Immensely popular with travel enthusiasts, the city of Paris needs no introduction. Every time you strike up a conversation with your traveller friend or your colleague, you would definitely come across their love for visiting Paris. While all of them, have a deep desire to explore Paris, there’s a common mistake they all do. Which is, being to the same cliched attractions in Paris, like million others. Oh, how boring! Instead, this time try these 7 offbeat things to do in Paris that will make your trip exciting.
1. Observe the skulls at the Catacombs of Paris
One of the creepy things to do in Paris is visiting the Catacombs of Paris. Holding the remains of more than six million people, the underground ossuary of Catacombs of Paris is the ‘World’s largest grave’. Set beneath the ground, the whole place has an eerie setting which adds to the mysteries appeal.
As you go on the audio tour, observe the skulls and the femurs on the wall, which are laid in an admirable pattern. For souvenirs, drop by the in-house gift shop. Prior to visiting the attraction, grab the tickets online. The Catacombs of Paris are strictly not recommended for the weak-hearted and those who are claustrophobic.
Address: 1 Avenue du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy, 75014 Paris, France
Timings: Monday – Friday: From 9 am to 12.30 pm and 1.45 pm to 5 pm
How to reach: RER B at Denfert-Rochereau
2. Get closer to the vampires at the Museum of Vampires and Legendary Creatures
Set along the murky alleyway near Porte des Lilas, Museum of Vampires and Legendary Creatures is a compact private museum dedicated purely to vampires and their study. Opened by the world’s only ‘Vampirologist’ – Jacques Sirgent, Museum of Vampires carries antique books, plastic bats, vampire killing kit, human remains, Dracula toys, and cryptic texts.
Feel free to interact with Jacques regarding all the queries surrounding vampires, werewolves, and what not! Regarded as one of the coolest things to do in Paris, your visit to the Museum of Vampires and Legendary Creatures will be a uniquely fascinating experience.
Address: 14 Rue Jules David, 93260 Les Lilas, France
Timings: 12.30 pm to 8 pm (Prior reservation mandatory)
How to reach: TillBus at Place du Vel’d’Hiv
3. Kiss under the Sun at Temple of Love
No, I am not trying to fool you with the name. One of Paris’ best-kept secrets, Temple of Love actually exists. Perched on a little island in the midst of the green field in Versailles, Temple of Love or Temple de l’Amour as it is known in French looks stunning. Walk along the pristine lake with your elbows interlocked, get on the boat and row your way into each other’s heart.
Add a little steam to your romance, by catching a mesmerising sunset in the Temple of Love. If you think heading on to Eiffel Tower is the most romantic thing to do in Paris, Temple of Love will change your views. Temple of Love is definitely one of the off beat things to do in Paris.
Address: Parc du Chateau de Versailles, 78000 Versailles, France
Timings: Tuesday – Sunday: 12 pm to 5.30 pm
How to reach: Hire a cab
4. Take an artistic tour of 59 Rivoli
Formerly a squat, 59 Rivoli is now a beacon of expression and creativity in Paris. Tucked away from rest of Paris, this hidden gem of a place is unlike any art gallery in the world. Soon after you climb the circular stairs and enter the gallery, you will discover the magic that 59 Rivoli carries, complete with colors.
Glance through the interesting paintings, feel the unusual vibe of the place and interact with the artists’ who have made 59 Rivoli come alive. There is no entry fee to visit 59 Rivoli and there are also musical concerts that happen during the weekends. Art and music at one place? Interesting!
Address: 59 Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France
Timings: Tuesday – Sunday: 1 pm to 8 pm
How to reach: Subway at Châtelet
5. Get lost between the pages at Shakespeare and Company
This ought to feature in every “offbeat things to do in Paris” list. While the name sounds like a play, Shakespeare and Company is actually a bookstore and perhaps the most popular one in the world. Yes, that’s right. Now, do not close this blog just because there is a bookstore recommendation in Paris. Hear me out. Opened in the early 20th century, the bookstore was the then meeting place of writers Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound, James Joyce, and several others.
As you wander around the bookstore which is stuffed with books of all kind at every nook and corner, you can smell history. A history that has stayed since its inauguration. If you are a book lover, then the iconic Shakespeare and Company is a must visit in Paris. And so you know the shop’s motto reads ‘Be Not Inhospitable to Strangers Lest They Be Angels in Disguise’.
Address: 37 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005 Paris, France
Timings: 10 am – 11 pm
How to reach: Bus at Petit Pont
6. Revisit the lost souls at Père Lachaise Cemetery
Attended by more than 3.5 million visitors, Père Lachaise Cemetery is the most visited cemetery in the world. Though the place is a cemetery, Père Lachaise is absolutely non-creepy and can be visited by everyone of all ages. To be honest, if you are on a lookout for a place of solitude, then the Père Lachaise Cemetery will be perfect.
Grab a handful of flowers from the street vendor and walk along the burials, closely studying the intricate tombstones and sculptures. Morbidly beautiful, Père Lachaise Cemetery is the resting ground of some of the famous personalities which include Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, Jean-François Champollion, Frédéric Chopin, and many others.
Address: 16 Rue du Repos, 75020 Paris, France
Timings: 8.30 am to 6 pm
How to reach: Subway at Philippe Auguste
7. Rediscover your senses at Dans le Noir
So, Paris is known for its exquisite French cuisine and you have already had a taste of it. But have you experienced dining at Dans le Noir? Probably, not. Not known to many, Dans le Noir is where you will be served in total darkness. Built on a concept called dark dining or blind dining, Dans le Noir will give you the unique dining experience of your life.
What makes the place even more interesting is, the dishes here are either served by blind or visually impaired staff. With no lights to see, feel your other senses come alive as they take you on a fascinating ride. Notably, a percentage of the profits help support charities in different countries.
Address: 51 Rue Quincampoix, 75004 Paris, France
Timings: 7.30 pm – 11 pm
How to reach: Subway at Rambuteau
Fascinated by the list of offbeat things to do in Paris, why not take a trip now?
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