One Perfect Day in Paris...


One of my favorite blogs The Enchanted Home regularly features guest posts discussing their "Perfect Day".  This morning after reading a post by another of my favorite bloggers, Elizabeth from Pretty Pink Tulips about her perfect day at Las Ventanas in Los Cabos (great choice, Elizabeth!), I started thinking about what MY perfect day would be and immediately thought of one place - Paris. [Having just finished Kati Marton's memoir Paris - A Love Story may have something to do with my feeling this way.]
There is something comforting about knowing a city well enough to not have to worry about finding your way or feel the need to see all the "must see" sights. I have been to Paris quite a few times but it is the one city where I just can't seem to get my fill - I always want to go back.  I don't speak French and I have never had the opportunity to live in Paris so my choices may still seem a bit "touristy" for those of you who really know Paris. But, for me, this is my idea of a perfect day in Paris....

Photo Courtesy of Leading Hotels of the World

Waking up in a suite at the Le Bristol, it's a gorgeous Spring day and Paris awaits. Sharing my perfect day is my husband, of course, who is my favorite traveling companion.

Photo courtesy of Paris Perfect

Our favorite cafe is just down the street so we walk there to have café au lait, freshly squeezed jus d'orange and pain au chocolat. 

Photo courtesy of Paris Walking Tours

After breakfast we stroll through the Jardin de Tuileries, stopping along the way to appreciate the beauty of these gardens, towards the Louvre. We spend some time in the part of the garden with the sculptures by Aristede Maillol.  Since we have already spent hours at the Louvre on other trips it's not part of my perfect day, so we keep walking over the Pont Royal towards the Musee D'Orsay.

Photo via Fotopedia

On my perfect day there are no lines of tourists and students waiting to buy tickets for the D'Orsay. We buy our tickets and walk into the blissfully empty museum to spend an hour or so amongst our favorite paintings.  No need to see every inch of the museum as we have seen much of it before. I head straight for my favorite artist, Jean-François Millet,  where I enjoy his stunning paintings of 19th century peasant life. My husband loves Camille Pisarro, so he spends his time admiring his landscapes and scenes of Paris.
Photo courtesy of Cuisine Insolite
Leaving the museum, we wander towards Boulevard St. Germain and stop to buy some sandwiches at  Gosselin for our picnic lunch.

Photo via Fotopedia
Picnic in hand, we head to the Musee Rodin where we will enjoy our jambon beurre baguettes alongside Rodin's incredible sculptures and gorgeous gardens behind the museum.

Photo courtesy of JCChabot
Because one can never spend enough time in the gardens of Paris, our next destination is the Jardin du Luxembourg where we will spend the early afternoon relaxing by the pond, reading and watching children sail their model boats.

Photo via Fotopedia
No ideal day in Paris would be complete without a little retail therapy so we head back over the Seine to the rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré to my favorite store in Paris - Hermes where I pick out a few "souvenirs" to remember my trip.

Photo via Fotopedia
No trip to Paris is complete without macarons from Laduree so that is our last stop before returning to the hotel to get ready for dinner.

Photo courtesy of Travel Muse
Dinner is at our favorite neighborhood restaurant Chez Flottes on the rue Cambon. It is neither fancy or stuffy - I order the simple, but perfectly prepared, roast chicken along with their signature aligot (whipped potatoes with tomme cheese), we share a bottle of crisp Sauvignon Blanc and tarte tatin for dessert. A perfect ending  to a perfect day in Paris...
Where and how would you spend your "perfect day"?