Contributing writer

By Emily Rekstis

Contributing writer

Emily Rekstis is a freelance writer who has worked at Harper’s Bazaar, Self, And UsWeekly. Her bylines appear in Healthline, Byrdie, Women’s Health, MyDomaine, BuzzFeed, The Cut, Allure and many more.

Well Traveled In Paris: A woman running in Paris

Image by xavierarnau / iStock

September 13, 2022

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Travel can restore your well-being. We’re here to help you on that journey with Well-Traveled, a go-to destination for travel recommendations and tips. This series is sponsored by Delta Air Lines, the airline that is committed to helping you travel well. Sit back and enjoy a journey that prioritizes a better, healthier you.

Paris is the city of lights and love. It’s an international hub for food and fashion. It’s a beloved metropolis that has a lot to offer for locals and visitors alike. Composed of 20 different districts that each have their own identity and personality, Paris can be an overwhelming place to visit. That’s why we’re here to help!

We’re here to guide you through a Paris trip you can feel good about. Not just because you get to experience all the luxuries the city has to offer, but because you can indulge in its decadence without sacrificing your own self-care or dedication. You can stay in a deluxe 4-star hotel that’s committed to sustainability. You can chow down on classic French pastries free of animal byproducts. You can wake up early to take a yoga class before enjoying a natural wine.

We’re here to show you how eating, drinking, shopping, and touring Paris can be done in a healthy, eco-conscious manner. You don’t need to make any sacrifices to enjoy a true Paris experience. Thanks to the peak in wellness culture, Paris is all about balance.

where to stay in paris

It seems like there’s a never-ending list of places in Paris to stay. But if you’re looking for a truly comfortable, convenient, eco-conscious experience, we have a few favorites you have to check out.

Hotel HOY

Everything about this hotel embodies healthy living, from the Japanese binchotan charcoal purified tap water to the organic French beauty products to the ballet bar to stretch in most rooms. HOY stands for “House of Yoga,” which the space perfectly encapsulates thanks to its tranquil atmosphere promoted by calming artwork featuring yoga poses and reminders to breathe above elevator doors. You’ll leave feeling more relaxed and centered than you could have ever dreamed.

  •  Price point: $$$
  • Area: Rochechouart district / 10th arrondissement
  • Amenities: A yoga studio; a plant-based restaurant; a care room featuring holistic therapies.
  • Book now:

Le Citizen Hotel

This boutique sustainable hotel sits on the lovely Canal Saint-Martin and offers a charming experience if you’re willing to be a little ways away from the tourist attractions. The comfortable 12-room hotel offers a free minibar, free snacks and a free buffet breakfast all while practicing an eco-friendly philosophy. Some ways they’re doing this are by filling up glass bottles of water in each room regularly instead of using bottled water, committing to effective recycling systems, and minimizing paper consumption by including iPads in each room versus newspapers and notepads.

  • Price point: $$
  • Area: Canal Saint-Martin district / 10th arrondissement
  • Amenities: Grown Alchemist skin and hair care products; bar and restaurant featuring locally sourced, organic products.
  • Book now:

Hidden Hotel

This trendy, 4-star, eco-friendly hotel is near the Arc de Triomphe and walking distance to other tourist hot spots. However, tucked away in a quiet side street, you’ll love how convenient yet calming the location is after a long day of sightseeing. Each room features warm natural woods and COCO-MAT bedding made from natural latex and coconut fibers and cotton satin sheets that guarantee an excellent sleep along with a cozy stay.

  • Price point: $$
  • Area: Ternes / 17th arrondissement
  • Amenities: COCO-MAT bedding; wooden bicycles and electric scooters available to rent; organic and biodynamic wines available at the bar.
  • Book now:

Extra spot:

For a sun-drenched weekend getaway, head south to the Riviera. Nice is France’s original resort town, so wellness-tinted hotels and spas are a plenty. Boscolo is a 5-star stay, complete with a restorative spa, two creative restaurants, and rooftop bar and pool club, with a view that can’t be beat. 

what to do in paris

There is so much to do in Paris, it can seem overwhelming. We nailed down a handful of our favorite wellness activities so you can prioritize the ones that speak to you. 

