Arts, Culture & Media

A Summer Beach With A View Of The Eiffel Tower

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Paris has trucked in palm trees and 5 tons of sand for the popup beach along the Seine (Photo:Jake Cigainero)

August is prime vacation getaway month.

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Here's just a sample of where some of our Geo Quiz text game players are going:

"Going to hike the Mont Blanc circuit in France, Italy, & Switzerland. Why you ask? Why not?" Garett in Sacramento, CA

"I'm going with a group of people from the US to compete in an international dodgeball competition in New Zealand." Jake in Los Angeles

"My girlfriend and I are headed to Rio de Janeiro for some club soccer, samba, live music, and to get lost in food markets." Sergio in Long Beach, CA

"Going to Amman, Jordon to play rugby and learn Arabic." Andrew in Boise,ID

So with interesting vacations in mind, here's the quiz:

Where in the world can you sit on a beach with palm trees and still enjoy a view of the Eiffel Tower?

Keep in mind there are no ocean waves anywhere near the Champs-Elysees. Palm trees do well on Pacific islands and in tropical rainforests, and it's not Las Vegas.

So where in the world can you sit on a beach and still enjoy a view of the Eiffel Tower?

You may have to use a little imagination.

Jake Cigainero sent us this story:

Every August Paris empties out. But if you walk down to the Seine, you'll see palm trees, umbrellas, lounge chairs and sand beaches lining the riverbank – and people.

The seaside motif is part of the 12th annual Paris Plages – an urban oasis that's free to the public. It's a tourist draw. But for Parisians who can't afford to go anywhere in the current economic climate, Paris Plages is the next best thing to a summer getaway.

"It almost feels like you're on holiday" says Elena Najdawi who's originally from Nice. She says the urban beach reminds her of her Mediterranean hometown, " This place, it's not a real beach, but for me it's great. Whenever you have sun in Paris, all the people are crazy so you enjoy it."

Even though the Paris city government has cut the beach budget in recent years, it still trucks in 5,000 tons of sand for the urban oasis. Damien Masset, head of Paris Plages, says the economic crisis is all the more reason to offer free activities to everyone.

Leonard monney and his family live in the 2Oth arrondissement. He says he can't afford to take his kids on vacation this year, so he's brought them to Paris Plages to relax, "It's so hot at home. We wanted to get some fresh air, to enjoy the beautiful view, and to see all the people and tourists. So we're walking around Paris. Just because we live here doesn't mean we know everything about the city."

Along the half mile of urban beach, there are also popup cafes, ice cream vendors and musicians – and since no beach is complete without volleyball, the city has also installed a four net sand court just in front of city hall.

Jonas Bastia has come to play volleyball with friends every weekend since Paris Plages opened last month."It's great for the tourists" he says, "but truth be known, the Parisians stuck in the city are the ones who get the most out of Paris Plages."

So where can you sit on the beach and still enjoy a view of the Eiffel Tower?

The answer is Paris.