A step-by-step guide


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About this Guide

Welcome to our Paris guide, where we have carefully selected the must-see places and added personal suggestions. It’s a quick and simple guide that you can consult at any time during your trip.

We have focused on providing useful and practical recommendations that will enhance your trip, including off-the-beaten-track locations. We consider this guide a compilation of our favorite spots in the city.

We have also included gastronomic suggestions that will delight your palate and immerse you in Paris’ delicious culinary culture.

We hope you enjoy our guide and it inspires you to explore all the treasures that this wonderful city has to offer!

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a little bit of history!

Paris is a city that has become a global reference in terms of culture, art, fashion, and gastronomy. The history of Paris is long and rich, dating back many centuries.

In the 3rd century BC, the region we now know as Paris was inhabited by a Celtic tribe called the Parisii. The city itself did not yet exist, but the Parisii had established a settlement on the Île de la Cité, in the center of the River Seine.

During the 1st century BC, the Romans conquered the region and established a city called Lutetia on the Île de la Cité. Over the following centuries, Lutetia grew into an important Roman city with an amphitheater, public baths, and a temple dedicated to Jupiter.

In the 5th century, the Romans withdrew from the region, and the Franks took control of the city. During the Middle Ages, Paris became the capital of the Kingdom of France, and the city rapidly grew in size and importance. The Notre-Dame Cathedral was built in the 12th century and became a symbol of the city.

During the 17th century, King Louis XIV decided to move his court from Paris to the Palace of Versailles, which diminished the political importance of the city. However, Paris remained an important cultural and artistic center during this period, with the construction of significant buildings such as Place Vendôme and Pont des Arts.

In the 18th century, Paris was the stage for the French Revolution, a period of major political and social changes that began in 1789. The Bastille, a prison in the center of the city, was stormed by revolutionaries in July of that year, marking the start of the revolution. During this period, Paris became the capital of the French Republic, and significant political and social reforms were carried out.

During the 19th century, Paris experienced a period of significant growth and modernization. Architect Georges-Eugène Haussmann carried out major urban reforms that transformed the city, including the construction of wide avenues and squares and the demolition of old and narrow neighborhoods. The Eiffel Tower was built in 1889 as part of the Universal Exhibition and became a symbol of the city.

In the 20th century, Paris was the scene of important historical events, including World War II and the Liberation of the city in 1944. After the war, Paris underwent a period of renewal and economic growth, becoming a center of culture and fashion.

Today, Paris remains one of the most important cities in the world, with a rich history and a wide variety of tourist attractions. From the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe to art museums such as the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay, the city offers a plethora of places to visit and enjoy. Moreover, the city continues to be an important cultural and artistic center, with a vibrant theater, music, and contemporary art scene.

Public transport in Paris operates on an integrated network of metro, buses, trams, and RER trains. To use public transport in Paris, you can purchase a single ticket, a daily pass, or a weekly pass, which can be used on all modes of transportation.

The metro is the fastest and most efficient way to get around Paris. The metro network has 16 lines and 300 stations that connect the entire city. Metro trains usually come every 2-3 minutes during peak hours and every 5-10 minutes during off-peak hours.

It’s a quick and effective method, although it’s advisable to avoid rush hours between 7:30-8:30am and 4:00-6:00 pm. The Paris metro is affordable and safe. There are packs of 10 trips, necessary for any stay, which can be used by multiple travelers. The current price is around 11 euros for 10 trips. These tickets are valid for all public transportation in Paris.

Buses are another option for getting around Paris. The bus network covers the entire city and is a good choice if you want to see the city’s tourist sites. Buses usually come every 10-15 minutes during peak hours and every 20-30 minutes during off-peak hours.

The tram is a comfortable way to travel in the outer areas of Paris. The tram covers the eastern zone of Paris and some areas around the city. Trams usually come every 5-10 minutes during peak hours and every 15-20 minutes during off-peak hours.

The RER train is a fast way to travel in and around Paris. RER trains have five lines that connect the city with suburbs and nearby tourist attractions such as the Palace of Versailles. RER trains usually come every 10-15 minutes during peak hours and every 20-30 minutes during off-peak hours.

