Paris at Christmas time, ooh, la, la! There’s no one better to share it with us than guest Parisian expert, Robin Locker Lacey.
Not many travelers pick the month of December when planning a visit to Paris. But visiting during the holiday season, whether for a girls’ getaway or luxury escape, can bring many benefits as well as unique experiences you won’t find at other times of the year. Not only are lines at museums and attractions non-existent, and prices more reasonable, but the City of Lights takes on a magical quality and seems to glow from within.
Just walking the streets will provide a feast for the eyes and tempting delights. Rows of trees bordering the Champs-Elysees drip with garlands of blue lights. Patisserie windows display sweet holiday treats like the popular French yule log, Bûche de Noël.
Whether you’re flying solo or with your sweetheart, for a one-of-a-kind view you won’t soon forget, head over to the Place de la Concorde and grab a seat on the giant ferris wheel. Time your ride for after dark, near the top of the hour, to watch the Eiffel Tower sparkle.
For those on a girl’s getaway, make sure you leave time for shopping! Department stores show their holiday spirit by lighting up their facades and showcasing creative holiday-themed windows. Don’t miss the 20 meter high Christmas tree under the spectacular glass dome at Galeries Lafayette. Topped with a crown and adorned with twinkling lights, it’s the star of the show.
If you can extend your Christmas visit into early January. You’ll be able to take part in the Paris Soldes, which happens only twice a year. All shops, boutiques and even department stores discount their merchandise. Luxury travelers can score even designer items at up to 80% off.
Christmas Markets also appear in many of the arrondissements throughout the city. Strolling the rows of stalls which are stocked with handmade ornaments, toys and gifts while noshing on crêpes, roasted chestnuts, gingerbread and mulled wine, known as vin chaud, will put you in the holiday spirit.