Paris has always had my heart. There are some places that people are inexplicably drawn to, and for me, Paris is one of them. The architecture, the history, the shopping and fashion, the quaint streets…I could visit countless times and still discover something new. With each trip, I fall in love all over again. Before heading to the South of France in June, we made a weekend trip to the City of Love. It had been five years since our last visit and I could not wait to be back, sitting at a cafe sipping an espresso and savoring every moment.
Paris in the summer is vibrant and lush! I loved seeing everything green and in bloom as we made our way through the Jardin des Tuileries, stopping for croissants and taking it all in. Strolling aimlessly through the city without an agenda is one of my ways to spend a Parisian day and our weekend trip was the perfect reminder of how much I adore it.
On our first evening, we took a private boat ride on the Seine. I had ridden the Bateaux Mouches as a child but wanted to book a unique experience for Lyle and I to enjoy together. I really love seeing cities from the water because of the different vantage point it affords you. I found our private boat tour after researching charters on TripAdvisor and the captain’s glowing reviews. Captain Artur began operating his boat ride during Covid and quickly amassed a following. While Captain Artur’s boat is not the most glamorous vessel, his hospitality was top notch and the private experience was a blast! Not to mention, it’s also much more economical than other private tours on the Seine.
Following the boat ride, we headed for a drink at the Ritz Bar, followed by dinner at Ober Mamma. Its sister restaurant, Pink Mamma, is an Instagram dream and always praised for its amazing Italian fare. Ober Mamma has a similar menu and it was much easier to get a reservation in advance — both restaurants do take walk-ins but the line gets very long! We loved the Neopolitan pizzas and pastas at Ober Mamma and would definitely go back. I know, Italian food in France seems strange but just trust me.
During the day, we meandered around Montmartre, one of my favorite neighborhoods! On a gorgeous June day, Sacré Coeur and the surrounding area was brimming with activity, including the famous La Maison Rose. We loved walking around the streets behind the Basilica, getting lost taking photos and embracing the charm.
We also visited the Musée de L’Orangerie for the first time. Having been to the Louvre and Musée D’Orsay on previous visits, we wanted to try a new museum and really enjoyed our time there. This is a much smaller museum and is well-known for housing an impressive collection of Monet’s water lilies. If you’re not a big fan of museums, Musée de L’Orangerie is the perfect size because you can enjoy the art without having to spend hours there, which I personally appreciate!
A highlight of the trip was our lunch and afternoon at the Hotel Raphaël on its stunning terrace! If there is a beautiful roof deck in a city we visit, I will find it…and the Hotel Raphaël’s terrace offered the most gorgeous views of the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe. We enjoyed an al fresco lunch and spent the afternoon sipping rosé in the sunshine.
For cafés, my favorite part of the European culture, we started our day at Les Deux Magots, a fixture in Saint-Germain-des-Prés and much less crowded than the famous Café de Flore. A short walking distance from Notre Dame, Louis Philipe, is one of my top picks for a quaint lunch destination.
As always, I missed Paris before I even left and am already planning my next visit…!
The A-Lyst is a Boston-based lifestyle blog curating the very best of style, beauty, food, and travel.