One of my favorite things about living in Amsterdam is that if I feel like going to Paris, it's only 3 hours away by train. This fall I decided to take advantage of this benefit by treating myself to a solo mini break for one night.
It was my first time experiencing the city in early fall, and I would recommend September and October as the two best months to visit the city. The tourists have mostly disappeared and cooler temperatures make for lovely all-day walking excursions. It is still warm enough to enjoy the outdoor cafes while watching the autumnal colors take over the trees.
Probably the most picturesque cafe I can recommend would be La Maison Rose. Located just off the main tourist drag in the heart of Montmartre, it's pretty much my postcard perfect idea of Paris. You'll find better food close by at Le Cheri Bibi (make a reservation), but I think this is a perfect stop for a cheeky daytime glass of wine. I'm a sucker for the hand painted type and the color palette.
The graffiti in Paris is really something else. Sadly I still haven't spotted any by my favorite French graffiti artist Miss Van.
No trip to France is complete without doing a macaron run. At Laduree my favorite flavors are the iced mint & orange blossom.
This trip was the first time I made it over to shop at the Galeries Lafayette. In terms of the retailers, it's really like any high end shopping mall. But the interior is breathtaking in its grandeur; the stained glass ceiling and art nouveau details are off the hizzy.
Anyone visiting Paris, especially for the first time, needs to allow some extra days for aimlessly wandering. If you shuttle from one major attraction to the next you'll get burned out and miss all the gorgeous details hiding around the city.
Probably the attraction I would most recommend to someone who has already been to Paris several times is Le Musée des Arts Forains. This is a bonkers collection of carnival rides & games from the end of the 19th century. You even get to go on a few of the rides (one of which is terrifying)! This museum is by group tour only, so you need to book in advance. Totally. Worth. It.
A few more recommendations:
Cafe Charlot- cute little bistro for a nice lunch
Gustave Moreau Museum- tour the inside of the home of this insanely awesome artist (includes loads of paintings of unicorns)
Day trip to medieval town of Provins- Is jousting your thing? You'll want to visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site to get in on that action.
Le Pharmacie- for a special dinner in a perfect Parisian location