Paris stirs a certain l’amour inside its guests, giving it a bit of a reputation for being the romantic capital of the world. The French city is a classic choice for couples looking to find and share a little je ne sais quoi, or solo travellers looking to fall head over heels for the city itself. Take a look at these six romantic places that love birds should seek out on city breaks to Paris.
1. Sacre Coeur
Looking over the bohemian hill village of Montmartre, this white church and basilica looks like a guardian angel. Take a free tour inside to appreciate its opulent beauty. If it’s sunny, after your tour, sit down on the surrounding grass to catch some rays, otherwise, wander into the village square where you can watch local artists at work while tucking into French cuisine in the welcoming restaurants. This neighbourhood has been the setting for many popular romantic films, such as Moulin Rouge, Midnight in Paris and Amelie, and it could be the setting for your own love story.
2. Luxembourg Garden
Like many artists and writers before you, be inspired by the sheer beauty of Luxembourg Garden. This huge, manicured park boasts a palace, a fountain, preened lawns, a puppet show, tennis courts and food kiosks. Sit down on one of the green chairs that are dotted around the place; perfect for some serious people watching. Then, grab a coffee to walk around with, taking in the seasonal colors and happy sounds that are seen and heard throughout.
Head to Rue de Tivoli with an appetite to enjoy a lunch at one of Paris’ oldest tea saloons, Angelina. The dizzying selection of sweet treats will make you weak at the knees, from macarons to eclairs to custard tarts. There is also a savoury menu to choose from, but it’s the pastries and cakes that stand out here. Hot chocolate lovers simply must try to chocolat chaud; it basically tastes like a melted dark chocolate bar and is served with a huge dollop of freshly whipped cream. Look around and feel like French royalty in the gilded decor.
Hop onto the RER C from St Michel and you’ll be in the famous suburb of Versailles within half an hour. This area is of course home to the Palace of Versailles, an extraordinary piece of architecture set in vast grounds that also feature two Trainon palaces and a hamlet. Discover the history of the palaces most famous resident, Marie Antoinette. The luxurious decor, fascinating guided tour, perfectly kept gardens and huge water features will blow you away. There is also the opportunity to rent a rowing boat out together on a sunny day.
5. Champ de Mars
This probably comes as no surprise but no trip is complete without a trip to Eiffel Tower. If you want to take in the panoramic views, take the elevator (or steps, if you’re feeling active) up to the top through the day. However, at night time it starts to feel a little bit more romantic. The tower lights up in the dark and on the hour, every hour, it sparkles as the bulbs flash! There’s a reason it is called the City of Lights.
6. The Seine
The surprisingly clean(ish) Seine guides visitors through the city and you’ll spot many tourists and locals alike setting down on the paved banks with a bottle of vin rouge on an evening in the summer months. You can also take a river boat tour or stop in one of the bars and restaurants that line the river. It’s also a lovely idea to walk alongside the Seine and look at the barges that bob along, decorated with colorful flowers and deck chairs.
No matter what budget you are on, there are plenty of romantic past times to enjoy in Paris. Be prepared to be swept off your feet.