Monday, April 26, 2010

pique-nique time!

It is officially picnic season here in Paris now that the sun has FINALLY decided to come out. Picnicking may not be something most tourists would think to do, but it definitely brings a nice break (or end) to the day. There are many places in Paris to have a great “pique-nique” as the French say, but I certainly do have a few favorites that I thought I would share. So grab a blanket, a bottle of rosé (don't forget your corkscrew!), a baguette, some delightfully smelly french cheese and head out to enjoy some of the green spaces Paris has to offer!

Parc du Champs de Mars

Since the Eiffel Tower is usually one of the first images that pops into someone’s head when they think about Paris, I thought I would start here. One of the largest parks in Paris and you definitely can’t beat the view. The park is named after the Roman God of war and apparently it was once used as a military training field. Now, the only training going on is maybe a game of Frisbee!

*champs de mars, paris, Paris, Ile de France, 75007‎
Metro: Bir-Hakeim (line 6), Champ de Mars Tour Eiffel (RER C), Ecole Militaire (line 8)

Buttes Chaumont

Not only is this a great place to spread out your picnic blanket, you can also take a long stroll around the park and see man-made grottos, cute little pathways and bridges, a 32ft waterfall that cascades into a beautiful lake, and a temple atop a hill modeled after one found in Tivoli, Italy.

*1 Place Armand Carrel, 75019 Paris
Metro: Buttes Chaumont or Botzaris (line 7bis)

Parc Monceau

With its “English” style, this is one of the more “comfortable” parks in Paris. As opposed to the more traditional, rigid French-style parks, Parc Monceau has curved walkways, statues sporadically placed around the garden and a collection or scaled-down architectural features. A local favorite that is great for families, runners (there is a circular dirt track that surrounds the park), or internet-seekers (it is an active free Wi-Fi area).

*58, Boulevard de Courcelles, 75008 Paris
Metro: Monceau (line 2)

Canal Saint-Martin

Although not the grassiest of places to picnic, I still love meeting up with friends here. We usually meet up near The Galerie de l’Ourcq, which has a bit of grass, but you can also wander up and down the canal to find a spot you like! There are also bunches of cute restos and bars along the canal in case you don’t have time to prepare a full picnic.

*It extends from the 4th up into the 10th districts. My favorite place to get out of the metro is at Juares (line 2) and walk from there.

Pont Neuf

Seen in many photos of “romantic Paris”, Pont Neuf has a view of the older part of Paris, including the Notre Dame Cathedral. Surrounded by the Seine, you can wave to passing boats while lying back, relaxing and admiring the view.

*1 Square Vert Galant, 75001 Paris‎
Metro: Pont Neuf (line 7)

1 comment:

  1. Some of my personal favorites include the Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes on either extremity of the city. These large parks have everything from lakes to tracks and at Bois de Vincennes you also have the Chateau de Vincennes.


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