The main purpose for this weekend getaway was to visit a friend of mine, but also to discover all the hidden gems Paris has to offer. As I had been to Paris before and all the ‘must see’ tourist attractions are seen I had a perfect chance to look more into the local life, learn about the culture, wander around on these narrow cobblestone streets empty from tourists and to get lost in smaller not so well known areas.
One of the reasons behind my fondness to Paris is its compactness – most things worth to see are located in the central town and are so close to each other that there’s no need for (public) transport. Also I’m in love with the architecture in Paris. One must give a salute to G. E. Haussmann for renovating Paris and giving us all these wide avenues, parks, squares and of course – Haussmann buildings. I just can’t stop admiring these houses with tiny balconies, secured with ornamental railings and decorated with flora.
A new finding for me this time, a hidden gem, was a labyrinth of passages across Paris. The passages are, as mentioned, labyrinths leading to numerous boutiques, coffee shops and courtyards. Over the years many fell into disrepair or were demolished, but if you know where to look there’s still some of them left. This time I visited two of these – always crowded Passage Jouffroy and its not much quieter sibling Passage Brady.
I often found myself from tiny coffee shops, ordering “un café, s’il vous plait” and plain croissants. The culture, long coffee breaks and picnics by the river are things I will definitely start to miss.