Bonjour! The beautiful city of Paris leaves a great impression on people as the city is packed with unique architecture, rich history and delightful pastries. Hence, it is no surprise that Paris is often portrayed as a dream destination – a must have on your bucket list. Here are some famous attractions and lesser known places perfect for all travellers to explore and get to know Paris.
1) For art appreciators
Musee d Orsay
Whether you want to appreciate rich art history or to add some aesthetic shots to your Instagram, the museums in Paris will certainly leave you satisfied.
Formerly a train station during the 19th century, Musee d Orsay offers a unique feel compared to other contemporary museums. It even contests with the Louvre with its historical context and its stunning architecture. The museum features a wide array of well-known artists. Most notably, impressionist paintings ranging from Van Gough to Monet.
I particularly found this museum fascinating for the fact that it is divided into different sections featuring similar themes. Each artist depicted a story through their paintings, and this arrangement helped me pay more attention to the fine details these artists incorporated in their art. Some of my favourites featured within the museum are ‘Medusa’s Shield’ and Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’. Indeed, a visit to the museum provides a much different dimension to these famous artworks.
Top Tip: Bring your student ID when visiting museums anywhere in the world, as most museums offer free entry for students.
2) For the historians
The Palace of Versailles
A living connection to rich histories, the palace of Versailles is a must-visit for those who want to fully comprehend and experience the lifestyle of France’s absolute monarch and the rise of the French Revolution. As you walk through the large palace you will find fascinating historical artefacts such as the layout of the royal bedroom, the chapel, valuable vases and furniture.
Additionally, the palace of Versailles is also home to the astounding hall of mirrors filled with grand chandeliers. This is a hall dedicated towards France’s political success. Even more so, observed within the halls is French artist, Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun’s paintings, depicting of several historical achievements of the French. Furthermore, the exterior of the palace is known to have housed the battlegrounds of the French revolution.
On a lighter note, with all the picturesque views, the garden of Versailles is definitely an ideal place to take Instagram-worthy pictures.
Fun Fact: Despite being home to France’s absolute monarchy, the palace of Versailles hardly has any toilets.
Tip: If you are interested in the story behind historical artefacts, request an audio guide when visiting attractions.
3) For a mix of culture and halal food
The Grand Mosque of Paris
Situated within a small neighbourhood in Paris, this grand mosque features an exquisite blend of cultures. From the outside, the abstract Moroccan designs of the mosque adapt into the classic French buildings. As for within, the mosque features a magnificent garden filled with many different types of roses, plants and trees.
The mosque also has a delicious Moroccan café and other restaurants. Here, they serve pastries, coffee and all the best couscous you could enjoy. Best of all, the cuisine served in the café and restaurants are halal (food that is permissible in Islam). Yet, it is not only Muslims that frequent this area – many Parisian flock here for its calming garden atmosphere.
Although not as famous as the Eiffel tour, these attractions will surely leave you impressed. Here’s hoping that this article intrigues you enough into visiting the city of lights. Ending on that note, Au Revoir!
Written by Aisyah Mohd Bahrin.