Bonjour mes amis! Hello my friends of Postcards From Paris!
In just under six weeks I will be winging my way across the planet to fly from Brisbane, Australia to Paris, France — magnifique!
I can’t wait to taste my first delicious croissant (or Pain au Chocolat!), see my friends, catch up with some of my Postcards from Paris followers, and make Paris my home for the next month :-)
The taste of the first baguette, first coffee, first time seeing the Eiffel Tower again — these and many others are what I crave when I’m not on Parisian soil, and I will savour each and every one of them.
If you haven’t had a look at my Paris Adventures yet, you might be interested to see the new ones I’ve added this year — I’m sharing my love of some unusual things and I do hope those that sign up for them will enjoy them as much as I do :-)
Want to meet me in Paris? Check out these dates and let’s catch up!
1 – 00:05 – Jardin alpin
Nestled in the heart of the Jardin des Plantes, the Alpine garden includes more than 2,000 mountain plant species .
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/ngNvu
2 – 00:15 – square des peupliers
This small private street ( no cars ) created in 1926 is an exquisite romantic and green place to take photos for a fashion shooting for example
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/qC1kU
3 – 00:25 – Terasse de l I.M.A
The Arab World Institute (IMA) is a Parisian cultural institute dedicated to the Arab world.
You can go for free on the rooftop and have an incredible view
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/zP50L
4 – 00:35 – les Passages Couverts
Real covered galleries in the middle of buildings and generally housing shops , Secret Parisian walkways are an architectural curiosity full of charm.
5 – 00:44 – Panthéon Boudique
The giant bamboos and stone slabs make of the Garden of the Buddhist Pantheon one of the most zen secret place of the capital .
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/LCp09
6 – 00:55 – Collèges des Bernardins
The collège was used until the French Revolution as a residence for Cistercian monks students at the University of Paris.
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/5VAg9
7 – 01:03 – Hôtel Dieu
Hotel-Dieu de Paris is the oldest hospital in the capital.
You can enter for free and climb at the last level to have a view over notre dame … but please be respectful of the people resting inside, it’s still an hospital.
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/yxK9T
8 – 01:13 La Petite Ceinture
The little belt railway was a Parisian railway that, from 1852, was a circular connection between Paris’s main railway stations. In a partial state of abandonment since 1934. Many French railway enthusiasts and associations would like to see the abandoned railway and its remaining stations preserved and protected as a part of France’s national heritage.
Map : this place is all around Paris, and it’s forbiden to enter so i will not give the information but if you really want to go just look on internet for « accès petite centure »
9 – 01:24 Jardin d’Agronomie Tropical
The Garden of Tropical Agriculture is in northeastern edge of the Bois de Vincennes. there you can find a half-wild nature and remnants buildings of the French colonial era sometimes half covered by vegetation.
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/eVXEb
10 – 01:34 Design & Nature
The Design and Nature gallery specialises in the creation of stuffed animals, in entomology (the science of butterflies and insects) and in osteology, as well as in the presentation of organic and vegetal species.
Map : https://goo.gl/maps/Py8v8
My first print book to be published on Amazon will be ‘live’ in August, maybe even as little as a week away!
I’ve talked about it over the past year, published a short Kindle book on Paris last year, but now I’ve finally finished my 42 page “Memories of Paris” book based on a selection of my photos which I’ve turned into watercolour paintings.
I’m just waiting for the first ‘proof’ copy to arrive in the post for me to approve, then it’ll be available to the public — I can’t express how happy this makes me, I’ll be a published author sharing pix of my most favourite city in the world.
Because of my love of Paris, I created this website 8 years ago, and I’ve met the most amazing warm and funny folks through this site, people who send emails, tweets, Facebook messages, audio messages, Youtube and video messages — it is so lovely to share my love of Paris with others — thank you to each and every one of you! I’ll keep you posted and send a quick update when it’s on Amazon – woohoo!
What’s on when in Paris in August?
visit the BEACH in Paris! Yes, that’s right! “Paris Plage“!
July and August are traditionally the hottest months, and many Parisians take off for the whole of August to be closer to the seaside and cooler weather. By deciding to be there for September, I’ll be visiting at a lovely time of year, still summer but not too hot …
“Dear Teena, I am very concerned about the things I’ve read about the crime and pickpockets in Paris. Do you have any recommendations to try and avoid being victimized? Also we are taking the train in from Brussels. We get in at 10:30am but can’t check in our hotel until 2pm. Would it be safe to store our luggage in a locker or would we be better off going to our hotel with our luggage? I’m really nervous about having my stuff stolen. K”
Your questions are all good and relevant — I suggest contacting your hotel and ask if you can bring your bags there first, most hotels have a secure storage area for arriving and departing guests. That way you know they’ll be safe and then you only have one place to go back to after your first adventure.
