There are countless attractions and sites to experience in the great city of Paris. Home to the Eiffel tower and the elegant Notre Dame Cathedral, we often picture landmarks that resonate across the world. But it is the culture of Paris that seems to present a touch of something truly special in this one of a kind city.
The open market
If you’re open to the open air of Paris, you may be intrigued with mingling with other people in the open markets. Paris markets can be traced back to the fifth century, when a central market known as “Palu” was opened to allow the locals to sell their products and share ideas in a single location. Since then, Paris has accumulated over ninety different open market locations, each with their own unique
A taste of everything
The cultural experience is something to behold. While you might be familiar with the traffic of an open market or haggling with the pan handlers, Paris offers something unique to the experience. You’ll be able to wander around and do a bit of exotic shopping, as well as practice your French. This is going to be extremely important, especially if you want to get the best deals or find what you’ve been looking
And keep in mind that each open market will have different merchants with different items and prices. Just visiting one won’t allow you to fulfill what the experience can really deliver. If you can’t find what you’re looking for at one market, move on to the next one. With over ninety different markets to choose from, if you can’t find what you were looking for, you probably weren’t looking hard enough. Gourmet
foods, exotic linens and scarves (great for capturing a breeze in your next photo), and some of the most extraordinary handcrafted jewelry are just some of the things you can expect to see in the markets. You just have to have a good eye and an ear for the right deal.
Be aware of what’s around
One thing to consider is that being in the open market does make you vulnerable to pickpockets or even misplaced merchandise (like leaving your bag of goods on the pathway), so be sure that you keep your articles secure. And when shopping, it’s generally a good idea to keep your money in various locations on your person. For instance, you may keep some in your pocket, some in your shoe, and even a little under your hat (just joking, but you get the idea). This will help you when bartering so that the merchant doesn’t know how much you actually have to negotiate with.
European travels can take us to some of the most extraordinary places in the world. We can stop, take in the sights, and enjoy the unique identity of each culture. When it comes to the identity of Paris, we may be able to picture the sights and sounds, but it is the unique atmosphere of the open market that can really deliver the perfect taste of what it’s like to be in this wonderful city.
Crystal Groome is owner of Barge Connection – specializing in European Barge Vacations since 1988. Crystal has specialized in barging vacations specifically for over eleven years and visits Europe yearly to personally inspect individual barges and operators. Check our latest time sensitive specials on Facebook and Twitter (@bargeconnection).