The Paris Internship Program (PIP) is a semester-long program at Boston University. The first eight weeks are dedicated to taking classes, while the next eight weeks are dedicated to an internship at a French company.
Like lots of European cities, Paris has a great public transportation system. With many metro and bus lines running throughout the entire city, it’s fairly easy to get around. This is great considering BU’s Paris housing is in Puteaux, a Parisian suburb right outside the city.
The Paris Internship Program offers housing options so that you don’t have to find your own apartment in the city. You can choose to either live in a residence hall or with a host family. I chose to live in a residence hall (the Student Hotel) because I prefer living on my own and with other college students. But if you’re looking for an immersive way to practice your French, living with a host family is a great option.
Although the Student Hotel is located on the outskirts of Paris, the metro makes it a breeze to get to the center of the city (just a 20-30 minute ride). Since we have to take the metro at least twice a day for classes, students in this program tend to buy a Carte Navigo — a monthly transportation card for the buses and metros.
With my Carte Navigo, I’ve been able to travel all over Paris. Here are some of my favorite spots that I found so far!
- Le Centre Pompidou is my go-to spot for studying. It’s a modern and contemporary art gallery with a multi-level public library on the other side of the building. The library is a great place to study because there’s plenty of room on each floor with outlets at each seat.
- Le Pain Quotidien is a café near the BU Center in Paris and is another place I like to go to do homework. Since it is a five minute walk from school, it’s a great place to grab a quick bite and study in between classes.
Restaurants and Nightlife:
- Libertino is a great Italian restaurant with delicious food and drinks. The atmosphere is very Instagram-worthy and features a neon light outside and faux plants on the walls inside. This place is great to order several dishes and share amongst friends.
- Kakdougui is an authentic Korean restaurant that serves KBBQ and other popular Korean dishes such as bibimbap. They have a good fixed menu option that comes with appetizers, an entree, and a matcha tiramisu dessert that’s to die for.
- La Coupole is a traditional French restaurant that specializes in seafood. They have all the classic French dishes as well as a large seafood menu and display in the restaurant. The seafood is very fresh and pairs well with their signature cocktails.
- Kebab shops can be found all over the city and are one of the few places you can find a late night snack when everything else in Paris is closed. I personally like to order a kebab sandwich with Algerian sauce.
- Le Comptoir Générale is a popular bar with three different themed rooms: a grocery store, pirates, and taxidermy. It’s located in the Marais district, which is known for its cuisine and nightlife.
- Brigitte, another bar, is right around the corner from Le Comptoir Générale and has delicious house cocktails as well as a very friendly staff.
- Club Banana Café has great Happy Hour cocktails and a fun neon lights environment with a disco ball. The Happy Hour in Paris lasts from early afternoon until 8 or 10 pm, so there is plenty of time to make the most of those prices!
- Rosa Bonheur sur Seine is a bar with cool rainbow neon lights. It’s situated on a boat on the Seine river and offers a great view of Paris with fun music to dance to.
Paris has a vast variety of amazing restaurants, bars, and cultural activities that I’ve barely even scratched the surface of. There’s almost too much to do and see outside of the typical tourist ventures that it would take years to truly discover the city. Since I am here for only one semester, I hope to come back again for an extended period of time to explore Paris like a true Parisian.
Madison Imoto, Terriers Abroad Blogger
Born and raised in Kane‘ohe, Hawai‘i, Madison Imoto is a senior in the College of Communication studying Media Science with a minor in French. She is currently studying abroad with BU’s Paris Internship Program! Outside of school and work, Madison enjoys baking, traveling, and dancing. She is so excited to be a part of The COMmunicator team in Paris!