Soak up the Sun on Paris’ Urban Beaches
27 March 2017
Days of Cafes, Culture the Seine and the Sand
Paris. The home of art, culture, cafes and fashion; the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. There’s an endless array of activities to keep you occupied as you holiday in the French capital… but wouldn’t it be great if you could enjoy all of this in the accompaniment of a soft sandy beach?
Introducing the Paris Plage. The city’s answer to the Cote d’Azur; created each year between July and August when 5000 tons of real sand are shipped in to bring the beach to the banks of the Seine.
The one month event takes place across three locations in Paris: Voie Georges-Pompidou, the Hôtel de Ville and the La Villette Basin; all of which are located just a short journey from Amarante Beau Manoir. Read our brief guide to each of the three destinations and prepare yourself for days in the sun on Europe’s most desirable urban beaches.
Located 9 Minutes from ABM
Situated by the Tuileries Gardens and surrounded by stunning Parisian architecture – namely the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay. This stunning beach located by Voie Georges-Pompidou is arguably the most beautiful of the three locations… providing for the perfect spot to relax on a deck-chair, as you take in the views of the shimmering Seine.
And once you’ve had your fill of relaxing in the sun, building sand-castles or reading a book under a palm tree (yes a real life palm tree) there are no shortage of activities taking place to keep you entertained. Voie Georges-Pompidou; as well as being a makeshift beach, also turns into a makeshift dance studio – where you can brush up on your moves at designated Zumba, Tropical and Latino dance classes. Alternatively, you can remain on your deck-chair and watch as others fail miserably at learning said dances.
Given the beach’s close proximity to the Louvre; the museum also tend to host a number of activities and competitions throughout the Paris Plage. Last year they held the ‘Neptune’s Realm’ exhibition; which explored the mysteries of the sea through a range of activities. They also ran a daily lottery prize draw offering the chance to win tickets to the museum. The agenda for this year is yet to be released; but we expect the Louvre will be looking to outdo their exploits from last year, so watch this space.
Hôtel de Ville
Located 18 Minutes from ABM
The largest of the three locations is the beach that runs for 3.5km between Pont Neuf and Pont de Sully; with the Hôtel de Ville lying slap-bang in the middle of the two – where the bulk of the beachside activities reside.
Of course, relaxing on the expansive stretch of sand should be very much on the agenda; but the transformation of the square outside the Hôtel de Ville is certainly worth a visit. Here you will find what seems like a lively coastal resort; and the numbering volleyball courts and barefooted football players running around may cause you to stop and check that you’re not actually living it up on Copacabana Beach.
The square outside the hotel is also home to what is arguably the highlight of the entire Paris Plage month; the Fnac Festival. Typically held towards the end of July, the Fnac delivers some thirty artists to thousands of spectators over four days… for free! The festival in the past has seen the likes of Charlie Winston, Gregory Porter, Jeanne Cherhal and Glass Animals light up the square; so taking in a performance from the comfort of the beach should be number-one to tick off of your Paris Plage checklist.
La Villette Basin
26 Minutes from ABM
This manmade lake (the largest in Paris) is the newest addition to the Paris Plage line-up; and is your one-stop location for water-activities. Extending nearly 700m in length and 70m in width, the spacious stretch of water provides the perfect location to canoe, kayak or pedalo around. As of 2017 there will also be three designated swimming pools open until September; varying in size and depth for swimmers of all ages and abilities.
There’s also no shortage of goings-on once you’re out of the water. Leisurely strolls along the canal are a good way to admire your surroundings without getting wet; and the beach is the perfect place to lose yourself in a book – which will kindly be provided free of charge by the on-hand library service! The canal boats that align the basin also contain a number of pleasant surprises; with restaurants, bars and even music venues making their home in the colourful barges.
With a visit to the French capital this summer there will be no more discussions of the age-old ‘City Break versus Beach Holiday’ argument, as you experience the best of both worlds with the Paris Plage. Take a look at the great selection of luxury offers available at Amarante Beau Manoir today.
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