Posts Tagged ‘france’

Postcards from Paris October 2017

Postcards from Paris is a newsletter about the city I love!

Welcome to Postcards from Paris October 2017!

If you’re new to Postcards from Paris — WELCOME!

My name is Teena Hughes, I’m an Australian who has lived in Paris several times over a period of about thirty years, and I love to go back once a year if possible, and spend about six weeks feeling like a local Parisienne again :-)

While I’m there, I catch up with my friends I met there over twenty years ago, plus I host Adventures.  I’ve also written a couple of books about Paris, and I love this city more than any other.

Enjoy the little French tidbits I have for you today, and do get in touch if you’d like to chat or ask a question. Here we go!

My 2018 Paris Calendar by Teena Hughes

My first 2018 Paris Calendar has launched!

So excited! 12 pages with a great photo for each month — grab your copy here >>

I plan to create another one with different photos too — so stay tuned!

And for my Postcards from Paris subscribers, I’m sending you a freebie one-page Calendar too!

With love from me and a huge thanks for following along on my Paris adventures xxx Just check your email :-)

2018 Paris Calendar by Teena Hughes

What’s happening in Paris in October?

Le Salon du Chocolat, that’s what!


The words in the video translate to:

  • Le Salon du Chocolat c’est le plus grand evenement mondial dedie au chocolat et au cacao == The Chocolate Salon is the the largest world-wide event dedicated to chocolate and cocoa.
  • 500 participants, 60 pays = 600 attendees, 60 countries
  • 5 Jours de Show = 5 Days
  • 20 Robes en Chocolat = 20 Dresses made of chocolate
  • 100 Demos Par les Plus Grands Chefs = 100 Demonstrations by the Top Chefs
  • 12o Ateliers = 120 Studios
  • Le Salon du Chocolat Junior = the Junior Chocolate Salon
  • 28 Oct – 01 Nov Paris Porte de Versaille = 28 October to 01 November  at Porte de Versaille
  • Info & Tickets

What else is on in October:


Will you be in Paris in time for the Christmas Markets?

I’ve written about Christmas and the Yuletide season a few times, and I’d like to share these stories with you:

Things happening in Paris over the Holidays

What about New Year’s Eve in gai Paree?

Le Loir Dans le Théière

Postcards from Paris October

My old-time favourite Tea House / Salon de The

Le Loir Dans le Théière
3 rue des Rosiers
75004 Paris

When I lived in Paris in the late 1980s, this became one of my favourite places, and I’ve heard that the name of this Tea Salon came from an unlucky dormouse which was thrown into a teapot during the Mad Hatter’s feast in Alice in Wonderland story.

Now in 2017, I still visit this gorgeous tea salon when I am in Paris each year, and I want to share it with you. This warm and cozy space is decorated with trinkets and knick knacks (odds and ends) and the aroma of the delicious gourmet cuisine (pies, large salads) wafts by and makes the mouth water.  Keep an eye out for the dozens of pastries which include the incredible lemon meringue pie and the chocolate fondant cake.

Come weekends, it’s hard to find a spot to sit as …


Recent Questions about Paris

Giovanna asks:  When is it summer in france?

I replied:

Hi there Giovanna,

The hottest temperatures in Paris are generally July and August (summer) with June and October almost as warm.

The coldest months are around November, December, January, February, March and April.

It’s hard to predict accurately as the weather can change from year to year.

Whenever you decide to visit, have a great time!

Bon Voyage!

Question from Eshaana: 

Hi Teena I am planning to relocate from Geneva to Paris in September this year to study French full time.  I would love to start my orientation to Paris with your week-long silk painting course.  Please let me know the dates of the next courses in July/August with details of costs etc.   I look forward to hearing from you.

Best regards

My reply:

Bonjour Eshaana!

How lovely to hear back from you.

I totally understand, and yes it would be great to meet in Paris for silk painting.

If you’re on my Paris newsletter list, you’ll be notified when I plan my next trip to Paris and will get other tips about the city I love.

If you haven’t signed up yet, here’s the link:

Have a fabulous week!

ciao ciao,


Question from Marion: 

Hi Teena. Are you still doing one day beginner silk painting? I’m a Canadian lady interested in a unique Paris experience.

