Parks and Gardens in Paris
Here are five amazing things you can do around the Parks and Gardens in Paris
1.) Play a Boule Game
In every Parisian park you will find some passionate boule players. Try this typically French “sport”, for which Frenchmen are crazy! The best way to discover this game is with a local guide teaching you the secret of petanque.
2.) Discover the hidden gardens in Paris
During your walks in Paris, enjoy discovering secret gardens or a French “square”, where Parisian families like to spend their weekends. Discover a quiet place, far from the traffic. All districts of Paris have their own hidden gardens.
3.) Have a picnic in a park
There is no better way to feel like a true Parisian than enjoying a picnic in a park, a welcome break from your touristic walking and sightseeing activities. It’s also a great idea for families visiting Paris to enjoy a peaceful time in a nice area.
4.) Go cycling in the woods
Rent a bike, such as a velib for instance (which you can find all around the city), and go cycling around Vincennes or Boulogne’s woods. Enjoy a nice tour far from the noise of the city and discover how Parisians make the most of these wonderful green spaces.
5.) Rent a small boat
During a sunny day this activity is a great idea to enjoy some sightseeing around the park. You can do this on Lac Daumesnil in the Vincennes wood or in the Boulogne wood. This activity is particularly good fun for a family with children.
- One park, garden or square out of four is open 24/7. You just have to check before heading yourself to a night stroll or an early jogging.
- Be a true Parisian and choose to jog into the Bois de Vincennes. On the border between Paris and its suburbs, this late royal hunting playground is nowadays a zoo, a garden with its several lakes and also the place for one of the most beautiful Parisian castles…
- You cannot sit on the grass in most Parisian Parks but you can still rush and grab a green chair! Otherwise, you also have a lot of big parks, a bit further from the center of Paris but which are more accessible and as pleasant.
Why it’s worth visiting
- Because you cannot avoid them in Paris as well as you cannot go back home and say “I’ve seen Paris” without adding “Oh, have you seen the Luxembourg Garden / The Tuileries / (or any other park)? How lovely and pleasant!”.
- If you want to meet Parisians in their natural habitats, which means out of the subway station and far from the office building. Perfect for a pleasant meeting.
- In order to enjoy making your way in the small alleys and to enjoy some fresh air before rushing back into the far more crowded Parisian streets…
- If you want to spend a quiet moment with your children, your partner or just on your own!
Facts about Parks and Gardens in Paris
Paris doesn’t seem to be a green city. Yet the town has plenty of green spaces: sometimes hidden and small. We can distinguish 4 kinds of gardens: first of all the two Paris kinds of wood, Bois de Vincennes and Bois de Boulogne which are the biggest green areas of the city. Then there are the parks, such as Buttes Chaumont or Monceau, then you will find many gardens, either famous, like Luxembourg, or hidden around the whole city. Finally, there’s the smallest example: The square, such as Place Dauphine. The history is different for each of these types of green spaces. The two kinds of wood, the most famous parks and the squares were built during the second part of the nineteenth century. It was a part of the new urban project lead by Haussmann, the chief architect of Napoleon III. In fact, the Emperor asked for green spaces in Paris as it was the style in London. However, some of the gardens and parks in Paris are older. For instance, the Tuileries Garden was the garden of the Louvre palace, when the court was living there. And the Jardin des Plantes was built in the seventeenth century by the king.
Parisians love to go in the gardens and the parks of their city… In fact, in summer it’s the best solution to escape from the heat in their flats. These spaces represent the heart of the city… In these gardens many Parisians used to play as children, then it was there that they had their first dates. Older Parisians like to spend their afternoon strolling around or playing petanque. In May and June, students usually study for their exams around these gardens. So, Parks and gardens in Paris are a very popular destination where all the different generations are going. To visit a park in Paris is to discover the city as a true Parisian.Elliot
- 13 million visitors a year 99%
- Incredibly detailed 80%
- Contains hidden mysteries 70%
Paris Parks and Gardens approximately open around 8.00am and close at 9.00 pm or even 10.00 pm during the Summer and at 8.00 pm the rest of the year.
Best Parks and Gardens in Paris
1.) Jardin des Plantes:
This garden was built during the seventeenth century; it used to be the Garden of the king of France. A small zoo was also built there in order to welcome the animals offered to the king. The garden is now the property of the Natural history museum and you can visit a zoo, tropical green-houses and the Natural history museum.
2.) Tuileries Garden:
This garden used to be the garden of the Louvre palace. It was a close garden reserved to the court and to the royal family. It’s a typical French garden, designed by Lenôtre, the designer of Versailles’s garden. It’s now a popular garden where each year the international fair of modern art takes place.
3.) Luxembourg Garden:
This garden is the garden of the Senate, but it’s open to the public. It’s also an old garden since queen Marie de Medicis built it. In this garden, you can play tennis or petanque or just sit on the grass. It’s a very popular place in Paris. This garden appears a lot in French literature as it’s the most famous garden of Paris.
4.) Bois de Vincennes:
It’s the biggest green space in Paris! It’s an incredible place where you can easily spend a day. Just rent a small boat on Daumesnil Lac, or visit the Vincennes castle. It’s also a nice place to go cycling.
5.) Park Montsouris:
This garden was built during the nineteenth century. It was part of the urban project of Haussmann, the chief architect of Napoleon III. It’s a big park in Paris, 14th district, which is the favorite place of all the Parisians of the left bank.