Favorite Places to Write When Traveling: Paris Cafes!

Whether you’re passing through a town or city, or settling in for an extended stay, you’re going to want to find a regular place to write. Perhaps it’s your hotel room, a cafe, retreat center, or even the city park. What are your favorite places to write while traveling? (Besides airplanes or airports. We covered that last time here.)


This post is fifth in new blog series that I’m running for the next six months, in conjunction with fellow creativity coach, Paula Chafee Scardamalia. See her latest post here. And more about our series below.

All of my Travel & Writing: Flights of the Imagination series here.

An espresso at a Parisian cafe/Un petit espresse dans une cafe Parisienne

An espresso at a Parisian cafe/Un petit espresse dans une cafe Parisienne

I for one love writing in cafes. And what could be better than writing in a Paris cafe?! There’s another place I like to write when I go to Paris, and I’ll share that in a moment.

Etiquette for Writing at a Paris cafe

Here’s what I’ve learned, observed, and experienced about how best to take advantage of writing in Paris cafes.

  • Most cafes will let you stay a long time. As a courtesy, be sure to order something.
  • They will not bring you the check unless you ask for it. It’s called, “L’addition.” So when you’re ready to leave, ask, “L’addition, s’il vous plait.”

    Writing Chez Prune, a cafe, Paris, France

    Writing Chez Prune, a cafe, Paris, France

  • Look to see if other people are reading or writing. Then you’ll know that this spot is a place people feel comfortable in.
  • Some cafes serve only pastries and drinks. So check that ahead of time. If you plan to stay in a few hours and want a meal, check to see when the kitchen is open. Meal times in Paris run later than what a lot of Americans are used to.
  • If you want to eat a pastry, and they have no more, you can bring in your own pastry from a patisserie (pastry shop.)
  • Chez Prune, Paris, France. One of my favorite cafes in Paris.

    Chez Prune, Paris, France. One of my favorite cafes in Paris.

Do you have any advice for writing in French cafes? I’d love to hear them!


Paris metro ticket


Bastille station in Paris, France

Another Favorite Place to Write in Paris: The Metro

I love the Paris metro and love writing there. I’ve written while site on outdoor platforms, like this one at the Bastille station. I’ve written while riding the train. There’s something meditative, trance-inducing, sitting on the train as it rumbles through the tunnels.

I love the Paris metro so much that I feature it a bit in one of my romances, Parisian Amour.

Parisian Amour by Beth Barany

Parisian Amour by Beth Barany




About our Travel & Writing series

Travel & Writing: Flights of the Imagination Blog Series with Beth Barany & Paula Chafee ScardamaliaFor the next 24 weeks, you are invited to join Paula Chafee Scardamalia and I as we share with you about the magic of travel and writing.

Whether you write fiction or nonfiction, novels, short stories, personal essays or keep journals, we will offer information, tips, techniques and tools for using travel to inspire, inform, enrich and empower your writing.

Look for posts from both of us at
diviningthemuse.com/blog and https://writersfunzone.com/blog/ every other Wednesday.

And get information on our destination retreats, mine’s in Paris for novelists, Paula’s is near Delphi, Greece for writers who want to tap into their dreams. >Check out Paula’s post this week on favorite spots for writing while traveling.

My big dream

IMG_3934_view of roofs in Paris-10th arrondisment

View of roofs in Paris-10th arrondisment. Image copyright 2012-2014 Beth Barany

My big dream and coming reality: To take a group of writers to Paris Oct. 2015 and have a writing workshop on preparing your novel.

Join me in the beautiful City of Lights.

It’s happening! All the details are here.

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