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Unique Gifts Bought In France

With Christmas less than two weeks away, I thought I would share a few ideas for unique gifts that you could give at Christmas or any time of year. (Disclosure: I bought all of these things for myself). Some of these items can be found outside of France; however, wouldn’t you rather go to France and go shopping? Here’s my list from least to most expensive unique gifts: Continue Reading →

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Top 100 Experiences In France

Chateau du Chenonceau France Top 100 Experiences

Chateau du Chenonceau France

Top 100 Experiences In France—The List Is Growing

France has so much to offer in terms of sites and experiences and while the typical travel guide will highlight the Top 10 or most common ones, I like to share those that have been truly unique to me. I have done each one of these Top 100 experiences in France (active, outdoor, culinary, arts and entertainment, or learning) during my many trips to France and some I have done more than once (ie. Kayaking under the Post du Gard) because I loved the experience so much.

More experiences are continually added to the list and when it surpasses 100, I’ll just keep adding more, so it will be the “Top 100+ France Experiences”!

Be sure to check out the map at the end of the page. Each of these experiences is indicated on the map, so if you’re looking at visiting a certain area of France, click on one of the locations and read about the experience.

I will be adding to this list so that eventually there will be 100 experiences that you should consider doing in France.  Here we go (click on the title to get more information):

1. Touring Many Chateaux In The Loire Valley 

2. Paddling A Kayak Under the Pont du Gard in Provence

3. Running In The Marathon du Medoc

4. Learning French at Ecole des Trois Ponts in Riorges France  and

What To Expect When You Take A French Immersion Course In France

5. Having A Picnic Dinner In Paris

6. Attending A Chamber Music Concert in Sainte-Chapelle In Paris

7. Riding A Bicycle In France

8. Take a cooking course at Cordon Bleu

9. Attend a performance or take a guided tour at the Paris Opera (Palais Garnier)

10. Visit a local market and buy a roasted chicken

11. Attend a French concert

12. Attend a bull fight and Is It Wrong To Attend La Course Camarguaise (Provencal Bullfight)?

13. Stand in the middle of a field of sunflowers

14. Try on (and buy) an Hermes scarf.

15. Sit in a bar on the Champs Elysee and watch the World Cup Finale

16. Fly In A Hot Air Balloon in the Loire Valley

17. Lunch At The Eiffel Tower

18. Attend the Fete de la Veraison In Chateauneuf-du-Pape

19. Eat Lunch or Dinner at a Farmhouse

20. Visit “Le Café Des Chats

21. Seeing An English-Speaking Comedy In Paris 

22. Market Tour and Cooking Class at Le Foodist

23. Kitchen Gadget Shopping at E. Dehillerin in Paris

24. Be in Paris on New Year’s Eve

25. Be in Paris on July 14 and watch the Bastille Day Parade

26. Attend a fashion show at Galeries Lafayette in Paris

27. Do the Van Gogh Walk in Saint Remy de Provence

28. Drink a hot chocolate at Angelina’s in Paris

29. Historic Walking Tour of Paris

30. Take a tour of La Conciergerie

31. Buy an ice cream from Berthillon and walk around the Ils St-Louis

32. Walk along the Canal St-Martin

33. Have a drink on a barge on the Seine in Paris

34. Go to a book talk at Shakespeare and Co.

35.  Spend the night at a real chateau

36. Visit Cimetiere du Pere-Lachaise

