The Best of Paris is Hidden in the Wide Open

Paris alley behind le procopeThe best of Paris is hidden in the wide open. Her beauty is in her history; the architecture, the windows, the doors and the colors that represent the differing sides of conflicts that shaped the city, as it is known today. The city of Paris is like a Parisian woman, she is aging gracefully with little need for cosmetic intervention. Paris has good bone structure (architecture) and a few accessories that enhance her beauty more (ornamental lanterns, colorful doors, classic gates), but how many times do tourists miss these in the rushed commute to the main attractions?

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Original cobblestone back alley streets and entries to courtyards with private gardens on the sides of brownstone buildings may be located behind seemingly ordinary facades. Centuries old wood beams ceilings, and ancient brass and metal lanterns are items that can be taken for granted by locals who walk past them daily. Visitors traversing along the route to the iconic attractions who take the time to absorb their surroundings will be in awe at the how many of these treasures are in their path.

Paris alley with beam ceilingMany times I have been in search of a particular destination, eyes laser beam on the street signs, and by accident notice an unusual gargoyle, gas lantern or gorgeous flower garden off the balcony up high near the street signs. I whip out my camera and snap a quick pic and move on, only to revisit it at the end of the day and discover it was my favorite thing about the visit. Remember, the destination may be the short-term goal, but the long-term goal is to discover the essence of Paris. Pay attention and you just may be lucky enough to find it “hidden” out in the open streets of the City of Light.

All photos property of The Weekend In Paris. Must obtain permission before use.


  • Natalie
    Posted at 19:04h, 09 October Reply

    I’ll have to remember to not be so focused on the location on my trip to Paris, but the journey to it instead! Can’t wait to see this city for the first time!

  • Leah
    Posted at 14:08h, 08 October Reply

    Great metaphor! Love it! Paris is only getting better with age; it just takes the observer the grace and curiosity to appreciate her 😉
    You’re right to point out that some of the best parts of Paris are hidden away behind those big gates of the “hôtels particuliers”. Some of my favourites are in the Marais.

    • Weekend In Paris
      Posted at 15:11h, 09 October Reply

      Hi Leah,
      The Marais has some amazing treasures that I have found along my travels – love it!
      Thanks so much for chiming in! I hope you like my site and visit often and comment.
      🙂 Priscilla

  • Kim 24/7 in France
    Posted at 09:22h, 08 October Reply

    Paris is indeed beautiful – inside & out!

    • Weekend In Paris
      Posted at 15:12h, 09 October Reply

      Hi Kim,

      Yes, Paris is beautiful inside and out! How lucky for the Parisians and those who get to call it home.

      • Kim 24/7 in France
        Posted at 06:49h, 10 October

        Paris is home in my heart, but I do love the Riviera sunshine!

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