I had heard about a company, Eye Prefer Paris Tours, which offers private, 3-hour walking tours of Paris customized to your interests. I decided to experience the tour myself to see if it was worth recommending to my clients.
Our instructions were to meet Richard, the tour guide/owner, at the St. Paul Metro stop in Marais. It was easy to get to from the Marriott hotel and only took about 15 minutes by the Metro. Richard, an American who moved to Paris 4 years ago, handed us a map of Marais and we set off on our walk. This district is one of the oldest in Paris with many buildings dating back to the 1300’s. The city is performing on-going restoration to the historical buildings and former palatial homes. There are some beautiful homes and gardens and Richard explains the history of them as you leisurely stroll.
We walked by many food shops, unique clothing boutiques and other interesting stores. We stopped into an unusual chocolate shop where they created replicas out of chocolate. There were books, cutting boards, musical instruments and even an Eiffel tower. We purchased a few chocolates for the road and they were delicious. We also stopped into an exotic looking tea emporium. On display they had many varieties of teas in wooden boxes with lids that you could open in order to sniff the teas. They sold the teas in beautiful tin boxes stacked on the walls up to the ceiling. I am not a tea drinker but this shop could have converted me.
The other interesting aspect of the Marais district is that this where the old Jewish quarter was situated prior to the Holocaust. The city memorialized this area with a Holocaust museum and several other monuments. Today, there are several streets where the Orthodox Jews still live today. If you enjoy eating falafels, make a point of visiting this area. For 5 Euro, you can eat one of the best falafels I have ever had.
I really enjoyed walking this area and seeing the non-tourist side of Paris. Even though the Marais is very historical, few tourists take the time to see it. If you have been to Paris before and wish to experience something different, then I would highly recommend exploring the Marais district. For a more personal touch, Richard’s company adds value by highlighting the most interesting places to see. To follow Richard’s blog on things to do and see in Paris, go to [url=http://www.eyepreferparis.com]
Visit my website TheArtofVacationing.com and discover how I can book your Marriott dream trip for you.