24 hours in Paris
Written by Adrian Moore Illustration by Fernando Volken Togni
Paris, an emblematic and romantic city for so many, has been shedding its traditional image lately and embracing new trends in culture, art, and yes, even food.
Its shabby neighbourhoods have become havens for chic boutiques and trendy neo-bistros (think a kind of French gastro pub). Entrepreneurs have started to embrace a more global view, with cooler attitudes than you might expect from the legendarily snobby Parisians, while creating exciting new places that, dare one say, promise to bring the City of Light back onto the world stage of innovation.
Despite years of bad PR, the legendary French pride is evident and justified in Parisians’ love of their capital, with its charming historic quartiers such as the ancient Marais, the literary Left Bank Saint Germain neighbourhood, and the touristy but quaint Montmartre artists’ district. The café society, high-end designer shops, and funky boutiques, famous gourmet restaurants and tiny artisan bistros, legendary monuments, and new cutting-edge houses of culture offer something for everyone.
Taxis may be hailed on the street (ensure that the light on top is illuminated) or at official taxi ranks.
Paris is a fairly compact city and has many charming historic neighbourhoods best explored on foot.
The Vélib’ bike rental system is a great and green way to get around; the first 30 minutes is always free. Credit card required.
The Paris Metro is (for the most part) clean and efficient. A one-way ride anywhere in the city costs €1.70, while ten (a carnet) will cost €12.