Best Flea Markets to Shop in Paris

Whether you are a tourist on a budget or a tourist with enough cash to spend for souvenirs and a little Parisian shopping, Paris’ flea markets should definitely be in your itinerary. Paris is not just about fancy dining and shopping; there are also flea markets, or les puces, located in the outskirts of Paris where you can find unique items and unusual merchandise at low prices.

Merchants from all over Europe set-up shop in these flea market locations right outside Paris to sell their unique items. The variety of items sold in these flea markets are very surprising since you could find antiques and vintage pieces sold for low prices. If you are a collector of fancy French china or perhaps, dolls and toys that are old, you should definitely start your search for more of these items in the les puces.

If you can’t find what you were looking for in one flea market, don’t fret– there are two other large flea markets for you to check out. These flea markets are also located on the outskirts of Paris.

The largest of these three flea markets can be found in Puces de Saint Ouen, a sprawling 7-hectare area full of merchants and wares. It is believed that over 3000 vendors are found in this flea market while over 180,000 visitors are known to visit it every weekend. Puces de Saint Ouen has also been recognized as the world’s largest antique market.

Puces de Saint Ouen is only open on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays of every month; however, minor sales may occur during the weekdays. To reach Puces de Saint Ouen, simply take the metro at Porte de Clignancourt, Line 4.

Another smaller yet popular flea market in Paris is the flea market in Porte de Vanves. Antiques are rarely sold here; however, if you are looking for unusual modern items like paintings, clocks, picture frames, lamps and everything else in between, Porte de Vanves is the place to be. Only 50 vendors are found in this area but the merchandise they sell are very unique and varied. You could chance upon art pieces and wood structures in this flea market, as well as other common items like mirrors and garden pieces.

To reach Porte de Vanves, simply take the Metro at Line 13. Make sure to schedule all your trips to this flea market on Saturday and Sunday mornings only since the area is a ghost town, especially in the evening.

Whether you’re a shopaholic or a mere collector of antiques and rare finds, the flea markets in Paris are the best places to find special souvenirs.

5 Art Museums to Visit in Paris

Who doesn’t love art? Kids are easily amazed by the unusual things art and history have to offer and not only does exposing your kids to different evidences of early art and history entertain them, it also helps them grow. Instead of busying yourself with arcade games, video games, and toys, take your children to an educational road trip which they will never forget. Paris has all the right museums and attractions which will surely bring out the Picasso or Michelangelo in your kids.

Musée de la Poupée – Paris
28, rue Beaubourg Impasse Berthaud
75003 PARIS

What you’ll see: art and toys such as authentic, little French dolls, wood-crafted toys, accessories, furniture, and other small toys for boys. Musée de la Poupée – Paris keeps track of the history of toys. If you are interested in finding out who enjoyed what in a certain year, this museum keeps track of it all.

This museum is open from 10 AM to 6PM daily, Mondays through Fridays, only. For adults, the entrance fee is 8 Euros but for children aged 3 to 11, the rates are at 4 Euros. For students, the entrance fee is 6 Euros.

Grévin
10 boulevard Montmartre
75009 PARIS

Like Madame Tussaids, Grevin is a museum that showcases the most stunning wax work images of many popular people, including the President of France, celebrities, royals, and other popular personalities. Philippe Starck and Barack Obama are the museum’s latest exhibits.

This museum is open from Mondays through Fridays, at 10 AM until 6:30 PM; however, over the weekends, you may drop by at 9:30 AM until 7:00 PM. The entrance fee is fixed at 21.50 Euros but students may pay 18.50 Euros, which is a discounted rate.

Musée de la magie – Musée des automates
11, rue Saint-Paul
75004 PARIS

If you are fond of magic or anything involves fancy tricks, cards, and a little magic dust, the best place to go is to Musée de la magie – Musée des automates. This museum showcases different tools used for executing different magic tricks.

The musuem is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2:00 PM until 7:00 PM while the entrance rates are at 7 Euros for adults and 5 Euros for children aged 12 and below.

Palais de Tokyo – Site de Création Contemporaine
13, avenue du Président Wilson
75116 PARIS

Everything about this museum is art: the east wing houses modern art while the left wing is where you can find contemporary art creations. This museum is very popular among Parisians but don’t let that put you down, there are so many surprises in this museum intended for tourists, as well.

The museum is open from Tuesdays through Sundays and the entrance fee is at 6 Euros for adults.

Petit Palais, Musée des Beaux Arts de la ville de Paris
Avenue Winston Churchill
75008 PARIS

Our last stop for the day is where you can find fancy items used by the French royals of the previous centuries. Everything here is fancy and fragile so make sure to watch your step wherever you go. The Petits Palais also showcases paintings and different works of art.

