9 Places In Vancouver That Will Make You Feel Like You're Emily In Paris
Travel abroad without leaving Vancouver! 🗺️
In 2020, my family and I decided to go to Paris — and then the COVID-19 pandemic happened.
Like many Canadians, we decided to start exploring our own province and the cities within instead of travelling.
When you think of Paris — also known as the city of lights — you think of romance, fashion and maybe even a bakery. We still wanted that magical experience.
So, with "La Vie en Rose" playing on my phone, I took my husband for a Parisian weekend in Vancouver. He also doubled as a free photographer which was a bonus!
An Authentic Breakfast, Or 'Petit-Dejeuner'
Marché Mon Pitou is a simple green and white quaint little cafe that has drawings of dogs on the windows, with a couple of wooden chairs and tables outside — like your usual French café. Then you step inside and you're instantly transported to Paris!
The smell of fresh bread and coffee, and the amazing aroma of different spices, are the perfect start to the day.
It's super cozy inside, and there are lots of French products for sale — including those tiny jams with the French flag on them that make the perfect souvenir.
The food and the coffee were great! It gets very crowded but it's definitely worth the wait.
You can see a painting of the same two dogs everywhere, and according to a staff member, they're very friendly and belong to the owners, which is why the theme is around them. From what I understood, they're treated like celebrities!
The best part though is the bathroom. It's a small museum of paintings, vintage vases, and antiques… a bathroom selfie is a MUST!
A Stroll In Gastown
Karen Habashi | Narcity
What says Paris more than cobblestone streets and lights everywhere?
It's a very romantic place for a walk, especially at night.
On our walk, we found a little gem — a building that has Normandie on it and the colours of the French flag.
Normandy is a beach in France where D-Day happened, which began the liberation of France and the rest of Europe during WW2.
It's always great to stand to reflect and be grateful for the sacrifices they made for us to have our freedom.
Take Paris Home With You
Karen Habashi | Narcity
If you don't want to go out anywhere, you can just have a Parisian night at home.
Buy a fresh baguette from Plaisir Sucré and practise your French while you're there.
It's a small patisserie with amazing bread and food. It's also a traditional French bakery, just like the ones you can find around every corner in Paris.
Always Get Extra Cheese
Don't forget your cheese and charcuterie from Les Amis Du Fromage!
I think of myself as a cheese expert, and I've never seen so much cheese in my life! You will find everything you need to make the perfect cheeseboard while enjoying some French tunes.
Then turn on a French movie and enjoy your food with some French wine and candles around you for the perfect romantic evening.
Bon appétit, Mes Chéris!
A Fashion Walk
We also did some window shopping — because what's a Parisian experience without looking at all those brands and clothes?
We headed to Holt Renfrew.
If I was in Paris, you'd find me in Galeries LaFayette, or walking aimlessly around, checking out the shops on the Champs-Élysées.
Thankfully, my husband was around to remind me it's either the bag I saw or our mortgage.
A Church Visit
Paris is famous for its beautiful churches that are centuries old, with amazing architecture and history. The most famous is Notre Dame, a medieval cathedral famous for its gothic architecture and mesmerizing stained glass windows.
So, we visited the Holy Rosary Cathedral.
It was built in 1900, so it's more than a century old and has beautiful stained glass windows and stunning medieval architecture that resembles that of many French churches.
A Small Bite At Paul’s Bakery on Robson
The floor of this spot has the authentic Parisian style of white and black, and the ambiance is very Parisian with the music playing French songs, people talking, and everyone dressed to the nines.
You could tell that everyone there was just living the "savoir vivre."
It has a digital background that shows many sightseeing spots in Paris and even people walking around there.
I took a picture with the Eiffel Tower in the background, and it looked like I was sitting in a cafe right by it.
I recommend having some of the patisseries there! The eclair is my favourite, and the croissants are so fresh and flaky.
Ladurée is also an essential part of any Paris visit, for a sweet treat! Not only for the macarons that just dissolve in your mouth but also the drinks they offer. You can also enjoy the tea room they have that looks like you're in Versailles.
Take A Walk In The Park
Cardero Park is usually unnoticed, but it's lined with beautiful trees and lanterns. It has beautiful wooden benches that reminded me of Jardin des Tuileries.
You can just sit and enjoy the weather, have a snack or watch the boats. At night, it feels like you're walking by the Seine.
Have A Candlelit Dinner
After a long walk by the sea wall, we headed to Provence Marinaside.
A visit to Paris is never complete without a seafood dish, and having the marina next to you gives you the ultimate dining experience. Not to mention it's an award-winning restaurant!
With a small candle on each table to add a romantic flair and a very friendly staff, you will just want to stay here for the whole night.
I dressed up a bit because as a mom-of-three I never say no to a chance to dress up.
Everything was delicious, from the appetizers to the desserts and the drinks.
Our server told us that the chef who owns the restaurant is actually an appointed knight!
What's a better dining experience than having a real knight delight you with food?
The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Narcity Media.
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