Paris adventures in the offseason


Paris cafe breakfast

And this.

Paris metro

And them.

It was exactly what I needed to kick off the offseason. Yes, it was a hectic few days to get there. But Paris. Whatever you need to do to get there will always be worth it.

We rented this VRBO in the 6th arrondissement, right in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. It was a one bedroom apartment on the first floor of a lovely building on the left bank.

Paris Saint-Germain-des-Pres

Interior courtyard of the building; below left: street view of building; storied Cafe de Flore just down the street

It wasn’t particularly big or fancy, but comfortably fit the four of us. And oh, the location. It could not have been more perfect. If you’re traveling in Paris with kids, I highly recommend renting an apartment over staying in a hotel. We had more space than a hotel room, and the kitchen enabled us to take advantage of the best neighborhood bakeries and food purveyors. Being in a neighborhood meant access to better pâtisseries, boulangeries, and restaurants than the more touristy areas around the hotels, and at $194/night, it was money-saving to boot.

Because of our central location, we walked just about everywhere. The Eiffel Tower and Rodin Museum.

The Louvre.

Rue Mouffetard.

Paris Rue Mouffetard

Mouffetard is one of my favorite streets in Paris. A cobblestone street lined with butchers, cheese shops, bakeries, restaurants, and a huge farmers market: it’s the holy grail of food.

Now this is where a normal person, with normal vacationing behavior would have more to say about another museum visited, a tour taken. Instead, we just ate.

From the traditionally French,

Paris Poilane bakery

to incredible ramen. Ippudo in the 6th arrondissement was an awesome find.

Veggie tamago ramen with housemade noodles

And then there were the pastries. You can’t leave Paris without a visit (or two) to Fauchon.

The kids had to sample the macarons everywhere we went. Luckily for them, you can’t go a block without finding one that was better than the last.

For me, it’s all about the bread. Unbelievably the cost of a baguette hasn’t changed much since I studied abroad there in 1995. 1.20€ (around $1.25) buys you a loaf of crusty perfection. Paired with a slab of rich European butter and a smear of homemade jam, I’m pretty sure nothing better exists in this world.

All too soon our time was up. It was our first international trip with the kids and Paris proved itself an easy and amazing family vacation destination. À bientôt Paris!

Paris Eiffel Tower

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