The admission rates have changed over the years in this museum so make sure to ask before visiting. It is also open from Tuesdays until Sundays.

Best Clothes to Pack for your Trip this May

It’s spring in Paris once again and it is the best time to dress like a true fashionista!

April and May comprise the spring season in Paris and those who are visiting the City of Light in May should prepare for a real-life fashion showdown. The streets of Paris will not be a sea of black coats and black slacks this springtime, instead, colors and prints of different shades and textures will flood the districts.

Spring is the best time to experiment with clothes, colors and styles. Since it will neither be too cold nor too warm outside, it wouldn’t be a good idea to stick with your black coat, pants, and boots. Most Parisians, especially locals, will be in their best spring wear, as well. Colors like orange, brown, turquoise, red, green, khaki, white and several others will be “in” and darker hues will not be very common. If you want to know what most Parisians will be wearing so you can prepare before your trip, head down to the websites of popular fashion designers and see what’s in their spring wear gallery.

Ladies will find the season exciting since they will be able to exercise their fashion chops as they mix and match different springtime clothing. Men, on the other hand, will have to stick to the common casual wear. After all, there is not a lot of unusual variations for men’s fashion. A cool shirt, colored scarf, a beanie hat, and some light khaki pants may do for starters. You may also refer to fashion websites for more ideas.

During spring, skirts, scarves, and sleeveless tops tend to become very common. You might want to build your wardrobe with tops, skirts, pants and shorts with sophisticated floral designs, stripes, and perhaps, some repetitive shapes. Since vintage wear has become quite popular lately, clothes with bows and ruffles may become “in fashion” as well.

Although you are encouraged to experiment with different spring time styles, don’t forget to invest in some light rain coats or jackets as well. Springtime in Paris does not mean everything will be sunny and bright; some days will be rainy, cold, and gloomy and a colorful jacket or coat might come in handy.

Remember, being fashion forward does not mean having the latest designs in your closet, it means knowing what suits an occasion without spending so much on your wardrobe. Let your creativity run wild this spring!

Top 3 Chocolate Shops in Paris

Like Belgium, France boasts its own unique chocolate creations and there are hundreds, even thousands of chocolate shops in Paris to prove it.

Some of Paris’ most interesting chocolate shops are already known throughout the country, even the rest of the world. These chocolate shops are often found in

Perhaps Paris’ most popular pastry and chocolate shop is Laduree. In fact, Laduree was featured in a Hollywood movie and in several TV shows in the US. Laduree stands for luxurious treats and delicious pastries, making it one of Paris’ highly visited restaurants and pastry shops. Laduree’s Macarons is considered their best and most popular creation, yet.

There are four (4) Laduree branches in Paris todate:

Laduree Bonaparte

Laduree Bonaparte in 21 Rue Bonaparte 75006, Paris

Laduree Royale

Laduree Royale in 16 Rue Royale 75008 Paris

Laduree Printemps

Laduree Printemps near 62 Boulevard Hausmann 75009

Laduree Champs Elysees

Laduree Champs Elysees in 75 Avenue des Champs Elysees 75008 Paris

Although Laduree popularized the sandwich type, colorful macarons which are sold in different restaurants and shops across the country, Laduree also serves other delicious meals and breads.

Just a few blocks away from Laduree Bonaparte is where you can find another popular chocolate shop. La Maison du Chocolat is a chocolate shop that specializes in all things chocolatey like chocolate eclairs, macarons, and cakes. They are known for creating chocolate jewels back in 2005.

You can visit La Maison du Chocolat at 225 Rue du Faubourg St. Honore, 75006 Paris.

On a nearby district, you can find another chocolate shop which is known throughout Paris for their Eiffel Tower chocolate creation. Basically, they product chocolate renditions of the Eiffel Tower.

Michel Chaudun is also a famous restaurant and confectionary in Paris. Tourists and celebrities are known to visit the shop to taste their finest chocolate creations.

For a taste of the Eiffel Tower chocolate, head down to 149 Rue de l’Universite, 75007.

http://www.Welcome2France.com is where you can find beautiful Paris apartments located near these chocolate shops. Book with us today!

5 Reasons Why Getting Lost in Paris is a Good Thing

Paris is a fairly large city and the city which is made of over 20 districts has so many treasures and amazing scenes to offer. Many who go to Paris already know where to find the Eiffel Tower, what bus to take to get to a certain district and how much time to spend to walk to a certain landmark. Google Maps and other interactive smart phone apps have actually made traveling easier but if you want to make your Paris more memorable, why don’t you leave all your maps and apps in your luggage and simply, get lost.