37. Hiking In Chamonix And The French Alps

38. Visit The D-Day Beaches Of Normandy

39. Champagne Tasting in Champagne

40. Volcanoes In France?

41. Running In France

42. Marché Aux Puces: A Flea Market Worth Visiting In Paris

43. Experience Eating These French Foods

44. Taking Home Some Unique Gifts From France

45. Oysters and French 75 On New Year’s Eve

46. Great French Meal in Lyon

47. Visiting London and Paris via the Eurostar

48. Wine Experiences For The Senses In Paris

49. VizEat: A Dining Experience With Locals

50. Culinary Tour Changed My Mind About Montmartre

51. Experiencing Medieval France

52. Active Boomer In France: Some activities to consider

53. Surfing In Biarritz

54. Discovering The Covered Passages In Paris

55. Unique Experiences During My First Trip To France

56. Photographing The 10 Most Beautiful Places In France

57. Oysters and Wine At Le Baron Rouge Wine Bar After A Market Visit

58. Visiting Fondation Louis Vuitton For The Architecture

59. Seeing The Tour de France

60. Staying In A Chalet In The Heart Of The French Alps

61. Visiting the Cité Medievale de Conflans in Albertville

62. The Most Beautiful Villages Of France: Some That I Have Visited (and recommend)

63. Visit a“Cave à Vin” to sample delicious foods and wine.

64. Visit Verdun And Some Of The World War 1 Sites

65. Visiting and Going On top Of Some of France’s Arcs, Arches, and Portes

66. Be In France During “Les Soldes” (Winter or Summer)

67. Seeing Paris In A Different Light—Night Time

68. You MUST Try Bouillabaisse (Fish Soup/Stew) The Traditional Way

69. Two Special Experiences In Marseille: Seafood and Views

70. La Cité du Vin Wine Museum In Bordeaux

71. The Other Part Of Versailles Visitors Often Miss: Marie Antoinette’s Hamlet and Petit Trianon

72. Flamingos, Wild Horses and The Medieval Fortress of Aigues-Mortes In The South Of France

73. 36 Hour Stopover In Collioure With A Hike up to Fort Saint-Elme.

74.  Cruising Down The Seine River In Paris OR 4 Boat Tours To Experience Outside Of Paris

76. Fête de la Transhumance: Sheep Fill The Streets In St-Rémy

77. Rochers Sculptés (Sculptured Rocks) in Brittany

78. Quirkiest, Most Imaginative Sight: Les Machines de L’île In Nantes

79. An Easy Hike In Colorado– Le Colorado Provencal

80. King Arthur And The Brocéliande Forest Legend

81. Exploring The Other Side Of Montmartre (Beyond Sacre Coeur and the Moulin Rouge)

82. Visit Le Chateau des Baux de Provence While You Can

83. Discover France’s Version Of Stonehenge: Carnac’s Megalithic Alignments

84. Seeing Optical Illusions At The Fondation Vasarely in Aix-en-Provence

85. Learning About Paris While You Run: With Paris Running Tours

86. Celebrating Cinema At the Lumière Museum In Lyon

87, Traboules and Wall Murals In Lyon

88. Lunch At Pomze in Paris: Satisfying An Addiction

89. Paris Greeters: A Free Walking Tour Worth Taking

90. Highlights Of Montpellier And An Excursion to Sete

91. See Van Gogh’s Paintings Come Alive In Provence And On Film

92. Seeing Fashion At  Musée Yves Saint Laurent In Paris

93. 9 Beautiful Spots To Get Away From The Crowds In Paris

94.  Paris Dinner Soirée At Jim Haynes

95.  “59 Rivoli”–A Former Squat That Provides Studios For Artists In Paris

96. Remains Of The Bastille: 4 Spots You Likely Overlooked

97. National Library of France: 2 Sites Worth Visiting

98. Parisian bistro with traditional French cuisine: A la Biche au Bois

99. My City Hunt With Paris In Action

100. Watch, follow, or ride in a Citroën 2CV

And now the NEXT 100!

