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Attractions of Paris

The city is the attraction of course but inside the many wonders of Paris are a few hidden gems which somehow are overlooked, perhaps because of the global awareness of The Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, the Sacré Cœur and the Seine. Find here then some of those other attractions which make our city special.

 

 

The Venice of Paris

Canal Saint-Martin and Canal de l'Ourcq - Sometimes called the Venice of Paris, though in fact it is more similar to Amsterdam, or the canals of London around Camden lock, this quiet tree lined canal just near the Gare du Nord.  Whether you take a tour boat trip or more like a local just walk and picnic on the quiet banks this is a welcome break from the traffic and cars of other parts of the city.

From the Place d'Italie take the Metro M5 orange line northwards to Bastille.

 

Child's Play is International

Let the kids play with the local kids at one of the many city parks, try particularly Le Jardin d'Acclimatation, located in the giant city wood called the Bois de Boulogne. Originally established in 1860 it has kept up with the times and today has a wide range of activities including archery, fun house mirrors, miniature golf, trains, pony rides, puppets and both science and art museums targeted at kids. Very few tourists go here so it's a great place to immerse in real Parisian life. The entry fee is only 3 Euros, though extra charges for some activities apply.  website

 

New York on the Seine

Visit the 1/3 scale reproduction of New York's Statues of Liberty on Île aux Cygnes in the Seine.

 

The Original Flea Market

It is well worth visiting le Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen to see what a 19th century flea market looked like, and it seems some days that even the stock in the shops has not changed in a hundred years! There are of course many flea markets in Paris but it is this market in the northern part of the city beyond the Périphérique ring road which is the grand dame of them all.  Best reached by taxi but also accessible via Metro though it will take almost an hour from rue Mouffetard. Walk to the northern end of the road and then to the river edge to board at Saint-Michel the M4 northwards until it takes you to Porte de Clignancourt.  website

 

Islands in the stream

Île de la Cité, and it's neighbor Île Saint-Louis, the artificial Île aux Cygnes, and to the west Île Saint-Germain together with Île Seguin, are reminders of how the River Signe has always been at the heart of the city.  From green parks on Île de la Grande Jatte through to the Cathedral and Royal Palaces on Cité to the post-industrial wasteland on Île Seguin it seems every aspect of Paris is presented, and emboldened in miniature on these islands.

These little islands, each with its own character, are both at the heart of the city and at the same time distinct from the cite and from each other. 

It is a simple walk north from rue Mouffetard and when you hit the river you will be right beside Ile de la Cite where you can start your island exploration, but be sure to see more than the Cathedral!   website