My reply:

Hi Marion, lovely to hear from you!
I live in Australia, and travel to Paris each year for 6 weeks to host my Adventures. Unfortunately I won’t be there at the same time as you 😞 I do have online Courses though — I’m currently updating and adding some new ones in the next month or so, if you’d like to be notified please sign up at — if you have any questions, please do let me know. And have a fantastic time in Paris!! Wish I could be there at the same time!
Bon voyage!

Recent Posts

Learning French

Here is another great video for you – let me know what you think!

“5 Weird French Expressions to Sound Like a Native”

and here is one of my favourite French singers – Trudbol:

For the lyrics in French and English, pop over to Trudbol’s Youtube Channel >>


I hope you enjoyed Postcards from Paris October 2017 today!

I’m excited to tell you I’ve started planning my next trip to Paris – woohoo! July 2018 sounds like a great plan — can you meet me there? I’ve got my fingers’ crossed!

Let me know if you have any questions about Paris or my website,  or just want to share some tips about your trip to Paris.

Post a Comment below, or click the little “Say Bonjour!” tab on the right side of the screen, or pop over to the Facebook page — I’d love to hear from you!

Ciao ciao for now, a bientot !

Teena Signature


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The romantic lock bridge in Paris – Pont des Arts

Heard of the romantic lock bridge in Paris?

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.

But guess what? On 9th June, 2014 part of the bridge started to collapse due to the weight of the thousands of locks!

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)

[mappress mapid=”37″]

Metro :

  • Pont Neuf (line 7)
  • or Louvre-Rivoli (line 1)

What is Bastille Day?

Have you ever wondered, “What is Bastille Day?”

To be honest, it’s only non-French people who call the 14th of July “Bastille Day”, so please don’t say “Happy Bastille Day!” to your French friends or other French people – ok?

I’ve lived in Paris so I am familiar with this day commemorating the French Revolution, but thought I’d get a Wikipedia explanation for you:

“Bastille Day is the name given in English speaking countries to the French National Day, which is celebrated on 14 July each year. In France, it is formally called La Fête Nationale and commonly Le quatorze juillet (the fourteenth of July).

The French National Day commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution with the Storming of the Bastille on the 14 July 1789, as well as the Fête de la Fédération on the 14 July 1790.

Celebrations are held all over France. The oldest and largest regular military parade in Europe is held on the morning of 14 July, on the Champs-Élysées avenue in Paris in front of the President of the Republic, French officials and foreign guests.”

Read more on Wikipedia here:

If I’m lucky enough to be in Paris for le Quatorze Juillet (Bastille Day), I generally celebrate with friends by having a picnic or going out to dinner. There will be plenty of restaurants open for this national holiday, but a make sure you BOOK IN ADVANCE so you will have a guaranteed reservation.

Luggage tags for Paris

Luggage tags for Paris

Luggage tags help you find your bags, fast

All those luggage tags in airports, on masses of black suitcases and bags, the conveyor belt going round and round.

When you’re waiting for your bag this lime green one with French words on it will be visible from a distance and oh so easy to spot :-)

Luggage tags for Paris, lime green with French words

  • Luggage tag is made from lightweight aluminum
  • Removable leather strap is included
  • Image is covered by crystal clear coating for protection
  • Measures approximately 3.25″ x 2″
  • Add your contact details

**Please note payments will appear as ‘Abfab’ or ‘Absolutely’ on your credit cards and receipts.

Questions about these lime green luggage tags?

Please let me know asap and I’ll do my best to help you, thanks! Back to my Paris Store >>




Mini folding umbrella with French words

Mini folding umbrella with French words

A mini folding umbrella – ooh la la :-)

I wanted to design a mini folding umbrella with French words all over it, in a happy bright colour to make a statement in the streets of Paris on a grey winter’s day. This is my first one:

Mini folding umbrella, French words (image)

Mini folding umbrella - Teena in Paris at Place des Vosges (image)Mini folding umbrella: $US29.99 + Shipping $10.00

  • Made from 100% polyester pongee waterproof fabric
  • Opens up to 41″ span
  • Can be reduced to a collapsed height of 9″
  • Each rib consists of 3-section aluminium for flexibility and strength

I had a prototype umbrella made and took it with me to Paris – here I am in the Place des Vosges just off rue St Antoine near metro Bastille. It was a grey day, and this design really stood out from the crowd :-)

**Please note payments will appear as ‘Abfab’ or ‘Absolutely’ on your credit cards and receipts.

Questions about my gorgeous Paris umbrella?

