Destinations In Paris Everyone Needs To See At Least Once, According To Ina Garten

Ina Garten may be from New England, but it's safe to say her heart is in Paris. The TV personality and cookbook author first discovered a love for cooking during a four-month camping trip in the City of Lights alongside her husband, according to Business Insider. One day, the owner of the campsite offered the young couple a home-cooked dish. "It was coq au vin," Garten reportedly told MSNBC host Willie Geist during a virtual luncheon. "I heated it up on my little camping gas stove. [...] And I thought, this is the most delicious thing I've ever eaten in my life. I need to know how to make this."

That pivotal moment kicked off what would become Garten's career as the Barefoot Contessa, all thanks to a classic French dish. Since then, the author has continued her love affair with Paris, calling the city's cafes one of her favorite things in a New York Times feature and even purchasing an apartment in the city's 7th Arrondissement.

Thankfully, we can all experience Paris the way Garten does with her list of personally curated destinations. Her first stop during a 2022 trip was at Adriane M Fleuriste because, as she wrote in an Instagram post, "Paris isn't Paris without a gorgeous bouquet of flowers." Once you've grabbed your bouquet of roses, it's time to sample the local cuisine.

Ina Garten's favorite food spots in Paris

Soon after visiting her go-to florist in Paris, Ina Garten headed to her favorite bakery in the city, called Poilâne, as she documented in a post on Instagram. She shared in the caption, "When Jeffrey and I came to Paris in 1971, we stayed in a small orange tent on the outskirts of Paris (we couldn't afford a hotel room!) but the bakery @poilane was on my list of things to see (how did I even know about it??). Now my favorite bakery is a block from our apartment and I go there all the time." Hit up the bakery for fresh bread, tarts, and other scrumptious goodies.

During the same trip, Garten revealed her favorite cheese shop with a series of carousel photos. "Too much cheese; too little time! The renowned cheese shop Barthélémy is my favorite cheese shop in the world and it's right around the corner!" she wrote. Later, during her Paris getaway, the Barefoot Contessa visited Café Varenne, another spot located near her 7th Arrondissement home, for lunch (a simple salad with goat cheese and frites). She also shared a separate snap of a tomato tart lunch, plus some other produce and sweet tarts, from the grocery store La Grande Épicerie de Paris.

To unwind at night, Garten ventures outside her neighborhood to the classy Bar 228 at Le Meurice Hotel, per a 2016 Instagram post. Her drink of choice: a fruit-topped bourbon sour.

Ina Garten-approved landmarks and activities

A trip to Paris isn't complete without rich cheese and decadent tarts, but Ina Garten makes sure to fit in some sightseeing between noshing on all the delicious food. While tourist spots like the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre are must-sees, Garten enjoys strolling around in areas you might not see highlighted in many guidebooks. In 2022, the cookbook writer shared an Instagram post naming Cherche Midi and Rue de l'Université (both located within the 7th Arrondissement) as two of her favorite streets in the city. For first-time visitors, be sure to stop by the Hôtel des Invalides, conveniently situated between the two.

Just over the Seine River, you'll find Place Vendôme, another Paris destination loved by Garten. She posted a photo of the picturesque spot in December 2016 when the plaza displayed a lit-up Christmas tree. The food guru gushed in the caption, "Night time on the Place Vendôme. The French do it with such style – simple and elegant." After visiting the area, make your way to the Palais Royale, just next to Place Vendôme. If Garten's ode to the building on Instagram is any indication, you might just run into the TV star there during your Paris vacation.

Once you've explored the city's charming streets and stunning architecture, take a rest with a quintessential Parisian picnic. According to one 2018 post, Garten likes to picnic in Tuileries Garden, a picturesque park with trees, ponds, and endless people-watching.