While our days will soon be getting cooler, the European spring is set to turn some of our favourite cities into the stuff of dreams for many a South African traveller. Paris, the third-most visited city in the world in 2014 (after London and Bangkok), is guaranteed to have something for everyone. If you love being active on holiday, here are some ideas for getting out and about in the City of Love.
How to get there: Fly into Paris’ most iconic airport, Charles De Gaulle. For the cheapest flights around, use PriceCheck’s flight comparison.
Top tips on what to do:
- Get your wheels on and join thousands of rollerbladers. If you’re in Paris on a Friday night, join the weekly Pari Roller brigade – thousands of enthusiasts who meet for a skate through Paris’ boulevards. The event started with just 12 skaters in 1993 but is now a draw for people from all over the city and the world.
- Explore and play in the Luxembourg Garden. Created in 1612 by the widow of King Henry IV, this is probably the most famous of Paris’ outdoor attractions. Pony rides, puppet shows, the famous carousel (the city’s oldest) and an extensive playground make the garden ideal for keeping children amused for a few hours while adults explore the Luxembourg Palace, which is where the French Senate meets. Be sure to pack the right backpack for each family member before you take flight!
- Learn to tango by the Seine. Few things could be more romantic than dancing alongside Paris’ second-most famous landmark, the Seine River. Since 1999, a group of dancers has met at 7:30pm at Square Tino Rossi near the Cathedral of Notre Dame ever summer night (from mid-May to late September). Learn the tango, salsa or rock-swing for free in one of the most memorable ways imaginable (a tip-hat is passed around for anyone who’s feeling generous). Do some mental prep before you leave and read some books about learning to dance!
- Cycle the City of Love. Rent a bicycle, pop a baguette in the basket and fulfil your lifelong Paris dream: explore this beautiful city in the way most Parisians do, while working up a sweat and burning off the pain au chocolat(s) you had for breakfast. Wherever you’re staying in the city, you won’t have to walk too far before you find somewhere to rent a bicycle.
- Take a Segway tour for an easier ride. If you prefer a less taxing way of seeing the city up close, why not try a Segway tour. It’s ridiculous fun, makes exploring with older children easier – and will leave you with energy to see more of the city in a short period.