Spending a perfect day in Paris

A wonderful spring day at the Tuileries garden

A wonderful spring day at the Tuileries garden

Spending a perfect day in Paris – Travel Photo Mondays

How can you not have a wonderful experience in Paris especially if you visit the city in springtime when practically everything is just bursting at the seams. There are so many options, neighborhoods and activities to explore and enjoy in Paris, but let me tell you how I ended spending a perfect day in Paris. (At least my version and how I discovered a few favorite things to do in the city of light).

Delicious pastries at the Movenpick Hotel Paris Neuilly

Delicious pastries at the Movenpick Hotel Paris Neuilly

It starts off with breakfast

For me, a perfect day always has to start with a generous breakfast with amazing pastries and some local foods while having my morning at hotel Movenpick Paris Neuilly in the area of La Defense. I slowly take my first bite of a chocolate croissant and memorize every single sensation, and then follow with a sip from my first café Mocha. Ah yes, (pure joy) and I was already having a perfect morning just from those first few bites. The extensive choices of hot and cold offerings along with fresh fruit, juices with an extensive pastry selection were all so tempting at the breakfast service.  I think I could have easily stayed there all morning with refills of café mochas, but there was a whole city to explore that morning. I brought my cell phone and took these quick snaps below, but it doesn’t show how excellent the breakfast buffet service was. I already had a wonderful start to my perfect day in Paris.


Breakfast buffet service at Movenpick Hotel

Breakfast buffet service at Movenpick Hotel



After a delicious and complete breakfast, it was definitely time to walk off those calories and explore the  charming neighborhood around La Defense.  While I was walking towards the metro, I realized that area is not as touristy as many of the other arrondissemonts (neighborhoods) in the city, and that put a nice smile on my face knowing that I’m really in a lived in part of the city. I passed through a variety of pastry shops, cafes and stores mostly catering to locals. It gave a nice impression of Paris also for the locals, and not just the hordes of tourists coming to see everything in just a few days.

Waiting inside the Paris Metro

Waiting inside the Paris Metro

Using the metro

What an ego builder it is to be able to master the metro system of Paris and using the system quickly. You can literally travel the length of the city pronto, and for a very reasonable amount. Even better is to take advantage of their Paris City Pass card, which allows for unlimited use of public transportation, including the on/off buses and a cruise on the Seine river. I enjoyed using my City Pass also for the amazing and fast access to many landmarks and museums. My favorite part was the fast track entry when you visit many sites or museums that allow you to go in quickly and avoid those long lines – a real plus and time saver!


Spring blooms at the Tuileries garden

Spring blooms at the Tuileries garden

Spring time in Paris

So where to go on a gorgeous spring day in Paris and wanting to be outdoors – why the Jardin des Tuileries, of course! And what perfect timing, all the flower beds were blooming with these gorgeous tulips and masses of colorful annuals. I’m in heaven when it comes to beautiful spots for photography, and I could have easily spent all morning just walking around and looking for the perfect angle and architectural backgrounds to photograph the landscape and monuments. Although we did have a target on visiting the Tuileries, and it is right on the perimeter of the gardens can you guess what it is?  Yes, it is the Orangerie.


Water lily series at the Orangerie

Water lily series at the Orangerie



Originally the building that housed the tropical and citrus plants of the Louvre, the Orangerie is just the perfect first visit to see the collections of Impressionistic art created by the master painters of Impressionism in France. The museum exhibits just the right amount of paintings to introduce any art novice to the popular painting style known as Impressionism, which was a very popular form (and controversial) of painting in Paris and throughout France in the early 19th century.


Monet's Giverny garden at the Orangerie, Paris

Monet’s Giverny garden at the Orangerie, Paris




Inside the Orangerie are two amazing oval shaped rooms with Monet’s master works – the rooms are filled with these gigantic panels on the walls with his water lily series. They were painted in his garden and home at Giverny which is located outside of Paris. Just walking through the rounded panel paintings and admiring the huge scale in 360 degrees, gives you an immediate impression of his world, and the colorful brushstrokes that evoke spring time in his gardens.


Monet's water lilies at the Orangerie, Paris

Monet’s water lilies at the Orangerie, Paris



Walking by the Orangerie and the Seine river, Paris

Walking by the Orangerie and the Seine river, Paris

Walking along the Seine

After touring the Orangerie, I found a convenient walk along the Tuileries and the banks of the Seine river. It was a perfect and sunny day to be outdoors and walk past so many historic landmarks and architecture lining the Seine. Our next stop is the Pont Des Arts or the Lovers bridge ,which crosses the Seine river and offers magnificent views of the river. While walking across the bridge, you can see all the grand monuments along the river and it is an impressive view. Across from the bridge is the Musee D’orsay, which is our next stop on the left bank of Paris.



