5 Ways to Bring Paris Into Your Home

An Eiffel Tower figurine sitting on a map of France.
Pincasso/Shutterstock

Whether you had to cancel a dream trip to Paris last year, or you just can’t wait to visit again, there are plenty of reasons to fantasize about the City of Light. With travel still out of reach for most folks, below are a few ways you can get your Paris fix at home.

Cook Some Delicious French Food

french onion soup recipe.
Rockridge Press

To quote Ratatouille, “The best food in the world is made in France.” While you’re waiting to sit down in a Parisian restaurant, try your hand at French cooking at home.

French Cooking for Beginners breaks down complicated recipes. Or you can pull a Julie & Julia and cook your way through Julia Child’s classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Food is an integral part of French culture, so cooking will make you feel closer to Paris than anything else. Plus, learning about classic dishes makes it even more fun to try them on your next trip.

Watch Awesome Movies Set in Paris

A dancing scene from "An American in Paris."
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Putting on a movie or TV show set in Paris can really make you feel like you’re there. Disney’s Ratatouille or the Pink Panther franchise are family friendly options, while Amélie or An American in Paris are more suitable for adults. For more specific areas of Paris, The Da Vinci Code will make you feel like you’re visiting the Louvre while Moulin Rouge! will make you feel like you’re performing in the iconic cabaret house.

Want to mimic the open-air film festival held at Parc de la Villette? Set some blankets or chairs outside and project any of these films onto the side of your house. Pass out some wine, cheese, and bread to give your guests the full experience.

Take a Virtual Tour of a Parisian Landmark

The "Figure D'Artiste" exhibit in the online tour of the Louvre museum.
Musée du Louvre

It’s not the same as being there, but you can visit many of Paris’ most famous museums and landmarks from the safety of your computer. Take an online tour of the Louvre or the Musée d’Orsay. Or, visit the Eiffel Tower, Sacré Coeur, or Opéra Garnier.

These make great educational adventures for the kids or fun staycations for yourself.

Order Some Beautiful Photography Books

Paris photography book
Harry N. Abrams

One of the joys of Paris is its effortless beauty. From small cafes to towering buildings, almost every corner of the city is charming. Pictures rarely do it justice, but plenty of photographers have tried.

Photography books like Paris in Bloom capture the colorful blossoms that cover the city in spring. For beautiful photos of famous Parisian landmarks, check out Spectacular Paris.

Practice Your French

homescreen of Babbel language program

What better way to prepare for your next trip to Paris than to practice the language? Apps like Duolingo and Babbel are both popular.

You can also pick up a book like helps you remember common phrases, like the Easy French Phrase Book.

Try to master a few phrases you know you’ll use, like “Can you recommend a wine?” or “Where is the nearest Metro station?” It’ll be exciting and useful to be able to speak at least some of the native language while you’re there. Plus, the locals will definitely appreciate your efforts!

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