Cultural events in Paris that have thrilled me and that you, too, can experience
Paris has had a special place in my heart since 1988 when I started working for the French airline Air France. I spent many weeks and weekends in the “city of dreams”. So I was overjoyed when I received an invitation from the France Tourism Development Agency Atout France to visit cultural events in Paris as a blogger. It is always interesting to go back, and after so many years to find one’s favourite bars, restaurants, bookstores, benches and stores in the same place.
Cultural events in Paris
The capital of France is called by the most beautiful names and evokes many associations – the city of love, the city of light, the city of romance, of art, of culture. Not just because of its history, atmosphere, important tourist and cultural landmarks, but also because of its special charm and unique charisma.
Having described in Part 1 the visits to the Parisian museums, I will continue my review of special cultural events in Paris that we visited during the presentation of the new tourist season.
Official launch of the Paris cultural season at Opera Le Garnier
The official opening of the Paris cultural season took place at one of the most beautiful operas in the world – Opera Le Garnier. We reached the opera from the hotel in old timer convertible Citroen 2CVs, the so called Ducks. An excellent option to get to know Paris. Our driver was a special connoisseur of Paris and during the ride told us heaps of interesting tidbits about the “City of Light”. Opera Le Garnier was constructed in neo-baroque style and is considered to be an architectural master piece of the second half of the 19th century. The most famous part of the Palais Garnier is a large staircase, to this day considered to be one of the most opulent staircases in the world. The formal opening was attended by the mayor of Paris – Anne Hidalgo, who delivered a fantastic and inspiring speech. Otherst were French minister of culture Audrey Azoulay, deputy minister of tourism Mattias Fekl, and Caleri Pécresse, from the office of Ile-de-France. They all emphasized that this season the tourists will be able to enjoy 500 most interesting cultural events in Paris. From the stage we were treated with the most beautiful scenes from ballet, drama, opera, and music. The formal part was followed by a real party with clubbing, rivers of Moët & Chandon, and elegant catering. Unforgettable.
Get to know Paris with Bateaux Parisiens
We spent the first evening having dinner and socializing on a boat sailing down the Seine.
An unforgettable experience which, if you’re in Paris, you shouldn’t miss. This is a way to see at once the city and all of its most important landmarks. The dinner was excellent, and we frequently went out on the deck to admire closely the bridges of Paris, the Church of Notre Dame, Musée d’Orsay, the National Library and the docks of the Seine, where lovers like to snuggle and kiss.
Philharmonie de Paris
The next day we enjoyed the exhibition of the Spanish designer Balenciaga in the magical museum of La Bourdelle and a visit to the Paris Philharmonic (Philharmonie de Paris), where after listening to the orchestra’s rehearsal we gathered for lunch at the top of the modern building that after a decade of reconstruction was finally opened in early 2015. This cultural institution has an annual budget of 80 million euro! That’s how highly the French regard their culture. But this was evident in all of the institutions we visited.
Shakespeare and Co. – paradise for book lovers
On that Tuesday (second day of our press-tour), we had the evening off and you can guess what I planned for those few hours. I visited the most famous, cult bookstore in the world located on the left bank of the Seine, exactly opposite the Notre Dame – at 37 Rue de la Bucherie, in 5th arrondissement. If you like books, this is the place for you. For a while ago the bookstore has also had a café so that you can sit down, sip coffee or tea and enjoy the scent of old books, with a view of the most beautiful cathedral in the world. Shakespeare and Co is a bookstore specialized exclusively in Anglo-Saxon literature, but that’s not the only interesting thing about it. The first floor above the bookstore, known as “tumbleweeds”, serves as a shelter for travellers, accommodated there in exchange for a few hours’ work at the bookstore. A few steps from the bookstore is one of the oldest pastry shops in Paris – the famous Odette (the house in which it is located dates back to the 17th century – 77 rue Galande), where a must try are the typical French pastries “les choux” with an excellent espresso!
Magical palaces in the vicinity of Paris – Fontainebleau and Versailles
The third day of our press tour was dedicated to palaces. We first visited the royal of palace Chateau de Fontainebleau, where Napoleon used to live. The lunch and the afternoon were reserved for a visit to the largest palace in the world – Versailles. Lunch again left us speechless. The elegant café restaurant “Ore – Ducasse” is located at the palace of Dufour. We started with Moët & Chandon and finished with the chocolate phantasy created in the honor of Marie Antoinette.
Dinner at the 58th floor of the greatest “Parisian charmer”
Dinner was booked at the 58th floor of the most important tower in the world – Tour Eiffel, and can also be considered one of the cultural events in Paris. Just as the entire trip was inspiring, so was the dinner. You really feel good having Paris in the palm of your hand.
Thus ended our fantastic press-tour. In addition to getting to know the most important Cultural events in Paris for the next 6 to 12 months, we, bloggers and journalists, also got to know each other and exchange our impressions and experiences of Paris.
Until then, be sure to visit Paris, which will make you like it more and more every time, or at least will try to do so with its countless trump cards. You’ll soon agree with my opinion that this is the most beautiful city in the world.
Paris mon amour – you’ll be forever in my heart.