When going to the most romantic city in Europe, Paris, it is important to get the full Paris experience in and the best way to do this is to spend your days there as if you were a local. This is no easy feat, but when you know how to avoid the tourist traps and blend in as a local it really isn’t hard to have an amazing and authentic experience.
Where to stay
When staying in Paris, do exactly as the locals do and rent an apartment for the weekend. Holiday apartments are a great way to feel as if you are a local and also to get a real feel of the neighbourhood you are staying in. Pick an area that might be a little quieter too, this will be much better than seeing tourists everywhere, because all the hotels are in proximity of each other. Imagine the feeling after landing from your Air France flight and heading straight to your apartment on the train!
Learn some French
Before arriving in France it can really pay to brush up on your French, especially because Parisians are very proud of the French language and rightly so, it is one of the most beautiful languages on the planet without a doubt. So get out your old French phrase book or look to the internet to one of the many great language learning apps that are available today. The French will appreciate your willingness to speak their language, and it will only add to your experience.
Go where the locals go
We already talked about staying in an apartment rather than a hotel and how helpful this can be in the authenticity of your experience. Something you can do is to go somewhere where you know there are no tourist attractions at all and then you know you will be seeing the real Paris. You will most likely find a shop, bakery or cafe that very few other tourists know about. How good is that?
Wandering around some different neighbourhoods can be an interesting experience in itself and watching the Parisians (rather than other tourists) in their everyday lives can be very interesting.
What to eat
Eating in Paris should not be a problem at all, especially since the French have one of the most famous food cultures in the entire world. One thing to notice is that people in Paris eat quite late and you should expect to be eating dinner after 8 o’clock in the evening at least. Of course if you are not accustomed to this, it is a great idea to keep your energy level up during the day by eating some fantastic baguettes, croissants, and other great French pastries.
Be adventurous with your food too and try all the interesting things that the French have to offer, for example steak tartare, escargot and many other delicious dishes.
Most of all, enjoy your time in Paris!