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Exploring the lesser-known Paris

Exploring the lesser-known Paris

While enjoying your stay at the Hotel Royal Cardinal, why not take the time to unusual tour of Paris and discover the city that is off the beaten path ? There’s a Paris that’s not as well-known as that which boasts so many world-famous monuments, but which is nonetheless fascinating, exciting and memorable. Here is our quick guide to this relatively hidden Paris.

Unusual tour of Paris to discover another Paris

You’ve seen the major tourist attractions and landmarks of our wonderful city, such as the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysées, the hill of Montmartre and the Louvre, and now it’s time to explore the more obscure byways of the capital. For starters, why not take a tour in a Citroen 2CV, that most iconic of classic French cars? With your enthusiastic and multilingual driver as your guide, you will be taken on the themed tour of your choice in retro splendour. Roll back the sunroof and enjoy the sights!

Nature lovers, especially those with a fascination for the denizens of the deep, should not miss the tropical aquarium of the Palais de la Porte Dorée. Amidst the Art Deco splendour of the oldest aquarium in Paris, you’ll get up close with 350 species, including sharks, piranhas, turtles, stingrays and much more.

Lovers of culture will delight in guided tours of the Manufacture Nationale des Gobelins, a tapestry factory which once supplied the French monarchy; the national library of France at the BNF François Mitterrand and the Cité de la Mode et du Design, one of the city’s most remarkable contemporary monuments.

Another way of seeing the real Paris is to delve into some of the neighbourhoods less frequented by tourist. Each of them has a little something that differentiates it from others. La Butte aux Cailles is a fine example of this. It has a real village atmosphere, with bars, restaurants and small but lively cafés.

You can explore the wonders of nature right on the edge of the city, too. The Bois de Vincennes is a former royal hunting preserve which occupies 10% of the total area of Paris. Here you can enjoy pleasant walks, bicycle rides, or sightseeing on horseback. Or you can simply relax in the vast green expanses it offers. While there, however, you simply must visit the gorgeous botanical gardens of the Parc Floral de Paris.

Finally, here’s a visit that will also enchant the children! The Château de Vincennes is a 14th and 17th century royal castle in a superb state of preservation.
When it comes to unique places and unusual visits in Paris, it’s clear that a single stay will not be enough to discover everything.


For more information on these unusual visits, the Tourist Office Paris can help or see below:
Paris Authentic
Tropical Aquarium at Palais de la Porte Dorée
Parc floral de Vincennes (floral Park)
Cité de la Mode et du Design (City of Fashion and Design)
Château de Vincennes (Vincennes castle)


Picture Floral park at Vincennes copyright holder: Tourist Office Paris - Photographer Amélie Dupont

Hotel Royal Cardinal, a 2-star hotel in Paris, in the heart of the Latin Quarter