101. Abandoned railway in Paris: La Petite Ceinture

102. Where You Can Find Lavender In Provence

103. Discover Pont d’Arc By Kayak

104. Two Of The Best Ways To See The Cliffs At Étretat

105. Where To See The Best Bastille Day Fireworks In Normandy

106. Visiting A Lavender Farm In Provence And Learning About Lavender And Lavandin Oil

107. Lunch with a view of Etretat

108. Sound and Light Shows In Paris and Provence That You Must See

109. Hidden gardens in Etretat

110. Take Your Daughter To This Museum In Paris: Marie Curie Museum

111.  A multi-sensory experience devoted to Calvados apple brandy

112. Historical Walking Tour: Life In Paris During WWII

113. The drive between Normandy and Paris: ‘Route des Abbayes’

114. Where to see French films with English subtitles in Paris

115. Localers Food Tour Near Canal Saint Martin

116. Point Zero and The Paris Meridian

117. Not your typical food court: Beaupassage Paris

118.  Augmented Reality At The Relief Map Museum In Paris

119. Exploring The Caves at Aven d’Orgnac

120. La Felicità, Paris

121. Sculptures de Décure At The Paris Catacombs

122. Two Days In The Ardèche

Need More Ideas?

  1. If you want more ideas in the area where you are travelling, check out this map. It shows the location and related post about the site and experience.

2. If you’re looking for specific, unique experiences in Paris, check out this page: Unique Paris Experiences 

100+ Unique Experiences In France

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Cooking Classes

Life is about experiences and one of the great experiences is taking a cooking course in Paris.  Besides learning great cooking techniques, you sample delicious cuisine and often get to take food home!

Le Cordon Bleu

The famous Le Cordon Bleu school is worth the visit. There are full day, half day and multi-day classes available. Some are hands-on and some are just demonstration classes. These classes are taught in English and you are provided with aprons and all the utensils, ingredients, and recipes….and food to take home (depending on the type of course you take). My favourite was, “The Secrets of Macarons”. It lasted 3 hours and was a blast. I ended up making about 40 lovely little treats!

Le Cordon Bleu, Paris France

Le Cordon Bleu, Paris. Photo: J. Chung

Le Foodist

In October, 2014, I took part in the Market VIsit and Cooking Class which ran from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm. We began with coffee and croissants/pastries and then proceeded to the market near Maubert-Mutualitie and picked up the ingredients for our lunch. We were divided into groups (there were 9 of us) and had tasks ranging from mincing the salmon to whipping the eggs and cream to make the vanilla ice cream. We spent approximately 2 hours preparing lunch, while drinking some wine. Lunch was delicious and during our courses we heard many stories about the history of France from Fred, who was a delightful host and teacher. It was an experience well worth doing! Check out: www.lefoodist.com. Here are some of our dishes and our group at lunch:

Kitchen at LeFoodist, Paris France

Kitchen at LeFoodist, Paris. Photo: J. Chung

Coq Au Vin, LeFoodist, Paris France

Coq Au Vin, LeFoodist, Paris. Photo: J. Chung

Poire Belle Helene, LeFoodist, Paris France

Poire Belle Helene, LeFoodist, Paris. Photo: J. Chung

Dining Room, LeFoodist, Paris France

Dining Room, LeFoodist, Paris. Photo: J. Chung

Other cooking schools in Paris getting good reviews include:

 La Cuisine Paris—lacuisineparis.com

Eye Prefer Paris Cooking School–eyepreferparistours.com/cooking-class

Cook’n With Class—-cooknwithclass.com

Ecole de Cuisine Alain Ducasse—www.ecolecuisine-alainducasse.com

On Rue Tatin—award-winning author and journalist Susan Loumis runs cooking classes in Paris and Normandy—-onruetatin.com

Patricia Wells—Journalist, author, and cooking teacher has cooking classes in Paris and Provence—- patriciawells.com/cooking

 

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Unique Paris Experiences

Unique Travel Experiences In ParisTravel guides will share great information about popular experiences and sites, however, they don’t always mention the special, unique Paris experiences that locals or die-hard devotees to Paris enjoy.

When I travel to Paris, I’m in search of all different kinds of experiences that can make my trip even more special….whether they be culinary, active, or learning experiences, or sites that are not necessarily written about in tour guides. These places are often cherished by locals and are not always crowded, which is a bonus.

Here are some of my favourite unique Paris experiences (note: I keep adding more, so be sure you keep checking back for new ones):

Unique Paris Experiences To Consider:

1. Have A Drink On A Boat That Is Moored In The Seine

Boat on Seine, Paris France.

