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.

Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

onthemove
Level Contributor
79 posts
Save Topic
Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

My family of 5 (3 teen boys) will arrive into Paris around 6am and have to make our way from CDG to ibis budget Paris Porte de la Chapelle (ex ETAP HOTEL), 7-9 Impasse Marteau

75018 Paris. After dumping luggage, we have the entire day free until our tour group arrives from London in the evening and our Europe tour begins. We don't know Paris at all, but the TA reviews of this hotel paint the local area as rather dismal so I'm worried. PLEASE can the forum give us suggestions on what we can do that day nearby/ where we can dine OR will it be necessary to head into the city (and how?). We will be doing the usual Louvre/Eiffel tower etc the following day so we need ideas on what would be fun, not costly, easy to get to and not too taxing after the jetlag? (Pls don't say Disneyland!). We will probably need to buy warm clothes as even spring temps sound cold to us coming from the tropics! Thanks...

SANDEMANs NEW Europe - Paris
City Tours, Bar, Club & Pub Tours, Walking Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Private Tours
White Umbrella Tours
City Tours, Cultural Tours, Walking Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Day Trips
Retro Tour Paris
Sightseeing Tours, City Tours, Cultural Tours, Historical & Heritage Tours, Private Tours
City Wonders
Sightseeing Tours, City Tours, Cultural Tours, Night Tours, Day Trips
Queensland
Level Contributor
3,989 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

I would suggest that you buy 1 carnet of metro tickets, which will get you a pack of ten tickets. One for each person on the way into the centre and one on the way out.

From the looks of it, you are near the last stop on the (Green) line 12 metro line Porte de la Chapelle. If you hop on this metro, you have a direct line to the Concorde metro station. If you hop off here, you will have the Louvre on one side (well Tuileries gardens first, then the Louvre behind it) and the other way is the Champs Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe. Perfect for you guys - won't be too taxing to have a walk around the area, get some fresh air to fight off that jetlag and lots of restaurants nearby.

I know you say you will be doing the Louvre the next day, so I wouldn't suggest going in this day, but as I said it is time to get some fresh air and also get your bearings.

As far as I am aware there is nothing much in the area of your hotel. I actually think I stayed that same area on my first trip to Paris (guided tour - we stayed at an Ibis hotel) but unfortunately for us the metro was on strike!

Edited: 15 May 2013, 10:24
New York City, New...
Level Contributor
514 posts
46 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

What the previous poster said -- definitely don't lose this day hanging out near your hotel! Is the next day just a one day tour and then off to somewhere else? What parts of Paris are included in the tour besides the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre (if anything)? (And what do you enjoy, generally?) That will help others provide some direction.

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
25,906 posts
81 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

since your European tour includes Paris you can assume you will be hitting some tourist highlights -- I am going to suggest on day 1 you do something that they won't include and your friends won't have seen -- and which you can drive the rest of your tour companions jealous over.

Get a carnet of tickets and then head to the Basillica St. Denis. From line 12 you would take the metro to St. Lazare and then switch to the 13 heading for St. Denis/Universite and get off at BAsilique St. Denis. You can see our visit at: …wordpress.com/2010/… You can see if it looks as nifty to you and as likely to be of interest to your kids as it was to us and ours.

Do this in the morning, have lunch and then perhaps head by metro to the center and hang out at the Tuilleries or Luxembourg Gardens in the afternoon.

onthemove
Level Contributor
79 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

Thanks a million for the suggestions. Sounds like we need to get to a Metro and out of the hotel vicinity. Our actual tour starts in the evening with a drive around Paris for a look at the iconic night views. The following day, we are doing a cruise down the River Seine and then its free and easy with the guide's advice - so the Louvre and Eiffel tower are our "must-sees". St Denis' sounds intriguing Janettravels44 if not somewhat morbid - it would probably appeal to my teen boys. Have to say the Champs Elysees gets my vote tho. Any particular restaurant recommendations - not too expensive and teen-friendly??

BTW can you buy a "carnet" of tickets at any Metro??

Le Bugue, France
Level Contributor
14,097 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

<<Have to say the Champs Elysees gets my vote tho>>

With only one day to roam, IMO it's a waste, just a big wide street with box stores and automobile dealerships, very sterile compared to the Paris most people imagine. You can take a bus down it and see the Arc de Triomphe, but again, with only one day, do something the other tour members won't even think of - Saint-Denis is a good suggestion, but there are hundreds of options.

Hard to recommend restaurants when we don't know where you're headed.

Yes, every métro station sells carnets.

Saratoga Springs, NY
Level Contributor
5,461 posts
144 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

I get really, really wanting to see the Champs Elysees. I had wanted to see it since I was a high school French student. My teacher really talked it up all the time, as though it should be the center of the universe. Shame it's really just a big outdoor shopping mall with all of the stores you see in any major city.

So my suggestion to you would be to go to the Arc de Triomphe and visit the top. Look at the view down the Champs Elysees and decide if you still want to stroll down it. If you do, that's fair enough. Stroll down it a bit, but make note of where the metro stations are for when you get bored and want to see something more interesting or "Parisian."

Another thing you can do is visit Place du Trocadero (metro stop Trocadero), which is easy to get to or walk to from the Arc de Triomphe. There you can take wonderful pictures of each other with the Eiffel Tower in the background. I always like to bring a small, cheap point and shoot camera so I can ask other tourists to please snap my photo without worrying they'll run away with my phone.

Bellflower...
Level Contributor
5,306 posts
21 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

Since Porte de la Chapelle is near Montmartre, would that be good place to wander?

Treadlightly, surely you have a brochure or description of your trip that names places that you will see. If you provided some specific place names, that would really help.

MrsJAS

Bellflower...
Level Contributor
5,306 posts
21 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

Something that has not been mentioned: Paris is full of patisseries! I'm not so sure if you'll have a chance to stop at any during your tour.

MrsJAS

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
25,906 posts
81 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

you need to do what you want to do but the Champs is about 100th on my list of things worth seeing in Paris with limited time -- a tedious outdoor shopping mall -- yes the street is a marvel but it is just a wide street -- and the Arc is at the head and Concord at the foot -- but compared to a stroll through the 6th, or a stroll through the Marais and Isle St. Louis or a stroll through the Luxembourg Gardens or Tuilleries, or an afternoon at Pere Lachaise -- or that trip out to St. Denis --- not on my list.

Victoria, Canada
Level Contributor
22,208 posts
91 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Help - a day to spare: Where do we go from here?

Yup, the Champs, while an iconic image on postcards, is hardly worth cramming into a one day visit ,, you will be driving up or down it most likely on your drive by tour, so why bother cramming into your too short free time as it is.. its just shops, and most are BORING..

I have one suggest that my teen boys loved, a bit off beat, but very interesting.

The Paris Catacombs. It isn't just a morbid collection, the catacombs were also used in WWII by both the Nazis and the Resistance, they are huge!!

Also, if I had to take teen boys to only one museum in Paris I would suggest the Invalids Army Musuem, its never crowded, its arranged logically, starting with medieval weapons and armour( the works, battle axes, horse armour, swords etc) it works its way up through the ages and covers more then just europeon weapons( samurai swords and amour too) , and goes right up to WWII. Its a pleasure to walk through, almost no lines, never crowded, even my 11 yr daughter really enjoyed it.