We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Paris Tips

Northampton...
6 posts
Save Topic
Paris Tips

We are heading to Paris in just over two weeks. We're staying at the Royal Élysées, a hotel just 5 minutes from the Champs Élysées. I am looking for tips on which order to do sightseeing in? We will be therebfor four complete days. Tips for travelling around Paris? Most importantly - tips on where to eat and drink? Thanks in advance for any posts :) xx

Boston...
Level Contributor
12,883 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Paris Tips

My goodness, you're asking us to post a guidebook! You want an itinerary, tips for traveling and restaurant advice. I would ask if you've invested in a guidebook or two. If not, it sounds like you need to.

So here's what you do. Get a guidebook and actually read it. Then have your travel partner do the same. Make a list of what you want to see and visit. Then take your map of Paris and group them according to proximity to each other, so you're not running all over the city willy-nilly. Plan for about two major sites per day.

For four days, you'll only want to buy a carnet (car-nay) of tickets for use on the métro or buses. It's a packet of ten single tickets sold at a slight discount. You each use one on each journey on the métro or bus.

There are 10,000 restaurants in Paris. By law, the menu is posted outside. As you walk around, have a look at the menu. If you like the sound of it, pop your head in and reserve for dinner. Or just walk around and pop your head in and see if there's a table available.

Saratoga Springs, NY
Level Contributor
5,457 posts
144 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Paris Tips

There are some good sample itineraries to the right of your question. But we can't say what you'd prefer to do. For example I wanted to go to Galleries Lafayette when my husband wanted to go to Invalides. Both are perfectly valid choices.

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
2,426 posts
35 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Paris Tips

Guide book, yes. We like Eyewitness books because of their extensive pictures and diagrams. Use your book as a screen. Read about a destination, then determine whether it is of further interest to you. If not, you have just prioritized your agenda and often saved half a day. After you have seen the places that are of vital interest to you, you can then add back in those of lesser interest. Or not.

London
Level Contributor
2,211 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Paris Tips

As everyone says, it is your trip so only you will know which things interest you the most. Do invest in a good guide book, I agree the eyewitness ones are pretty good. If you want to go up the Eiffel Tower (and everybody does), try and book your tickets online now, though I suspect availability will be difficult at such short notice. Once you know your time slot, the rest of that days itinery can be worked around it.

http://www.tour-eiffel.fr/

If I could only offer one tip, it would be to learn a few phrases ansd pleasantries in French. Contrary to stereotypes, the locals are quite friendly if you make a bit of effort.

Northampton...
6 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Paris Tips

Haha I guess I was extremely vague - I do indeed have a travel guide, lonely planet. I have a map of Paris, I have also been researching on the web a lot.

Eiffel Tower is a must, thanks for the tip on pre-booking. I want to go in the evening when then city is lit up... I'm guessing around 8pm would be a good time?

We are staying near the arc de triomphe and champs élysées so will be going there.

We want to go to the Louvre and it appears this is free on the first Sunday of every month (our last day there).

Also considering a cruise along the Seine.

Thanks for the tips of getting a carnet of metro tickets - I am imagining the metro will be similar to the London Underground - maps everywhere and quite easy to use if you know the closest metro stop to where you need to be!

As far as eating, I was more looking for tips on how not to break the bank. We would like to go for one quality expensive meal, may do this at the Eiffel Tower? However the rest of the time looking for reasonably priced places to dine. We will probably have a couple of picnic lunches and go to cafes for breakfast/lunch so it is mainly dinner - good to know they all have menus outside. This will help a lot!

Thanks again guys.

Northampton...
6 posts
Save Reply
6. Re: Paris Tips

Every single day we are there is sold out for the Eiffel Tower, does this mean we won't be able to go up when we get there?

Boston...
Level Contributor
12,883 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Paris Tips

No, it may mean you have to stand in line though. While I understand the convenience of pre-booking the tower, I'm one of those who would rather go stand in line around 8:45am or so and just wait for it to open. That way I can be sure of being near the head of the line on a bright sunny day, rather than be locked in to a day and time that there's a 50/50 chance of it being cloudy or rainy. But that's just me...

I've read here that, if they're available, you can pre-purchase a ticket to only the second level, and then buy a ticket to the top once there.

Florida
Level Contributor
17,117 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Paris Tips

No, it just means the advance tickets have sold out. You can still go to the cashier for tickets... if you go 1/2 hour before they open (so, 9am or so?) you won't have to wait toooo long. If you do have time to book dinner *on* the tower, then you can visit the tower levels at that time as well. You'll have to read the Tour-Eiffel and restaurants web to know how to do all that. (I have no experience with dinner there).

You can use Yelp and la Fourchette for restaurant recommendations with user reviews... also there are a lot of reviews posted on TA, but the search /filter isn't the best. just have to browse...

Los Angeles
Destination Expert
for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
Level Contributor
10,966 posts
107 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Paris Tips

OP said they wished to do ET when the city was lit up - but I'm not sure how easy it is to get tickets in the evening (and there will be a line). I wouldn't spend the extra money to eat in the Tower (the food may be good - it gets mixed reviews, but many complain about the quality to price ratio).

Yelp tends to have less expensive restaurants and short reviews by locals (posted via smartphone) while LaFourchette often has longer reviews.

There are hundreds of affordable restaurants in nearly every area. The key thing is to figure out where you'll be and then research restaurants in that area. We usually eat in brasseries or cafés and not restaurants, because we like the convenience of choosing a place on the run. But, if you want a really special meal, reservations are strongly recommended. There are so many options...without knowing your preferences or where you'll be, it's hard to recommend anything. Not familiar with the area near the Arc, so of no help there.

Edmonton, Canada
Destination Expert
for Edmonton, Yellowknife
Level Contributor
1,343 posts
36 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Paris Tips

We went to a grocery store and bought some granola bars, fruit, juice boxes, and just a few extra snacks. We took them with us but ate baguette sandwiches for lunch. It kept us going through the day.