Paris city officials and French actress-slash-supermodel Laetitia Casta flipped the switch Wednesday evening to illuminate the Champs-Elysées with holiday lights and decorations. Some 200 trees situated alongside the iconic avenue, and stretching from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde, will be lined with shimmering, ecologically friendly blue lights through January 8th, boosted by thousands of garlands and light-emitting diodes placed in the treetops that progressively change from blue to red to white hues, making the scene especially bright and cheerful. As in past years, the famed avenue will also have a full-blown Christmas market, so expect large crowds if you venture there.
Meanwhile, Christmas lights and holiday decorations in other areas of Paris will start showing up around the city in coming weeks-- read the complete guide for details on where to head for seasonal cheer.
In Paris for the holiday season? Make sure to consult our newly updated guide to December Events in Paris, highlighting all the major seasonal happenings around town, as well as major exhibits on major figures such as Georges Braque. Finally, don't procrastinate any longer on making holiday dinner reservations: consult my guide to Paris restaurants open for Christmas to secure your table.