The best way to discover or revisit Paris is on foot. This is not always the most popular option with teenagers and the chase for mosaic “graffiti” by street artist Invader could be an incentive. There are many copies of these so finding the genuine ones is not as easy as it sounds. There are almost 1,500 of them, in different sizes and at various heights and many have cultural and artistic references. Download the app and flash with a phone to enter the hunt.
If walking is not practical, it is possible to take in the sights aboard a hop on- hop off boat that runs a shuttle service on the Seine every half hour between major landmarks. Parisians themselves use Batobus as they can be a clever way to beat car traffic. Get off Place de la Concorde and don’t resist the nostalgic appeal of the Grande Roue in the Jardin des Tuileries (plenty of selfie opportunities too).
There are landmarks in Paris that deserve to be visited time and time again and among them is the Eiffel Tower. Booking is essential and crossing over the river to Place du Trocadero where skateboarders and roller skaters congregate is a good way to approach the area. Another monument that cannot be missed is the Sacré Coeur and, if you can face it, the sunrise is the moment when it’s tourist free and a rendez-vous for teens.
A stroll along the Seine on the way to Berthillon on Ile Saint Louis is an absolute must (29 rue Saint Louis en l’ile, closed Mondays and Tuesdays). This family run business have been making ice cream for five generations and are renowned for their fruit sorbets and delicate flavours.
THE COOL QUARTIER
A very friendly neighbourhood to roam is the Canal St Martin with lots of places to eat outdoors and shops to visit. For its buzzing atmosphere, start with breakfast at Holybelly and bring back one of their sturdy mugs; or buy delicious chouquettes and baguettes dotted with chocolate chips from nearby Boulangerie de quartier Mamiche. At lunch, Candide serve an amazing roast chicken and frites; alternatively, and despite their recent openings in London, we still very much enjoy going to Miznon in Paris of which there is a branch by the canal. Chinese dishes and cool drinks can be found at Gros Bao in a kitsch and cheerful décor.
Visit The Next Door, 10 rue Beaurepaire, for streetwear and tee shirts; Thanx God I’m a V.I.P. for vintage finds and stock up on Huile SOS équilibrante and probiotic based skincare at Kreme. Their commitment to the environment and brand values are sure to resonate with younger generations. Centre Commercial at 2 rue de Marseile is the brainchild of Veja founders Sébastien Kopp and François Morillon and showcases niche and established brands with a sustainable and traceable approach. The concept-store like selection includes clothing, footwear and accessories as well as cosmetics.
LE MARAIS TOUJOURS
Shops are plenty in the neighbourhood and it’s worth just wandering around rue des Francs Bourgeois but we recommend Meet up Paris (102 rue du Temple, 3e) for their selection of rare and collectible sneakers that should interest connoisseurs. At 18 boulevard des Filles du Calvaire, Maison Kitsuné’s sweat shirts and matching jogging pants embellished with a playful fox face will appeal to boys and girls. The likes of Stussy, Supreme, BAPE and Carhartt are also nearby.
For second-hand finds, try the shops rue des Archives where garments are sold by the weight. Towards les Halles, we also like Kiliwatch where we used to shop when we were still at school. From either of these, it is easy to reach the Centre Pompidou to admire iconic masterpieces by Kandinsky, Miro or Mondrian.
Get lunch Chez Alain Miam Miam where the sandwiches have gained cult status (26 rue Charlot, 3e) or try l’As du Fallafel, an institution rue des Rosiers.
Centre Pompidou, Paris
For a very traditional Parisian experience, go to Le Bouillon Chartier for dinner, there is a branch on each side of the Seine. Although it is practically on every guide book, it really is an authentic and almost mythical brasserie where Parisians have been going for 125 years. It is popular with teenagers thanks to its unexpensive food and fast service that ends at midnight. We fall for the profiteroles (filled with vanilla ice cream, as they should be) and the Mont Blanc cup, an indulgent combination of whipped cream and sweet chestnut purée . Watch out for similar places, these are the original restaurants.
Otherwise, DJs and pizzas are on offer at La Felicita, a brilliant venue that is reminiscent of an Italian food market and also has a fun music and dance programme.
Another great option is Le popup du Label where there is a real sense of happening, live music as well as photographs and prints in the gallery next door (14 rue Abel, 12e).
A sweet way to round up the day is to watch a film on the rooftop of Hotel Paradiso, every Sunday night during the summer; or to stay the night and enjoy a movie in bed with a bucket of popcorn.
Le Bouillon Chartier