France

Paris Fall Weekend

|Location: Paris, France|

I could spend the rest of my days in Paris and be so happy.  I’ve been more times than I can count but can never get enough of this fabulous city.  Thankfully it’s only a quick three hour train ride from Stuttgart and we make the most out of it!  We hopped over to Paris for the weekend to savor the Parisian life, eat at our favorite restaurants, and explore some new spots.

Our favorite area to stay is the Rue Mouffetard area in the 5th arrondissement, near the Censier-Daubenton metro stop.  It’s a market street that is very alive and well, from the Patisserie to the Poissonnerie, Fromagerie, and more.  It feels ‘small Paris’ to me.  If you stay long enough, you’ll recognize all of the store keepers, the Macaron owner, and even the ones who come out every Sunday afternoon to play the accordion, base, and sing so the locals can dance in the square Saint Médard.  It is so magical, and I always say it’s the area in which I will one day live!

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Feeling so content on Rue Mouffetard

 

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Our favorite boulangerie/patisserie, Le Fournil de Mouffetard

Walking north towards the Ile de la Cite and Notre Dame, we finally checked out the famous Shakespeare and Co. bookstore.  I know it’s popular but had skipped over it for many trips, and to my pleasant surprise it was everything you want a bookstore to be and more.  It’s full of nooks and crannies, warped wooden beams and tons and tons of books.  It used to be the haunts of Hemmingway and the Lost Generation in the 1920s.  I think Belle and the Beast would also approve!  The walk to Shakespeare and Co. was full of beautiful Parisienne doors and even the prettiest pink house.

If you’re near this area in the 5th arrondissement, you must try our favorite lunch spot, Le Pré Verre.  The food is gourmet and the formule midi, or set lunch menu, hands down cannot be beat.  You get a starter (usually a type of salad), main, glass of red wine and a cafe for 14.90 EUR, plus all the baguettes and water you could want.  It is a steal and our very favorite lunch spot!  The restaurant is very close to the Cluny Museum (which I also highly recommend), and not to far from the Pantheon, Shakespeare and Co., or the Notre Dame.  It’s also close to the pink house above. : )

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Today’s formule midi of the day at Le Pré Verre

The rest of our afternoon consisted of exploring the 2nd arrondissement up Rue Montorgueil, another more well known market street that we hadn’t been to yet, and made our way to l’appartement Sézane.  Sézane is a stylish French label who opened as an online store and you can now shop in a physical store in Paris (and as of a few weeks ago, New York as well!).  The physical store has only recently been opened, and when we got there we found a long line wrapped around the block to get in!  The line was of course mostly ladies and a few dedicated boyfriends and husbands, including mine.  I will say everything in the store was gorgeous!

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The infamous (or is that instafamous?) floor at Sézane

Dave was a very good sport throughout our Sézane shopping ; ) so our next adventure was a speakeasy in the 10th of his choice called Lavomatic.  I was very impressed with how to get in and the actual bar was very cool.  Make sure you go early, there was a line to get in when we left!

One of our favorite spots to enjoy the sunset and glow of the city is along the banks of the Seine under the Pont Neuf.  Sit on a bench facing the river, or even on the banks of the Seine.  It’s quite romantic and I love how the city lights up at night.  This little spot to enjoy each others company also happens to be close to our favorite place for dinner, Au Bougnat.  A few years ago, Dave and I spent a wonderful seven days in Paris and had the entire city to ourselves.  On the second day Dave got down on one knee and asked me to marry him on the Pont Alexandre III, and we celebrated shortly after at Au Bougnat.  I’m talking champagne, bottles of wine, multiple courses.  We had a lot to celebrate, and I may or may not have been uncontrollably crying tears of happiness throughout it all. ; )  We even take a celebratory picture with champagne every time we go because we’re nostalgic like that. : )  So you see, I may be a little biased but I think this restaurant is perfect.  Don’t let the close proximity to the Notre Dame fool you.  This is a hidden gem and oh-so-cozy.  Do yourself a favor and book a table here next time you’re in town!

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Admiring the city’s sparkle and each other on the quai de la Seine under the Pont Neuf.
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Scallops and risotto at Au Bougnat. This plat was to die for


The next day we enjoyed our Rue Mouffetard a bit more with some cappuccinos followed by fresh oysters from the Poissonnerie Mouffetard.  It was a treat!  The rain and sun kept alternating throughout the day but I didn’t mind since I was back in my favorite slice of the world.

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If you can make it to Rue Mouffetard on the weekends, be sure to grab six or twelve oysters from Poissonnerie Mouffetard, and check out their fresh fish.  We love it!

After strolling around Mouffetard, finding pretty fall flowers and of course picking up some treats, we made a pit stop at the Opera before we had to head back to Stuttgart.  We’ve seen shows here in the past but today we only had enough time to stay outside.  The inside is stunning but the outside is equally as romantic.

I hope you enjoyed our weekend in Paris mes amis!  I’ll post a full Paris City guide soon so stay tuned for ALL my recommendations on what to do, where to eat, and where to get out and explore beyond the city!  Paris is my favorite place in the world and I hope to inspire you to find more about it as well!

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Can’t wipe a smile off my face when I’m brought to Paris 🙂

Get there:  Paris is very accessible by train.  You can take a high speed train from Stuttgart to Paris in 3 hours, compared to a 6+ hour drive!  Check the SNCF website as well as Deutsch Bahn to get the best prices, and book at least a month in advance if possible!  The trains run to the city center, while flights to Paris still need a 1hr+ train ride.

Stay:  We adore the 5th arrondissement and always stay in an AirBnB near Censier – Daubenton.  Paris is a huge city with tons to offer so try out a few areas and see what fits you best!

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