Like Bastille day in France, American Thanksgiving has become a tradition for celebrating and gathering with your family and friends. However, Thanksgiving, unlike Bastille day, is not known by the majority of the French population. In fact I’m ready to bet that most of my fellow citizens have no idea what or when Thanksgiving is. So if you’re in Paris on the fourth Thursday of November and if you’re an American looking for a taste of home, here are the things to do for Thanksgiving in Paris.
The first thing you have to know is that Thanksgiving in Paris is like any other Thursday of the year: Parisians go to work, all shops and restaurants are open as well as monuments and attractions. If you’re not really into spending long hours having dinner (although turkey is one delicious bird and deserves a long ceremony), you can go and enjoy the city to the full: you can visit a museum like the Louvre or the Orsay museum, have a cup of coffee at a terrace if the wind is not too cold… The one thing you can do as well for Thanksgiving is to go see the Christmas illuminations that shine around town since mid-November, like the ones on the Champs-Elysees for instance.
Another thing to do for Thanksgiving in Paris is to cook your own dinner (and if you do, don’t hesitate to invite us!). If you’re renting an apartment in town, this is the perfect option. You can find your turkey in any butcher shop (the best solution is to order it a couple days before) and local vegetables everywhere. One store I have to mention is Thanksgiving, located in the heart of the Marais neighbourhood, a store where you’ll find any essential of American cooking.
The last thing to do for Thanksgiving in Paris, if you’re not renting an apartment and simply want to enjoy dinner without having to cook for long hours, is to find a place that serves Thanksgiving dinners. Here are a couple places that celebrate Thanksgiving properly.
- The American church of Paris: 65 Quai d’Orsay, 75007 Paris. Thanksgiving dinner on Saturday, November 28.
- Joe Allen: 30 rue Pierre Lescot, 75001 Paris. Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday November 26.
- Breakfast in America: 4 rue Malher, 75004 Paris ou 17 rue des Ecoles, 75005 Paris.