Champs-Élysées–Things to Do in Paris

Champs-Élysées–Things to Do in Paris


8th arrondissement from Place de la Concorde to Place Charles de Gaulle (Arc de Triomphe);

As one of the most famous streets in the world, Champs-Élysées is a broad avenue lined with trees, numerous retails shops, restaurants, gardens, monuments, and theaters. Before the avenue became what it is now, it once housed fields and gardens. You can read about the history here. The avenue is also well-known for many events such as the military parade on Bastille Day, holiday lightings, and the finishing stage of Tour de France.

After visiting the Arc de Triomphe, we walked down the celebrated avenue, hoping to sight-see while skipping hand-in-hand, humming Les Champs- Élysées by Joe Dassin.  The romantic fantasy was rudely replaced by walking sluggishly in heat and humidity, dodging the crowd, attempting to not breathe in the millions of pollen flying in the air, and sneezing non-stop. We stopped by a few stores along the way in an attempt to find shorts for my poor husband (who had been suffering in dark jeans thanks to me who had forgotten to pack him some shorts) and respite from the heat. We were successful in finding shorts for my husband, but not any relief from the heat, as it seems like the French don’t believe in air conditioning. None of the stores we went to seemed to have the A/C on, and only rarely did we see a fan or two. It may also be due to the fact that we only went into bargain shops like Zara and H & M, and not the high-end stores. The department stores, however, were not that much better, as they were very warm inside as well.


After stopping by a pharmacy to get allergy medicine for my husband, we took a detour on to Boulevard Haussmann to get to the rooftop café at Printemps Haussmann. Unfortunately, that meant we didn’t get to walk all the way down to Place de la Concorde and even more walking in the heat with a congested and sneezing husband, but at least we got to pass by the beautiful Palais Garnier on the way. Read on to see if the Printemps Haussmann’s rooftop view was worth the trek.


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