When traveling to France, the two things most people have in mind are: shopping and eating! Here were some of my favorite places to shop and stuff my face in Paris, Lyon, Les 2 Alpes and Bretagne from my recent trip to France!
Obviously France is like the shopping mecca of the world, so these are some of my recent favs:
Springsioux, Paris – the raddest up and coming rock n’ roll Parisian brand. They’ve got badass jewelry, tees and accessories and also carry some incredibly unique pieces from young designers from across Europe. They have a dreamy shop in Le Marais and hold events at least once a week, which usually either includes champagne or Caesars! WHERE: 4e arrondissement.
The Kooples, Paris – you may have heard of this shop before. @Offner first introduced me to the brand last year. They have such beautiful pieces. I love the entire concept behind the store… Now if only I had more money!! WHERE: There are shops located pretty much in every arrondissements in Paris and shops also in Lyon.
Les Galeries Lafayette, Paris – a classic if you’re in Paris. Basically, it’s like an enormous Holt Renfrew that carries the most high end brands and that is always beautifully decorated all year round! WHERE: 9e arrondissement
American Retro, Paris – a super rad shop that carries edgy fashion pieces that are usually very colorful. They’re trendy with a twist. WHERE: There are a few different shops in Paris.
Auchan, Lyon – you won’t really find any clothes there but it’s my favorite spot to buy groceries!! They have such a HUGE selection of fresh products, cheese, vegetarian options, cookies, etc. Each time I go to the store, I want to buy everything! Think of a Costco with lot’s more fresh products and selection and a lot cheaper!! @Offner even found a friend there!! WHERE: everywhere in France!
Where to eat
Let’s be honest, France has probably the most amazing food EVERYWHERE, so here are just some of places I liked on this past trip:
Tata Burger, Paris – they’ve got the biggest burger made to look like a penis! Yup! The food and atmosphere is pretty wild and super fun! WHERE: 4e arrondissement
LA Favorite, Paris – very trendy and beautiful looking bistro in the 4e arrondissement. They had the best vin chaud! Yummy salads and desserts! WHERE: 4e arrondissement
Casa San Pablo, Paris – a Spanish tapas restaurant that’s incredibly cheap and super yummy! Loved the traditional decor. WHERE: located in the 4e arrondissement, right by the Place Sainte-Catherine.
L’épicerie, Lyon – My favorite spot for lunch or for the “goûter”, they’ve got the best tartines and homemade desserts. Yum, I can almost still taste it in my mouth! WHERE: Bellecour, on the presqu’île.
Pique-Nique en ville, Lyon – A super small and quaint restaurant that serves a great “formule midi”, otherwise known as an appetizer, main and dessert at a fixed price, which is very common throughout France. Absolutely loved their pasta and wine selection. WHERE: Presqu’île
Abel, Lyon – one of the oldest bistros in the city that was founded in 1928. The place is also called a “bouchon Lyonnais”, which is a place where they serve traditional Lyonnais food, including the Quenelle, etc. WHERE: Presqu’île
Le Cellier, Les 2 Alpes – For the best “montagnard” food, ie. the food of the mountains, the specialty in that area. They serve an amazing tartiflette, raclette, gratin de crozets, fondue, grilled meats, etc! I love their traditional ski chalet type decorations!
Crêperie, Bretagne – While you’re in the region, you’ll want to order a freshly made sweet crêpe or even a savoury crêpe otherwise known as a “galette de sarrasin” usually filled with veggies, cheese and or meat, accompanied by a “bolée de cidre“. You’ll also want to order a “Flan Breton” or “Far Breton” to get an authentic dessert. They are so delicious and buttery! WHERE: There are crêperies located in every small town in Bretagne and are all equally tasty.
Paul – a chain of patisseries that serve all sorts of yummy goodness! They’re now even located at rest areas on the highway and in train stations, they’re like the tim hortons of France but without all the chemicals and crap in their food. They serve salads, sandwiches, quiche, desserts, yummy drinks, etc. WHERE: Anywhere in France
Any patisserie or boulangerie in the area you will be staying will serve you amazing fresh bread, pastries and cakes. The perfect and cheapest place to have breakfast in the morning!
Also, I highly recommend getting cheese from the weekly market or some of the amazing local shops that always feature cheese made from the region. You can get great quality cheese for very cheap and encourage local producers.
If you like macarons (for some reason, I just can’t get into them!), you’ll want to stop by Pierre Hermé, the best macarons in Paris! WHERE: Several locations across the city.
*NOTE*: If you’re a vegetarian like me, I hope you like cheese, bread, pastries and salad because as I’m sure you know, a lot of the French cuisine revolves around meat. So you’ll need to find substitutes to meat for your meals. Even when you ask for a vegetarian salad or sandwich, from experience, they have the reflex of offering you fish or seafood. That said, you can survive! I’ve never eaten so much and so well in my life as I have in France!
Well there you have it! Hope this travel post was insightful! Let me know if you have any food or shopping recommendations for my next trip to France!
Writing this blog makes me miss France even more!! Can’t wait to return!