Known as the City of Lights, Paris is one of the top destinations in the world. Recognized mainly for its Eiffel tower and beautiful cafés, this romantic city has so much to offer to its visitors. Regardless of whether you want to spend your honeymoon there or explore the amenities and scenic villages, it is a destination you should write down on your travel list.
For an even better experience, you could learn some basic French words and phrases. There are great online classes, such as Live Lingua French, that teach you the language from the comfort of your home. I mean, you would like to know something else besides “Je t’aime”, right?
There are plenty of famous magnificent places worth visiting, such as the Louvre Museum, Arc de Triomphe, and the Notre Dame Cathedral. But, there are many other lesser-known attractions to visit visit in Paris. Trust me, they are worth your visit. So, let’s check them out.
Although I am mesmerized by the greatness and architecture of the Notre Dame Cathedral, I have to say that Sainte-Chapelle is maybe the most beautiful church in Paris. Located in the middle of the court of the Palais de Justice (Justice Palace), this chapel was originally a private chapel to the Frech kings. Now, it’s home to court registers and courtrooms. That’s why you have to go through security in order to get in.
Reading about it may not leave an impression, but once you enter this chapel, you will feel the fantastic atmosphere. There is some magic there. When the light shines through the panes of the enormous glass mosaics in the upper chapel, it illuminates scenes from the Bible. It’s really a breath-taking view.
Jardin des Serres d’Auteuil
Looking for a piece of nature where I can free my mind and relax, I found the Jardin des Serres d’Auteuil (a.k.a the municipal gardener). These botanical gardens are part of the big greenhouse complex at the southern edge of the Bois de Boulogne. They were built for cultivating plants for municipal parks.
What makes them so beautiful is the way they are grouped around a wonderful tropical greenhouse. In these gardens, you can find a great variety of plants, including palms, orchids, ferns, azaleas, as well as rare trees. It is indeed a piece of nature where you can relax and enjoy the view.
Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
Another place worth visiting is the romantic Parc des Buttes-Chaumont. Whether you are traveling with your partner or looking for a place to enjoy, this park is the perfect spot. It is one of the largest parks in Paris and it’s a real piece of heaven. There you can find a waterfall, lake, bridges, dramatic slopes, fake crags, and plants. It’s indeed a magnificent scenery.
Apart from being romantic, this park is also great for kids because there are many playgrounds and pony rides. You can also sunbathe on the lawns or have a picnic with your friends or family. Moreover, you can climb up the small mountain hidden deep inside the park and get to the Temple de la Sybille. From there, you can see the park and the city.
If you are into ancient times like me, you should visit the catacombs. Sounds mystic, scary, and thrilling at the same time, right? Well, that what catacombs are for – great excitement and time traveling. However, keep in mind that you have to enter legally, otherwise you may get lost.
You can find the catacombs beneath the Parisian streets. This chilling labyrinth of death is home to near 6 million Parisians from the late 18th century. Their bones and skulls are carefully arranged throughout the labyrinth reminding of their death. Apart from these remains, you will also find graffiti from the time of the French Revolution as well as engravings lining the walls.
While looking for a place that reminds of the past, I found the Gaîté Lyrique. This museum is located in a former music hall from the 19 century and has a classic baroque architecture. While reflecting baroque in its appearance, it exhibits arts from the digital age.
What I really like about this place is that you can go with your kids since there are many kids’ activities. There are also drawing activities, storytelling, concerts, workshops, dance performances, and much more. Additionally, there is a free library on the first floor you can visit. It contains a great range of book collections, cultural publications, as well as consoles where you can play video games.
Le Ballon de Paris
If you are looking for high-adrenaline experience, I whole-heartedly recommend Le Ballon de Paris. It offers you an unforgettable flying experience and a scenic view of the magnificent Paris. So, if you have ever imagined carelessly flying in the air, this is your chance. This balloon will take you at a height of 490 feet and let you enjoy the scenery beneath while swinging in the wind.
You can find it anchored in the Parc André Citroën, which is another attraction worth visiting. There are lots of people hanging out in the park, sunbathe, or have a picnic. Also, there is a fountain with numerous springing lets of water which kids find amusing.
I love Paris, but there are moments when I just want to take a break from the whole Parisian thing. In one of those moments, I found the Passage Brady. Found in the Grands Boulevards neighborhood, this small passage is a passage to another country. Well, it’s not a magical path that will literally take you to another country, rather a passage that leads to the Indian and Pakistani communities.
Although it’s not as beautiful as the other passages in Paris, it still offers a one-of-a-kind experience by taking you to a different culture. There, you will find Indian and Pakistani traditional food, such as chicken vindaloo, saris, and New Delhi barber and beard trimmer. So, if you want to explore Paris in-depth, this is definitely one of the less-known places you must visit.