The Big Mistake People Make When Visiting Paris, According To Anthony Bourdain

People that haven't yet been to Paris might dream of the magical city. But if those dreams only involve mimes, berets, coffee shops and the emblematic Eiffel Tower lit up against the night sky, Anthony Bourdain had a few thoughts on that.

As anyone who is familiar with the late culture connoisseur knows, Bourdain was not only a fan of trekking off the beaten path, he was a believer in realness. A couple of years ago, Travel + Leisure compiled a list of some of Bourdain's best quotes about traveling, and not only did he advise to drink heavily with locals, but he also advocated for "winging it." 

As he once said, "I'm a big believer that you're never going to find the perfect city travel experience or the perfect meal without a constant willingness to experience a bad one. Letting the happy accident happen is what a lot of vacation itineraries miss, I think, and I'm always trying to push people to allow those things to happen rather than stick to some rigid itinerary." And those words certainly rang true with his advice to anyone visiting the City of Lights for the first or second or even third time.

Bourdain's advice: Slow down and enjoy every moment

Paris is one of those cities that carries a reputation for having a dalliance with romance. Who doesn't come to Paris without Barthes' idea of the image repertoire, via movies, books, even travel shows like "Parts Unknown"? But like few others, Anthony Bourdain — with his blunt wisdom — was able to break that image and reshape Paris like it were any other city, often advising to avoid typical tourist spots and any places with a line.

An article in Eater featured some of Bourdain's best pieces of advice for experiencing the French mecca, including the mistake people most often make that leads to them not enjoying the trip: "The vacation gone wrong in Paris is almost always because people try to do too many things," Bourdain said. On the contrary, in order to have a good time, he declared, ""Most of us are lucky to see Paris once in a lifetime. Please, make the most of it by doing as little as possible. Walk a little. Get lost a bit. Eat. Catch a breakfast buzz. Have a nap. Try and have sex if you can, just not with a mime. Eat again. Lounge around drinking coffee. Maybe read a book. Drink some wine. Eat. Repeat. See? It's easy."