In regard to pickpockets, don’t wear anything on your back as that makes it easy in a crowd for someone to access your backpack while you’re being jostled. Generally Paris is extremely safe and if you stick with other people as you walk you should be very safe. When you’re eating or drinking, don’t leave your wallet, handbag or smartphone on the table or bar, as that makes them easy targets. If you have a handbag or shoulder bag, wear it or carry it in front of you so you can always see it.
Using your smart phone or camera, take photos of your passport’s relevant pages, and all cards in your wallet (backs and fronts) — upload them to secure storage like Dropbox.com for free, so you can access them easily from anywhere.
I love to see Paris from the water each time I arrive after my trip from Australia (where I live), so I take a 2.5 hr barge cruise for about $US30 (either morning or afternoon), and also I love the Champagne cruise at sunset to see the skyline, Eiffel Tower etc at night – beautiful! Here are links on my website for both of these:
A bit more expensive at about $80, but such a fabulous thing to do!
Apart from that, I just love to stroll the streets, sit in sidewalk cafes and restaurants, go to wine bars at night and meet the locals. With only two days, there’s a chance you’ll try to see TOO MANY tourist attractions so my advice is — don’t. Only see one or two max, and spend the rest of the time being part of the Parisian culture.
I hope you have a simply marvellous time, do let me know how you get on!
Q & A • Question from Facebook
“BonSoir! Love your fabulous blog and spicy ideas! I’m about to move to Paris again soon and i would like to find a job, if you know something feel free to let me know. Love and Happiness all over Merci :)))”
I live in Australia, and visit Paris each year or two, so I’m sorry I don’t personally know of any jobs for you right now — it will of course depend on many things — your age and your nationality (under 30s from some countries can work for a year), as well as whether or not you can work legally in France. But don’t despair!
“Most of the Americans, Australians, Canadians and New Zealanders living and working in France fall into one of three categories:
They are married to a French (or another national of the European Union) citizen.
They inherited dual citizenship from their parents.
They are highly-skilled professionals sent to their company’s French office to achieve a specific task. France currently has working holiday agreements whereby Canadian, Australian and New Zealander citizens aged between 18 and 30 years can undertake paid employment for up to one year.”
Doesn’t sound promising, does it?
I have written a blog post or two about jobs, so here are a couple of pages I’ve written which might help:
research and book my flights a couple of months in advance if possible
research accommodation (I like to rent an entire apartment, so a studio apartment is perfect)
check out Google maps for the address where I’ll be staying, search for things “close by” like cafes, restaurants, grocery stores, Metro stops, bus stops (I may even print off a page or two from the map so I have it with me for me first day in the new location)
organise a mobile phone — I bought one just to use in Paris about 5 years ago, so I take it with me, plug it in as soon as I arrive at my accommodation so it’ll be charging straight away; find a place to buy a “recharge” for the phone so I can start using it (generally Tabacs are a good place to start, or you can also find a store for the brand of phone card you’re looking for)
book a pick-up from the airport to your hotel, which can be done online, print the receipt and have it in your wallet for when you land in Paris; call the toll-free number once you’ve collected your bag, and tell the operator which Terminal you’re at (there should be signs everywhere); now it’s a waiting game until you mini van arrives. If this all sounds too slow, grab a taxi instead.
before I get on the plane to leave Australia, I turn off “roaming” on my iPhone (mobile phone) so I won’t be socked with a huge bill on my return to Australia, (a) I will still be able to use my smart phone to access the internet whenever I am in a wifi (pronounced “wee-fee” in French) zone (see how easy it is to do this in Paris) just by walking into any park or government building, (b) I’ll be able to make calls and send texts all over the planet for free by using the VIBER APP in a wifi zone when I’m out and about (I love love love this app!), (c) I also downloaded Viber onto my laptop, so I can type messages and make/receive phone calls via my computer when I’m back at the apartment
once I’ve arrived, I take a photo of my building from the street (if it’s the first time I’ve been there), then I take a photo at the corner of the street so it’ll be easy to recognise on my way back; if I then take a bus or the Metro (train) I take photos of the bus stop or Metro sign so I can remember HOW to get back home later that day
after my first Parisian breakfast in a cafe, I head to the nearest Metro (train station) and buy a “carnet” of tickets (pronounced KAH-NAY) — ten tickets is a good place to start unless I want to get a monthly ticket. More info will be available at the Metro so read and work out which is best for your needs.
next I like to visit the nearest Post Office to buy some stamps, so that when I’m whiling away the hours people-watching in a cafe I’ll have some stamps to put on those postcards I’ve just purchased.
