A Cruising Couple | November 9, 2015 9:00 PM ET
3 Ways to Have the Perfect Picnic in Paris
If you’re planning a trip to Paris, chances are you already have the top attractions like the Eiffel Tower and Louvre jotted down on your to-do list. But while you’re zipping from place to place, don’t forget to take the time to slow down and soak in the details that make Paris such a wonderful destination. One of our favorite ways to do just that is with a lazy picnic, complete with great French wine and local delicacies.
There are plenty of ways to plan the perfect picnic in Paris, but here are three of our favorite options that offer a little something for everyone:
Itinerary Number 1: An Evening at the Eiffel Tower
Where to Go: The Champ de Mars
Photo via Flickr/Bruno Monginoux
To get en route to the most memorable picnics of your life, we want to put you smack dab in front of the Eiffel Tower itself.
The Champ De Mars is a long, picturesque green space open to the public. Come and grab the best spot so you can enjoy a perfect view of the world-renowned monument while you snack on some French delicacies with your loved ones. Photographers should plan to arrive around 6 p.m. for the best lighting. Stay past sunset so you can get the most out of your picnic and enjoy the beauty of the brilliantly lit tower in all its glory.
What to Eat & Where to Find It: Paris is world-renowned as the City of Love for a reason. Only here can you bypass waiting in line at the supermarket to have a romantic picnic delivered straight to you. Paris Picnic, a restaurant located on Rue Notre Dame de Nazareth, specializes in picnic baskets of all varieties and will happily deliver one to your location of choice.
Choose from a variety of baskets such as:
• The Le Classique: choice of wine, baguette, assortment of cheeses, charcuterie (cured meats) fresh salad du jour, artisanal crisps, fresh market selection, mineral water and seasonal dessert.
• Le Chic: champagne, foie gras, baguette tradition, assortment of cheeses, charcuterie (cured meats) fresh salad du jour, artisanal crisps, fresh market selection, mineral water and macaroons.
• Le Bon Bon: champagne, fresh fruits from the market, gourmet chocolates, macaroons, mineral water and seasonal dessert.
Itinerary Number 2: Breakfast by Notre Dame
Where to Go: The Quai de la Tournelle
Photo via Flickr/Lolwaro974
The Quai de la Tournelle is where you’ll want to set up for a gorgeous view of the Notre Dame Cathedral, paired with the peaceful setting of boats bobbing pass on the Seine River. Arrive early in the morning for a picnic breakfast before the cathedral begins to bustle with tourists.
Then, when you finish off those last lingering pastries, head over to the cathedral and allow yourself to be captivated by its singular beauty. The iconic cathedral is France’s most visited monument with about 30,000 people coming each day — given Notre Dame’s 850 years of history, gorgeous gothic architecture and alluring stain-glass windows, it’s hardly any wonder why.
What to Eat & Where to Find It: Let’s start with the coffee, of course. Malongo is a great little local coffee shop just a few minutes from Notre Dame on 50 Rue Saint-Andre des Arts. The espresso is delicious, but there are other coffee varieties if you prefer to start the day with a cappuccino. After your coffee fix, grab some pastries from Angelina Cafe, located on 226 Rue de Rivoli. It’s said that this is the place to get the best Chocolat Chaud (hot chocolate) in all of Paris, but you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu.
Itinerary Number 3: A Local Favorite
Where to Go: Parc Monceau
Photo via Flickr/Panoramas
Parc Monceau is the place to go for a truly traditional picnic away from the crowds and the tourists. Spread out your blanket over the folds of lush green grass, watch the ducks float gently by on the pond and surround yourself with views of vibrant flowers and elegant stone creations.
This is a hidden gem in Paris, often overlooked by tourists, yet a favorite oasis for locals. Bring the family, as there are large playgrounds and pony rides for the kids.
What to Eat & Where to Find It: La Corniche is located just up the road from the Parc Monceau, at 77 Boulevard de Courcelles. This quaint lunch and dinner spot boasts a menu almost as colorful as its interior. Owned by a French family from Tunisia, La Corniche has a Mediterranean-inspired menu that is both healthy and delicious. You can get just about everything on the menu to go, making it a great stop before your picnic in the park.
There’s so much to do in Paris that sometimes it can be difficult to slow down and appreciate the small things. A leisurely picnic is a perfect way to relax with that special someone and enjoy all the uniquely beautiful moments of a vacation in the iconic city.
Have you been on a picnic in Paris? Where would you recommend?
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