Overall, the fastest and most convenient way to get around Paris is by using the metro, which reaches near all the major sites and locations. However, at times, it may be more convenient to use the RER train as it makes fewer stops. The price of a single ticket in Zone A is 2.10 euros, but if you plan to use the metro frequently, it’s recommended to purchase a pack of 10 trips, which will be more economical for you.

The Eiffel Tower

Built by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 Universal Exhibition, it has become the iconic symbol of Paris. This imposing iron structure stands at a height of 330 meters and offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city from its observation platforms.

The Louvre

One of the largest and most famous museums in the world, with a vast and diverse collection spanning from ancient to contemporary art. Inside, visitors can marvel at masterpieces such as Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, and the Coronation of Napoleon. In addition to its impressive art collection, the museum is also known for its stunning architecture, including the iconic Glass Pyramid.

Notre-Dame Cathedral

An architectural gem of Gothic style that has left an indelible mark on the history and culture of Paris. Located on the Île de la Cité, in the heart of the city, the cathedral has witnessed numerous historical events throughout the centuries. Unfortunately, in April 2019, it suffered a devastating fire that caused significant damage to its structure. However, a reconstruction process has begun, and the cathedral is expected to reopen its doors by the end of 2024.

Arc de Triomphe

Built by order of Napoleon Bonaparte, the arch commemorates French military victories and pays tribute to fallen soldiers. In addition to its historical significance, the Arc de Triomphe offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view of Paris from its observation platform at the top. It is especially spectacular at sunset when the city lights up, and the view becomes even more magical.

The Champs-Élysées

One of the most famous avenues in the world, it is known for its elegance and vibrant atmosphere. This wide avenue is lined with luxury shops, boutiques, restaurants, and stylish cafés, making it a popular destination for shopping enthusiasts and gastronomy lovers. It is an emblematic place that personifies Parisian style and glamour.

Versailles Palace

One of the most iconic destinations in France and one of the most visited tourist attractions on the outskirts of Paris. Built in the 17th century, it served as the principal residence for the kings of France from Louis XIV to Louis XVI. The palace is renowned for its impressive Baroque architecture, opulent salons, exquisite gardens, and its historic Hall of Mirrors, where the Treaty of Versailles was signed marking the end of the First World War.


A charming neighborhood situated atop a hill in northern Paris. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, Montmartre became an artistic and bohemian epicenter, attracting famous artists such as Pablo Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. The focal point of the neighborhood is the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, an impressive white church that offers panoramic views of the city from its dome. Montmartre is also known for its narrow cobbled streets, lively cafes, and street artists.

The Latin Quarter

A historic and cultural area of Paris that has long been a haven for students, intellectuals, and artists. The neighborhood takes its name from the Sorbonne University, one of the oldest universities in Europe, which is located in the area. The Latin Quarter is characterized by its narrow and picturesque medieval streets, bustling cafes and restaurants, bookstores, and vibrant nightlife.

Luxembourg Gardens

A green oasis amidst the bustle of Paris. Designed in the 17th century, it features lush landscaped areas, ponds with rowing boats, fountains, sculptures, and beautiful corners to relax. The garden is also known for its iconic Luxembourg Palace, which currently houses the French Senate.

Musée d'Orsay

A must-visit for art lovers. Housed in a former train station, the museum boasts an impressive collection of masterpieces from the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist movements. Among the most famous works on display are Edgar Degas’ “The Dance Class,” Vincent van Gogh’s “Starry Night,” and Édouard Manet’s “Luncheon on the Grass.” The Musée d’Orsay offers visitors the opportunity to immerse themselves in the rich history of 19th-century French and European art.

Les Invalides

An impressive architectural complex in Paris. Originally built as a home for war veterans and a military hospital, it now houses the Army Museum, where collections of weapons, armor, and military artifacts from the Middle Ages to World War II are exhibited. One of the standout attractions at Les Invalides is the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte.

The Petite Ceinture: An abandoned railway line that encircles Paris and is now a popular place for walking and exploring.

The Promenade Plantée: A 4.7 km elevated garden built on an old railway line that offers panoramic views of the city.

