Top Ten France Classic Adventures

Skate Paris at Night
By Patricia Ochs

"Mon dieu!" is the familiar cry from cafes as thousands of skaters whiz through the streets of Paris. Join in and put some zoom in your step as you take in the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe. At ten p.m. every Friday night, come rain or clear dark night, the Place d'Italie buzzes with thousands of "les rollers." How organized is this crowd? They're even led by a roller-blade national police unit and followed by an ambulance. What is now called "Le Friday Night Fever" has grown from a few dozen skaters to about 5,000. They scream at up to 20 miles per hour down the Boulevard Saint Germain, the Boulevard Saint Michel, and the Rue de Rivoli, snarling traffic as they go. Woe to the guys in front who lose their balance with several thousand blades in back unable to execute "le stop."


Sign up to Away's Travel Insider

Preview newsletter »