Please let me know asap and I’ll do my best to help you, thanks! Back to my Paris Store >>




Pack of Playing Cards with French words

Pack of Playing Cards with French words

Pack of Playing Cards for your holiday?

Whether you’re going on holidays overseas or interstate, a pack of playing cards is always a great thing to bring with you.

This deck has 54 cards, with my design on their back – French words and phrases which make me think of being in Paris.

Pack of playing cards with French words (image)

I also found a font (typeface) which reminds me the art deco Metro signs in Paris – what do you think? Does it look ok to you?

Pack of playing cards: $US12.00 + Shipping $4.00

**Please note payments will appear as ‘Abfab’ or ‘Absolutely’ on your credit cards and receipts.

Questions about my gorgeous Paris pack of playing cards?

Please let me know asap and I’ll do my best to help you, thanks! Back to my Paris Store >>

What is the location of public toilets in Paris?

What is the location of public toilets in Paris?

Finding the location of public toilets in Paris is easy!

The location of public toilets in Paris is — everywhere! On this great Paris website you can find them by arrondissement / suburb (district), from the 1st / 1ere / 75001 / Premier to the 20th / 20eme / 75020 / Vingtieme.

They’re called “sanisettes” and they are modern 21st Century self-cleaning, grey space pods which easily blend into their surroundings – you might not even realise they ARE toilets. There are 400 in Paris, and great news! They’re also wheelchair-friendly (I’ve been told) or at least accessible for the disabled.

They’re open between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. and can be found near major tourist spots, food markets and taxi stands.

Location of public toilets in Paris (snapshot image from website)

Click this link to view the website with all the locations >>

Every time someone uses a “sanisettes,” then exits, the automatic door closes and it’s like it’s taking a shower :-)

The toilet bowl and floor are automatically cleaned, dried and disinfected.

Inside you’ll find coat hooks, a mirror and a handbasin, with natural lighting coming through the roof, and they use a reduced amount of water with renewable energy-source electricity.

How cool these public toilets are also eco-friendly and doing their bit for the planet — on flush at a time :-)




A-Night-in-Paris Store

A-Night-in-Paris Store

A-Night-in-Paris Store

I’m thrilled to announce that I have been designing handbags, umbrellas, smartphone (iPhone, Android, Blackberry etc) case and much more — all with a Paris theme, using my own photos.

Please note that each item will be manufactured once the order is placed, and this can take 2-3 weeks before delivery. I’m still working out the Store software so if something doesn’t make sense with the items or shipping etc, give me a yell, ok?

Items in the Store – woohoo!

[nggallery id=1 template=wp-eStore]


Stay tuned for the smart-phone cases, toiletries bags, umbrellas and much more!!

To be notified of new products, please sign up for the Postcards From Paris Newsletter.


Les Mandibules restaurant in Paris 75011

Les Mandibules restaurant in Paris 75011

PLEASE NOTE: in Sept 2015 – New resto called “FACE B” is at this address

In July 2012, we found Les Mandibules restaurant in Paris whilst wandering around the 11th arrondissement, and I really wanted to check it out.

We were there relatively early at 7pm and were the only customers for a short while. The decor was super cool, old album covers, an old portable record player in the front window, Rolling Stones album in prime position. Lost of memorabilia around the place and great music on the sound system set the mood for a great evening.

Les Mandibules Restaurant window (image)

The Menu at les Mandibules restaurant

  • offered some delicious options and after choosing champagne as an aperitif, we decided on the duck and salmon for main courses.

Les Mandibules restaurant • Paris 75011 (image)

Please note that “Entrée” in French is the “starter” course (as it is in many other countries apart from USA).

Les Mandibules restaurant Duck & Salmon dishes (images)

The duck was served with thinly sliced carrots cooked with cumin, absolutely delicious.

The salmon was servcd with wild rice and looked fantastic.


