To see all of my pictures from the trip, click here  

The Eiffel Tower – beautiful, the Mona Lisa – small, The Arc de Triumph – definitive, Notre Dame – historical.  Going to Paris is all about “what you saw and what you will see next time.” 

 

The center of the city is a tourist heaven with plenty of sites and lots to do.  You could spend weeks in the museums, walking the streets and eating.  Out side of the city center though is an over crowded and busy city. 

 

If you are ever thinking about going to Paris let me shed some light on it for you so you can avoid some of the pains I experienced. 

Leave your car out of the center of city; it’s near impossible to drive.  Park your car in underground parking and say good bye.  Rely on the transportation the city provides.  The Subway system will get you within blocks of anywhere you want to be tourist wise and taxis are near by to take you the rest of the way. 

Taxi drivers are not your allies.  Don’t waste your time asking them questions unless you are a paying customer.        

 

If you want to see all the sites in the downtown area then go to the Eiffel tower first.  In the front of it you will see Double Decker buses pulling up every 10 minutes or so.  Pay the 25 euros and climb aboard.  These buses are a god send.  The fare gets you 2 days of access to the buses and all they do is drive around the “big ticket” attractions.  You receive head phones on the bus and you can plug them in anywhere you sit and you can listen to English commentary about the sites you drive by.  If you stay on the bus for the whole tour (lasting 2.5 hours) you will have seen the majority of the tourist attractions.  I did this and I developed a good grasp of where everything was (also because they provide you with a map with all of their bus routes). 

 

The bus makes 9 stops along the way where you are free to get off and on.  A bus arrives at these spots every 10 minutes.  I think it would be extremely beneficial to get off at each stop to explore and then return to the bus and continue on. 

 

The food is awesome.  Paris (most of France for that matter) has great service and what they serve is even better!) 

 

When looking for a hotel, shop away from the city center.  Don’t worry yourselves with being away from the action.  You are only a quick subway ride away.  Getting a hotel away from the city center will save you at least 45 euros a night (which is like $85). 

 

If you’re a tourist then I would say “go to Paris.”  Once you have been there and got it out of your system; the rest of France has plenty to offer.