Le Marais: A historic neighborhood in Paris known for its medieval and Renaissance architecture, narrow streets, and bohemian atmosphere.

La Place des Vosges: A historic square located in the heart of the Marais district, featuring beautiful French-style houses and a large statue of Louis XIII.

Les Halles: This neighborhood is located in the most central point of Paris and owes its name to the central market that operated there during the seventies.

La Maison de Balzac: A house-museum dedicated to the famous French writer Honoré de Balzac.

Place du Trocadéro: Here you will find the best views of the Eiffel Tower. Also, visit the Trocadéro gardens, at the end of which you’ll come across a photogenic carousel and the banks of the Seine, which also provide an excellent perspective of the Eiffel Tower.

Le Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature: A museum dedicated to hunting and nature, featuring an impressive collection of art and objects related to the theme.

Montparnasse Tower: An office and observation skyscraper in Paris. Standing at 210 meters tall, it is the tallest building in the city. It offers panoramic views of Paris from its observation deck.

Le Musée des Arts et Métiers: A museum dedicated to science and technology, showcasing a large collection of historical artifacts.

La Crypte Archéologique de l’Île de la Cité: A collection of ancient ruins discovered during the excavation of the square in front of Notre-Dame Cathedral.

Le Musée de la Poupée: A museum dedicated to antique dolls and toys.

The Pantheon: An architectural masterpiece designed in the Neoclassical style by Jacques-Germain Soufflot. It features an imposing dome and an impressive façade, while its interior houses a series of frescoes and ornamental sculptures.

Pont Alexandre III: One of the city’s most iconic bridges, spanning the Seine River. Built in 1900, it is named after Tsar Alexander III of Russia. The bridge is renowned for its beautiful architecture and decorative details, including statues, lamps, and reliefs.

Rue des Thermopyles: A small hidden street in the 14th arrondissement of Paris with Art Nouveau and Art Deco style houses.

Tuileries Gardens: They are beautiful public gardens stretching from the Louvre Museum to the Place de la Concorde.

La Conciergerie: An ancient palace and prison located on the Île de la Cité, in the heart of Paris. It was used as a prison during the French Revolution and is known for having housed historical figures like Marie Antoinette. It is now a museum showcasing the history of the prison and justice in France.

The Museum of Romantic Life: A museum dedicated to the Romantic artistic movement, housing a collection of art, furniture, and related objects.

Paris Catacombs: An underground network of tunnels and chambers that hold the remains of approximately six million people. These catacombs were created in the 18th century to alleviate overcrowding in the city’s cemeteries.

Place Dauphine: A historic square located on the Île de la Cité, constructed in the 17th century.

Mazarine Library: A historical library founded in the 17th century, it is the oldest public library in France.

Place Vendôme: It is known for its neoclassical architecture, and at the center of the square stands the Vendôme Column, erected in honor of Napoleon Bonaparte’s military victories.

The European House of Photography: An art center dedicated to photography, hosting exhibitions and events related to the medium.

Pigalle District: This red-light district, filled with sex shops and erotic clubs, has a major appeal with its trendy nightclubs, and above all, the famous Moulin Rouge.

Rue Crémieux: A picturesque and colorful street in the 12th arrondissement of Paris.

Madeleine Church: Built in the neoclassical style, this church resembles a Greek temple with its imposing façade and Corinthian columns. It is famous for its magnificent interior and for hosting numerous musical events.

National Library: One of the country’s most important cultural centers. It houses a vast collection of books, manuscripts, maps, and other historical documents, offering exhibitions and activities related to literature and culture.

Cité Florale: A small residential community in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, featuring picturesque houses and gardens.

Sainte Chapelle: A Gothic gem located on the Île de la Cité, near the Notre-Dame Cathedral.

Opera Garnier: The Palais Garnier is the oldest opera house in Paris and is renowned for its beautiful architecture and interior decoration.

Père Lachaise Cemetery: One of the most famous and visited cemeteries in Paris. The cemetery offers a tranquil atmosphere and beautiful funerary monuments.

Strolling along the River Seine: Taking a leisurely walk along the River Seine is an iconic activity in Paris. The river winds its way through the city, offering panoramic views of some of the most emblematic landmarks, including the Eiffel Tower, Notre-Dame Cathedral, and the Louvre.

