Is Paris the Most Romantic City in the World?

Is Paris the Most Romantic City in the World?

Someone once told me that the romance of Paris won’t come alive until you visit with someone you love.

Well, for Paris’s sake, I sure hope that’s true!

People often go on and on about the romance of Paris, but is it really the most romantic city in the world? Maybe if you like being harassed by touts constantly and smelling pee everywhere.

Looking around there were tons of young couples in love, obviously soaking up the atmosphere of the city. People seemed more open about showing affection here, so maybe it was the romance of the city that was contagious?

Yet somehow, I just didn’t get infected like I thought I would.

Paris - June 2014

Almost everywhere we went we saw a wedding photo shoot taking place. Most of them were Asian wedding shoots too, which more than likely meant they traveled specifically to Paris just for the sole purpose of doing their shoot. That’s a really popular thing to do nowadays, but that almost deserves a whole article on its own.

Paris - June 2014

Paris - June 2014

Even at the photo shoot locations, I just didn’t feel a romantic atmosphere. Was I seeing a different Paris than everyone else?

Paris - June 2014

That’s not to say that I felt Paris was horrible and completely unromantic. While I did see its charm at some moments, overall I just don’t think I could all it the most romantic city in the world.

Walking around, it really did smell like pee everywhere–especially the morning after a late night of partying for France’s victory in one of the World Cup matches. And it was crucial to not breathe too deeply on the metros. So far, not romantic Paris.

Paris - June 2014

Before arriving I thought people exaggerated about the smell and filth of Paris, but unfortunately, the rumors were mostly true. I figured it wouldn’t be worse than any other large metropolitan area, but it was.

Each morning we would wake up and walk to find breakfast, needing to mind our step as we maneuvered around heaps of trash and suspicious wet puddles when it hadn’t previously rained. Again, not romantic Paris!

Paris - June 2014

We couldn’t walk for half a block without someone asking us to buy their tacky souvenir or to fall for their petition signing scam. Again, I know I had heard rumors of all of this before arriving, but I really had high hopes for Paris and hoped for those things to not bother me.

But I guess they did.

Paris - June 2014

So maybe it would be different if someday I return to Paris with Johnny. We could wine and dine while viewing the Eiffel Tower in the distance, we could stroll across the Pont des Arts before locking our love lock to the bridge, and we could even rub up on Dalida for good luck in love together. Yup, that’s a thing.

Paris - June 2014

And maybe, just maybe, then I’ll finally fall in love with Paris and be able to proclaim it as the most romantic city in the world.

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Do you find Paris romantic? If not, which city do you think deserves to be called ‘the most romantic in the world’?

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16 Comments

  1. June 18, 2015 / 12:07 am

    I think that Paris is one of the most romantic cities, but not the most romantic city. My top three romantic cities that I traveled to with my wife was 1. Venice (Florence and Rome also) 2. NYC 3. Paris.

    • Beth Williams
      July 10, 2015 / 1:44 pm

      Now that I’ve finally been to all of those cities, I must agree that NYC is incredibly romantic!

  2. September 8, 2014 / 9:57 am

    I loved Paris in Fall too and I met up with my French boyfriend (at the time) there which definitely made it romantic to me. Guess it does depend where you go in the city and what time of year

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:14 am

      And most importantly, who you’re with ;)

  3. September 3, 2014 / 4:24 am

    Interesting to read this because although I really liked Paris, I too didn’t find it all that romantic as such compared to somewhere like Florence. Great city but I wouldn’t necessarily pick if I was looking for solely a romantic destination!

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:14 am

      Ah, Tuscany.. now there’s a romantic destination!

  4. September 3, 2014 / 2:53 am

    Sorry mate I agree.Paris is filthy,smelly expensive and full of immigrants. I would recommend several other romantic destinations- in Europe Canary Isles,Barcelona,Kefalonia in Greece, Rome,Florence.In Asia, Shanghai is amazing also Taiwan and Macau. Don’t know why people think so much of Paris…

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:13 am

      I agree, Barcelona seemed far more romantic to me and practically all of Asia)!

  5. September 2, 2014 / 2:51 pm

    Hahaha I love your reflections on Paris because (although I’ve never been) I’ve always had the same thoughts as everyone gushed on about the romance of it. I’ve never found a city romantic… Rolling fields? Sure! Mountains? Yes! City? Eh, pee and trash don’t do it for me.

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:13 am

      Precisely! Give me a secluded beach, a beautiful mountainous valley… but a city? Nah. Not romantic. :)

  6. Elena@Elena's Travelgram
    September 2, 2014 / 1:26 am

    I’d say it Paris’s romance allure really depends on the season and the places you visit. I hated Paris on Christmas ’cause it was just all as you described it. And there were hell lot of tourists EVERYWHERE.

    But I loved Paris in Spring and Fall – there were less tourists (touts and litter too), more absolutely deserted streets and those lovely street cafes where you can drink your coffee for eternity people-watching and cuddling with your partner.

    Besides, there’s hardly any romance around the Eiffel Tower (and even on it’s top) or Champs Elysees, but it could be found at least popular places like Montmartre side alleys, Saint Denise neighborhood or Promenade de Plante

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:09 am

      I think Paris could totally be romantic in spring, which is when I next hope to visit!

  7. September 2, 2014 / 11:16 am

    I personally found Bruges to be the most romantic city I have ever been to… even out romanticising Paris. Paris gave me more of an art feel then a romance feel

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:12 am

      Gah, I missed out on Bruges! We chose not to stop in Belgium, but I really regret that!

  8. September 2, 2014 / 4:18 am

    As a solo traveler in Paris, I felt like it catered to love and romantics significantly and then I felt like I wished I would have waited to visit with a significant other in the future :) Well, there is always next time!

    • Beth Williams
      September 29, 2014 / 10:10 am

      Maybe I’m just bitter since I was there alone as well ;)
      Next time indeed!