Eat Cheaply in Paris

By: Gary Hill

It's easy to eat cheaply in Paris.

Eating out in Paris does not have to be an expensive or an extravagant thing - you can eat well and very cheaply if you know where to look. Whether you want to eat al fresco in the parks and quiet places of the city - or whether you prefer to sit and laze the day away in a cafe or bar or bistro - follow the great ideas and tips you'll find here. Paris does not need to cost you the earth and - with some local knowledge - you can eat cheaply in Paris every day.

In Europe in general - and Paris is no different - it's a good idea to make lunch your main meal of the day. Almost all cafes, bars, bistros and restaurants offer fixed price menus at lunchtime and will often throw in a glass of beer or wine for free included in the price. Even at dinner time if you look around you can find restaurants with menus offering three courses for less than fifteen euros.

Students who have an international student card can use the dining facilities of the Paris university campuses - and the local student food caterer called CROUS also provides food outlets around the city. Just search for CROUS Paris online for a list of addresses. You can also buy a copy of the necessary card at any of the CROUS outlets - provided you have your student identification with you.

Good places to eat include:

Cafe Berthillon on Rue St-Louis-en-I'lle. This is the most fantastic place for ice cream and sorbet with flavours and styles like you couldn't even imagine. Expect long queues for the most popular ice cream shop in Paris.

Cafe de la Mosquee on Rue Geoffroy-St-Hilaire provides authentic mint tea and middle eastern flavours in it's savouries and cakes.

Cafe Very is in the famous Jardin des Tuileries right in the very beating heart of the city. This is the best of several cafes in the gardens and delivers the most perfect toasted croques you'll ever find.

For a more restaurant level nosh up then try some of these great places:

L'as Du Falafel - no prizes for guessing what the dish of the day is here! The falafel is the most famous of all middle eastern treats - look out for the pitta special - with pitta bread, cabbage, aubergine, hummus and tabasco sauce - wonderful.

The Foyer Du Vietnam is on Rue Monge and is a very popular purveyor of vietnamese curries and noodle dishes. Popular with students and locals alike.

Goldenberg Restaurant on Rue des Rosiers is the best known Jewish eating place in the city. You can stuff yourself on borscht, blinis, strudels and - of course - chicken soup! Great food in an authentic atmosphere.

These are only a few suggestions on how to eat cheaply in Paris. The main tip is to remain flexible and - if you can - chat with the locals and ask for their advice.

Enjoy your trip to Paris.

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