Paris is known as one of the most romantic places in the entire world. And people everywhere know the world-famous tourist destinations like the Eiffel Tower, Champs Elysees, the Louvre, Notre Dame, and the Arc de Triomphe. However, there is much to see off the beaten path in Paris that can leave you swooning, and it is definitely worth the effort to find these lesser known destinations. On your next trip to Paris, plan carefully and be sure to include these little known sights to see in Paris:
Basilique St. Denis. The basilica is one of the earliest examples of French Gothic architecture, featuring awe-inspiring stained glass works and giant statues of famous French rulers. The Basilique St. Denis tour takes you through the burial ground of nearly all of France’s royalty, where you can see the tombs of the likes of Marie Antionette, Clovis, and Louis XIV during a two-hour, 45 minute metro ride. This is a very interesting tour of French history, and not for the faint of heart.
Rue Cler. Walk along the cobblestone path to take in the feeling of old Paris, and visit the numerous shops and cafes that line the street. Visit on Sundays to shop at an authentic Parisian street market.
Cour Saint Emilion. If you want to do some shopping but want to avoid the crowds of trendy Paris shopping districts, then this charming pavilion is your perfect stop. Just off the city center and near the Grand bibliotheque, the Cour Saint Emilion is a village of boutiques and restaurants house in historic Bercy storefronts.
Musee Carnivalet. This charming museum is the perfect place to brush up on the history of Paris, covering everything from the city’s origins to its modern condition. If you are a fan of French literature, then you will be pleased to find that the Musee Carnivalet features fascinating exhibits on Rousseau and Voltaire.
Opera Garnier. Home of the famous “Phantom of the Opera,” this opera house is a beautiful work of romantic architecture, and a great place to spend some quiet time reflecting. If you visit on a Thursday afternoon, you can take a tour in English.
Place de la Contrescarpe. This charming pavilion in Paris’ Latin Quarter was memorialized by none other than Ernest Hemingway himself, who once occupied an apartment overlooking the square. It’s a great place to walk around and people watch, and to learn a lot about authentic Parisian culture.
There are many places to visit in Paris that you won’t necessarily find in all of the popular travel guides. Keep these great lesser-known destinations in mind when you visit Paris.
Abuout the Author: Ludivina Bessemer loves to travel throughout France and often helps others set up their own France tours, whether they want to work with a formal tour group, explore on their own, or both!