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Itinerary advice please

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Itinerary advice please

My wife and I will be in Paris May 17-21. We've each been there once before (separately) for less than a day en route to other destinations, so this is basically our first visit. We are mid-thirties, experienced travelers. Since we've had kids, this will be our first "no-kids" trip together. Here is the general itinerary I've come up with (note that I have not yet booked any restaurant reservations, tickets, guided tours, so everything is still pretty flexible). Suggestions and advice are welcome!


- arrive CDG 8:30

- check in to hotel (IC Paris Le Grand) around 10:30 (if room is available for morning check in)

- 12:30 - Metro to Rue Cler, grab lunch

- walk around Champ de Mars/Eiffel Tower area (but don't plan to go up, not interested)

- walk along Seine or past Trocadero, making way to Champs Elysees

- walk along C-E to Tuleries

- walk back to hotel via Place Vendome

- back to hotel around 18:30

- 20:00 - dinner near hotel at Bistrot la Bruyere

- after dinner, Metro to Louvre (which will be open late, and free this night for Museum Night)


- Morning: walk around Marais and Les Halles neighborhood (either guided or self-guided tour of Marais)

- Rue Montergueil for lunch

- back to hotel around 14:00

- Late Afternoon: Ile de la Cite, Ile St. Louis (either guided or self guided tour of area)

- visit Notre Dame, climb to top if line not too long

- 19:00 Concert at St. Chapelle

- 20:30 Dinner at Semilla

- 22:00 or 22:30 - River cruise departing from Les Vedettes du Pont Neuf


- Morning: Latin Quarter/St. Germaine/Jardin du Luxembourg (guided or self-guided)

- Boulevard Raspail open market for lunch

- 14:00 - Metro to Montmartre area

- Montmartre/Sacre Coure/Pigalle (guided or self guided)

- 17:30 - Make way back to hotel, visit Galeries Lafayette and or Opera tour if have time/energy

- 19:00 - Dinner at Pirouette

- 21:00 - Caveau de la Huchette for jazz music/dancing


- Morning: Versailles (get there by 9)

- tour palace, gardens, trianons

- return around 15:30

- Evening: return somewhere we want to go back to


- Morning: RoissyBus to CDG for 10:30 flight

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1. Re: Itinerary advice please

My first thought is that, if you're arriving in Paris after an overnight flight from Boston, I seriously doubt you'll have the energy to get through your arrival day plans. Truly, if you've never been jetlagged, you have no idea how debilitating it can be.

What "open market" is there on the bvd Raspail on Monday? There aren't any markets that I know of open on Mondays in Paris.

New Hampshire
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2. Re: Itinerary advice please

If you are arriving after an overnight flight, it is highly unlikely that you'll accomplish all that day of arrival.

For most, first order of business is some really good food and coffee (or other beverages). You may not want to wait until you get to rue Cler for that.

Even for the young and energetic, that is a LOT of walking. If you've managed a bit of sleep on the flight, you just never know when you'll run out of steam and/or your legs will turn to noodles.

You can play it by ear...but you may not have the energy or enthusiasm for a gigantic place like the Louvre in the evening.

Sunday mornings/early afternoon are a great time for exploring Isle de la Cite (flower and bird markets) and Isle St-Louis (as many of the shops are open). Though, if you want to climb the Notre Dame towers, it's really best to get there just ahead of opening time, as lines grow longer throughout the day, or you may want to walk past now and again to check the length of the line.

The Raspail market is on Tuesdays, Fridays, Sundays.

You might want to go to Opera and Galeries Lafayette, then Montmartre...

All in all, you've schedule covering a lot of areas and places and you just may not have time for all of that, or will be really rushing (St-Chapelle, dinner, Seine cruise...) but you'll figure out how to adjust as you go.

Baton Rouge
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3. Re: Itinerary advice please

Museum night at the Louvre sounds pretty cool, but I don't know if I could appreciate it after a full day following an overnight flight from the US.

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4. Re: Itinerary advice please

Yes, everything can be adjusted on they fly to account for our energy levels and desire to slow things down.

Having looked back at Raspail after these comments, I see now that that is not open on Mondays, so I will cross that off the list.

Funny you both thought that day 1 is the most crammed, as I thought it was the least crammed, and I've even built in some morning rest time after checking in to the hotel. I also expect that we'll both get some sleep on the airplane. But we are certainly familiar with jet lag and how to deal with it.

I wish Museum Night had fallen any other night other than our first night, but I'd really like to take advantage of it, so we're going to try to power through. If the Louvre proves to be too much for that night, we'll either skip it or go to L'Orangerie instead for just a short visit.

Le Bugue, France
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5. Re: Itinerary advice please

Is there a particular reason you're going to rue Cler for lunch on Day 1?

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6. Re: Itinerary advice please

Yes. It's not too far from the Eiffel Tower/Champs de Mar, where we plan to be that day, and we don't plan to be back in that part of the city for the remainder of the trip. So it seems convenient.

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7. Re: Itinerary advice please

I should also add that the companies I am considering using for walking tours are: Paris Walks, Paris Greeters, and Discover Walks. Any feedback on that would be helpful.

Thanks for the replies so far.

8. Re: Itinerary advice please

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