When I was in Melbourne recently, I had the fortune to meet my best friend from childhood’s twin 8 year-old boys, Joe and Sam. After commenting on their little hoodies and penchant for wearing them even though it was relatively warm, I made the mistake of calling them “little homeboys” which they later remembered as “houseboys”. Turns out the houseboys are heading to Europe soon and wanted some tips about what to do in Paris. They’re quite the little foodies so my tips will hopefully appeal to them. So here goes…
Dear Joe and Sam,
I am so excited that you are going to visit Paris. I know mummy told you that I used to live in Paris and that she visited me a couple of times, one time alone and one time with daddy. These visits always involved much good food and perhaps even a drink or two… I am glad this love of the good things in life has been passed down to you and I have a couple of tips for places you might like to go when you are there.
1. You will definitely want to visit Pâtisserie Stohrer at 51 rue Montorgueil. They have all sorts of treats like this:
2. More treats can be had at Angelina at 226 rue de Rivoli (at Tuileries métro station). They have the most amazing hot chocolate:
3. For dinner one night, I recommend going to Willi’s Wine Bar at 13 rue des Petits Champs, 75001. It’s within walking distance of the apartment you are staying in and it’s a little bit chic so you will have to be on your best behaviour!
4. You two might appreciate Le Tambour for a less formal meal. It’s at 41 rue Montmartre, just north of rue Étienne Marcel and has wonderful memorabilia from old métro stations. (see the interior here). You will love the owner who has a wonderful handlebar moustache!
5. You HAVE to go to Café Beaubourg, just next to the Centre Pompidou. Mum and dad can have some 1664 beer and you guys can have a croque monsieur. Like this:
6. I think you would like Dame Tartine, none the least for the Stravinski fountain you get to watch outside. It’s at 2 rue Brise–Miche, just around the corner from the Centre Pompidou. They have delicious and different open-faced sandwiches.
7. Ice cream at Berthillon is a MUST!!!It’s sold all over Paris but everywhere on the Ile St Louis – also a nice spot for a wander…And look:
8. Last sugar fix, promise (though I could go on for ages…). One word: Laudrée.
You must go and eat some macarons from Laudrée. You can find the list of shops here.
I know mummy and daddy have organised all the typical Parisian sites for you so here are a few they might not have thought of.
1. A visit behind the scenes at the Opéra Garnier might be fun for you.
You can check out all the details for the guided tour here. It’s at the Opéra métro station.
2. The Cité des enfants at the Cité des Sciencesis a pretty fun place to hang out when you are 8 years old. Have mum or dad check out what’s on on their website to see what exhibits might be of interest. It’s at 30, Avenue Corentin Cariou 75019 Paris at the Porte de la Villette métro station.
3. According to Frommers, Paris’s definitive children’s park is the 20-hectare (49-acre) Jardin d’Acclimatation in the northern part of the Bois de Boulogne. This is the kind of place that amuses tykes and adults but not teenagers. The visit starts with a ride on a green-and-yellow or green-and-red narrow-gauge train from Porte Maillot to the Jardin entrance, through a stretch of wooded park. The train operates at 10-minute intervals daily from 10:30am until the park closes; one-way fare costs 1.25€ ($1.80). En route you’ll find a house of mirrors, an archery range, a miniature-golf course, zoo animals, a puppet theater (performances Wed, Sat, Sun, and holidays), a playground, a hurdle-racing course, junior-scale rides, shooting galleries, and waffle stalls. You can trot the kids off on a pony (Sat and Sun only) or join them in a boat on a mill-stirred lagoon. La Prévention Routière is a miniature roadway operated by the Paris police: Youngsters drive through in small cars equipped to start and stop, and are required by two genuine gendarmes to obey street signs and light changes. Inside the gate is an easy-to-follow map.
Sounds like a lot of fun to me! Read more here.