These must-do’s are not found on your typical list of things to do in Paris. They are my own personal picks, filled with romance and joie de vivre for you and your lover, or simply enjoyed by yourself, which can be the ultimate luxury. Aah, to spoil oneself in Paris!
Inside Shakespeare and Company. Photo via miragebookmark.ch.
1. Peruse the Many Great Bookstores of Paris
While it may not be a hard fact, it certainly seems like Paris has more bookstores than many of the other cities in the world, and a good number of them are English. There is a bookstore for every whim and whimsy. Des Femmes serves those who are interested in feminism, while I Love My Blender is a quirky gift and book paradise. Shakespeare and Company is my personal favorite—it’s the most charming English bookshop in town, with a very rich history to boot.
Scope out the street art.
2. Enjoy the Free Street Art
The best area for graffiti viewing is the canal Saint-Martin, in the 10th Arrondissement. Try Localers, which offers a Space Invader trip appropriate for the whole family.
3. Surround Yourself with Flowers
Whenever I rent an apartment or enter a hotel room in a city I’m visiting—or, when I’m in Paris, where I have an apartment—the first day I pick up a bouquet of flowers. Waiting for my guy to give them to me once or twice a year is NOT for me. This is an essential luxury and one I always find a way to afford. Paris boasts some of the world’s most incredible floral artists (see the link below for a list).
Canal Saint-Martin, in the 10th Arrondissement.
4. Visit the Canal Saint-Martin
Share a bottle of rosé at the edge of the canal Saint-Martin with a dear friend on a lovely spring night. Many Paris first-timers don’t make it to this area, nor have many longtimers been here yet, but I encourage everyone to do so, particularly in nice weather. Explore it with the help of our walking trip of the canal Saint-Martin (it’s less than $4!). This artsy bohemian area always makes me feel young again.
5. Play Like a Kid
Laugh, run and act silly. Rejoice—you are in Paris! We believe you will enjoy yourself even more if you purchase the GO-Card before your trip. Apologies for this shameless promotion, but truly I have personally handpicked all our partners, convincing them to give you special gifts and great deals (more than 250 places in Paris and throughout France). They include spas, shops, restaurants, hotels, car services, trips, online shopping retailers and so much more. You’ll also receive the gg2p digital travel magazine for free and a set of our best Paris walking trips, and you’ll always be able to access all the archived content on our site. Now shout for joy like you did when you were only four! And book that trip to Paris—what are you waiting for?
Get off the beaten track and see more of the best parts of Paris that tripists often miss. Download our self-guided walking trips as pdfs or smartphone apps.
Our Favorite Bookstores
For French speakers: Des Femmes
English titles and gifts: I Love My Blender
Shakespeare and Company
Best Parisian florists