The Most Romantic Park in Paris?
This is a teaser for Valentine's day, and nothing more ambitious, because how can one possibly affirm that one parisian park is more romantic than another? Still, if you happen to be in the parc Monceau as the suns sets on a February eve, and the rain begins to fall with every raindrop refracting a mellow evening glow, making the very air seem incandescent....then you will know. And if you happen to be watching the scene unfold over the water wreathed in Corinthian columns, the enchantement of ancient times will seize you, and in that moment the parc Monceau will become for you the most romantic of parks.
Call it if you prefer the most fanciful of Paris parks, designed in such a spirit by the painter Carmontelle and the architect Colignon, at the request of the Duke of Orléans following his marriage to the Princess of Pinthièvre in 1769. The garden was intended to give the illusion of a journey through the ages and the empires, which explains the odd presence of such exclectic pseudo-ruins as a pyramid, a gothic arche, and Corinthian columns. Confiscated during the Revolution, the park was permanently opened to the public in 1861, half it being sold off to rich bankers who developed and purchased the plush hôtels particuliers that now surround it.
In contrast to the vast rectangular Tuileries and the tourist-infested Jardin de Luxembourg (both still romantic in their own right), the parc Monceau is a smaller oval space with a more intimate and bourgeois feel. Here you will find just as many bench lovers as you will little children and lawyers in running attire. Click on the main photo to see other photos of Parc Monceau.
If you would like to overdose on romance for Valentine's day, the next public garden on the "most romantic" list might be the Musée Rodin, the master of sensuality set in stone. Last year's Valentine's recommendations are also still valid of course: "Three Parisian places to say "I love you." Get yourself in the mood for love with our photo gallery "Paris, Mon Amour."
Wherever you choose to woo, consider staying in a nearby Paris-Sharing apartment. We have created a "Romantic touch" pre-selection of places fit for Valentine's.