Guessing Game: Best Kept Secrets of Paris

Can you guess where I took this picture?!?

HOW WELL DO YOU KNOW PARIS? THE CITY IS FULL OF SURPRISING PLACES!

Over the years I’ve become quite intimate with the back streets, local hang-outs and unexpected corners of the city… the better I get to know Paris, the more I love it. I share my favorite spots with my guests on SOJOURNER TOURS Best Kept Secrets and Off-the-Beaten-Path sojourns… and, I thought it would be fun for some of you to test your knowledge and get to know the city better.

Please post your guesses! I love seeing your ideas. 🙂

HINT: Don’t be fooled, this is in Paris not Kyoto!!! Where can you be transported to Japan without leaving the Paris? Think harder than the Guimet Asian Art Museum. This is further to the West in the city.

-Lisa (Sojourner Tours owner)

Garden of Albert Kahn

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Guessing Game: Best Kept Secrets of Paris

Can you guess where in Paris this picture was taken?

How well do you know Paris? The city is full of surprising places!

Over the years I’ve become quite intimate with the back streets, local hang-outs and unexpected corners of the city… the better I get to know Paris, the more I love it. I share my favorite spots with my guests on Sojourner Tours Best Kept Secrets and Off-the-Beaten-Path sojourns… and, I thought it would be fun for some of you to test your knowledge and get to know the city better. So, I’ll share a picture on the first and third Sunday of each month from August 2016 through April 2017 and reveal the location a week later.

Please post your guesses! It will be fun for everyone to see all the ideas the images foster.🙂

-Lisa (Sojourner Tours owner)

Answer…

 

 

Outside “Aux Follies” an old cabaret, now inexpensive and popular cafe in Belleville, Rue Denoyex.

A Postcard from Aix-en-Provence

Wish you were here!

Aix-en-Provence is a charming city –bustling and lively yet with a compact historic city-center that is easy to explore on foot! I love the college-town vibe and the incredible light produced by the sun here.

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Aix-en-Provence, France: Sojourner Tours

There is a farmer’s market every morning –and we’ll bring our Live-Like-a-Local guests here on one of the days when there is also a craftsman market (on a Tuesday or Thursday). It’s fun to look through the textiles, artisan objects and antiques sold in the market.

One of my favorite things here is sitting at a cafe terrace and people watching. But our guests will have time to visit the artist Cezanne’s workshop, the art museum, pop in a cathedral, go shopping… whatever catches their fancy!

Now, all we have to sit down and finalize the itinerary… make sure we visit places on market days, double check museum and restaurant opening times and days… etc. I’ll be posting it on the Sojourner Tours Website it in early September. 🙂

-Lisa (Sojourner Tours owner)

Lisa 2016 Ménerbes
Lisa Gustavson, Sojourner Tours Owner

A Postcard from Cadaqués

Wish you were here!

Cadaqués (on the Spanish side of Catalonia) is the last stop on our Best Kept Secrets of the French-Spanish Borderland sojourn. And it is one of my FAVORITE places on earth. The first time I visited here, it was love-at-first-sight. On a beautiful sunny day, this stretch of white buildings on the sea set against the arid mountains just enchants me. –No wonder so many of the great 20th century artists summered here… Picasso, Miro, Dali: those guys knew how to pick vacation destinations!

On the day that I took these pictures, I had a magical experience in the church that you can see in the first image. There is a baroque alter inside that is so ornate it is practically surreal; and, legend has it that Dali found inspiration here  because, back in the day, the local fishermen used to hang live lobsters on it that wriggled and slowly died during some ceremonies. –I’m not convinced that this led to Dali’s famous lobster-phone… but I still wanted to check it out again. To my delight, the church was open after hours and filled (appropriately) with baroque music. Just as I entered, someone lit the alter with light. MAGIC. –Timing can change everything! Outside, a man was playing flamenco music on a classical guitar, so I lingered a little longer than usual to enjoy my favorite view over the red rooftops of the boats bouncing gently in the harbor. Fittingly, we had lobster for lunch.

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Me, in Dali’s bathroom

I love strolling over to the nearby harbor. Dali and Gala lived there and a visit to their secluded home is always delightful (even if you don’t like Dali or his work, you can’t help but find his home fascinating in spots and enchanting in others).  I didn’t spot a lobster phone in the cottage but I may have caught a bit of Dali’s eccentricity because after being greeted at the door by a polar bear holding a lamp, I found myself doing silly things like taking this picture of myself in his bathroom!

TIP: Make reservations to visit Dali’s House-Museum, it is only open by reservation.

OUR FAVORITE FOOD: We’ve tried the restaurants in the harbor but the quality is pretty consistently tourist-level (disappointing). I recommend forgoing the view in favor of flavor and eating on the ugliest street in Cadaqués. The chefs who started Compartir had trained in what was considered the best restaurant in the world: El Buli (the documentary is on our list of favorite food films). As the name suggests, this is a fancy restaurant where you eat family-style –all the dishes are designed to share (“compartir”).

-Lisa (Sojourner Tours Owner

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Lisa Gustavson (Sojourner Tours Owner)