If you wish to discover the real Parisian’s Paris, a visit to a market is a must. The ‘Marché d’Aligre’ is the largest outdoor and covered market and is a real treat for the senses. Afterwards, set off on foot passing by the ‘Place de la Bastille’ or by metro towards the ‘Place des Vosges’ with its beautiful arches and art galleries. Continue on to ‘Le Marais’, one of the oldest districts of Paris, stroll around and take a look in to the inner courtyards where you can discover hidden treasures. For lunch, choose from one of the many bistros, one of my favourite’s being ‘le Café des Musées’ on Rue de Turenne.
After lunch, head towards the Seine and visit ‘Ile St Louis’ and ‘Ile de la Cité’ where you will find Notre Dame de Paris, not forgetting to pass by the Marché aux Fleurs. On both banks of the Seine you will come across many second hand bookstalls, where you can chance upon old books, pictures, vintage postcards and other quirky items. Afterwards, continue to the Eglise Saint Germain des Près, whose history dates back to the year 576. On your way you will discover more art galleries and antique dealers. To end your afternoon, and before returning to the hotel, you could stop and have a drink at the Deux Magots or at the Café de Flore and will discover from where many writers and poets drew their inspiration.
For a typically Parisian evening, allow us to reserve for you tickets for a concert in a church, for example at the Sainte Chapelle where you can admire not only the stained-glass windows but also enjoy a very special atmosphere. To finish off your evening, why not savour a Gastronomical experience in one of our many splendid restaurants.
Above the two Paris Opera houses, hundreds of thousands of bees yearly produce two thousand kilos of honey. A 100 gram jar of honey available at the Opera houses boutiques and at the fine grocery store Fauchon, will set you back 16 euros.
THE VINEYARDS OF MONTMARTRE
Visit the small hill in autumn and you will be surrounded by the famous Grape-Harvest's party of Montmartre. The vineyards are an ancient landmark on the hill. Bacchus, the God of Wine had a temple here. The Abbotts had their own wine press close to Saint Pierre Church. On the first Saturday in October, the grapes are harvested by many important people including celebrities, delegations; Les Chevaliers du Taste-Wine; (the knights of Wine Tasting) from different French provinces. Always a most festive event.
VISIT OF THE SEWERS
For centuries, the main source of drinking water in Paris was the Seine river, which was also the main sewer. Constructions of an underground sewerage system began in 1825 under Napoleon. Today, Egouts de Paris is a smelly museum. Each sewer in the 2,100 km system is marked with a replica of the street sign above. Remember to bring a sweater, as it is always cool underground.