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Paris in July...

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Kansas City, Kansas
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Paris in July...

Traveling to Paris July 15th for 8 nights. 5 females in group- myself (42), mother (65), and 3 daughters (16,14 and 10). Staying at Hotel Lancaster. Quite frankly, feeling a bit overwhelmed with what all to see and do. Want to hit the high points but not cram tours in all day. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

New Hampshire
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1. Re: Paris in July...

You do have three months to plan.

For a first-time visitor, the Eyewitness Top 10 Paris guide is an excellent resource.

A good approach is to plan one "major" destination per day and add smaller venues nearby. It's usually best to start the day at the more popular spots (Saint-Chapelle, Notre Dame towers, Catacombs, etc.) to avoid lines which grow longer throughout the day.

If you're creating a list, prioritize - must, maybe, if time...

Some days, you'll get around to far more than you would presume, other days not so much. You simply adjust from day to day. Often you have to consider the weather (hot/sunny, rainy, whatever) and adjust your plans accordingly.

There's far more to see and do than you can possibly cover in eight days, so try to focus on what you and the others would deem most appealing. I would encourage you to slow down a bit and enjoy what you do get around to and not worry about what you don't and resist the urge to go anywhere just so you can say so whether it's of particular interest to you or not.

los angeles
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2. Re: Paris in July...

That is excellent advice. I just want to add that even though you can't cover everything in 8 days, you really do have a great chunk of time, more than many people get. Many here are trying to plan their 3 days. So you are in very good shape!

One personal suggestion I have, after having traveled with family groups, is don't be afraid to split up. If Mom and 2 daughters want to shop at one of the big department stores, and you and one daughter would prefer to go to an art museum, so be it. It doesn't mean that a cloud has fallen over your happy group, it just means you are allowing for individual choice--and small groups are more "manageable" anyway.

Each person should have an idea ahead of time for a few things that are "must see" priorities for her. For example, the last time I went to Paris in a group of several adults, my number one goal was to walk from one end of Montmartre to the bottom of the Latin Qtr. I was content to do it with the whole group, with just my husband, or alone. It was not my intent to "sell" this to anyone else--that's where the hard feelings may have come in.

I would not have set out everyday with a headstrong idea of what *i* was going to do, as if no one else deserved company and we were just 5 individuals. But there are times to branch off--and if you agree to that ahead of time, it's best.

So after each person comes up with a must-do, go from there and build an itinerary as djk suggests.

By the way--once you get to Paris, some of these must-do priorities may change. Often, i just want to spend time in Paris, exploring and strolling. Yje planned itinerary to see a museum or get to a timed destination goes out the window!

You are lucky to be going with these important women, and you will love Paris!

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3. Re: Paris in July...

Most visitors who post on here dream of having as much as 8 days in Paris! I think djk's advice is good and also mcal's comments about not worrying if the planned itinerary has to go out the window!

Victoria, Canada
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4. Re: Paris in July...

For your girls,, I think it helps if they get a little reading ( or movie watching ) in before they go, kids are always more interested in something if they have some idea of what they are seeing or have seen a picture of it before etc.

For the older girls reading Sarahs Key, or Marie Antionette by Antonia Frazer( actually good book for adults too) and for the youngest, my daughter loved the series the Royal Diaries, Marie Antionette by Kathryn Lasky( the series covers many princesses of Europe, this one on Marie Antionette, and is written as if it is the diary of MA as a young girl, good series for kids 7-15) it will make visits to Versailles, the Louvre etc more relevent. The older kids will also likely enjoy the movie Marie Antionette with Kirsten Dunst, its was actually filmed at Versailles which is interesting as few American productions are allowed to film there but the director was Sofia Coppola and she was able to get permission)

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5. Re: Paris in July...

Here's a list I put together for a friend that you might get some ideas from. You're getting great advice above, too! I agree--just pick a few things a day.


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6. Re: Paris in July...

Those DK Eyewitness Top 10 Guides are great. I second that recommendation.

The science museum had quite a lot of English. My kids (also 3 daughters) loved it.

the big blue marble
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7. Re: Paris in July...

I travel with a large family group fairly often. In general, I ask each person for their one 'must' see/do.

Then I plan a rough itinerary, with a major site/experiience programmed each morning and each afternoon. I never make more than one reservation per day, so that it is easy to stray from the itinerary.

I agree, that being flexible about splitting up is good.

Toronto, Canada
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8. Re: Paris in July...

Just one small thing to add: has anyone told you that July is the time of the "soldes" in Paris? The city has semi-annual sales in January and July, so you and your girls will be in the city at the perfect time if you're hoping to do some shopping. :) It's my understanding that absolutely everything - fashion, housewares, etc all goes on sale during this period. This year the sales start June 27 and go to July 31.

Here's a link that explains the Jan/July sales: parislogue.com/travel-tips/guide-to-the-annu…

Toronto, Canada
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9. Re: Paris in July...

A quick comment on the literature: I think it's a wonderful idea to read a novel or two ahead of time - it adds that much more context to a trip and will help the girls create an emotional tie to the place they're visiting. But personally, I wouldn't recommend Sarah's Key. Dreadfully disturbing content related to siblings (and not terribly well written.) What about something like A Tale of Two Cities? I remember reading that around 13.

10. Re: Paris in July...

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