Wednesday, March 4, 2009
25 Things I Love About Paris: #18
18. Gardens and parks
There's nothing green on my block...just a wall of stone on each side of the street, trimmed in black wrought iron. There's not even a tree box between the sidewalk and the curb.
Luckily, Paris is far from an asphalt jungle because there are parks and gardens aplenty, ranging in size from the huge (the bookends east and west of the Bois de Vincennes and the Bois de Boulogne) to simply large (like the Tuileries, Buttes aux Chaumont, and the lovely Luxembourg Gardens) to the hundreds of pocket parks that dot the neighborhoods.
Right now, the crocuses are pushing up through the lawns and the forsythia is about to pop, and on a sunny weekend afternoon, all the world is out picnicking, playing ball, taking a stroll, or simply sunning themselves. But even when it's gray, that doesn't seem to deter the park enthusiasts. There are formal gardens, statuary, Victorian follys built into craggy hillsides, lush lawns, playgrounds, spots for a game of boule, cafes where you can sip an espresso, and lawn chairs for those wishing to read, chat, or contemplate.