Paris – the city of love, lights and croissants. The French capital is full of rich diversity, cultural monuments and hidden gems around every corner. The stunning Haussmanian architecture, wide tree-lined boulevards and cobblestone courtyards will take your breath away, and the shuttered windows, balconies spilling with flowers and colourful doors will make you stop to capture the perfect Instagram shot!
Here’s my guide on where to eat, drink and discover culture in France’s capital:
Despite boulangeries and patisseries everywhere you look, Paris is jam-packed with healthy cafés offering something for everyone, including vegan and gluten-free options.
Located in the heart of Le Marais area, the chic décor will make you feel like you’re in a healthy hotspot in LA. The vast menu offers superfood favourites such as açaí bowls and matcha smoothies, as well as various types of granola, cold-pressed juice and avocado on toast with poached eggs. Their take-away shop round the corner is also perfect to grab a veggie burrito to eat in a nearby green space.
Situated on a gorgeous street corner in the sophisticated district of Saint-Germain-des-Près, this is the ideal spot for people watching, smoothie-in-hand. Their grain bowls are composed of quinoa, lentils and various salads, and they offer an array of desserts with gluten-free and dairy-free options.
Love Juice Bar
Although known for its wonderfully thick “nice-cream” bowls (thick creamy smoothie bowls that taste more like dessert), this place serves the absolute best avocado toast in town. The bowls are filling and every flavour is incredible in its own right, but my favourites include the peanut butter bowl, chocolate bowl and mango & passion fruit bowl.
The fourth of the Big Mamma restaurant group to open, Biglove offers plenty of gluten-free dishes (including a delicious pizza) and an all-day brunch menu with an Italian vibe. Expect fluffy blueberry pancakes, stuffed peppers and spicy avocado toast. The walls are lined with wooden shelves filled with authentic Italian deli products.
If you’re looking for a cute relaxed hangout spot on a Sunday morning, this is the place to be. Famous for its brunch burgers, pancakes and soft-boiled eggs. Located near Place de la République, the minimalist wooden décor is complete with old-school American diner products.
Café Méricourt, by the same owner as the much-loved Café Oberkampf, is famous for its shakshuka alongside pancake stacks and other brunch staples. Don’t forget to make reservations online unless you want to spend your morning standing in the queue!
Bol Porridge Bar
This adorably tiny café is the definition of cosy, serving the ultimate hug-in-a-bowl: oatmeal, with every topping imaginable! Keep it classic with sliced banana and granola, go tropical with kiwi and toasted coconut chips, or channel your sweet tooth with a pool of melted peanut butter and chocolate chips!
Tel Aviv-style food such as a whole head of burnt cauliflower drizzled in tahini, and spicy fish in hot fluffy pita bread! Phenomenal flavours in relaxed setting in the heart of Le Marais.
The best Asian fusion in town, located just of the Champs Elysées, a few minutes away from the Arc du Triomphe. The vibe is cool, the black cod is a must-try, and the cocktails are fantastic too.
Faust – dance on the riverbanks of the Seine
Andy Wahloo – the place to be seen by the same owner as London’s Sketch
Lavomatique – a secret entrance disguised as a laundrette
Le Perchoir Marais – best rooftop bar in Paris for spectacular views
Candelaria – a hidden cocktail bar behind a delicious Mexican taco bar
Little Red Door – a trendy cocktail bar with all sorts of fascinating flavours
Madarin Oriental Hotel – get a drink in the elegant new garden, designed by architect Christophe Gautrand
Place de Trocadéro – Head here at night to admire the 20,000 sparkling lightbulbs of the Eiffel Tower light up every hour on the hour
Montmartre – Wander through the charming artist’s village and climb the winding staircase of the Sacre Coeure church for panoramic views
Musée D’Orsay – don’t forget to snap a picture next to the giant clock
Musee des Arts Décoratifs – check out the current Dior exhibition here
Place des Vosges – A beautiful green square surrounded by red-brick buildings, stunning arches and classic French cafés. Grab a French pastry at Carette or a smoothie at Juice Lab.
Jardins de Luxembourg – a gorgeous park where scenes of Gossip Girl were filmed, with an iconic pond, horse-riding for children and lovely little cafés
Le Marais – Stroll through the traditional Jewish road Rue des Rosiers on a Sunday to experience live street music and check out L’As du Falafel for world-famous falafel
Le Marché des Enfants Rouges – Check out this food market in Le Marais for fresh organic food, flowers and a variety of restaurant stalls
Rue Crémieux – the Parisian take on Notting Hill’s rainbow coloured houses, so remember to bring your camera