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footsteps of Hemingway, Wright, Joyce, Fitzgerald
footsteps of Gertrude Stein, Picasso, Man Ray, Chagall
footsteps of Gauguin, Oscar Wilde, Modigliani, Edith Piaf, Maria Callas
footsteps of Delacroix, Jim Morrison, Victor Hugo
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Paris private walking tours, custom-made tour in Paris ... footsteps of Gertrude Stein, Picasso, Man Ray, Chagall, Gauguin ... Montparnasse, la Coupole, la closerie des lilas, pere lachaise cemetery ...
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The ultimate in private walking tour
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The Paris Insight walks are more than walk-by descriptions of buildings.

The history of Paris, old legends, and characters "full of color" who have haunted Paris in olden or more recent times will come alive.

Following in the footsteps of Hemingway, Wright, Joyce, Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, Picasso, Man Ray, Chagall, Gauguin, Oscar Wilde, Modigliani, Delacroix, Jim Morrison, be guided to the homes, cafés, studios, parks, places they associated with and immortalized in their "chef-d'œuvres".

Find out where various episodes of Victor Hugo's novel "Les Miserables" took place; bring to light his Paris of 1830. "Smell the roses" in the Luxembourg gardens and, who knows, you may just come across Hemingway walking up to see Gertrude Stein at her big studio apartment "where there was a big fireplace warm and confortable, great paintings like in the finest museum…".

Discover new worlds and atmospheres as you slip discreetly into those mysterious, hidden, romantic courtyards that Paris preserves so carefully.

A wide range of walks are available, from custom-made to classical tours.

My Paris walks are limited to small intimate groups, therefore reservations are strongly recommended.

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Paris walking tours CUSTOM-MADE TOURS
Paris custom-made tours

Do you have your own dream or passion about Paris ?

Make it real with the custom-made tour, always a new and truly original offer. Tell me the subject you are interested in. The walk will take as long as is necessary, but will comes as close as possible to your dream.

The rate for this tour depends on the time required for its preparation and also on the number of hours or days the walk takes.

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Paris walking tours THE BEGINNERS’ WALK OF PARIS
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This is ideal for those who have never been to Paris before, who speak little or no French, who are unsure about the "flavour" of the Paris Metro or other "questionable "means of public transport, for those who have "no time to waste" and need to feel at home in Paris quickly, and for those who were last here a long time ago and need an "update". During this walk the secrets of places and monuments we pass by are revealed, your questions are welcome and are always answered and the public transport …a souvenir full of enjoyment.

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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“A MOVEABLE FEAST” Hemingway’s Paris in the early 20th century
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“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast” wrote Hemingway to a friend in 1950.

If you are not that lucky, then enjoy a delightful memorable experience of this walk.

My thanks go to Pat and John for whom I created this walk and with whom I spent magical hours in the steps of Hemingway. Pat's sweet voice reading extracts from Hemingway's book "A moveable feast" still floats in the Paris air …

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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Paris walking tours “LES MISERABLES” Victor Hugo’s Paris & the district of Le Marais
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Paris is the real-life stage of Victor Hugo’s novel Les Miserables.
The Marais is its most seductive, secluded, historical scene.
The spirits of Gavroche (le gamin de Paris), Jean Valjean (the convict), Cosette and Marius still wander through the narrow 17th century streets.

On this walk we discover 16th and 17th century former residences of the lords and ladies of the Marais; good king Henri IV, Catherine de Medicis, the Princes de Guise, Madame de Sevigné, (second only to Voltaire as the greatest letter-writer in French literature), whose accounts of public, political, literary and artistic events vividly describe the great age of Louis XIV. We also lift a veil on the Marquise de Maintenon, who secretly married Louis XIV after having been his mistress and the governess of his eight illegitimate royal children.

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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FROM THE ILE DE LA CITE TO THE PANTHEON
Paris off-the-beaten path
When, where and how was Paris born, who were Heloïse and Abelard why is the Latin Quarter so called, where is the oldest tree in Paris, is the University of the Sorbonne the University of Paris, have you ever heard of the legend of Saint Julien le Pauvre, where did the composer Saint-Saens play the organ, what was student life like during the Middle Ages, why is the body of Saint Genevieve not in its grave?

The answers are to be found around the Ile de la Cité, Cathedral of Notre Dame, the Latin Quarter, the old Churches of Saint Julien le Pauvre, Saint Severin, the Sorbonne and also in the narrow little streets of the Montagne Saint Genevieve. Typical beautiful courtyards bring a special charm to this walk
 
price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
 Paris private tours
Paris walking tours SAINT GERMAIN DES PRES
Paris off-the-beaten path

The Saint Germain district has money, elegance, sophistication and an easy going tolerance. Home for artists, art schools, artists’ cafés, galleries and at least 40 licensed bordellos before 1945. Every square inch in this district is dense with famous events, artists and creations.

Henry Miller… for the Paris Review: "…I found a freedom such as I never knew in America. I found contact with people so much easier… I met more of my own kind there. Above all I felt that I was tolerated. I didn’t ask to be understood or accepted. To be tolerated was enough. In America I never felt that”.

The cafés are an institution here. The writers Simone de Beauvoir and Jean Paul Sartre spent most of 1930-40 "….at the Flore, at least it wasn’t cold… It was our special resort. We felt at home there, it sheltered us from the outside world. You would see Picasso there, smiling at Dora Marr … and Jacques Prévert holding forth to a circle of acquaintances” wrote De Beauvoir.

