Paris is the capital and most populous city of France. It is situated on the Seine River and also referred to as the 'City of Light' or the 'City of Love'.
Population (metro area): 12.1 million
Currency: Euro (€)
Oh là là, Paris. Maybe more than any other city in the world, the French capital is the kind of destination dreams are made out of. Mention Paris to people from all over the world, and they will start fantasizing. The city conjures up vivid images in everyone's head.
Thoughts of the Eiffel Tower. Of the worlds best fashion. Baguettes fresh out of the oven, tucked away under the arms of the locals. Cute French girls and boys, colorful characters – fictional or real – like Amelie, Serge Gainbourg, and Jane Birkin. Romance. The art and the rich history, the famous artists and the beautiful showgirls. And – of course – the amazing food.
A lot has changed in this city in recent years. A booming new bistro scene has taken the stuffy dining experience and transformed it into something new and exciting. Finally, there is no shortage of good coffee to be had anymore (more on that later and in one of our blog posts here). And the famous Bobo lifestyle, a blend of the words and the attitudes bourgeois and bohemian, is still going strong.
So our day in Paris will be a busy one. As always, spending only 12hrs in a city as big and as diverse as this is an almost impossible task. But it is one that we tackled with lots of delight and excitement. We love this city, and we have been lucky enough to get to spend quite some time there in the past years. If we only had one day to spend in the City of Light, this is what we would do. Join us and let's spend a wonderful 12hrs in Paris together!
10am // Trocadéro
Call us romantics, but the Eiffel Tower melts even the most cynical hearts. And so we start our day with a glorious view of this world famous landmark. Instead of visiting the tower at its home on the Champs de Mars, we look at it from the other side of the river Seine, right at Palais de Chaillot next to Trocadéro. The big square is framed by the Musée national de la Marine and the City of Architecture and Heritage, and it is our first stop today.
That way, we avoid the masses of tourists. And we get to admire the architectural marvel in all its full sized glory. With the statues on both sides of the museums next to us, this might be the best photo opportunity you will get all day. So snap away, if you like.
10.30am // Place de la Concorde //
Jardin des Tuileries
Have you bought a ten pack of Metro tickets yet? If not, now is the time to do it. You'll always have a ticket handy while we explore the city. It's also cheaper than buying single rides. Take the Metro from Trocadéro to Concorde.
On our way to our next destination, we might as well squeeze in some sight seeing. So cross the giant square and have a quick look into the Tuileries. This giant public garden that was created by Catherine de Medici stretches all the way from Concorde to the Louvre. It's also where a lot of the shows during Paris fashion week take place.
Arriving from Concorde, head left to our next stop.
10.45am // Rue Saint-Honoré
Hello // Salut
Thank you // Merci
Yes // Oui
No // Non
Maybe // Peut-être
DO & DONT'S
Do: Look up and notice the street art on the buildings. Paris is full of it!
Don't: Forget the pickpockets. Keep an eye on your stuff!
We are in the first arrondissement of Paris. This part of town houses the Louvre and all the impressive buildings that go with it. It also feels like the center of posh Paris.
Walking down Rue Sain-Honoré, you'll see what we mean. A bit further down on your left you can catch a glimpse of the famous Place Vendôme. Luxury boutiques line the street. Every major fashion house seems to have a store here. Even if we can't afford a thing here, the window displays are fantastic and a lot of fun to watch.
Continue down the street until you reach Colette.
11.15am // Colette
The first shop we visit today is a special one. Colette is perhaps the most famous concept store in the world. Something that you can find in many big cities around the globe today started right here. It is considered by many to be the first shop that combined carefully selected designer pieces, high-end tech gadgets, art books and wonky accessories.
Colette is either loved or hated by Parisians and visitors alike, and arguments for each side are made easily. The fashion on the upper floor is amazing, the street wear on the first floor is lots of fun, and the beauty and skin care products they sell here are hard to get anywhere else. Colette also has tons of different collaborations with numerous brands throughout the year and sells a lot of exclusive limited editions, so you can often see long lines of fashion fans outside the store before it opens at 11am.
But the staff here is also notoriously brisk and sometimes even rude, and some things sold here are just ridiculously expensive. Don't try to take photos inside, you'll be asked to stop immediately.
Don't forget to look down the stairs. There's a bar that sells more than a hundred different brands of bottled water.
Colette // 213 Rue Saint-Honoré // Mon-Sat 11am-7pm // website