Here’s a little video I made about PLANNING A TRIP TO PARS :
All of this gets me into my “Frenchified Teena” mode :-)
Do you have anything you do when you first arrive in Paris (if you’ve already been), or something you’d LOVE to do if you visit in the future? I’d love to hear from you — if you received my Postcards from Paris newsletter via email, just click REPLY. If you’re reading this on my website, just post a Comment below :-)
Would you like to recommend any cafes or restaurants, or things for me to do? Feel free to share! One of my long time readers – Michael (from USA) – has sent me some wonderful suggestions and restaurants to check out, as have a couple of other folks, so do please send them along!
Last night I watched a movie on SBS TV in Australia, and it was one of the funniest French romantic comedies I’ve seen for a while — you should be able to watch this online if you’re in Australia (follow this link) or see if you can find it as a DVD (made in 2010):
Bonjour mes amis! Hello my friends of Postcards From Paris!
I thought I’d start off today’s edition with a HUGE welcome to my last few subscribers this month! Maybe you’re one of these folks? If you are, please do write back to me and say BONJOUR! I’d love to hear from you :-)
Teri from San Diego, USA
Stephen from Vancouver, Canada
Rod from Cleveland, USA
Victoria from Mcdonough, USA
Jim from Mesa, USA
MaKenzie from Bloomington, USA
Paula from Benton, USA
Linda from Pasadena, USA
Robin from Perth, Australia
Liz from Georgia, USA
Lida from Houston, USA
Jenifer from Sanford, US
Craig from Paris
Bettie from South Africa
I do hope you enjoy my little tips and stories about the city I love — I live in Australia and I try to get to Paris every year or two to fill my soul with the joie de vivre (joy of life) I feel whenever I’m in this extraordinary city!
Ways to Meet Me in Paris in September!
I’ve been totally revamping all the things I love to share when I’m in Paris:
Plus Size Fashion Adventures
Over 40’s Lazy Paris Adventure
and I’d love to share some new options — but I want to know if any of you think these might be of interest … just because I’d love to do these doesn’t mean anyone else would :-)
Stationery Lovers’ Adventure (there are some beautiful traditional pen and paper stores!)
Coffee Conversations in French — meet me for an hour and a half in a cafe with 3 other people and learn the right amount of French to survive in a cafe on your own :-)
Textile Tidbits Adventure — would you love to find some fabulous stores in Paris specialising in hand-made haberdashery (ribbon, beads, leather, twine, knitting needles, silk, felt)? The two stores we’ll visit have goodies from the 1890s to 1930s, a real feast for the eyes.
I will be finalising the dates and details within the next few days, so I will send a quick email to let you know all the “deets” (details). Can’t wait to be there – woohoo!
Learn French from a wonderful little French girl telling a story based on a mix of other fairy tales :-)
I just came across this video and I have to share — listening to French children is a great way to learn the language! Let me know what you think of this — I think it’s adorable!
I’ll be in Paris in September 2015 – will you be there?
Last edition I wrote:
I have been dreaming in French, and in my dreams I’m in Paris, and when I wake I am speaking or singing in French — what do you think that means?!!
It means I’m way overdue to visit the city where I’ve left my heart, and to where I return whenever possible, from the other side of the planet in Australia -)
and the great news is I have booked my Paris apartment and am finalising my flights this week to spend an entire month speaking French and dipping my croissant into my hot coffee!
What about you? What would you love to do in Paris? Send me a message, I’d love to hear!
I am finalising the pages for the Adventures I will be hosting, so do pop back and check this page (I’ll add a link HERE) and you can also follow the Facebook Postcards from Paris page too where I post updates >>
Here are some of the ways to do that:
click the “Say bonjour to Teena” button which should appear down the right side of the web page — you can record your voice straight away — and some of you have already been using this, I love it!
take a “selfie” video or photo with your phone or camera, then email it
record a voice message on your phone, then email it
email me on bonjour [at] a-night-in-paris [dot com]
The famous “love locks” which have appeared over the last few years are being removed from Paris’ centuries-old bridges, monuments, tourist attractions and other fences as the weight has become quite problematic, and placed some bridges under too much stress and strain. Everyone has an opinion on it, but the bottom line is there is no area which has been created specifically for this type of romantic gesture.