Le Café des Deux Magots is neutral ground between opposing camps (the Right and Left Banks of Paris), a favorite of American artists for decades and a place for surrealists’ meetings in the late 20th century.

History unfolds as you walk past the church of Saint Germain des Pres, rue Jacob, where the peace treaty between England and the United States was signed in 1783, the School of Beaux Arts, built on the former estate of Queen Margot, Le Procope, the oldest restaurant in Paris, 300 years of history and events, the romantic Cour de Rohan opened in 1776 and where Dr Guillotin first tried out the guillotine, Rue des Grands Augustins where Picasso painted his Guernica.

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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Paris walking tours MONTPARNASSE,THE GOLDEN 20TH, THE EXPATRIATES
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Montparnasse, the center of "le monde artistique et litteraire" from 1890 to early 1930, but also “a weird little land, crowded with artists, alcoholics, prostitutes, pimps, poseurs, college boys, tourists, society slummers, beggars, homosexuals, drug addicts, nymphomans, sadists, thieves, political refugees, anarchists…men and women without a country. A land filled with gaiety sometimes real and often feigned”, recalled Samuel Putman, a writer who lived in Paris at that time.

Today, its memorable past cannot really be revealed by the lone visitor.
Unless you are a skillful treasure hunter, this is the area of Paris where you need an interpreter. Someone to guide your steps through those silent streets, to the right and the left of the Boulevard Montparnasse, someone to take you to the homes and studios of Hemingway, Ezra Pound, Foujita, Man Ray, Max Ernst, Kadinsky, Kisling, Pascin, Gauguin, Modigliani, Soutine …

The cafés of Montparnasse (La Coupole, La Closerie de Lilas, Le Café du Dôme, La Rotonde) were centers and meeting places, second homes for all these extraordinary artists.

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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Paris walking tours PROMENADE TO THE ROMANTIC PERE-LACHAISE CEMETERY
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"Père-Lachaise is my favorite place in all of Paris. My fondness was fixed on that first visit. It was late afternoon, a fine day, early in September.
A time of lengthening shadows.
I was wandering aimlessly among the antique stones, when a gnomish woman slipped from between two mausoleums, flagged me down and asked, "Cherchez vous Sarah Bernhardt?”
wrote Bill Richardson in the preamble to his delightful, humor-filled book Waiting for Gertrude.

Père Lachaise is also one of my favorites as… "it is the only place in Paris where I can feel the four seasons!". Its extravagant collection of French statuary (19th century), representing pagan beauties, languishing widows, beautiful mourners and naked Muses is set in an abundant vegetation, quite unique in Paris. Romantic alleys and little cobble-stoned roads turn this famous, beautiful cemetery into a unique, mysterious place of promenade.

Temples, pyramids, obelisks, lofty columns and chateaux with stained-glass windows shelter the tombs of the illustrious and the not so illustrious, and offer a home to a colony of happy, independent cats. Mr Tomy-Tom-Tom, one of my cats, is a native from here. You should hear the stories he tells when he is in a good mood ! Stories about…

Heloïse and Abelard, Pissaro, Visconti, Rossini, Jim Morrison, Gericault, Bellini, Chopin, Ingres, Colette, Lalique, Corot, Molière, La Fontaine, Modigliani, Edith Piaf, Maria Callas, Oscar Wilde, Gertrude Stein, Isadora Duncan, Richard Wright, Balzac, Delacroix, Bizet, Enescu and…

My special thanks to Bonnie Tregov and Rhea Lazar for whom I designed this walk, and also to my good friends Ruth and Catherine, thanks to whom the "research" work turned into a treasure hunting game.

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
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MONTMARTRE, le temps de "la Bohème" et le temps "d’Amélie"
Footsteps of Hemingway, Wright, Joyce, Fitzgerald ...

Picasso, Braque, Van Dongen, Modigliani, Renoir, Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Corot, Cézanne, Manet, Sisley, Utrillo, Poulbot, Erick Satie, Berlioz and Max Jacob all "heard the call" of Montmartre. It is here that they lived and "gave birth" to famous works. It was during the period 1870 to 1920 - the time of "La Bohème" when Montmartre was but a little village, with vineyards, orchards, farms, maquis and a "bidonville de genie" (no electricity, no gas, no running water and no central heating). The construction of the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur (1919) marks the end of that epoch.

The modest cottages, the maquis and the windmills have been replaced by beautiful little villas and typical Parisian buildings. The "penniless" artists of the 1900's have given way to the "argentés" and "desargentés" artists of 2000. Painters great and small, film directors, actors, pop singers, successsful young managers, alongside religious communities and charming authentic "montmartois" share the beautiful romantic steps, the poetic streets and this unique atmosphere.

Montmartre continues to make us dream at least as much as the French film "e fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulin" ("Amelie").

Do you think this could be due to the miracle and sacrifice of Saint Denis and his companions Rustique and Eluthère, whose souls might still haunt the heights of Montmartre ?

price : 50 Euros/person time : 3 h
footsteps of Delacroix, Jim Morrison, Victor Hugo, latin quarter
SO...FIND ANOTHER WAY TO DISCOVER PARIS !
footsteps of Notre Dame, Sorbonne, Saint Germain des pres, Montparnasse ...

For further information and reservations
please Email or contact:

Virginia Dae
170/172 avenue Ledru-Rollin
75011 Paris, France
e-mail vdae@club-internet.fr
From US call Phone/Fax: (011) (33) 143 723 882

Paris private tours

Paris walking tours

la Coupole, la closerie des lilas, pere lachaise cemetery ...