Subject: Re: Paris Alone

I have spent many pleasant days wandering Paris on my own. Paris has such wonderful public spaces that you can spend days exploring them. Sit outdoors on a park bench (or at a cafe), read your book, write journal entries or post cards and watch the people. I especially liked to get off the beaten path to see places populated as much by locals as visitors. Among the places that I enjoyed - Place des Vosges (4th arr), Jardin de Plantes (5th arr), Parc de Buttes-Chaumont (19th) and the Promenade Plantie (11th arr).

If you can stay awake through dinner on Sunday, I heartily recommend attending Jim Haynes Sunday dinner party. He is an American who has spent most of his life in Europe. He hosts 50-60 people at his apartment most Sundays. 20 euros gets you good food, hospitality and interesting English conversation with people from all over the world. Most guests don't know one another so it is easy for a single person to jump right in. My "evening with Jim" was one of the most memorable of my time in Paris. A reservation is essential -

Finally, Paris looks wonderful from a bird's eye view. Most people know that you get nice panoramas from Sacre Coeur, Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe or Notre Dame. But if you want to avoid the crowds and see a different perspective, go to the restaurant on the 11th floor of La Samaritaine. There is a stairway to the roof for one of the best views of Paris. I also recall nice views looking west toward Notre Dame from the balcony outside the restaurant at L'Institut du Monde Arabe ( If you want the views without the pricey food, just visit during off hours (before 12 or 2:30 - 7:30).

Also do not leave Paris without a trip (or two or three or four) to Maison Berthillon on the Ile St. Louis for the fabulous ice cream.

Have a great trip!

Mark Los Angeles