Five ways to make a splash in Paris

Five ways to make a splash in Paris

Forage through the flea market at La Javelle

Rummage through rails of second hand clothes and vintage handbags in the market section of this Belle Epoque-style guinguette (all-purpose night spot) on the west side of Paris, close to the Port Javel Bas. Alongside craft stalls selling handmade jewellery and quirky, affordable homeware (anyone for a Perspex rhino bed lamp?), vintage Airstreams and food trucks sell tasty French snacks to diners on deckchairs. Pick up a plate of cold cheeses, meats and pickles for 15 euros or grab a thin-crisp pizza for 8 euros.
Drink and dance on a dockside barge where yoga and meditation sessions take place during the day, or relax into the night as accordion players rouse emotions with nostalgic classics on a terrace strung up with fairy lights.

Strike gold at Monnaie de Paris

In a clever move to safeguard its enviable position on the banks of the Seine in the 6th arrondissement, the last factory in Paris will fling open its doors to the public next year. For now, it’s possible to sneak inside the outer galleries of the French mint, where art exhibitions are held, and to visit Guy Savoy’s three Michelin-starred restaurant which occupies the upper galleries.
Founded in 864 by Emperor Charlemagne, Monnaie de Paris is the oldest institution in Europe with an intriguing history to tell. Tantalising exhibits in the new, highly-anticipated and highly-secured museum will include a series of 73 never-before-seen medals depicting profiles of Louis XIV for almost every year of his life. There’ll also be a chance to witness master engravers at work in the factory.

Clink glasses on a river cruise

Sipping bubbles at sunset is a fine way to wave au revoir to a weekend in Paris. This easy-going river cruise along the Seine is a light-hearted introduction to champagne, with three different tipples to taste during the hour-long journey. A sommelier is on hand to answer any burning questions, but this is far from a hardcore trawl through grape varieties and types of terroir. The tour, which costs 55 euros per person, departs daily at 6pm (except Sunday) until the end of September from Vedettes de Paris. Book tickets in advance.