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.


Carolyn said...

Yes! and very well-stated.

Grace and Bradley said...

When I lived in Paris and latter on visiting, Luxembourg Gardens is the one I most often passing by. A very good memory

Daniel said...

How right you are! The design of the gardens and flower beds must be done by geniuses. Last year, in the Jardin du Luxembourg, I saw a simple bed of petunias and geraniums that was one of the most beautiful displays I've ever seen. The colors, heights, and forms of the plants were chosen so carefully that the mix came together in a whole new way.

Starman said...

City people do love their parks. It gives us a sense of 'country' without the inconvenience of actually being there.

La Mom said...

Paris parks are the best! My fave is the Parc Monceau.

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