© 2012; 2008 Connecting: Solo Travel Network & Eva Lee. Information.
NOTE: This article is reproduced here for inspirational value alone and will not normally be updated.
Therefore, all facts, figures, and author's opinions are subject to change as time goes on.

Almost Free Sightseeing in Paris – A Solo Travel Report

Text and Photo by Eva Lee

Start by picking up necessities for this foot-saving, virtually free day of music, art and sightseeing in Paris – sorry, no free lunch:

Before heading out, check the Pariscope for a free concert you might catch along the way and plan your sightseeing around that event. This itinerary includes a visit to the headquarters of Radio France for one of its free afternoon concerts, but frequent free events are held at different venues around the city.

On Foot, Métro, and Bus 70

For example, here's how to spend a full day doing a little of this and that along bus route number 70.

The 70 bus continues on to the left bank, past the Musée de la Monnaie (Museum of Money) into the upscale, boutique shopping district of St Germain des Prés (6ème). At Église St Sulpice (St Sulpice Church), you could get off the bus and walk the "Rose Line" you read about in The Da Vinci Code, or ride on through Square Sevres-Babylone, past the Bon Marché department store – home to L'Epicierie Fine. This specialty food shop is the place to splurge on snacks and food souvenirs. Luscious madeleines. Sinful chocolates. Pastilles de lavande – sugared lavender flower petals. Wine from Bordeaux, Sancerre, or Alsace. From Denmark come X-IT sugarless mints with or without guarana. Everything is the best quality at L'Epicierie Fine.

Dine With Parisians

I recommend a stop for lunch in the fifteenth arrondissement (15ème) a neighborhood where "real people" Parisians live. Watch the large map posted on the bus for the stop at Voluntiers-Lecourbe.

Shop Til you Drop

From Radio France take the return number 70 bus. Descend at the Vaneau stop or at Sevres-Babylone. Now is a good time to browse L'Epicierie Fine for those exquisite foodie souvenirs.

After all this traipsing about you may be ready to call it a day and head for your hotel. But if you fancy staying around this area for dinner, retrace your steps past L'Epicerie Fine, two blocks south of the Vaneau Métro entrance, on rue de Sevres. Turn right onto rue Pierre Leroux and watch for Chez Germaine.


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