Boat on Seine, Paris France. Photo: J. Chung

This is number one because it is truly the most enjoyable, unique Paris experience that I keep doing. While having a drink at a sidewalk cafes immensely popular in Paris, if you want a different view, consider heading to the Seine River. One of my favourite places to have a drink is on a barge which is located on the Seine near Pont de l’Archevêché. It’s had various names throughout the years, such as Le Kiosque and Un Mojito Sur Scène.  Sometimes there’s recorded music and sometimes there’s a live band. I highly recommend going in the late afternoon and relax with a glass of wine or a Kir (wine + Cassis liqueur) while you gaze upon Notre Dame Cathedral.

2. Relax At Place Dauphine

Place Dauphine, Paris, France.

Place Dauphine, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

An oasis in the heart of Paris. This little park is surrounded by cafes and is just a stone’s throw from the  Seine near the western end of the Ile  de la Cite in the 1st arrondissement  of Paris.

3. Fat Tire Bike Company Tour

Fat Tire Bike Co, Paris, France.

Fat Tire Bike Co, Paris, France.

There are so many cool things to do in Paris and I highly recommend you take a “Fat Tire  Bike Company” bicycle tour through Paris at night.  Your tour lasts 4-5 hours where you’ll see sites like the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and the Louvre Museum (outside).  Imagine riding through the courtyard at the Louvre or down Boulevard Saint-Germain.  Some commentary is provided, but seeing Paris at night is what makes this so unique. Fine for children too. It is very safe  and the evening is topped off with a cruise on a Bateaux Mouche drinking wine! This unique Paris experience is THE way to see the city and get a little exercise.

4. Renting a “Velib” (bicycle) in Paris

On a Velib, Paris, France.

On a Velib, Paris, France.

It’s virtually free. It is a self-service system where you can take the bike on a journey for 30 minutes for free and you return the bike to any one of the many Velib “stations” located Paris. A 1 day ticket (1.7 € for one day) allows you to rent a bicycle as many times as you want during the 24 hours. The first 30 minutes are always free.  If you do go past your free 1/2 hour, the cost is minimal (1 E per half hour). You can also purchase a 7 day ticket (8 Euros).

5. Indulge In A Hot Chocolate At Angelina’s

Angelina's Hot Chocolate, Paris France

Angelina’s Hot Chocolate, Paris

Angelina’s is an institution that’s over 115 years old and is still adorned in architecture from the 1900s. It is “the” place to have a truly decadent hot chocolate. But this isn’t just any hot chocolate or “Chocolat Chaud”. Rich? Yes. Creamy? Yes. Smooth? Yes.  It comes in a pitcher with whipped cream in a separate container. Angelina’s is a tea room that also serves breakfast and lunch and pastries. There is often a line up to get in; however, the wait is usually not too long.

Once inside you can just have the hot chocolate (called “L’Africain”) which is made with the cocoa from Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, and Niger. You could also add a dessert like their famous Mont Blanc (meringue plus chestnut cream) or go for breakfast, brunch or afternoon tea. Check out my niece’s guest post where she shares her experience at Angelina’s.

6. Shakespeare and Co. Booktalk

Shakespeare and Co. Paris France

Shakespeare and Co. Paris

Visit this old, established bookstore that has many books in English. Check out the listing of authors who give free book talks. Past guests have included cookbook author, David Lebovitz and Canadian Naomi Klein who presented her book, “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate”. When the weather is warm, the seating often flows out into the front courtyard. Shakespeare and Co, Paris.   Read more about the Book Talk here.

 

7. Visit The Conciergerie

La Conciergerie Paris, France

La Conciergerie Paris, France

This former palace is where Marie Antoinette was imprisoned before being taken to the guillotine.  During the Reign of Terror, approximately 2700 people were imprisoned here before being executed. It is located west of Ile de la Cite, near Notre Dame.

