Take a stroll (or an Uber ride) through Paris to see some out-of-the-ordinary museums and enjoy some delicious French cuisine along the way.
Breadcrumbs through the city of lights continues… check out the interactive map at the end of this post to help you plan your visit to Paris.
On a recent visit to my favorite city, I was lucky enough to catch the Picasso Mania exhibit at the Grand Palais. Wow! Picasso never disappoints and the Grand Palais is such a glamorous and oh-so French venue.
Picasso Mania has left the Grand Palais but there are always new and fantastic shows to entice you. Here is a link to what is coming up at the Grand Palais – check it out. I suggest booking a ticket online before you travel since the special exhibitions are often booked-up well in advance. I try and get in as early as possible before the crowds seem too daunting and the rooms get too hot and sweaty (never a good combo).
After a lovely morning of soaking in some culture, it was off to a restaurant recommended by one of my favorite people – she is very saavy about all things one might call, old school French. As promised, the restaurant was charming and sooooo…French! Le Soufflé had so many soufflé choices, it was hard to choose. Make a reservation ahead of time (you can do it online at La Fourchette.com – this is the French version of OpenTable). This quaint restaurant is not hot or trendy, but very good and truly French.
Fortified for the next bit of culture, I headed for another of my favorites, Le Musee des Arts Decoratifs, which is part of the Louvre. Now this museum might not appeal to everyone but if you are in the design trade, it is a must see and if you just love the decorative arts, then this museum is your jam! It has so much to look at, design through the ages, with great examples in many categories. You do not need to reserve ahead of time for a ticket so head on over whenever you feel the urge to see something beautiful that you wish you could take home to your own house…but alas, you can’t.
The Centre George Pompidou, modern art museum extraordinaire! The building itself is a work of art and the permanent collection is really fun and truly has something for everyone. They also have lots of special exhibits that are worth checking out when you are in the market for something different or cutting edge. They also have a vey swanky restaurant on the roof – excellent people watching! Even if you don’t stay for food, check out the view from the upper outside decks – great views of the city.
Afternoon low blood sugar…need a snack quickly – the St. Regis Cafe on the Ile Saint Louis serves up some yummy hot chocolate. A welcome outdoor table under a toasty heat lamp and something warm and sweet to drink and I am off again. The Musee de la Chasse et de la Nature is, hands down, my very favorite museum in Paris. The museum showcases all things related to nature and hunting. I know that sounds strange because there are so many wonderful museums, but I love the building, the design and I love the exhibits! The stuffed polar bear says it all, the collection is extensive, well presented and beautiful with a sense of humor and panache. Visit for an hour and then return over and over for more in depth tour.
After a long day of looking at amazing and beautiful artwork of all kinds, I am hungry again! Continuing with the quintessential French food theme, mussels and frites with a bottle of white wine will hit the spot. I somehow end up at Le Marché every time I visit Paris, sort of by accident. To be honest, I am not even sure what else they have on the menu other than mussels and frites – so I can vouch for that delicious meal but I can’t speak to anything else that they may serve. When the weather is sunny and warm, you can sit outside on the Marché Sainte-Catherine and enjoy the festive atmosphere of the square. Wow, that was some day! Now home to put my feet up and plan for tomorrow. Paris is the best!
The map below is interactive and you can save it to your own phone or computer with the addresses and notes from the above post. You can add your own notes as well as more stops on the route. Let me know how your trip to Paris goes – Do you have any suggestions for me?