Our dessert at Les Mandibules restaurant was profiteroles (image)

Our dessert of profiteroles was delicious – a small cup of chocolate was provided to pour over the profiteroles, which immediately hardened and provided plenty of crunch to go with the icecream inside the choux pastry.

If you find yourself anywhere near rue St Maur and rue St Ambroise, check out this delightful restaurant. The Patron was absolutely charming and quite a character, who ensured our visit was fabulous. (View the Where to Eat in Paris page and also the Famous French Food page.)


  • champagne 12,0 euro per glass
  • entrées / starters 8,0 to 10,0 euro
  • mains 18,0 to 22,0 euro
  • desserts 8,0 to 9,0 euro

Map to les Mandibules restaurant

[mappress mapid=”29″]

Les Mandibules
5 rue Guillaume Bertrand
75011 Paris

Metro: St Ambroise / rue St Maur



Le Musee en Herbe for kids in Paris

Le Musee en Herbe for kids in Paris

Ever heard of le Musee en Herbe?

Le Musee en Herbe is a museum for kids and they absolutely love it. You can wander around the current exhibitions or take the kids on a guided tour including animations (they must be accompanied by an adult)

How about some of their workshops? Weekends, Wednesdays and many school holiday days. The kids will learn about the current exhibition – the artist and their work – and then be encourage to create their own art in the same style. This is very cool!

View on Youtube:

If you’re looking for things for kids to do in Paris, check out my other pages:

Click the buttons to read about all the other fun activities for kids

Read the  list of fun activities for kids to do indoors in Paris, from go-karts to  rollerbladingLots of  fun activities for kids including animals and birds in ParisThere are  plenty of fun activities for kids in Paris in summer timeLots of  fun activities for kids around water in Paris, from swimming pools to  waterfallsLots of  fun activities for kids in Paris at the circusWhat to do in Paris  France? So many things to choose from in the City of Love and Light

Le Musee en Herbe kids' museum looks fabulous (image)

21 rue Hérold
75001 PARIS
Tél : 01 40 67 97 66
Fax : 01 40 67 92 13
Ouvert du lundi au dimanche de 10h à 19h sans interruption, vacances et jours fériés.

Open from Monday to Sunday from 10:00a.m. to 7:00pm, holidays and public holidays.
Nocturne le jeudi jusque 21h. Open late on Thursdays until 9:00pm

Métros : Les Halles (ligne/line 4), Palais Royal (ligne/line 1 et 7)
Bus : 85, 74, 29, 48, 67
RER : Châtelet – Les Halles

Map to le Musee en Herbe

[mappress mapid=”28″]

How to use a foreign laptop plug

How to use a foreign laptop plug

Want to know how to use a foreign laptop plug while you’re in Paris?

When you’re going to be in Paris with your laptop, and you’re coming from another country, there are 2 things to consider:

  1. the plug which will go into a wall socket, and
  2. the voltage of your computer.

This video shows my Australian power cord plug, and how I get it to work while I’m in Paris. Luckily the French voltage (220v) and Australian voltage (240v) are very similar, so I don’t need a Voltage Converter. But you might. The last thing you should do is plug in your computer without findout FIRST whether you need a voltage converter — you run the risk of blowing up your hard drive.

Want to view on Youtube?


Transcript of “How to use a foreign laptop plug”

How To Use A Foreign Laptop Plug in Paris
with Teena Hughes of

How To Use A Foreign Laptop Plug in Paris - Tip! (image)With my laptop plug from Australia we have 3 prongs so what I needed to do was get a little attachment (plug converter) so that it would fit into the French system. So I simply got this little plug adapter here that just pushes on, and makes the two flat rods turn into round rods and also it pushes the height further away from the third prong for the Australian plug.

So all I had to do basically was just plug these two prongs into any electrical outlet here in this Parisian apartment and it worked just fine. So that’s all you have to do. Nothing special. So just get yourself one of these little plug adapters to go from Australian plugs to European plugs, and of course this will depend on which country you’re in.

Okay. If you enjoyed this quick Paris tip, you might like to get them in your email inbox – pop over to the website and sign up today!
See you soon!

If you’re not close to any shops, you can also buy these online – here’s the exact same one I have and it’s available online at Amazon:

Got any tips of your own on how to use a foreign laptop plug?

