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You wouldn't be here if you weren't curious.*

Hi! I'm Elena! Welcome to my travel blog Creativelena.com.
For me, it is all about “life-seeing instead of sightseeing”: Join me as I create, eat & live my way around the world. Curious?

*Check out my book, “The Creative Traveler’s Handbook”, for learning more about what we mean by creative travel. Travelling means the world to me, makes me fit for everday life and sometimes, I trust, also calmer on the inside. Read this blog with a smile, share what you love and remember to check back regularly: After all, when was the last time you did something for the first time?

Paris by Night: Photo Walk in the City of Love

Valérie, who’s working at a Paris hospital, loves Crêpes Indiennes with chicken & curry. Lise, shop assistant & fashion designer, tells me of dreams about running her own creative workshop. And what’s with  … Bertie’s CupCakery, the sugar-sweet seduction only ten steps away from Notre Dame? Well, she must be a sinner, naturally.

Süße Versuchungen: Bertie's Cupcakery bietet mit der sympathischen Einwanderin aus Washington echte amerikanische Cupcakes an, die mit viel Liebe tagtäglich frisch zubereitet werden. Ein Hochgenuss!

Sweet Seduction: Bertie’s Cupcakery offers real American cupcakes, prepared with love each and every day. I wonder whether the French already embrace them besides their own baguettes and croissants? Guess they have no choice 😉

 

Tonight, my discoveries are “with the people from all walks of life”. My recipe in case you want to act as a traveller instead of being a tourist? Act on your French (always helpful in the “Grande Nation”!), act on your courage by turning off into less travelled side streets (yes, also at night), act on your luck and get ready to be seduced. Since seduction is what it’s all about here.

Unterwegs in Paris: Verlockungen, wohin das Auge blickt.

Sweet Temptations: For men or for female purses.

Ein Laden voller Schokolade & Süßigkeiten! Oh dear :)

A shop full of chocolate and sweets! Oh dear 🙂

In der Crêperie Le Sarrasin et Le Froment schmelze ich dahin ... Französische Crepes, gepaart mit einer Schale guten Cidres, gehen einfach über nichts. Mmmh!

At the Crêperie Le Sarrasin et Le Froment on Rue Saint-Louis en l’Ile I literally melt away … French Crêpes coupled with a beautiful bowl of Cidre is hard to beat. De-li-cious!

Noch immer nicht genug? Wie wäre es dann mit diesen Macarons, gesehen in der Rue de la Verrerie im Quartier Le Marais?

Still haven’t had enough? How about these Macarons, seen in Rue de la Verrerie, Quartier Le Marais?

 

Photo Walk: One Night in Paris

I have just finished reading a book by Andreas Altmann, a German “Travelist”, book author & feverish preacher of accepting and living the gift of life, love and .. travelling! In actual fact, he reminds us not to take “photos like mad”, but to first assume the person, the story, the building, the city, the feeling, the smell, the sensation etc. behind what we see. “‘Today, we took a lot of pictures but we haven’t seen much.’ This means: Start from the other end, first look and let the world and all that happens in front of you enter your heart, your brain. Be still and feel!”

Well, I must say I could only be still while sitting, eating, tasting, feeling, smelling, noticing. Everything else – laughing, chatting, late night shopping & photography (AFTER the feelings and sensations, of course!) is where I would like to take YOU now.

Join me on my walk through the city, from the Hôtel de Ville across the Ponts de la Seine, showing you where you can get “off the beaten path avoiding the tourist sheep” while diving into “the real Paris”: Local faces, stories & tales of exceptional culinary delights. Enjoy!

(Late Night) Shopping macht glücklich.

(Late Night) Shopping makes you happy. Especially in Paris! As a woman, I dare say this much. 😉

Lieblingsplätzchen abseits der "Grandes Avenues": Die Rue Saint-Louis en l'île. "Ici, c'est comme un village", meinte die Verkäuferin Lise lachend. "Jeder kennt hier jeden." Und so war ich gleich mal miteingeschlossen!

My personal favourite hot spot for a wander off the “Grandes Avenues”: The Rue Saint-Louis en l’île. “Ici, c’est comme un village”, shop assistant Lise tells me with a wink. “Everybody knows everybody.” Including myself!

Lise und Elena beim Einkaufen (nach offiziellem Ladenschluss): "Allez, probier einfach noch schnell!" Über ihre Freundin, die das Foto aufnimmt, kommen wir ins Reden: Vielleicht kommt Lise ja noch zur Kreativ-Reisen Konferenz ins Rathaus wenn ich dort meinen Vortrag halte?

Shopping with the locals (after official opening hours): “Allez, you can still try this one on!” I end up buying it, naturally. Or did you really think otherwise?

Weitere Entdeckungen aus der "kreativen Ecke" dieser Straße auf der Ile de la Cité von Paris: Ein iPhone-Halter im klassischen Telefon-Stil.

More “creative” discoveries along this road on the Ile de la Cité: An iPhone telephone all in one.

Tolle Hüte gefällig? Pariser Stadtmode gibts auch zu erschwinglichen Preisen: Einmal nachgefragt, geben die Pariser auch gerne Auskunft wie ich erfahre.

Fancy a real French hat? Paris also offers you less expensive models, and the locals know where to guide you to get some. Their “bonnets”, as the cute little hats are called, are a treasured accesoire to any woman. I understand this much from talking to Valerie and from looking at many other Parisiennes.

Nachtspaziergang auf dem Weg zur Stadtmitte (Ile de la Cité): Hier wird sogar das Brückengeländer kreativ (gespenstisch?) beleuchtet.

City night walk straight into the heart of town (the Ile de la Cité): Even the handles are lit by some ghostly spots when crossing the bridge. Must be a token of good luck!

Wir mögen sie, die Pariser: Mit ihrem eleganten Hüftschwung, ihren frisch-parlierenden Worten, ihrem Charme (wehe dem, der kein Französisch spricht ;)), ihren süßen Straßen-Cafés die dank Wärmestrahler auch den ganzen Winter über draußen Betrieb feiern. Ein ökologischer Wahnwitz - der sich Besuchern gegenüber fotogen darstellt.

We love the Paris people: Their elegant way of walking, their beautiful Frenchie accent, their charme (behold if you don’t speak French though ;)), their sweet street cafés which thanks to heaters offer outdoor comfort all year round. An ecological outrage that does however lend itself to pretty night photography.

Nachts in Paris: Eine Stimmung der ganz besonderen Art.

One night in Paris: It’s all about the beauty of being and appreciating each moment!

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Written by Elena

Elena writes about creative destinations, shares her personal travel stories and brings inspiring photography & interesting news updates home to you. Her mission is: "Continue to be amazed at this world, one creative travel experience at a time."

Ready for learning even more about creative travel?

Elena has recently published "The Creative Traveler's Handbook". Chock full of inspiratinal stories, travel tips and advice, it offers everything you need for planning and managing your next creative escape, addressing beginners and experienced travelers alike. Here's how to get your hands on it now!
Bake Your Own Bread with Roswitha Huber in Salzburg
2nd International Creative Tourism Network Conference in Paris

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