Let’s talk about Paris!
How do YOU decide what to do and where to go when you are in Paris? I don’t need to tell you that the possibilities are endless; but somehow you need to narrow down the choices and think about just what is important to YOU.
I have shelves of books about France, Paris, fiction, biographies, historical writings, guides to hotels and inns, many, many maps, shopping guides and a healthy dose of French language books and guides.
A selection of one of my several shelves filled with all kinds of assorted reading about France and Paris:
A special note about the two copies, above, of “French or Foe?” by Polly Platt.
This was one of the first books I read when I began to visit France on a regular basis. Some reviewers are not crazy about the book; I loved it and found it so helpful, amusing and real! Yes, by now it seems a bit out of date but take a look and see if it interests you…
Next we have these City Walks guides. I think they are great, whether you are a first time flâneur or experienced traveller.
A selection of books I refer to often:
This is one of my personal all-time favorites:
Quiet Corners of Paris
It was through this perfectly square little book that I discovered the
“Musee de la Vie Romantique” in the 9th arrondissement. What a gem with the lovely, quiet gardens, old buildings, small cafe, and those typically Parisian benches. But the book has so…many other gems. I urge you to take a look.
I am generally not a fan of the more commercial guide books, but here are two exceptions.
First is this: the Knopf Mapguides “Paris”
This book/guide is arranged by arrondissement with a very good map that opens up, and then suggestions broken down by Restaurants, Tearooms Cafes & Bars, Shopping, and Museums. At the very end of the book is a section “Hotels in Paris” divided by price. While it only lists about five in each price category, I was surprised at the quality and accuracy of each listing. I found some hidden and unusual choices after cross-referencing them on line. So take a look. And, this is a series of about forty different cities around the world.
Hiding under the Knopf guide is the ubiquitous green Michelin Paris guide.
This entire series, as you may know, is a reliable and good source.
And now, the best for last!
I was just given this book by a very good friend, as an early birthday present (daughter and I will be celebrating my birthday while over there!)
Paris: An Inspiring Tour of the City’s Creative Heart
It is a truly lovely book. I know… another book about Paris, you say.
Not so. Whether looking through the book by Arrondissements, ” A Stroll Through Paris” or in the Paris Handbook sections of “Design”, “Style”, or “Flavor” it is well written, has exceptionally beautiful photographs, and is full of unique places and anecdotes. I highly recommend this book.
I do hope my suggestions have been, or will be, helpful to you. And I hope you will let all of us know if you have some good suggestions or ideas about your travel experiences; we would all love to know!