Paris City Hall: An impressive building in French Renaissance style located in the heart of Paris, facing the River Seine.

Basilica of the Sacred Heart: The basilica is known for its distinctive architecture, with its large white dome visible from many points in the city. It is an important place of worship and pilgrimage, and also offers stunning panoramic views of Paris from its terrace.

Paris is all of this and more! We understand that the best way to get to know a city is by walking the streets and discovering every secret they hold. We can’t think of a better way to show you the city than for you to visit with us on a Free Walking Tour.

Tours and Activities in Paris


Quiche is a savory pie filled with eggs and cheese, with a flaky pastry crust. It can be found in many restaurants and cafes and is a popular lunch option.


Ratatouille is a vegetable stew consisting of eggplant, zucchini, bell pepper, onion, and tomato. It is a popular vegetarian dish in France.


Escargots are land snails cooked in butter, garlic, and herbs. They are a specialty of French cuisine and can be found in many restaurants.

Coq au vin

A chicken stew cooked in red wine, often with mushrooms and bacon.

Boeuf bourguignon

Another stew, this time made with beef and cooked in red wine with carrots, onions, and mushrooms.


A hot sandwich made with ham and cheese, often topped with béchamel sauce and grilled.


Croissants are a French specialty and can be found in nearly every bakery in town. They are perfect for a quick breakfast or a snack during the day.

Crème brûlée

A classic French dessert made with a custard base of egg yolk and sugar, topped with a layer of caramelized sugar.


These colorful and delicate sweets are a Parisian specialty. They are small cookies made of ground almonds, filled with ganache, jam, or cream of different flavors.


An elongated and light pastry filled with pastry cream and topped with chocolate or coffee glaze.

Tarte Tatin

A delicious upside-down caramelized apple tart. The apples are slowly cooked in caramel and then covered with puff pastry and baked until golden and crispy.


Also known as “a thousand leaves,” it is a pastry composed of layers of crispy puff pastry interspersed with pastry cream or whipped cream and often topped with a sugar glaze.


A circular wheel-shaped choux pastry cake filled with hazelnut cream and dusted with powdered sugar.


Small shell-shaped sponge cakes that are soft and fluffy. They are often served with a cup of hot tea.


A light and airy dessert made with a base of pastry cream and beaten egg whites. It can have different flavors such as chocolate, vanilla, or fruits.


Coffee is a very popular beverage in France, and it can be found in almost every café and restaurant. The French usually drink coffee black or with a little milk.


France is known for its wine production, and there are many vineyards throughout the country. During a visit to Paris, one can enjoy a glass of wine in a restaurant or wine bar.


Cider is an alcoholic beverage made from apples. It is a popular drink in Normandy, a region in northern France, and can be found in some bars and restaurants in Paris.


It is a type of sparkling wine that comes from the Champagne region in northeastern France. It is known for its effervescence, or bubbles, which are created through a secondary fermentation process that occurs in the bottle. This process involves adding sugar and yeast to the base wine, which produces carbon dioxide and creates the characteristic bubbles.

Avenue des Champs-Élysées

One of the most famous avenues in the world and is home to numerous high-end fashion stores.

Galeries Lafayette

A department store located in the Opera district of Paris, featuring a vast selection of luxury fashion brands and haute couture.

Le Marais

A historic and trendy neighborhood that houses a great number of fashion boutiques and independent designer stores.

Rue de Rivoli

A shopping street that stretches from the Louvre to Place de la Concorde and offers a wide variety of shops, ranging from large chains to small fashion boutiques.

Rue Saint-Honoré

Another popular shopping street in Paris, renowned for its high-end fashion stores.

Galerie Vivienne

A historic covered shopping passage located in the heart of Paris. Galerie Vivienne is a prominent example of the covered shopping arcades that emerged in Paris during the 19th century.

