I hate running, but it’s something I have to do. And I have to do it in the city. I also have to it in places that have grass or dirt paths, because of my knees. Paris has a few options, but nothing as grand as central park. There are two large parks on the edge of the city, Bois de Vincennes and Bois de Boulogne.

bois de vincennes

bois de vincennes

bois de boulogne

bois de boulogne

Both are interesting, but not my favorite places to run. Bois de Boulogne is home to the independent prostitutes who work out of their vans and just off the main running paths at night. And Bois de Vincennes, although slightly less seedy, can be sketchy in its own right, especially just after dusk.

There are a few other really beautiful parks, but they’re not good for running. Parc Monceau is not bad, but usually littered with 5-12 year olds running around before, after and during school hours. Fortunately ,the firefighters come out at night and do their training there, but there are so many of them running so fast and so recklessly that after a few minutes the novelty wears off.

Le Parc des Buttes Chaumont is hands down the prettiest park in Paris. A lot of people get married there, on top of the hill. The problem there is the dirt path that goes around the hill and waterfall is so small I get dizzy running around it. My best bet is probably a real forest, like the one in Saint Germain en Laye, but takes 30 minutes to get there on the RER, and it’s not worth it to go all the way out there for a 40 minute run. I have gone bike riding, there though. A long afternoon ride of a few hours makes the long train ride worth it. They have a pretty chateau there, too.

au bord de la marne

au bord de la marne

children at parc monceau

children at parc monceau

parc des buttes chaumont

parc des buttes chaumont

But back to the running…There is a place in St. Maur that I like, but the dirt path there is not as well-defined as I’d like it to be, and although it’s a beautiful place to run (right along the Marne River), I end up on concrete for too long time. So that suburb is out.

So, that’s it! I’ve yet to find a solution to my problem. I think I’ll just end up sticking to Bois du Boulogne.

chateau in st. germain en laye

chateau in st. germain en laye

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