If you have any great suggestions and would like to share them, let me know and I’ll post them here; thanks in advance! View more Paris Travel Tips.




Where’s the best place to stay in Paris for our first visit?

Where’s the best place to stay in Paris for our first visit?

Looking for the best place to stay in Paris

Looking for the best place to stay in Paris?

Finding the best place to stay in Paris could include apartments to rent

Hi Rob,

Thanks for your email:

Hi Teena, I will be staying in Paris in late June for 11 days with my wife and two late-teen daughters. We need accommodation and think an apartment would be best for that length of stay. We wish to do the usual central Paris highlights (Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Louvre, tour of the Seine etc). Can you recommend whether an apartment is the way to go and which part of Paris would be best for our stay to get a first sample of Paris life; markets, shops, events etc. Any particular things to look for in regard to accommodation amenities would be appreciated. Thank you.


You’ll be in Paris at the same time as me, a lovely time of year :-)

Yes an apartment will be a wonderful solution, rather than a hotel. There are many apartment rental websites for Paris, and a few questions to ask and to look out for might be:

  • Is it easy to get in contact with someone after you arrive, in case you need help with anything in the apartment (water doesn’t work, etc etc etc). Make sure you get a local contact number … just in case.
  • Make sure that when you are given the key you do a quick inspection WITH the person handing over the key; if there are any obvious things you need to mention (like cleanliness) this would be the best time to bring it up, so there are no surprises later when you try to get your Deposit back.
  • Which floor is the apartment on? if it’s not the ground floor, is there a lift or elevator? French buildings are centuries old, and so many older apartments do NOT have lifts. Check to make sure before you pay any money, as this could definitely be a deal breaker. Nothing worse than having to walk up and down 5 or 6 flights of stairs several times a day. French translation of lift/elevator is “ascenseur”, and stairs is “escalier”.
  • Many apartments have very small kitchenettes and bar fridges rather than full-size fridges; with a family of four you might need to look for a full-size fridge and better cooking facilities.
  • Will you want wifi? Many apartments will have it for free, but you will need to ask if it’s not listed.
  • How close is it to the nearest Metro? You may not want to be walking for 15-20 minutes if you’re in a hurry to catch a train.
  • How close are the shops to buy bread, milk, staples? Again, the closer the better. Many apartment owners provide detailed maps and instructions to help you get oriented, but it’s also good to ask in advance.
  • Many apartments have a Cleaning Fee to be paid when you leave, or you could opt to do the cleaning yourselves. Give this one some thought – speaking from experience – do you really feel like scrubbing toilets and washing linen etc the day you’re moving out? It’s often easier to just pay the cleaning fee and not have to hassle with washing the sheets etc.
  • If you ARE lucky enough to get a washing machine with your apartment, don’t jump for glee just yet.  It’s quite normal for a ‘wash’ to take up to 2 hours – this is just how the washing machines work, and it’s much faster to simply go to a laundromat to wash AND dry your clothes.  I used to live there, with AND without a washing machine, and have recently rented an apartment in Paris which had a washing machine. I was very disappointed to discover they still take 2 hours to do one small load of washing (without drying). Luckily you can find laundromats everywhere as it’s quite common to NOT have a machine at home (small apartment sizes).
  • The size of the apartment may or may not be a factor for you, and of course the larger the place the more you’ll pay.

For the best place to stay in Paris

I’d avoid staying out on the edges of the city (called the “Peripherique”, which is like a “belt” [“ceinture”] around the 20 suburbs/districts/arrondissements) mostly because it will take longer to get into the heart of Paris and easily come and go to your apartment. There are so so many fabulous districts to stay in, it’s too hard to list them all. As long as read the Reviews on the apartment websites, you’ll see what other folks have said about the location, cleanliness etc.

If you might enjoy being near the markets, here is a list:

When you look at a map of Paris, I could easily say the Arrondissements 1 through to 11 would be perfect, and the outer ones maybe not. But then there are fabulous little pockets of Parisian life everywhere, and if you’re there for 11 days, you might not need to be right in the thick of things – here is a map which shows the 20 arrondissements (numbered from 74001 to 75020, which is the actual postcode of each of the 20 suburbs).

I hope this has been of some help, bon voyage and good luck finding the best place to stay in Paris!!!



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