8. Relax On Pont Neuf

Pont Neuf, Paris France.

Pont Neuf, Paris France.

Relaxing on Pont Neuf and the Square du Vert-Galant (one of my favourite views of Paris). Bring a picnic lunch and just watch the boats glide by.

9. Listening To Chamber Music in Sainte-Chapelle

Sainte-Chapelle, Paris France

Sainte-Chapelle, Paris France

Throughout Paris you will see posters advertising various concerts in churches. The best are certainly the ones which take place in Sainte-Chapelle (Holy Chapel), located on the Ile de la Cité not JUST because of the music. The  striking 15 stained glass windows which are each 15 metres high are stunning and will impress you particularly at night time, so be sure to attend a night-time concert.

More information is in this post: Attending A Chamber Music Concert in Sainte-Chapelle.

10. Having A Picnic Dinner On the Pont Des Arts

Picnique on the Pont des Arts, Paris, France.

Picnique on the Pont des Arts, Paris, France.

When dusk arrives, the crowds come out to the Pont Des Arts with their picnic dinners of baguettes, cheese and wine. Sometimes some musicians come out to play as well. It is a big party with joining! The Pont Des Arts is a pedestrian bridge that crosses the river Seine near the Louvre. [See below for more Perfect Picnic Locations]

11. Attend A Performance Or Take A Tour Of The Paris Opera House (Palais Garnier)

Palais Garnier, Paris, France.

Palais Garnier, Paris, France.

Visiting the Paris Opera House (Palais Garnier), which is located at 8 rue Scribe  (adjacent to the Opera Metro)  should definitely be on your list. Don’t just take photos from the outside. Go inside either to attend a performance or to take a tour. Here is more information about the tour [Guided Tour Of The Paris Opera].

As for attending a performance, during one of my early trips to Paris, I got tickets to see the American ballet.  My friend and I were able to sit in a private booth and while it was an interesting experience, at that time there wasn’t any air conditioning. I had to leave early as it was just too hot. Not sure if they have air conditioning now, but if ballet isn’t your cup of tea, definitely consider taking a tour.

Being up in a booth gives you a different perspective that you won’t get on a tour and it is here that you can imagine how the chandelier might have come crashing down in the Phantom of the Opera.

12. Drink Vin Chaud At An Outdoor Café In Winter

WInter in Paris, France.

WInter in Paris, France.

Vin Chaud is popular during Christmas and New Year’s. It is hot red wine with mulling spices and served with sugar on the side. Sit under a heated awning at an outdoor cafe. Or, go to an outdoor market where you can sample some vin chaud and roasted chestnuts!

13. Lunch at Le Jules Verne Restaurant In The Eiffel Tower

Bastille Day Parade, Paris France.

Bastille Day Parade, Paris France.

Take the private elevator to the 2nd level of the southern pillar at the Eiffel Tower and wait to be entranced by Alain Ducasse’s exquisite cuisine. I went on Bastille Day, for my birthday back in…….when the restaurant was not under Ducasse, yet my lunch and experience was very memorable.

14. Watch A Fashion Show At Galeries Lafayette

Galeries Lafayette Fashion Show. Paris, France.

Galeries Lafayette Fashion Show. Paris, France.

Most Fridays throughout the year at 3:00 pm, Galeries Lafayette puts on a 30 minute fashion show at its Haussmann store (40 Boulevard Haussmann) in the Salon Opera on the 7th floor. You will need to make reservations through their website. The show used to be free but they now charge 12 Euros (9 Euros for children).

Galeries Lafayette Website: https://haussmann.galerieslafayette.com/en/events/original-fashion-shows

16. Take In A Great View Of Paris—atop Galeries Lafayette

Paris, France.

After you do some shopping at Galeries Lafayette, go to the roof top (escalator and stairs to the 8th floor) and grab a coffee (or wine) and sit on the outside terrace, taking in the fantastic view of Paris.

17. Listen To Some Jazz On The Banks Of The Seine

Paris, France.

