5 Best Summer Beach Spots In & Around Paris
June 30, 2014
The Seine River. Almost as famous as the city of lights herself. Its waters give way to romantic dinner cruises and tour boats, its banks provide the perfect setting for Parisian picnic goers and its bridges are some of the cities main attractions. The Seine provides many a marvel for Parisians and visitors alike, but the one thing that it doesn't provide is a place to swim. But although Paris might be no Rio De Janeiro, don't despair, there are 5 spots in and around Paris where you can head to get your beach on.
Paris Plage (Paris Beach) is what some call a “Seine-side” holiday. Starting around July 20th each year and lasting 4 weeks, Paris Plage’s multiple man-made beach locations around the city provide a true beach escape.
The most iconic is the one located along the Seine River (on the right bank, between the Pont Neuf and Pont de Sully bridges). Aside from relaxing under the sun on a beach towel or lawn chair, activities include sand castle competitions, playgrounds for children, a pétanque field (game similar to bocce), an art gallery, a dance floor, taï-chi lessons and areas filled with water misters to cool off.
Admission Fee: Free
Metro: Hotel de Ville (Voie Georges-Pompidou, 75004)
The second most popular of Paris Plage’s beaches is located along the Bassin de la Villette. Here it’s a water activity lover’s paradise with row boats, pedal boats, electric boats, roller tubes, as well as activities just for children like zip lining. There are also sandy spots where you can grab a beach chair and umbrella and forget the world around you. On a hot day, be sure to take a run through the water misters or grab a cold beer at one of the surrounding bars/restaurants.
Admission Fee: Free
Metro: Jaurès (Bassin de la Villette, 75019)
This might not be a typical Parisian experience, but it is a whole ton of fun. Located in the very south of Paris is the Aquaboulevard activity complex complete with movie theater, gym, restaurant and…water park. The indoor pool area feels like being transported to a tropical oasis of white chairs, palm trees and blue water. It boasts over 10 waterslides (many of which are outside), a wave pool, hot tubs and more, while the outside is where you will find the seasonal beach. Note to the boys, Speedo-tight bathing suit shorts are mandatory in the pool area.
Admission: €29 Adults (12+), €19 Kids (3-11). Children under 3 are not permitted.
Metro: Balard (Line 8)
La Plage de L'Isle-Adam (the Beach of the Island of Adam) is the largest riverside beach in France. Located about 1 hour north of Paris by train, this is a little oasis in the small picturesque city of L’Ile-Adam. Although you cannot swim in the river itself, you can enjoy the 3-hectors of fine-sand beach and swim in the adjacent pool area. This pool area boasts numerous activities such as a dedicated area for young children, mini-golf course, restaurant and more. Note to the boys, Speedo-tight bathing suit shorts are mandatory in the pool area.
Admission: €16.50 Adult, €10 Kids
Train Station: L’Isle-Adam - Parmain
Deauville is certainly not France’s warmest beach destination, but it is one of the chicest and closest to Paris. Approximately 2 hours by direct train from Paris, Deauville and neighboring city Trouville have long been the beach destination for Parisians, comparable to what the Hamptons are to New Yorkers. The beach itself is a long and wide stretch of sand, peppered with colorful sun parasols as far as the eye can see. Walking along Les Planches de Deauville (the boardwalk along the beach) you can read the names of famous actors and actresses on the large beach lockers that many French people keep in the family for years. Stopping for ice cream or seafood along the boardwalk between sunbathing is a must-do.
Train Station: Trouville – Deauville