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Top 3 Spaces for Local Parisian Experience

December 12, 2018
by Abigail Haley

While the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre should certainly be on your to-do list when you visit Paris, the city has so much more to offer than just huge tourists attractions and baguettes. Check out these three places for a much more intimate and authentic experience.

Picasso Museum 

This relatively small museum is home to over 5,000 works, and is the only museum in the world with a permanent collection of painted, sculpted, engraved and illustrated works by Picasso. Housed in a 17th-century mansion house renovated to display the art, the museum is a pleasant and practical size with an impressive collection that demonstrates his mastery of skill and transformation as an artist. Free for students, you can return at your leisure and gaze at the works with fresh eyes each time.

Parc Buttes-Chaumont

Parc Buttes-Chaumont is one of the largest and oldest green spaces in the city. Commissioned by Napoleon III to manifest his vision of a modernized Paris, Parc Buttes-Chaumont’s history is richer than the soil it is built upon. Buttes-Chaumont roughly translates to “bald mountains,” referencing its original function as a barren landscape just outside the walls of Paris. Finally, in the early 1860s, the recently appointed prefect of the Seine, Georges-Eugene Haussmann, chose this unlikely site to begin the construction of a park. The finished work would act as a crowning jewel for his vision of a renovated Paris. Today, the park is a local Parisian favorite, boasting a serene escape from city life with a sweeping view of Montmartre from a temple accessible by footbridge.

Boot Cafe

At the Boot Cafe, you can watch from your seat as each cup of coffee is carefully and masterfully made from local beans. With only two tables, the small space has an intimate atmosphere, complete with cool music and impressive attention to detail. Here you are encouraged to enjoy your drink the Parisian way -- by taking the time to think about nothing other than the warm drink in your hand. The unassuming façade can be easy to miss but is well worth the extra look.

Abigail Haley is the Fall 2018 CEA MOJO Blogger in Paris, France, and is currently studying at Ithaca College.
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