Pont Des Arts looking at the Seine river, Paris

Pont Des Arts looking at the Seine river, Paris


The Pont Des Arts bridge really shows Paris as the romance capital with thousands of colorful locks place in every spot on the bridge. These are left by lovers visiting from around the world, many with engravings or personal messages on the locks. Afterwards, they tossed the keys into the Seine as a token of their eternal devotion.  How sweet – a little sappy, but on a perfect day like today in Paris, it all fits nicely.  The Pont Des Arts is a wonderful spot to take photos of the colorful boats, architecture and river scenes along the Seine.




Entrance hallway at the D'Orsay museum, Paris

Entrance hallway at the D’Orsay museum, Paris


An amazing lunch and visit in my favorite museum

One of my favorite activities for today had to be lunch in Paris, and not just any lunch – but a really nice meal in a nice restaurant. And we picked the perfect restaurant located at the Musee D’Orsay. Just in time since I was famished after all that walking around town. Seriously, you walk into the restaurant not expecting anything amazing for a museum restaurant and this is what you see below, pretty amazing right?


D'Orsay museum restaurant interior

D’Orsay museum restaurant interior


 Impressive, n’est pas?



Shrimp Louie at the D'Orsay restaurant

Shrimp Louie at the D’Orsay restaurant



Here is my entrée and appetizer dish


Prix fix meals with entrée at the D'Orsay restaurant

Prix fix meals with entrée at the D’Orsay restaurant



Needless to say it was a really good choice for lunch, and the hardest part was choosing what I was craving for the moment. I  decided to order their prix fix – 3 course luncheon, which included an appetizer, entrée and desert, and it was all so delicious and well proportioned. Having lunch in this splendid room really did add the perfect Paris day experience, and I could have easily finished my day here but there was still the amazing D’Orsay museum to explore.


Exploring the D’Orsay museum


Paneled Pierre Bonnard paintings at the D'Orsay

Paneled Pierre Bonnard paintings at the D’Orsay


It really could be quite overwhelming walking into the D’Orsay with all the incredible and extensive collections of Impressionism masters like Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, Matisse – everyone is represented at this museum with many of their master pieces on display.

I ended up spending most of my time with the special new exhibit that coincidentally just opened –  it was a retrospective of Pierre Bonnard’s introspective and intimate painting series. Hopefully this show will be around still when you visit the museum because it is the first major retrospective of his art collected from major museums from around the world. This was an amazing retrospective to see for the first time, but I’m sure any show that the D’Orsay features in it’s revolving show is a must see event for any visitor or even locals.



Bonnard at the D'Orsay museum

Bonnard at the D’Orsay museum


Intimate paintings by Pierre Bonnard

Pierre Bonnard is well-known for his intimate bed and bath series and this collection showed some of the most dynamic and colorful work like these paintings.


Retrospective of Pierre Bonnard, D'Orsay museum

Retrospective of Pierre Bonnard, D’Orsay museum



The wonderful thing about visiting many of the museums throughout Paris is that you can actually take pictures of the artwork without using any flash. Although many special exhibits may have restrictions on photography, so do pay attention when you visit any museums to see what the restrictions are for photography.




Colorful macaroons 7th Arrondissemont, Paris

Colorful macarons 7th Arrondissemont, Paris

Antique shopping and a coffee break

Surrounding the area around the D’Orsay museum is a wonderful district called the 7th Arrondissement which is the heart of Paris with all the grandest sites, architecture and charming neighborhoods. Just behind the museum is an area of antique stores, art galleries and cafes that are fun to explore. It really feels so far removed from the tourist venues and more like a neighborhood in this upscale area. It was fun to explore the high end galleries and unusual shops, if not just to peek at the store fronts. We take a nice coffee break at  the very posh and award winning pastry shop in Paris called Eric Kayser  Boulangerie – apparently they have won many bread and pastry awards and you know the French go gaga over their pastries and so did I. There are quite a few of his shops around the city so you can easily Google his shops and where to find them, but be forewarned, they don’t allow any photographs inside any of the shops.

Eric Kayser, Boulangerie in Paris

Eric Kayser, Boulangerie in Paris

 Ooh la la – yes please!