Curiosities of Paris

  • The Eiffel Tower was built as a temporary attraction for the 1889 Universal Exhibition and was scheduled to be dismantled in 1909, however, it remained because it had become a popular tourist attraction.
  • Père Lachaise Cemetery is the final resting place of many famous personalities, including Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf, and Frédéric Chopin.
  • In the Montmartre district, you can still visit one of the 15 windmills that used to be there. It’s the beautiful Moulin de la Galette.
  • The theft of the Mona Lisa is one of the most famous art thefts in history. It occurred on August 21, 1911, at the Louvre Museun. The culprit of the theft was an Italian named Vincenzo Peruggia, who was an employee of the museum.
  • The Paris Metro is one of the oldest in the world as it was inaugurated for the 1900 Universal Exhibition.
  • Currently, it is still possible to find in Paris two plaques from the 18th century that were installed to help citizens understand the new unit of measurement: the meter, after abandoning the use of the thumb and the foot.
  • The Pantheon houses the remains of prominent figures such as Voltaire, Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Émile Zola, Marie Curie, and Jean Jaurès, among others.
  • In front of the Petit Palais, you will find a sculpture of Winston Churchill.
  • Rue Mouffetard is a historic street in the Latin Quarter and is known for its restaurants and food shops.
  • The Arc de Triomphe is the largest monument of its kind in the world and is located in the center of Place Charles de Gaulle.
  • The Louvre Museum is the largest museum in the world, with a collection ranging from ancient artifacts to contemporary artworks.
  • The Moulin Rouge is the most famous cabaret in Paris and has been in operation since 1889.
  • It took over 100 years to build the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, and it was completed in 1345.
  • Paris is famous for its open-air food markets, such as the Rue Mouffetard market and the Marché des Enfants Rouges.
  • The zero kilometer point of Paris is in front of Notre-Dame Cathedral.
  • The Palace of Versailles was the official residence of the French kings from 1682 until the French Revolution.
  • The Place de la Concorde is the largest square in Paris and is located at the western end of the Champs-Élysées.
  • The Pantheon in Paris is a monument that honors great personalities of French history, including Voltaire, Rousseau, and Victor Hugo.
  • Gare du Nord train station is the largest train station in Europe in terms of passenger numbers.
  • The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is located under the Arc de Triomphe with its eternal flame, in honor of all the fallen and unidentified soldiers during World War I.
  • Hitler ordered the destruction of Notre-Dame, among other great Parisian monuments, in case German troops couldn’t keep the city during the final stage of the war. His order was not executed.
  • The Dome of Les Invalides is covered with 12 kilograms of 24-carat gold.
  • In the Tuileries Garden, there is a sculpture by Rodin.
  • The Alexander III Bridge is one of the most beautiful bridges in Paris and is adorned with golden statues and streetlights.
  • Near the famous Notre-Dame Cathedral, you will find the Memorial to the Deportation Martyrs. This monument is dedicated to the memory of over 200,000 deportees from Vichy France who were sent to Nazi concentration camps during World War II.
  • In the Montmartre district of Paris, there is a wall dedicated to love, where you can find “I love you” written in 300 different languages.
  • The Louvre Pyramid has the same proportions as the famous pyramid of Cheops in Egypt (146 meters tall and 230 meters wide).
  • Marie Antoinette was guillotined in the Place de la Concorde, where a guillotine was set up during the French Revolution.
  • The opulent Place Vendôme was also called “the square of the pikes” during the French Revolution, and it has a long history that explains why.
  • Although the Arc de Triomphe is widely recognized, Paris is home to a total of three arches arranged in a straight line. In addition to the Arc de Triomphe, the other two are the La Défense Arch and the Carrousel Arch of Triumph.
  • The Sacré-Coeur Basilica is located at the top of Montmartre hill and offers a panoramic view of the city.
  • The Musée d’Orsay was originally a train station.
  • If you pass through the Arts-et-Métiers metro station, it’s an incredible experience; you will feel like you’re inside a submarine.
  • The Canal Saint-Martin is an artificial canal that stretches for 4.5 kilometers and runs through the eastern part of Paris.
  • The Bois de Boulogne is a large public park in the western part of Paris, featuring gardens, lakes, and walking trails.
  • At the Memorial de la Shoah, you will see a wall with the names of the 76,000 Jews deported from Paris during the Nazi occupation.
  • The Pont Neuf: Despite its name, which means “new bridge,” the Pont Neuf is actually the oldest bridge in Paris. It was inaugurated in 1607 and crosses the River Seine, connecting the Île de la Cité with both banks.
  • Paris has an extensive and famous underground sewer system. You can visit the Paris Sewer Museum, which provides a unique perspective on the city’s history and sanitation infrastructure.
  • The bouquinistes are booksellers who have stalls along the Seine River. These vendors offer antique books, posters, postcards, and other items related to literature and French culture. They are part of the Parisian charm and a must-visit for book lovers.
  • The height of the Eiffel Tower continuously varies due to thermal expansion. During hot summer days, the steel expands, causing the tower to increase in size by 8 centimeters compared to winter.
  • Notre Dame served as inspiration for Victor Hugo’s novel “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.”
  • Princess Diana tragically lost her life in an accident in 1997 on the Pont de l’Alma. Since then, her followers and admirers have created a spontaneous memorial at that location, where a life-size replica of the Statue of Liberty torch can be found.
  • Paris also has a Statue of Liberty.
  • Paris is famous for its historical and cultural cafés. These iconic places have been frequented by writers, artists, philosophers, and bohemians over the years. Some famous examples are Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots, located in the Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighborhood.
  • The Palais Garnier building served as inspiration for the work “The Phantom of the Opera.”
  • Line 6 of the Paris metro between the Bir-Hakeim and Passy stations offers the best views of the Eiffel Tower over the Seine.

