Paris is not commonly covered in snow and exaggerated decorations during the Christmas months however this doesn’t affect the festive atmosphere that fills the city at this time of year. A Christmas spent in Paris is an enchanting experience.
Christmas breaks in Paris are cheaper and easier to find if you plan your trip ahead of time. This leaves plenty of research time to plan the perfect itinerary for experiencing the city at this magical time of year.
With the dark evenings and frosty mornings that come each winter, Paris lives up to its name as The City of Lights in a big way. Viewing the glorious lights of Paris is one of the most popular things to do when visiting the city in winter with the best viewpoints being the Champs-Elysées, along the Rue Montorgueil and Rue Mouffetard, in the Place Vendome. As the trees that line the Champs-Elysées get covered with strings of lights, the Eiffel Tower becomes the focal point of the night-time skyline with its large shimmering lights.
Store window displays are also a great place to view magical lighting displays, especially at the big department stores near Notre Dame Cathedral. Paris’ Christmas tree is also based near the cathedral that has huge branches and admirable decorations.
Around the city, ice rinks are set up so locals and visitors can enjoy a spin on the ice in the square near the City Hall and elsewhere, Paris’ famous for Christmas Markets can be enjoyed. Most of the markets imitate a Northern Alsace outdoor village made of wooden booths offering gourmet treats like mulled wine and gingerbread, gifts, decorations, and other delights.
Christmas in France is an extremely family orientated occasion meaning less time is spent out dining and partying and more time is spent at home with family or attending a service in one of Paris’ many churches. Attending midnight mass is one of the highlights of Christmas church in Paris and even if you’re not overly religious, it is an extremely festive and interesting experience. During non-service hours, you can visit any church to see one of the many nativity scenes that are erected for the Christmas season.
Guest post written by Rebecca Kelly of Simonseeks.com where you can find inspirational travel guides on things such as Paris nightlife and Paris attractions.