Buy a baguette, cheese, wine etc and go to one of the many beautiful parks in Paris.
Take a barge cruise UNDER Paris! I love this!
For an added adventure, take your picnic on a Barge Cruise — this is one of my all-time favourite things to do when I arrive, I get to relax for a couple of hours as I take in Paris and the outskirts from a barge, which also takes me on a magical journey BELOW Paris!
Oh you must try this if you’re there — it’s away from the madding tourist crowds and such a lovely way to spend a morning or afternoon in the city I love.
plus so much more, and something to suit everyone.
Ready to try something really unusual?
How about brunch, lunch or dinner in someone’s home? This is a great idea which has been going on for decades and is a great way to meet Parisians and other adventurous travellers — check out the article I wrote about this a while back:
I’ve been researching great little cafes off the beaten track in Paris, which have little gardens are are situation in a garden, rather than the typical Parisian cafe which is on the footpaths or sidewalks of this beautiful city.
I will be adding more information very soon – approximate pricing, a photo and other tips. In the meantime, if you get a chance to check any of these out, feel free to send me a photo, video or selfie and I’ll add it to my site if you’re ok with that :-)
11 rue Payenne, 3e
Terrasse du Café de la Gare
41 rue du Temple, 4e
Le Salon du Panthéon
13 rue Victor Cousin, 5e
Café du Petit Palais
Avenue Winston Churchill, 8e
Musée de la Vie romantique
16 rue Chaptal, 9e
8 rue Navarin, 9e
148 rue du Faubourg Saint-Martin, 10e
7-9 rue Francis-de-Pressensé, 14e
Le Bistrot des Dames
18 rue des Dames, 17e
83 boulevard Ornano, 18e
24 rue Vauvenargues, 18e
Le Café du Studio 28
10 rue Tholozé, 18e
6 impasse de la Défense, 18e
Le Pavillon du Lac
Parc des Buttes Chaumont, 19e
Le Café Caché
104 rue d’Aubervilliers et 5 rue Curial, 19e
Use Rechargeable Batteries for Smart Phones in Paris
Suitable for iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4 & 4S
Suitable for Samsung Galaxy S3/S4/Note
One little teeny tiny item that is a GREAT additional to your travel items is a rechargeable battery for your smart phones. When I was out and about walking all day long, I couldn’t always find a place to plug in my iPhone and charge it, so this little piece of technology was marvellous! I carried it in my bag with my iPhone, and it was charged for whenever I needed it. Also great if you’re stuck in a train station, bus station or airport for long periods of time without a way to charge your phone.
I found the perfect one which is only 6x6x1.5 cm / approximately 2.5×2.5×0.5″ in size.
I loved them so much I am thrilled to be able to share them with you — with my own Paris photos on them!
Buy Now for $US18.97 + $5.00 shipping
These are my unique designs, and only available from me — they are printed as soon as an order is received, and the total turnaround and shipping is approximately 14 days (or less).
Please note: AbfabDesigns.com may appear on your statement/receipt.
To charge the battery
Plug into your laptop or other USB port whilst plugged into the power
Battery types: Lithium ion batteries
Dimension: 6x6x1.5 cm / approximately 2.5×2.5×0.5″ in size
Charging time: approximately 3 hours
Black USB cable included
Compatible with iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4 & 4S
To charge the iPhone
Plug the recharged battery into your iPhone (if you don’t have any other way to charge the phone), and allow it to charge.
A word of caution when you’re in Paris and you’re walking around with smart phones
iPhone, Android, or iPad/tablets etc
Don’t be paranoid, be sensible with your phone, and DON’T make it easy for thieves to grab and run off with your expensive technology.
DON’T sit your phone/iPad on a café table (which I’m guilty of here in Australia) because these devices can fetch around 500 Euros on the black market.
Be cautious and careful and put your smart phone away where it can’t be grabbed when you’re walking the streets of Paris, in cafés and on public transport. If you have a backpack, handbag or some other bag you can carry in front of you where you can keep an eye on it, that’s best.
PS — BACK UP YOUR SMART DEVICE’S DATA before you arrive in Paris — better to be safe than sorry, right?
