Begun in 2002, the Paris Plage, or Paris beach, is a free summer event that ahs soared in popularity among both tourists and locals.
During the summer months, the roadways along the Seine are closed to traffic and given over to impromptu beaches, complete with sand and, in some areas, palm trees.
The Paris plage experience is basically divided into three distinct areas. The first and most traditional area, located from the Louvre to the Pont de Sully, offers sand and grass beaches, fountains, mini-pools, and free chaise lounge rental, as well as a variety of games, cafes, and snack bars.
For boating and water sports, try the beach scene at the Bassin de la Villette, that stretches from the Rotonde de Ledoux to the anciens Magasins generaux.
Choose from kayaks, paddleboats, sailboats, and canoes: they’re free to rent. When boating is over at 9 pm, stroll the waterside cafés and open air art exhibits.
The third plage is located at the foot of the National Library, and offers a more urban, modern feel. Pick up a book or a free newspaper, or plug into the area’s free WiFi service. The Josephine Baker Pool at the edge of the river will keep you cool.