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Old Posted Feb 27, 2014, 3:36 PM
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mousquet mousquet is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Nimbyland Paris, Museum France
Posts: 3,245
Best urban places... Is it your first time in Paris? I can't even think of any particular piece of advice when it comes to Central Paris. If the weather allows you to wander throughout the city as you say, it's fine. You should find some stuff to satisfy your curiosity pretty much anywhere in the central city. For real, from arrondissement 1 to 20 (that is all of them arrondissements of Paris proper), it's an endless show of either historic façades or local modern buildings, and local people can be more or less passed in the streets just about all over the city. That's obviously way too large to be seen entirely within a couple of days anyway. You'll probably be stunned by both the whole density of it and the pretty strict homogeneity of the historic districts that are almost too many. That's the most impressive thing, and you'll get that feeling in most the neighborhoods of the historic core.

However, don't forget to spend an hour in la Défense, so you see what "urbanisme sur dalle d'après-guerre" (postwar slab urban planning) means to a large scale. That will be a striking change from most of Central Paris that's yet just a couple of miles away from there. You'll find some slab planning in the Chinatown of the 13th arrondissement too, mixed with some more traditional (and better) boulevard-style streetscape. You may be interested in that Chinatown. It mostly goes along avenue de Choisy and avenue d'Ivry in a southernmost area of the 13th arrondissment, with lots of the local postwar modern architecture.

If it's your first time over here, I recommend you to focus on the "touristy areas", though, or say places around them, cause there's really a lot to explore.
Enjoy your stay anyway.
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