1. Visit a gym, spa, and restaurant in one at 21 Blanche.

If you’re looking to spend a day in one place to work or just unwind, this luxury gym is the place for you. Blanche is housed in a former private mansion; it’s a high-end gym featuring gym equipment, a pool and studio for Pilates, cycling, and other workout classes. After your workout, you can hit the spa and relax in the sauna or hammam. You can finish your time off at the BB Blanche breakfast, which serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner every single day. You will need a membership to access this gym, but if you’re a regular visitor to Paris, it could be worth it!  

2. Take a yoga class under the Eiffel Tower.

If you’re looking for a morning routine that’s a little less local and a little more touristy, may we recommend taking a yoga class underneath the Eiffel Tower? You can breathe, stretch, and flow through a solid yoga workout while taking in the breathtaking sights. There are a couple of low-key options, but this one hosted by former New Yorker Tioka via Airbnb has nearly 400 positive reviews.

3. Visit the Wellness Galeries at a classic French department store.

Shopping is an essential part of the Parisian experience. Now you can visit the French department store Galeries Lafayette Paris Haussmann with more than just shopping on the mind. This insulation features workout classes, healthy menus, and holistic treatments alongside shopping pop ups that compliment the three focuses: sport, self-care, and wellness.

Local tip:

“When it comes to fashion and beauty, women in Paris don’t like to spend too much time on it. We love the undone look, and we’re lucky to have a lot of beautiful brands to carry out this vibe,” says Mathilde Lacombe, founder of Aime Skincare. If you want to fit right in but still feel comfortable while sightseeing, Lacombe recommends wearing a pair of white sneakers, a good pair of jeans, a simple shirt, and a blazer for when it gets chilly.

If you’re on a food-focused trip to Paris, there’s no better way to really engage with the local cuisine than by cooking it yourself. There are countless amounts of cooking courses available in Paris, but if you’re looking for one to help you maintain healthy habits once you get home (but is still très French), iconic French chef Alain Ducasse’s school, Ecole de Cuisine, has an entire wellness program. You can learn how to cut down on waste in the kitchen, how to cook healthy, simple meals, or how to create delicious gluten-free pastries.    

Local tip:

If you’re looking to spend a day indulging in delicious food, Claudia Concha, CEO of No Diet Club Food Tours, says Canal Saint-Martin is the neighborhood to visit. “It’s not really famous but it’s amazing,” she says. “The best area in Paris to eat and drink.”


Learn about — and taste! — natural wines.

Do you know what sets natural wines apart from others? You can take a guided four-hour wine course to learn about the organic process of wine making while tasting delicious natural wines all around Paris. You’ll get to enjoy four glasses of natural wines alongside three-hour specialties such as cheeses and cold cuts. This is a great way to get out of the touristy areas and enjoy the cool, quiet neighborhoods you may have never discovered on your own.


Explore the French Riviera.

If your trip to France is long enough, make sure you head France’s southern Mediterranean coast. (Or, perhaps Nice is the main and only event.) The Côte d’Azur town is known for combining luxury with easy, relaxed living. And that’s embodied in no better places than the spectacular beaches: Plage Beau Rivage is a trendy, vibrant hot spot, Ruhl Plage is is rich in charm, and Le Voilier is a broad public option.

where to eat in paris

French cuisine is one of the main reasons to even visit Paris! If you want to indulge in all the delicacies Paris has to offer but are worried about dietary restrictions, do not fret. There are tons of places to get delicious vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free meals!

 Le Potager de Charlotte

This vegan gourmet restaurant offers seasonal plant-based meals using local organic products to deliver a dining experience that’s nothing short of swoon-worthy. Beyond the delicious food, you can feel good about the restaurant’s dedication to promoting a sustainable, environmentally friendly landscape.