Dare to do what no other tourist has done before: leave your travel guides behind and face Paris boldly without a map.

1. Learn time management.

Before you start with your trek, you need to prepare a few things: make sure to bring a watch with you or set your smart phone to alert you a few hours before it gets too dark. Set a curfew for yourself so you don’t spend the entire night walking around in, heaven forbid, an unsafe location. Paris is generally safe as a city but who knows who you’ll meet in the city and what their intentions are.

Getting lost in Paris simply means going around the city without a specific destination in mind and without the assistance of a travel guide so you get to see the city in a way that’s never been seen before. Getting lost in Paris doesn’t mean losing your sense of time though, so make sure to set a curfew for yourself and stick with that schedule.

2. See Paris differently.

Tourists who come to Paris with a travel guide pretty much know what to expect. The travel guide is making their trip easy for them, but if you had gone to Paris without any help from a map or guide, you will see Paris in a very different way. To locals, Paris is a mega-city where culture and commerce meet and mix harmoniously. To tourists, Paris is a city where you can find beautiful sights and sceneries, but to a lost tourist, Paris is a large strange place with so much to offer and so many treasures to share, but first, you have to find out where these treasures are.

Make your trip to Paris a personal experience and get to know Paris in a very honest way.

3. Know landmarks and tourist attractions faster.

Without a map, you will have to rely heavily on landmarks to find out where you are and where to go next. It would be a very exciting experience to see Paris without any guide and if you want to remember streets and landmarks faster, do so without a map.

4. Learn to speak to the locals.

A map is often used to show you directions but what do you do if you don’t have one? You will have to leave all your inhibitions behind and learn to converse with locals. Simply put, you will have to ask around. You will need to ask where you are and how to get to a certain location; most importantly, you will have to do all these to find out how to get back to your apartment.

map of paris5. Discover streets and locations rarely mentioned in travel guides.

The best thing about getting lost in Paris is that you get to discover streets and locations that are rarely mentioned in travel guides. On your trek, you might stumble upon unusual museums, statues and structures. For example, there are several copies of the Statue of Liberty throughout Paris, there’s one near the Grenelle bridge, Pont de l’Alma, and Musee des Arts et Metiers. Where are these places? You’ll have to find out for yourself.

Paris in the Springtime: Scenic Drives in Paris

With Spring right around the corner, the buzz for scenic drives and gardens in Paris have once again become popular. Within the city proper, gardens such as Tuileries, Champs-Elysees, Jardin du Luxembourg and parks like Buttes-Chaumont are often swarmed by tourists but if you want to keep away from the busy crowd, take the road less traveled and head down to these scenic drives and locations in the outskirts of Paris, instead. There are castles, fortresses, and palaces with lush gardens and stunning views you probably have not visited yet, so take the chance to see these tourist spots in person, this Spring.

Our journey begins in the northern outskirts of Paris, specifically in the town of Senlis and the chateau of Chantilly.

Château de Chantilly is a magnificent structure built during the late 1500’s to serve as one of the homes of the Montmercy family. It has undergone so many damages over the years but none of which were too serious to destroy the magical facade of the building. Today, the Chateau serves as a museum and a recreation center.

Places to visit: the chateau itself, its side gardens and the man-made fountain a few steps away from the chateau.

Not too far off from Chantilly is Senlis, a historic town that has become the subject for many films and TV shows. It is considered a jewel in this region of France because it is where you can find 16th century streets, courtyards, homes and structures. The town has technically maintained its 16th century look, making it one of the best towns to visit if you want to see France in the medieval era.

Places to visit: The entire estate of the Royal Abbey of Chaalis is a stunning location that includes gardens, fountains, and parks

The most beautiful towns of France are not only found in the northern region since the central area of the country boasts its own picturesque landmarks, as well. If you’re not too tired to go for a long drive, make sure your next destination would be the town of Moret-sur-Loing. Located south of Paris, this old commune has served as the inspiration for many of Monet’s and Renoir’s paintings. Even without an easel and a brush, it’s so easy to tell that Moret-sur-Loing is a masterpiece in itself.

Places to visit: Though privately owned, you should definitely try to drive by Château de Moret, a stunning home built in the 12th century.

Although Monet has used Moret-sur-Loing as the inspiration for most of his paintings, Monet never lived there and preferred to call Giverny his home, instead. Giverny is small commune west of Paris and it is where you can find three of the most intriguing gardens yet: gardens about hell, purgatory, and heaven. These gardens are found in Musée des Impressionnismes Giverny and may be visited from Mondays through Fridays.