To be honest, it’s almost a shame so many people leave Paris in August. There are a whole myriad of wonderful seasonal activities that spring up this time of year around the French capital, just in time for the perfect weather to match. A few of my favourites are the open air cinemas in the park at night and the carnival in the Tuileries gardens on warm evenings.
Water plays a big roll in the geography of Paris, and in summer, little pop-up bars, cafés, markets, and sporting activities suddenly appear, animating the banks of the Seine and the canals in the east. These are called Paris Plages (or Paris Beaches) and are put on by the local government for remaining city dwellers to make the most of this gorgeous summer weather. Here you’ll find the best way to cool off on a hot summer day — a Parisian cruise.
Along the Seine, you can hop aboard one of the many croisières taking travellers up and down the river to kick back and relax for some site seeing. These offer a unique perspective of the city from the water, and are quite a convenient way to get around as some, like the Batobus, let you on and off at each stop as you please. What might look like a tourist trap is actually an extremely fun way to see Paris. So much fun that locals, like me, take them every now and again.
But the real local’s favourite in recent years for a summer cruise is the Marin D’eau Douce. In the northeast of Paris, you’ll find these fun little electric boats at the Bassin de la Villette which feeds into the Canal Saint Martin, another one of my favourite summer hangouts. This basin is actually technically considered a lake, and is the largest one in Paris. The others you’ll mostly find in the large parks, particularly the Bois de Boulogne in the west where you can rent row boats. But here at La Villette, you’ll be captaining your own motor boat.
This week, before leaving on our own vacations, my friend Katie and I packed a little picnic and took turns driving one another up and down the canal in our own petit bateau. How nice it was to feel the breeze blowing through our hair, waving to other boats as we sailed on by, and even make some new friends.
Of course, when the sun is out, so is the sunscreen. I can not reiterate enough how essential SPF is this time of year. Lancôme makes it easy for us though, with their SPF products offering extra sun protection. A summer day out in the city for me begins with Bienfait Multi-Vital SPF 30, which is always on hand. And as I head out of town to the beach next week, rest assured... Bienfait UV SPF 50+
will be on double duty, while still oil free, light weight, and fast absorbing so as never to clog my complexion. And there you have it, my city and beauty tips for making most of summer while it lasts!