Chartres en Lumières

Most people treat Chartres as a day trip or stop-over on the way to or from Paris. It’s star attraction, the Chartres Cathedral, can be toured in an hour (allow more time to really explore it thoroughly). There are a few other sites to see for those who want to extend their time in town. But beyond that, why did I choose to stay overnight (especially when I have housing in Paris)?

I couldn't pass up seeing the city lit up at night for Chartres en Lumières.

Between April and October, the town puts on a show at night. I first heard of this event from a post on Out and About in Paris and it stayed in the back of my mind, only to resurface when Michael mentioned he wanted to visit Chartres again. 29 historical buildings participate, and the highlight of the nightly event is the projected light show on the main facade of the Cathedral.

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How to Celebrate Bastille Day 2014 in Paris

July 14th is La Fête Nationale for France, an important national holiday. In English we refer to it as Bastille Day because it commemorates the storming of the Bastille (and thus the beginning of the French Revolution). If you're lucky enough to be in Paris for this holiday, you have many great options to celebrate some liberté, égalité, and fraternité!

Here's how to join in the celebrations and make the most of being in Paris on Bastille Day:

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Park it in Paris: Parc Floral

In the "Park it in Paris" series, I write about the city's parks - some of the best spots to relax, people-watch, and mingle with the locals.

The Bois de Vincennes is Paris' largest park, located in the eastern reaches of the city. It features not one but four lakes, a (recently re-opened) zoo, an arboretum, and gardens. The Parc Floral de Paris is one of the gardens within the vast expanse of the Bois de Vincennes and is one of four parks that comprises Paris' botanical garden.

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