Could it really be? Has summer finally arrived? Judging by the barometer and blue skies, I’d say the season of beaches and bikinis has finally arrived. The only problem? Paris isn’t exactly close to the sea (it’ll take you a good two hours by train to get to the northern coast).

So what’s a girl to do when all she see’s is concrete? Simple: head to Paris Plage. Each year, from the end of July to the end of August, the quai of the river Seine is transformed into the closest thing you’ll come to sable in the city. For the next four weeks, you can say goodbye to the dull hum of cars by the water, and instead be greeted by sand and (hopefully) sun. That’s right, they actually bring in sand, although it doesn’t span the whole “beach.” Paris Plage is actually more like a boardwalk than a faux-shore, boasting everything from lounge chairs to ice cream stands, swimming pools to cocktail bars.

This year the plage is split into two sections, the first at Voie Georges Pompidou near Hotel de Ville, and the second at La Villette Basin near the Stalingrad metro. What’s more, it’s open all day from 8am to midnight, and it’s completely free of charge. So pick up a trashy novel that’s fit for the beach alone, and relax along the river like it was always intended.


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