Of the little time I’ve spent in Paris, I’ve seen it change and mend in all kind of landscapes. Irrespective of my issues with the city, the charm of the place never goes out. Even if cliched, I believe Paris always manages to stay up to its image of the most magical/romantic city in the world. And till a month ago, I honestly believed I’ve seen Paris in all its colors. I mean, I had written a day-itinerary, a guide of offbeat things to do in the city, and covered some exceptional streets, and hidden areas, too. Winter in Paris has always seemed the dullest times to me. However, everything changed at the beginning of the last week when I was greeted by the largest snow of the city in decades.
Boy! Was it beautiful!
The snow started on a Monday, which was a shame because that means that I couldn’t enjoy it even if I wanted to. However, as the week progressed, I found myself going out for in my break time to catch a glimpse of the central parts of the city (thank god it is at a short distance from my workplace). I would be lying if I’d say this made the infamous winter in Paris anything short of magical.
So, the blog today is a compilation of things you can do in winter in Paris, and in the snow (if you get lucky?). This is followed by everything you have to pack and be careful of for your Parisian Winter.Why visit:
Winter in Paris (November- February)
- Low Season, less crowded, more value for money
- Multiple Winter festivals and striking decorations
- Chances of Snow that adds the ‘Magic’ Factor!
What to do: Winter in Paris
Enjoy the city like the natives with lower prices and easier access to museums and cathedrals. All that while still being able to visit all famous Parisian monuments and facing less to no crowd. Other special things to do may involve:
- Ice Skating rinks outside Hôtel de Ville
- Traditional French Markets on weekends
- Celebrate Festivals with firework displays and decoration-lights at Champs-Elysee
What to pack: Winter in Paris
Winters are not only cold but windy and wet in Paris, much like other parts of Western Europe. There are certain must-haves that will help you stay on top of these extremities and help you enjoy your trip, too.
- Walkable, waterproof, comfortable shoes
- Socks, Scarfs, Gloves, Winter Hats, and all the add-ons to keep you warm and cozy
- Sturdy Umbrella to withstand the downpour and the unforgiving winds
- Stylish but functional trench coats
Furthermore, try to have some space in your suitcase to be able to take back home some of the most amazing finds of the Paris fashion scene. I’m not kidding! January-Mid Feb marks the biggest, most awesome sale in France and is definitely something worth it all. You’ll find the best of Parisian fashion at the most unbelievable prices. We don’t wanna miss that now, do we!
Preparing for Snow in Paris
Being the old city it is, Paris can be quite annoying at the slightest chance of heavy rain. Snow is a whole different level. So other than the clothes and cover-ups, there are several other things you need to be wary of in case you run into the snow here. Like I’ve mentioned before, it will make for one of the most aesthetic sights you’ve ever seen but will nonetheless cause frustration as a traveler.
For starters, the snow this time was so heavy that it caused the Eiffel Tower to close down for ! whole day. So, you may have to be flexible with your visiting schedule. Other than that, certain highways closed down and travelers were stuck for hours on the road, so staying off the road is the best advice. However, the train isn’t much trustworthy either. Paris has the oldest metro network and it sure is evident stations and lines can be shut down at any given instance and the snow just accelerates it. Here again, a flexible schedule, alertness to forewarnings, and good connectivity will help you. Walk as much as you can, though, because the city will look beautiful even amidst all these troubles!
That’s all for now in my ‘winter in Paris’ guide. If you know of anything else I should add or have any questions to ask, feel free to do so in the comment section below. For more of my travel in style adventures, keep following ERTSY.
Till then, wish you a cozy (rest of the) winter! xoxo