Locals, tourists bask in sun at Paris 'beaches'

STORY: The artificial beaches on the banks of the Seine in central Paris and the Bassin de la Villette, a man-made lake in the north-east of the city, have been a big success since they were launched by Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoe in 2002.

This year, the sites included six pools in the Seine cordoned off from other boats. Visitors could also participate in kayaking and paddle-boarding.

"There's the water, the boats, the sun, the beach chairs, the umbrellas - everything has been calculated to give us an ambiance of summer, of holidays," said Parisian Isabelle.

Locals found the "Paris Plages" sites a good alternative for those who were not able to escape the city for a vacation, as the country faces record inflation that has driven up the prices of basic necessities and led the government to take new emergency measures costing 20 billion euros.

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