Baguettes, croissants, bicycles—all of these things might make you think of Paris, one of the most historic and celebrated cities in all of Europe. Indeed, Paris continues to be one of the greatest attractions of an entire continent, and many students leap at the opportunity to study abroad in this part of the world. In doing so, you’ll connect yourself with centuries of history through the city’s cathedrals, arts and monuments.
And you’ll be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t spend some time exploring and indulging in the beautiful parks throughout Paris. The grassy knolls and shaded lawns of these parks have served as a mid-afternoon roost for innumerable famous figures of history, including Ernest Hemingway in his afternoons away from his notebook.
Granted, planning out your day-trips to Parisian parks isn’t the first order of business when you’re planning a move abroad for school. You need to get passports and visas in order, line up accommodations during your time at school and purchase study abroad insurance to cover you in the even of an illness or injury. But once those essential tasks are out of the way, the more fun considerations can come into focus.
With that in mind, here are some of the best parks Paris has to offer.
Le Bois de Boulogne
With more than 2,000 acres at your disposal, Le Bois de Boulogne is one of the largest parks in Paris. Once a royal hunting ground, the park was developed in the 19th century and is now used for jogging and other family activities. One tip when visiting this park: Go during the daytime, when it’s fun for all ages and entirely safe.
Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
Beyond the fast-paced environment of central Paris, the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont is a great destination for any romantic couple. Enjoy lakes, waterfalls, exquisite panoramic views of Paris and other Roman-style features dating back all the way to the 1860s.
Jardin des Tuileries
If you have plans to visit the Louvre, be sure to carve out some time to stop by the Jardin des Tuileries. This garden is one of the oldest continuous gardens in Paris, dating all the way back to the 16th century. Enjoy terraces, ponds and iconic statues that break up the beautiful greenery of the space. In fact, some of the original statues from the garden are now well-preserved in the Louvre itself.
Jardin des Plantes
Perhaps you’ve been to botanical gardens before, but never one like this. The Jardin des Plantes is rife with more than 10,000 species of plants and has been maintained since 1626, when it was created as a royal medicinal garden. Today, a small zoo is also featured in the garden for animal lovers. Be sure to bring a camera when you go.
One of the biggest challenges Paris poses to its visiting students is finding enough time to fit in everything you plan to do. Just visiting the city’s best parks can take multiple days to accomplish, and that ignores all the other compelling sites the city has to offer. With so much to do and so little time, the best thing you can do is be mindful about your travels, enjoying where you’re at and the experiences that come your way in your time in Paris.