Paris is a versatile city. You can of course enjoy the view from the famous Eiffel Tower, climb the stairs to the beautiful Sacre Coeur or go shopping on the Champs Elysees.
We ignore these sights and opt for a number of lesser-known places. Less cravings for long lines for attractions, busy shopping streets and crowds, then come with us!
Travel and accommodation
We traveled to Paris by train. In 3.5 hours you can be at Gare du Nord and your city trip can begin. You travel relaxed and arrive rested. If you book tickets as early as possible, the prices will be the most attractive.
Our Okko hotel is a stone’s throw from Gare du Nord, next to Gare de l’Est and therefore close to a number of metro stations. This is nice in winter, when there is a shower or it is chilly you can easily take the metro.
Hotel Okko is a fairly new hotel. The rooms are beautifully decorated, the beds are great and the shower is really great! In the lobby downstairs you can grab coffee/tea or water and a snack throughout the day. The breakfast is well prepared and delicious. You can leave your luggage at the hotel on the last day and pick it up again when you go to the station. The bonus of the hotel is the sauna! Small is beautiful. Very nice to be able to relax and warm the muscles after a day of walking through the city.
Musee Nissim de Camondo
A richly decorated banker’s house, or palace, from 1911. The house became a museum decades ago and the Camondo family had an extensive 18th century (art) collection. All furniture, paintings, carpets, tableware… it is a special collection. The kitchen is still in style and you can almost smell the Coq au Vin. I also find the different bathrooms impressive. If you like a piece of history, it is fun to visit this museum and delve into this family.
The Musée Nissim Camondo is located in the 8th arrondissement near the Parc Monceau. Are you looking for another beautiful museum? I have been to Musée Rodin, Musée Picasso and Musée d’Orsay before. The Louvre is also recommended. If you prefer modern art, go to the Center Pompidou.
Big fancy department stores
The large department stores such as Printemps and Galaries Lafayette are next on our list. Here we marvel at the beautiful Christmas decorations and buy some presents. It’s quite busy here so we don’t stay too long. If you are there at a quieter time, make sure you have lunch in one of the restaurants. You have a beautiful view of the city (and the Eifel Tower).
Fluctuart on the SeineWe walk along the Seine and visit Fluctuart. This is a small and free art center that focuses on Urban Street Art. The sun sets beautifully and the city shows itself from its best side!
Atelier des Lumieres
We take the metro to Atelier des Lumieres. Here you can see the great masterpieces of famous painters where the images are projected on the walls accompanied by music. We choose the show Océans, with images by National Geographic photographer Brian Skerry. It is an impressive performance and I enjoy the beautiful images!
Finally, we go out for dinner at Les Parigots. A busy restaurant where we enjoy delicious French food.\
Jardin des Plantes
The next morning we walk to the Jardin des Plantes, the largest botanical garden in Paris, which was created about 400 years ago. There is an impressive collection of around 4,500 plants on display. There are a number of beautiful greenhouses with plants from all over the world. Then we walk through the beautiful garden, it is pleasant even in winter!
At the Jardin des Plantes there are a number of museums and a zoo that are definitely worth a visit. We will save this for next time.
The Great Mosque (1920) is located near the Jardin des Plantes. There is a nice tea house with a terrace where you can drink delicious tea and enjoy delicious pancakes and other sweets.The Mosque is beautifully decorated.
The garden is impressive and a peaceful oasis in the city. The tiling and woodworking on the various doors and windows are incredibly beautiful.
After this, walk again along the Seine and reach the famous bookstalls and of course Ile de la Cité, with Notre-Dame. It is still quite a work in progress!
Near the bridge is Shakespeare and Co, a small famous bookstore. There is quite a queue to visit this bookstore. It is wonderful to browse and you can see from everything that an enthusiast is in charge here!
We walk via the Marche aux Fleurs flower market to Le Marais, where we get a delicious sandwich at L’As du Fallafel.
Canal St. Martin
Our last day in Paris! Today we start at Canal St. Martin. A wonderful place! This is a completely different neighborhood and you can walk along the water here and enjoy the French atmosphere.The Canal is especially worth seeing at the locks at the small Jardin Villemin
Viaduc des Arts
Via Place de la Bastille we arrive at Viaduc des Arts. This is a former railway line that has been transformed into an elevated park. Here you can enjoy a nice walk and look out over the houses and streets. Winter is not the most ideal place to visit this green oasis, but we get a good impression of it.
Place des Vosges
After the Viaduc we walk to Le Marais. We take a break at the famous Place des Vosges. In my opinion the most beautiful square in Paris. Here we enjoy the nice weather, the beautiful houses and the nice atmosphere at and around the square.
After this we walk leisurely through Le Marais. Le Marais has traditionally been a Jewish district, and you will still find many kosh restaurants there. In recent years the district has become extremely hip and happening. There are a lot of tasty eateries, beautiful galleries and nice and special shops and it is pleasant to stroll through them quietly. We visit a number of shops in impressive factory buildings such as Uniqlo and Merci.
Finally, we get delicious warm sandwiches at the boulangerie and head to the train. Our weekend in Paris is over, but it is definitely worth repeating!