A Box of Your Favorite Macarons

Delight in the heavenly flavors of French patisserie by bringing home a box of macarons. These delicate, colorful treats are a symbol of French culinary expertise and make for a delightful indulgence or a thoughtful gift.

A Beautiful Mini Eiffel Tower

What better way to commemorate your Parisian adventure than with a miniature replica of the iconic Eiffel Tower? I mean, this is a classic on its own, a souvenir that can adorn your shelf or just use it as a keyring.

Marinière (French Striped Shirt)

Channel your inner Parisian with a timeless French striped shirt, known as the Marinière. Embodying effortless elegance, this chic fashion staple represents the city’s fashionable flair and can add a touch of French sophistication to your wardrobe.

Street Paint (from the Bouquinistes)

Capture the artistic spirit of Paris with authentic street paint collected from the bouquinistes, the iconic second-hand bookstalls that line the Seine River. This unique souvenir allows you to bring home a piece of the city’s creative essence, perfect for artistic endeavors or creative displays.

French Chocolate

Renowned for its exceptional quality and craftsmanship, French chocolates tantalize the taste buds with rich flavors and luxurious textures. Choose from artisanal creations or well-known brands to bring a taste of Paris home.

French Soap

Available in a wide range of scents and elegantly designed packaging, these soaps bring a touch of Parisian luxury to your daily rituals.

A map

A detailed map of Paris not only serves as a practical tool for navigating the city’s charming streets but also becomes a cherished keepsake later on. Trace your steps, relive your favorite memories, and plan future adventures as you immerse yourself in the intricate details of this beautiful city.

If you want to discover the complete and up-to-date list of the best souvenirs from Paris, check out our blog:

General recommendations

Be careful with your personal belongings: Just like in any touristic city, you should always be mindful of your personal belongings. In crowded places like the underground or popular tourist spots, keep your valuable items secure and pay attention to your surroundings. Some typical scams include:

  • Someone claims that a valuable object has fallen and insists that it’s yours, then they will ask you for some money in return.
  • Signature collections in highly touristic areas, usually pretending to work for charitable organizations (very common near the Eiffel Tower).
  • Someone approaches you very friendly and offers you a “friendship bracelet,” then they will ask you for money (this is very frequent in Montmartre, near the Sacré-Cœur).

Paris is beautiful throughout the year, but bear in mind that the summer months (June to August) tend to be the busiest. If you prefer to avoid crowds, consider visiting in spring or autumn.

Learn some basic phrases in French.

Consider getting a transport pass to save money if you plan on using public transportation frequently.

Explore beyond the tourist spots and enjoy authentic Parisian life.

Savor French cuisine, explore local markets, and traditional cafes to truly experience the authentic flavors.

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