…..especially when Paris Plages is on in the summer. Paris brings tons of sand onto the banks of the Seine and sun worshippers sunbathe and walk along the Seine. Often musicians will set up shop and play some tunes.

 

18. Attend A Cordon Bleu Cooking Class

Cordon Bleu, Paris France.

Cordon Bleu, France.

You can go for a half day or full day and learn how to make macarons, breads, regional cuisines, and sauces.  Cordon Bleu short course offerings.

19. Be In Paris On July 14, Bastille Day

Bastille Day Parade, Paris France.

Bastille Day Parade, Paris France.

Be in Paris the day before and the day of “Bastille Day” (France’s National Holiday on July 14—-ironically, my birthday) and watch the parade down the Champs Elysees.

20. Wander The Gardens at The Musee Rodin

Rodin Museum, Paris, France.

Rodin Museum, Paris, France.

 

Walk around the beautiful gardens and see the famous “The Thinker” sculpture.

21. Go Running For Fun Or In A Race

Paris Marathon, France

Paris Marathon, France

Run the Paris Marathon (in April) or the “20 Km de Paris” (in October) or just run along the Seine for fun!

If you do decide to run a race in France, be sure to have a doctor’s certificate and book well in advance. And be prepared for some “different” race foods. No bananas but lots of sugar cubes, raisins, oranges, and pound cake are often offered along the route as well as water in bottles. Yes, bottles. Thousands and thousands of bottles scattered all over the road, so watch out! (Find out more about what it’s like to run in France: Running In France).

22. Ile Saint-Louis and Ice Cream

Berthillon, Paris France

Berthillon, Paris France

Berthillon ice cream and sorbets are cherished by  locals and tourists,  particularly when they are  purchased from the store on the Ile Saint-Louis. There is something about wandering the streets on the Ile and eating a delicious, rich ice cream cone. Berthillon’s is  the second oldest ice cream  parlour in Paris. You will no doubt encounter a small and playing on the bridge between Ile Saint Louis and Ile de la Cite.

23. Relax In Luxembourg Gardens and People Watch

Luxembourg Gardens. Paris, France.

Luxembourg Gardens. Paris, France.

…..and watch little kids play with their boats in the fountain.

24. Drive Around The Arc de Triomphe (and around, and around)

Arc de Triomphe, Paris, France.

Arc de Triomphe, Paris, France.

Here’s your chance to drive like the French! This is one of the grandest roundabouts and it is fun to drive around the Arc and try to get out onto one of the major streets. Just don’t be fearful. Be bold!

25. Join A Strike, Or Watch One

Protesting in Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Protesting in Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Strikes, or, “Les Greves” can shut down all transportation, museums, or any public institution. They occur fairly often but do not last long. I encountered one as I turned a corner. I felt completely safe and the crowd of a few thousand were very peaceful.

26. The Catacombs

Catacombs, Paris, France.

Catacombs, Paris, France.

This underground cemetery houses the remains of more than 6 million people. It was established in the early 18th century as Paris’ cemeteries could not deal with the overflow of bodies. It is interesting to see the skulls and femurs artistically arranged throughout the underground cavern. The entrance is located near the Metro: Denfert-Rochereau.

27. Buy A Hermès Scarf…And Don’t Forget The Cards

Hermes, Paris, France.

Hermes, Paris, France.

The Hermès carré (scarf). The classic orange box with the horse motif. Timeless.  The beautifully designed silk scarf has been cherished by those who love the unique patterns ever since it was created in 1937. But true fashionistas know that when you purchase an Hermès scarf (at a Hermès boutique, bien sur), one MUST also ask for the “Cartes A Nouer” (aka “Knotting Cards”). The 22 cards provide pictures and instructions to tie your scarf in many different ways. You won’t get the box of cards unless you ask!   Hermes Website.

28. Buy Something From Cartier

Cartier, Paris, France.

Cartier, Paris, France.

Who can resist Cartier?