Pastries and cakes at Eric Kaiser

Pastries and cakes at Eric Kaiser





Cobbled streets at St. Germain des Pres

Cobbled streets at St. Germain des Pres

Fun and trendy St. Germain Des Pres

After our afternoon tea break, we head out St. Germain Des Pres which is a relatively short walk from the D’Orsay museum. The area is well-known for food and celebrates French cuisine at its finest with some of the best cafes, markets and specialty food purveyors all mixed into this foodie lovers ghetto. It is also a very trendy and see and be seen area where many of the locals and wannabes hang out for fashion trending and just plain people watching.  I’ve signed up for a food tour of the area that I took in the area and I’ll post it soon so you can get a better idea about the food scene here.  So for now we are just exploring the neighborhood in a random and haphazard way. Really even getting lost in the neighborhood is fun and it’s nice to discover something new or unexpected in this cool and hip area.



Popular cafes at St. Germain de Pres

Popular cafes at St. Germain de Pres



We ended going to a specialty market and picking up some wonderful cheeses, cured meats and wine and ate at the market. It was a perfect and simple dinner eating some of the best specialty foods from the regions around Paris right from the market.


Selection of specialty French products at St. Germain des Pres

Selection of specialty French products at St. Germain des Pres


French food at its finest at Le Marche, St. Germain de Pres



St. Germain de Pres food market

St. Germain de Pres food market





Champs Elysees at night time, Paris

Champs Elysees at night time, Paris

Paris at night

At this point, I was close to calling it quits for my perfect day in Paris, but no….. I just had to see the city at night time and seeing some of the monuments lit up. Just a short metro ride away is the Arc de Triomphe and visiting it at night time is a must in my book. The added surprise is also seeing the Eiffel tower in the background and the Champs Elysees (the grand Parisian boulevard) all light up and dazzling.


Arc de Triomphe at night time, Paris

Arc de Triomphe at night time, Paris





Unknown soldier, Arc de Ttriomphe

Unknown soldier, Arc de Ttriomphe


Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower

Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower


Time for the perfect sleep

That really was a long day enjoying all the amazing landmarks and wonderful experiences touring Paris but I’m really tired and ready for a nice long sleep. It’s going to be a perfect night and when I return back to my room at the Movenpick, the turn down service is perfect and wow, the view of the Eiffel Tower lit up in the distrance is really magical! My bed is so inviting, I’m really tempted to jump right into bed, but I enjoy some of the treats and fruits that the hotel has placed in the seating area so I can enjoy the evening views of the Eiffel tower in the background.


Nibbles and wine before my sleep time

Nibbles and wine before my sleep time



Snack time before sleep

Fluffy extra large bed at the Movenpick Paris Neuilly

Fluffy extra large bed at the Movenpick Paris Neuilly



The bathroom is fantastic and usually I don’t do baths, but after a really long walk around Paris, this is the best way to end the day with an indulgent bath with all their nice bath toiletries, yes! Afterwards, the fluffy bed is awaiting and I’m ready to crash for a very long, long time. It really was a perfect day in Paris and I’m ready for bed, good night.


Modern bathroom with ultra luxe toiletries at the Movenpick

Modern bathroom with ultra luxe toiletries at the Movenpick


So what do you think about my post on spending a perfect day in Paris, would you do the same? Or maybe you create your own perfect day by visiting the Paris Convention and Visitors bureau website for information here.  Thanks for visiting today, if you enjoyed the post, I hope you can share it with any of the social media buttons around the post, thank you. Also today is Travel Photo Mondays, so I hope that you can visit some of the other bloggers participating in today’s linkup below.

While enjoying my perfect day in Paris, I was a guest of the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau with a stay and City Card, all opinions and thoughts are always my own. I had a fantastic stay at the Movenpick Paris Neuilly and it is a fantastic area if you want to get away from all the maddening tourists and crowds.

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29 Responses to Spending a perfect day in Paris

  1. Ali Haider October 20, 2016 at 11:25 pm #

    Paris is Just Love!

    Awesome Place <3

    One I'll Go There 🙂

  2. rai October 1, 2015 at 7:36 am #

    Paris is good place for going to live free.i also have wish to go there.

