Money Matters Team

Paris: be my valentine?

By Money Matters Team 24/01/2013

Plan a trip to the lesser known sights of Paris

Discover some of Paris' best kept secrets...

An old saying goes: 'avoid clichés like the plague,' but what about a trip to Paris for a romantic Valentine's break? The City of Love has long been an icon of romance, yet strip away the clichés and Paris still has a big heart to share.

Set your sights…

Who needs public transport? Paris is the perfect place to saunter, arm-in-arm. Being just a couple of miles wide, the city centre is walkable. The sights, sounds and scenery will put a spring in your step and you can witness the city up close and personal. Whether it's trying out your French with a local, getting lost up a side close, or forgetting the time of day in a homely café, this is the real Paris.

Museums of mystique...

Ah, how romantic: fighting through the hordes with your loved one to get a snatched and blurred picture of the Mona Lisa. Why think famous when there's quaint and cosy?

Many of Paris' smaller museums offer equally beautiful art, and often escape the 'madding crowds'. There's plenty of choice with lots of smaller museums showcasing fashion, money and wine – to name just a few. The Musée Marmottan houses the world's largest collection of Monets. For lovebirds, The Musée Rodin, housed in a villa, is widely claimed to be one of the city's most romantic museums (pictured right).

Take dining with a pinch of salt

Offering thousands of places to eat, it's all too easy to get sucked into fine dining. For good old fashioned French fare try one of the many bistros scattered around the sixth and seventh arrondissement which serve delicious, no-nonsense food. Eatinparis.com is a handy guide for finding restaurants in Paris and can be searched by district. Who needs candle-lit dinners and violins anyway? They're a fire hazard and you can't hear yourself think!

Going off the beaten track…

Spend sometime away from the rest of the world exploring Paris' covered passages. These were the city's first malls and, below their vaulted ceilings of glass and wrought iron, there are unusual items from French designers, antiquarian book dealers and art galleries which date back to the 19th century.

A room for two, forget the view

Why blow your budget on a fancy hotel when you can spend your money on an authentic Parisian B&B? This will leave you with more to spend during your Valentine's break, and you'll both appreciate the parochial and local feel of a French guest house.

What to take with you?

Given its many 'over-impressions', arguably the best thing you can take with you is an open mind. This might be closely followed by extras such as your French foreign phrasebook, travel insurance, camera and maybe some 'special words' for your partner.  

So, there you have it. The metropolis will provide the romantic blank canvas – all you have to have to do is paint the picture and whisper 'je t'aime'…  

This Money Matters post aims to be informative and engaging. Though it may include tips and information, it does not constitute advice and should not be used as a basis for any financial decisions. Sainsbury's Bank accepts no responsibility for the opinions and views of external contributors and the content of external websites included within this post. Some links may take you to another Sainsbury's Bank page. All information in this post was correct at date of publication.

This Money Matters post aims to be informative and engaging. Though it may include tips and information, it does not constitute advice and should not be used as a basis for any financial decisions. Sainsbury's Bank accepts no responsibility for the opinions and views of external contributors and the content of external websites included within this post. Some links may take you to another Sainsbury's Bank page. All information in this post was correct at date of publication.

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