Ah, Paris… The city of lights, the city of love, and the city of grand, but sometimes predictable, tourism. Chances are Paris is somewhere on your travel bucket list, and you probably have a list of at least five sights to see that most epitomize the city. Abbey Road Programs would like to present you with a short list of some attractions that may not be as famous and visited as the Eiffel Tower but are definitely worth a visit while you’re in Paris. Amusez-vous!
Catacombes de Paris: Anyone interested in unconventional adventure and the somewhat macabre should be sure to stop by the Catacombs of Paris. Created in the late 18th century when cemeteries throughout the city began to overflow, the underground ossuary fills portions of the city’s old and abandoned stone quarries. It houses the remains of over six million people, some of whom were likely very important historical figures.
“Space Invaders” Scavenger Hunt: While you’re out roaming the city’s beautiful streets, keep your eyes peeled for… aliens! Well, not real aliens, but mosaic art portraying alien characters from the 1980s hit video game “Space Invaders“. The artistic oddities have been installed in various locations around the city since 1998 by the aptly named French urban artist, Invader.
Cimetière du Père Lachaise: History, music, and literature fans alike can find something of interest in Paris’ largest cemetery. Established in 1804 by then new Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte, Père Lachaise is the final resting place for more than one million people in burial sites ranging from simple headstones to ornate and decorative crypts. Among the famous departed buried in the cemetery are Irish writer Oscar Wilde, Polish composer and pianist Fryderyk Chopin, American rocker Jim Morrison, French singer Édith Piaf, France’s 12th century forbidden lovers Abelard and Héloïse, and famed French essayist Marcel Proust.
Versailles Musical Gardens: The palace of Versailles and its surrounding grounds are a must see. But after you’ve taken your tour of the Hall of Mirrors, roam the gardens as classical music from the era of King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette fills your ears. To catch the musical gardens, you’ll have to visit the palace on a Tuesday between April and October.
While you have Paris on the brain, check out Abbey Road Programs’ great summer opportunities in France!