The iconic brand makes jewelry and watches, of course. But did you know that if you buy one of their watches, you can get one of their travel cases FREE. Once again, you must ask for it. It is in plush red velvet and is a perfect travel companion for your time piece.

29. Le Café Des Chats

Cafe des Chats, Paris, France.

Cafe des Chats, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Cafe des Chats, Paris, France.

Cafe des Chats, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

In 2013,  Paris opened its first cat cafe. I went 2 days after it opened, and had a glass of wine and a dessert while kittens and cats wandered around the cafe, sat on laps, and posed for pictures.

It’s a different experience.   Yes, you obviously have to like cats.

To find out more about what it’s like, check out Visit Le Café Des Chats.

30. Le Foodist

Cafe des Chats, Paris, France.

LeFoodist, Paris France. Photo: J. Chung

As mentioned in my October 11 blog post about my Le Foodist experience, the market visit and cooking class is definitely worth doing, not just for the tour, the cooking and the food, but especially for the stories told by Fred, the owner/chef who truly made the experience memorable.  We went to an open-air market to pick up the ingredients for lunch and then came back to prepare the lunch.

Location: 59 Rue Cardinal Lemoine in the 5th Arrondissement

Website: www.lefoodist.com

Check out these other unique Paris experiences:

Looking for unique experiences in other parts of France? Be sure to check out the growing list : Top 100 Unique Experiences in France

Many of my Paris experiences can be found (in a condensed version) in Google’s new travel tool: Touring Bird. Check out their website for tours and (free) experiences for Paris and 19 other popular cities.

Interested In The Top 10 Photo Locations In Paris?

If you’d like to be updated on more unique experiences in Paris and elsewhere in France, be sure to subscribe to my weekly posts. Receive your guide to the Top 10 Photo locations in Paris—a free downloadable PDF.

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#23: Montpellier And Paris

Place de la Comedie, Montpellier, France.

Place de la Comedie, Montpellier, France. Photo: J. Chung

In October, 2014 I visited Montpellier for a week to attend the Accent Francais language school. I can’t believe I had never been to Montpellier, however, after doing a lot of research on the best places to study French, I decided to try out this town. I rented an apartment not far from the school so there was no need for a car. This was my “test”—-to see if I might like to live in Montpellier for a month. Following this week I travelled to Paris and stayed 8 nights. I also signed up for French lessons at Alliance Francaise. Although it was my 23rd time I still discovered new things and experiences. Some of the highlights were:

Exploring the pedestrian area of Montpellier. It’s quite a large area and has wonderful shops

Montpellier, France.

Montpellier, France. Photo: J. Chung

Quick train trip to Sete, which is on the Mediterranean

Sete, France.

Sete, France. Photo: J. Chung

In Paris: LeFoodist- going to the Maubert-Mutualite market to buy our ingredients before spending two hours preparing our lunch. It was followed by a leisurely 2 ½ hour lunch. The stories told by Fred made the entire experience thoroughly enjoyable.

LeFoodist, Paris, France.

LeFoodist, Paris, France.

Trying out the BEST pastries and breads in Paris—from L’Éclair des Genies, Pierre Herme, Poilane, Eric Kayser, Bread and Roses, and Dalloyau

Galeries Lafayette Gourmet, Paris, France.

Galeries Lafayette Gourmet, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

20 km de Paris race that began and ended at the Eiffel Tower

20 km de Paris, Paris, France.

20 km de Paris, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Lunch at Café Constant

Cafe Constant, Paris, France.

Cafe Constant, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Finally getting to see the Monet paintings at Musee L’Orangerie. I can’t believe I had never been.

L'Orangerie Museum, Paris, France.

L’Orangerie Museum, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

Monet's Water Lillies, Musee L'Orangerie, Paris, France.

Monet’s Water Lillies, Musee L’Orangerie, Paris, France. Photo: J. Chung

For more details, check out my blog post on the Highlights of Montpellier During A One Week Stay.

Trip #23 To France_ Montpellier, Sete, Paris

Trip #23 To France_ Montpellier, Sete, Paris