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This is why you should visit Paris in the winter

PUBLISHED: 09:58 25 January 2018 | UPDATED: 09:58 25 January 2018

Winter is the perfect time to discover the magic of Paris © encrier - Thinkstockphotos

Winter is the perfect time to discover the magic of Paris © encrier - Thinkstockphotos

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The weather may be a bit grey and gloomy this time of year, but the City of Light offers plenty of things to do and see in the winter

Drink hot chocolate

There are few things that warm you from the inside out as much as a steaming mug of chocolat chaud. The luxuriously silky-smooth cups from Angelina are almost too good…

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Go ice-skating

From the Hôtel de Ville to the first floor of the Eiffel Tower, Paris has some seriously impressive ice rinks during winter. Pull on your hat and gloves and take a twirl on the ice!

Visit Shakespeare and Company

There’s something particularly appealing about listening to a poetry reading, enjoying a tune on the piano or devouring your favourite book in this literary institution as snowflakes fall above Notre Dame outside.

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Play a board game

Too cold to venture outside? Stay cosy in the OYA café in the 13th arrondissement and choose from its mountain of board games. The first game costs €5 and €3 thereafter.

Cuddle a cat

Sometimes you just need to hug a big ball of fluff with your cup of tea, especially in the colder months. Luckily there are a few cat cafés in Paris to choose from including Café des Chats in the Marais and Chat Mallows Café in the 15th arrondissement.

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See the Christmas lights

Paris is magical at any time of year but it’s even more mesmerising when draped in a dazzling display of fairy lights. Go for a stroll and you’re bound to happen upon a whole lotta sparkle.

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People watch

Paris is home to countless cafés where you can spend entire afternoons watching the world go by – with a glass of vin chaud in hand, of course. Most cafés have snug blankets that you can wrap round you so get comfy, you’re bound to be there for quite a while!

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Go for a stroll in a Parisian park

Just because it’s a bit nippier outside doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy Paris’s beautiful parks and gardens. Wrap up warm and head out for a lovely winter walk.

Take a spin on a merry-go-round

These enchanting carousels pop up all over Paris in winter and what better way to entertain the little ones than with a go on one of these twinkling roundabouts?

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Catch an art exhibition

Visiting one of Paris’s many museums is a perfect rainy day activity. One of the newest museums is the Musée Yves Saint Laurent that showcases the legendary couturier’s designs in his former haute couture house in the 16th arrondissement.

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See the Christmas displays

The ‘grand magasins’ along the Champs-Élysées create dazzling window displays and decorations for the festive season. The ones not to miss are Galerie Lafayette, Printemps and Le Bon Marché.

Shop!

If you want a whole new winter wardrobe, you won’t be disappointed by Paris’s offerings. From vintage stores in Montmartre, to designer shops in more upmarket areas, you can shop till you drop! You can normally find great bargains in the January sales that start from 10 January.

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Treat yourself

One way to warm up in Paris is to visit one of the city’s traditional Arabic bathhouses and treat yourself to a steam and a rejuvenating exfoliating body scrub or massage. Hold on to those blissed-out vibes with a pot of fresh mint tea.

Other articles you might like:

The Paris museums you haven’t heard of

Winter getaways in France

8 of the best vegetarian restaurants in Paris

Paris’s east side: 3 walks off the beaten track

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