Help me find where I can spend some downtime between touristy activities while in Paris for a week!
February 15, 2012 1:42 PM Subscribe
Help me enjoy Paris as a local!
posted by CristinaT to travel & transportation around Paris, France (11 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
My boyfriend and I are going to Paris from March 13th to March 21st. It will be the first time for both of us, and while I’m extremely excited, he’s probably about ten times more excited than I am because he’s been dreaming about going there since he was a child. While I’m sure I will enjoy fulfilling his desire to see the Eiffel Tower (actually going up the tower), the Louvre, the Arc de Triomphe, the Pere Lachaise cemetery, the catacombs and other famous must-see landmarks, I’m actually less of a touristy kind of gal and generally prefer to experience the places I visit as a local might. It’s not that I don’t want to see these places -- I’m super excited to take it all in -- however we only have a week, and I’m concerned that if we don’t have a few places to have a little downtime to recharge after being amongst so many tourists, I might just go crazy. He seems to think that we can suck up our fatigue for a week and just be on the go for the entire week to be able to see as much as we can, and I’m willing to try, but I already know myself well enough to know that I’m not built for that kind of itinerary. I’m not looking for solitude exactly, just a way to be around regular locals who are just living their lives, versus tourists.
So, I ask you, what kind of hidden gems have you found in Paris that are not tourist heavy, where we can experience Paris as a local might? I’m not necessarily interested in see-and-be-seen types of places, however, we are both relatively young (late twenties/early thirties) and enjoy being around youngish people. We like little cafes, simple and non –pretentious restaurants with an emphasis on good food, artsy stores, stores full of oddities, taking walks, lying in the grass (although I know it’ll be too cold for that!), etc. We’ll be staying in the 16th arrondissement, but are willing to travel. My boyfriend is a native French speaker, and I am fluent as well, so we are not afraid of going way off the beaten path into places or situations where no English would be spoken.