There’s so much to love about Paris, but one of my favorite aspects of the city is its many gardens. When I spent two weeks in Paris as a student, I was so poor I couldn’t afford to do anything in the city. So each day I would explore a different park, find a secluded little spot, and spend the day reading.
It was actually a great way to see Paris, so I wanted to incorporate my favorite gardens into this trip, showing Greg my top three green places in the city.
Jardin du Luxembourg
This is my absolute favorite garden in all of Paris! The minute you step inside you feel as if you’re in an impressionist painting.
The garden was built by Marie de’ Medici (she was the widow of King Henry IV if you’re wondering how she ended up in France). The Luxembourg Palace, where now the French Senate meets, serves as the focal point among lush, green lawns and vibrant, blooming flowers.
This is my favorite statue in the garden, the “selfie statue” as Greg and I like to think of it!
I love this park so much I took Greg there for breakfast several times during our trip. We’d buy fresh croissants (and macarons!) on our way and eat them al fresco in the gorgeous gardens. It’s just about the most perfect way you can start a Parisian day.
Champ de Mars
During our dinner in the Eiffel Tower, we watched the sun set over the Champ de Mars. We saw tiny people looking up at us, watching the Eiffel Tower light up around us. So on another night we headed to the park to become one of those people, seeing the Eiffel Tower from the outside rather than from within.
This is by far the most touristy of Paris’ parks, with men walking from group to group trying to sell cheap Eiffel Tower trinkets and, for the smarter entrepreneurs, beer and wine.
Nonetheless, the Champ de Mars offers unbeatable views of the Eiffel Tower, so it’s worth having a picnic there one night.
And then you’ll have a front-row seat as the sky darkens and the Eiffel Tower lights up.
And there’s no better place to watch the Tower’s evening light show. In the summer it lasts for 5 minutes and happens every hour, on the hour, beginning at 11pm.
Jardin des Tuileries
This garden is located right in front of the Louvre, and is the perfect place to relax after what is sure to be an exhausting visit to the western world’s largest museum.
The garden has many hedges which offer a surprising amount of privacy in such a popular park. You almost don’t feel like you’re right in the heart of everything, even though you are.
From the Jardin des Tuileries you can walk straight into the Place de la Concorde.
And onto the Champs-Elysées, Paris’ most famous boulevard.
Where finally, after a lot of walking, you’ll end up at the Arc de Triomphe.
When you’re there, if you still haven’t gotten your fill of walking, you can climb 284 steps up to the top.
Where you’ll be treated to sweeping views of Paris.
And you can look back on the Jardin des Tuileries in the distance!
To paraphrase Audrey Hepburn, Parisian gardens are always a good idea!
(You can find all of my France travel posts here).