  • Price point: $$
  • Area: There are two locations. The original is in the Ternes district (17th arrondissement). The newest location is in Rochechouart district (the 9th arrondissement).
  • Dietary consideration options: Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
  • Setting: Elevated casual
  • Menu & info:

VG Pâtisserie

Nothing is more Parisian than a croissant and a coffee—and now even vegans can enjoy the flakey pastry thanks to this plant-based bakery. Founded in 2016, VG Pâtisserie was the first of its kind to deliver delicious vegan versions of all your favorite French pastries.

  • Price point: $$
  • Area: 11th arrondissement
  • Dietary consideration options: Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
  • Setting: Casual
  • Menu & info:


Formally Bob’s Kitchen, this vegetarian restaurant and juice bar is the perfect lunchtime pit stop. This healthy eatery serves bowls filled with rice, veggies, and sauces for a dish alongside gluten-free pancakes and organic juices for meals that are as colorful as they are tasty.

  • Price point: $
  • Area: Temple (3rd arrondissement)
  • Dietary consideration options: Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
  • Setting: Casual
  • Menu & info:

Extra spot:

There’s no better place to sip on a glass of wine than in Paris, and this low-key spot is a favorite among the locals. Not only is the atmosphere in Le Baron Rouge electric, but you may also notice people bringing in green bottles to refill their favorite wine for a sustainability hook we can’t help but admire.

what to pack in paris

In the chicest city in the world, you’ll want to dress your best so you can feel confident and comfortable while walking (or biking!) around to all the sights. We rounded up some key must-have items from French brands we know you’ll fall in love with.


  • 32 colorways — plus the option to create your own
  • Refillable packaging
  • Organic ingredients

If you’re looking to really lean into the Parisian aesthetic, there’s nothing like a red lip to top off a look. This French brand carries 32 stunning shades of red so you can find one that works best for you. The vegan, cruelty-free formulas are made from organic virgin jojoba oil, vegetable squalane made from olives, shea butter, and pigments that are micronised and infused in a vegetable oil for comfortable, gorgeous wear. As if that weren’t enough, the beautiful formulas are housed in refillable leather cases that aren’t just sustainable, they’re drop dead gorgeous.


  • Travel-sized
  • Multi-purpose, from a makeup remover, oil cleanser, face oil, and hair oil.
  • Simple formula

You’ll need a clean, efficient, effective way to remove that red lip and this oil is it. Formulated with virgin oils like sea buckthorn, camellia, apricot, jojoba, almond, safflower, coconut and tamanu, it will dissolve all of your makeup while leaving behind a fresh, hydrating glow. So not only does it act as a makeup remover, but it can also step in as your moisturizer if you’re in a pinch.


  • Organic cotton yarn and natural indigo dyes
  • Buttons are made from recycled copper
  • Certified with GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard)

Nothing says effortlessly chic like a classic pair of blue jeans. If you’re looking to upgrade your denim game before your trip, this certified ethical and sustainable French company has been making jeans using organic cotton yarn and natural indigo dyes since 1892. There are a ton of great styles to choose from, but our personal favorite is this high-waisted skinny jean.


  • Travel friendly
  • Customizable details
  • Hand assembled in France

Even if you don’t regularly journal, what better time to start than over a glass of wine or cappuccino while people-watching in Saint-Germain-des-Prés? If you’re looking for a little more initiative to get started, buy yourself one of these stunning French, hand-made refillable notebooks. They’re so beautiful and unique, you’ll want to write in it just to show it off. The covers are made from oiled leather while the inside is filled with Kraft paper held together by a brass or nickel binding screw. It’s a little pricey, but totally worth it.

bon voyage // paris

Between all these great wellness experiences, don’t forget to enjoy all the stunning architecture, culture, and beauty Paris has to offer. Taking in the sights and their histories can be just as grounding as a yoga class.