A city rich in treasures from its historic past, Paris boasts many modern attractions as well. Paris is known for its famous buildings and works of art, its chic fashion scene and its modern literary, artistic, and intellectual ideals. The capital of the nation and of the historic Île de France region, Paris is located in northern central France, across the English channel from Britain.
The city center, known as Intra-Muros, (within the walls), is bisected by the River Seine. Paris is divided into twenty zones or arrondissements that fan out in a circular pattern with the Louvre as the center point. Few cities can compare with the eclectic mix of cafés, bars and restaurants that line every street and boulevard of Paris. The city's compactness makes it possible to explore on foot and experience the individual feel of the different quartier. Paris is a real cinema capital, and the best Parisian music encompasses jazz, avant-garde, salsa and, currently, Europe's most vibrant African music scene.