Archive for the 'The Great Outdoors' Category


The Central Park of Paris?

6km to the north-east of Paris, the Parc Georges-Valbon is so big that it spreads across the territories of five suburban towns. With the future Grand Paris aiming to redynamise the region, it is perhaps not surprising that such a facility should become one of the new focal points, and plans are afoot to transform […]

Hit the Beach!

Every summer since 2002, Paris closes off sections of its quais to traffic and transforms the riverbank along the Seine into “Paris Beach.” Paris Plage started up again a fortnight ago (July 19th) and will run through August 17th. Paris Plage runs roughly from the Louvre to the Pont de Sully, about 2 kilometers east. There is also […]

Have a Seat

Park chairs, known as Luxembourg chairs, come in upright and relaxed models in a restful shade of green. Today, these are manufactured by a company called Fermob. According to the Fermob website, “the legendary chairs and armchairs of the Jardin du Luxembourg [were] created in 1923 in the Paris parks department workshops, and…Fermob still manufactures […]

Eiffel Tower Skating Rink

Can’t make it to the Alps for a winter sport vacation? There’s another option high in the air for enjoying leisure time in the great outdoors. Almost 200 feet up off the ground, the Eiffel Tower skating rink allows you to swirl and slide inside the monument itself. Open through February!

Setting Sail

It’s been an exceptionally warm and sunny fall this year, and I have been taking advantage of it by being outdoors as much as I can. Some of my favorite places to be in this kind of weather are the Parisian parks and gardens. I especially love to go to the Luxembourg Gardens and the […]

The Greening of Paris

Many sick old trees around Paris were cut down over the summer, their trunks dug up and fresh soil laid down to prepare for the fall plantings. Fences such as this keep people out of the dirt. But in the mean time, with all of the rain and sunshine we had in August they sprouted […]

A New Forest Begins

In the last few weeks, Paris has opened access to the first forest ever to be planted within the city itself. Covering a narrow strip less than half a kilometre long, and currently home to mere saplings, will it ever feel like a wild woodland? After visiting the transiant landscape of this creation in progress […]

A Place in the Sun

After such a wet and cloudy spring, what Parisian *wouldn’t* want an app telling you exactly where to find the sunny terraces around town? I actually saw a sticker for the Sunny Chairs Paris app on a traffic light pole this morning while walking the dogs and downloaded it immediately. You can search by arrondissement, […]

Paris Zoo Reopens!

The Paris Zoo (Parc Zoologique de Paris) celebrated its 80th anniversary with a reopening in June 2014. The six-year closure was necessary to plan renovations. The zoo had never had been renovated or upgraded since 1934. Now, instead of being cooped in cages according to their type, the one hundred eighty park species, including the […]

A Car-Less Champs-Elysees?!

For the first time ever, the Champs-Elysees will be closed to automobiles in observance of July 14, or what Americans (but not the French) call Bastille Day. From 2pm-6pm, the famed promenade will be for pedestrians only. Most Parisians and savvy expats avoid the Champs-Elysees, a morass of tourists and chain stores such as Abercrombie & Fitch.This […]

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