Looking at maps and information on your smart phone in Paris
If you’re standing in the street and want to look up maps etc, considering going inside a cafe or somewhere more secure. Thieves are grabbing phones out of tourists’ hands because they’re small, easy to grab and easy to sell.
Make it harder, go and sit somewhere where it will be more difficult to snatch anything out of your hands.
I know all this sounds scary, but it makes sense when you’re travelling to be super vigilant with anything you own that costs hundreds of dollars to replace.
How to back up smart phones
Plug your phone into your laptop.
iTunes will launch
an automatic back-up will be performed by iTunes.
While you’re in Paris, it’ll be a good idea to back up your phone often, especially if your taking lots of photos and videos, and adding lots of new friends into your Contact list.
Got any tips on using smart phones when travelling? I’d love to hear from you – I can post your tips here on this page — thanks in advance!
If you’re feeling romantic and you’re on foot, you might want to walk across the Pont des Arts, to see the multitude of locks which romantic couples have left on the bridge. Often called the “Lock Bridge” or “Love Lock Bridge”, romantic couples add locks to the sides of the bridge.
The local want to ban the practice, but no law has been created yet.
Built between 1802 and 1804 under the reign of Napoleon, the bridge is a favourite with local and visiting visiting artists.
The “love lock” ritual started in other countries, and finally reached Paris in 2008, finding a home on the Pont des Arts – now lovers are also going to the Pont de l’Archevêché near Notre Dame cathedral.
For your romantic adventure, once you’re on the Pont des Arts there are great views up and down the River Seine so take in your surroundings – the beautiful, centuries-old historical buildings from the Ile de la Cité, to the Louvre and Pont Neuf – you can also see the top of Sainte Chapelle church in the distance.
If it’s a lovely day, bring food and drink and have a little picnic with your loved one.
Map to the locks on the Pont des Arts (the Bridge of Arts)
When I lived in Paris all those years ago, the thought of “food trucks” (like in the USA) were unheard of.
Zoom forward to the 21st Century and “Voila!” they’ve definitely arrived and become popular
Grab a hamburger for €8.50
add fries for a total of €10.50
The very first food truck was launched by an American from California who was studying at a culinary school, and saw an opportunity. Called “le Camion Qui Fume” (the Smoking Truck), it can be found at different locations at different times, so check the website for the up-to-the-minute schedule or follow them on Twitter:
I’ve been talking about, dreaming about, sketching and thinking of publishing a book about Paris, and I’ve finally done it!
Yesterday I clicked the PUBLISH button on my first Kindle book about Paris, and I’m so excited! It’s only 20 pages and covers some of my favourite things to do, and even though it’s a Kindle book, anyone can read it on a smart phone or a desktop computer by downloading the software from the amazon site. Cool!
And the best part is it’s only $US0.99! As this is my first time at publishing this type of book I’ve set it at the lowest price allowed. If you do decide to buy – that’s fantastic – thank you in advance!
If you could also leave me a Review on Amazon that would be absolutely marvellous – many thanks in advance!
I’ve done it! I’ve created a book — and it’s available on Kindle first!
This does not mean that you can’t read it if you don’t have a kindle — not at all!
Here’s a snapshot of one of the pages of my new Kindle book on my iPhone:
It’s a short photo book with about 20 pages (with paintings of some things I love to do when I’m there), as my first foray into Kindle, and I’m quite pleased with how it turned out.
Now, getting back to Kindle – if you don’t have a Kindle, you can download the Kindle App on your smart phone, and you can also download the Kindle Reader on either Macs or Windows PCs, so that’s easy! The quick video walks you through how to download the software.
You can read all Kindle books on your laptops and desktop computers — in fact that’s what I do as I don’t have a Kindle :-) OK — so what’s my book about? The truth of the matter is I love Paris, I used to live there, and every time I visit I take at least 1,000 photos and video clips. For my first Kindle book about Paris, I thought I might just make a small book with some of my favourite photos.
I got to thinking about that, and thought I’d like to do something slightly differently from everyone else — so I’ve made paintings from my original photos and I’m really pleased to share them with people who read my Kindle book.
Come walk with me through Paris, it’s about 20 pages long, I do hope you enjoy it.
My website about Paris is a labour of love, and sometimes I recommend things for which I receive a very small commission (sometimes 20c, 50c, $1). These small commissions help me pay for the hosting and upkeep of the site, so if you buy something, I’m sending you a big warm hearty “thank you” hug in advance!