12 Cour Carrée
Scenic StrollsFrench writer and poet Victor Hugo wrote, “To wander is human, to stroll is Parisian." Indeed, strolling, or the act of walking for no reason other than pure pleasure, is a popular pastime in France. The word for it is flânerie. Although how it came to be is up for debate, the beauty of the city must surely have played a role. Even metro signs and park benches can be enchanting in Paris, and you’ll feel like you’re walking through a movie set when you’re in areas like Rue Montorgueil, a pedestrian-only market street near Les Halles; Rue Crémieux, a street with candy-colored homes in the 12th arrondissement; and Place des Vosges, the oldest planned square in Paris, where Hugo himself once lived. A stroll along one or many of Paris’s Seine-crossing bridges, including the 16th century Pont Neuf and gilded Pont Alexander III, is also essential for soaking up the magic of the city.