  3. Michele {Malaysian Meanders} August 3, 2015 at 8:00 pm #

    A perfect day indeed. It brought back great memories of my own Paris trip a few summers ago. I wished I could have dined at that restaurant in the Musee d’Orsay, but I’m afraid my 3 kids would have rebelled at being suitably behaved for that elegant place. We did manage a nice lunch at Eric Kayser, although I was scolded for taking photos of the pastry case.

  4. christa June 7, 2015 at 1:30 am #

    A perfect day, indeed! The last time I was in Paris was three years ago. I loved every minute of my visit. Thank you for inviting me to join your meme. Although I would LOVE to be part of your fabulous meme, my blog is not a travel blog. Now that I know where to find your meme, I will be visiting often because I love seeing photos around the world.

  5. Suzanne Stavert June 5, 2015 at 12:05 pm #

    I LOVE Paris! I have been many times and I never tire of it. I have not visited in the Spring. I think I need to do that. A day is not complete without a Macaroon…

  6. Linja June 1, 2015 at 6:55 pm #

    It’s been years since I went to Paris but I love the D’Orsay!

  7. Life in the Carolina Mts June 1, 2015 at 8:21 am #

    Lovely shots – lucky you to have a chance to visit Paris!

  8. Marilyn Jones May 28, 2015 at 10:10 am #

    I love your Paris photos, especially the ones taken at night/evening. As always; excellent!!

  9. Pablo May 28, 2015 at 4:16 am #

    Oh, right now I just want to go to visit Paris. Great pictures and great tour. I am sure you had a fantastic day there.
    Best regards

  10. Ursula Maxwell-Lewis May 27, 2015 at 2:57 pm #

    Marvellous photography, as always, Noel. Honestly, though, I adore Paris. I’d live there, if I could. I’d say you reminded me of that – but, I didn’t need much reminding! 🙂 Sigh….

  11. Lisa Chavis May 27, 2015 at 3:56 am #

    What a FABULOUS day in Paris! So many drool-worthy pastries and as always, your photos are wonderful! The Musee D’Orsay is one of my favorite Paris museums as well. So much to see and you’ve captured it perfectly!

  12. Sue Reddel May 27, 2015 at 3:25 am #

    Oh how I love Paris! You did a great job taking me right back there. I’m so glad you included the Musee de l’Orangerie it’s absolutely one of my favorite Paris museums and so many people miss it.

  13. Suze The Luxury Columnist May 26, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

    The Musee d’Orsay is so beautiful, isn’t it! I love the cafe there and how nice that there was a Pierre Bonnard exhibition. I love the subtlety of his paintings

  14. Carole Terwilliger Meyers May 26, 2015 at 7:45 am #

    A perfect day in Paris–flowers and pastries and art museums–oh, my! Yes, indeedy.

  15. Tom Fakler May 25, 2015 at 9:25 pm #

    I could spend the whole day at the Musée d’Orsay. I know there is so much more to see but it is a really great museum.

  16. Anita @ No Particular Place To Go May 25, 2015 at 7:15 pm #

    Starting out the day with some of those lovely pastries sounds devine. I’d love to see the Jardin des Tuileries and the Monets and lunch and a visit to the D’Orsay museum sound amazing. Can’t believe you fit everything else into your day but I have to agree, it’s my idea of a perfect day too!

  17. Johanna May 25, 2015 at 2:14 pm #

    Oh your photos! How eloquent they are in reminding us of all that’s beautiful about Paris – especially in Springtime. You had me at ‘cheese’ too – delicious photo!

  18. Susan Moore May 25, 2015 at 8:24 am #

    You really make me want to get back to Paris again – it has been too long since I visited and there is so much more I want to see in Paris. Thanks for sharing your wonderful photos!

  19. Bilal Tahir May 25, 2015 at 8:21 am #

    i want also want to spend 1 month in Paris but i am live so far .Paris is really superb awesome place.
    Thanks for sharing.keep up it.

  20. Betsy Wuebker | PassingThru May 25, 2015 at 4:48 am #

    Paris is so much better when we can meander through the day doing the things we love most. Can’t wait to return.

  21. Donna Janke May 25, 2015 at 4:20 am #

    If I had just one day in Paris, this would be the perfect itinerary. The food, especially the cheese, looks great. I love impressionist art. And what could be nicer than a walk along the Seine!

  22. Rajlakshmi May 25, 2015 at 12:47 am #

    ohh the pasteries look heavenly … I would love to eat that someday 😀

  23. Life Images by Jill May 24, 2015 at 9:09 pm #

    Oh now, now I am wanting more than ever to go back to Paris. Thanks for taking us there.


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