Paris is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world. But many people who go there, as much as they loved it, couldn’t help but feel a little alienated. This feeling usually comes with visiting a foreign place, for sure. But Paris, in particular, has a very distinct and tough culture to crack into.
If you want to feel like a true Parisian on your next visit, follow these tips!
Learn some of the language
One of the reasons people love to visit France is because there’s not so much pressure to learn any of the language. Every time I’ve been to Paris, most people I speak to start communicating to me in fluent English as soon as they realize I’m not French. (Which, given my terrible French accent, is something they realize tragically fast.) It’s true that knowing some French isn’t essential. But if you want to really submerge yourself in the ways of Paris, you should definitely spend a few months learning French before you leave. (And, yes, work on your accent!)
Stay there like you live there
Something that always snaps you out of the feeling of being “at home” when you’re on vacation is the hotel. Once you get back to the hotel, all sense of pretending you live in this place disappears. But there’s an alternative to hotels that will help you feel more at home; vacation rentals! You can rent an apartment or a house and stay in Paris as though you live there. You can even get into home-cooking some classic French recipes! Find out about Paris vacation rentals for your chosen vacation dates.
Emulate the dress style of Paris
As anyone interested in the Parisian lifestyle knows, the fashion of Paris is very distinct. While it’s ever-changing, the classic form of the style can be seen even in today’s iterations - a testament to its staying power. Its influence can be seen in all over the world. And if you want to fit in - and maybe even turn some heads - then you should consider emulating the style during your visit.
See the less obvious attractions
Part of feeling like a Parisian is really knowing Paris. But if you only know the locations of its most famous landmarks, then your claim to “knowing” Paris is a dubious one indeed! You should be much more familiar with its more secret and alternative spots. Think about it: do you usually hang out at the famous spots of your home city? Or are you more likely to hang out at some of the more intimate, hidden places? Spend some time getting to know the areas of Paris that aren’t flooded with tourists.
Check out some local entertainment
Want to feel like a Parisian? Then submerge yourself in its entertainment culture. See some local French bands - not the American ones who happen to be there on tour. If your French is really good, then why not check out a French film? And no, I’m not talking about a subtitled screening. Go check out a native film in its own language, without subtitles. This is, in fact, one of the best ways to improve your knowledge of the language!
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