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Day 223: Sandcastle

Boy it feels “heavy” in the city. No wonder everyone seems to have escaped to the beaches, fake or otherwise. Anything for a little bit of fresh air and cooling breeze. On passing Paris-Plages today, the quay was absolutely packed with adults and children alike, and a stroll along the beaches revealed various on-going events. Best to enjoy with ice cream in hand, I believe.

From simple sun-bathing or sand-playing, to enjoying a game of petanque or two, to watching performances by street artists, to enjoying a short massage session at the pop-up massage stands. And giant Disney-inspired sandcastles can also be found, and they’re quite the attraction as various camera (including mine) went a-clicking busily around it. I know, I am such a tourist :p

Day 201: Paris Plages

In Paris, you don’t have to go to the beaches. The beaches come to you instead ;)

The mairie has been busy since the weekend, constructing the quay-side beaches which make their appearances annually in July and August, for approximately 4-5 weeks. When I passed by this evening along Voie Pompidou, the landscapers were busy putting in the final touches while anyone unauthorised were barred from entering Paris Plages.

Trucks and trucks of sand have been brought in, new lounging chairs set in intermittent distances, and shower areas set up too. Now, nobody’s allowed to swim in the Seine (and I’m not sure if anyone would really want to either, without taking on the risk of disease) so the beaches would be use mainly as sand pits and sunbathing spots. However, there is also a floating pool near Pont Marie for a quick cooling dip and aquagym. And over at Bassin de la Villette, I believe there would be an artificial wave good for surfing too!

Paris Plages 2011 runs from 21 July to 21 August at Voie Pompidou, Hôtel de Ville and Bassin de la Villette. Click here for the full programme.

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