I have been to Paris, but I never really see the "wow" stuff. I have strolled the Left bank (kind of boring actually), Climbed the Eiffel (everyone must scale it once in life) - did a 20 minute Louvre tour, Venus de Milo and Mona Lisa then GOODBYE.
Arc de Triomphe? Notre Dam (another cathedral) what else is there? any MUST SEE PLACES? I love Versailles by the way. I will not miss that. You can get there by train.
But what else MUST you see in Paris that I have missed?
Also, be sure to spend at least a couple afternoons relaxing in Parisian cafes savoring the city's lifestyle.
You might want to go to Notre Dame when they are having services. I understand that the music is fabulous.
And if you really get bored, you can always go to MacDonald's on the Champs Elysee to experience the Parisian corrumption of American culture in the form of a frommageburger and a glass of wine....
Interesting subject. I would also like to know what others do and consider "must sees" while in Paris.
Our best memories of Paris are from just walking and walking !
However, some hight points were Sacre Couer , the Momartre area just behind, I personally enjoyed the huge department stores in Paris and their roof top cafes with magnificent rooftop views, Monet's home just outside Paris was among our favorite places, riding the Paris Metro, Eiffel Tower at night, the Opera house, Les Invalides where Napolean's sarcouphegus is resting and is now a military museum AND still a hospital, more walking and walking. We went to the Louvre and like you, found ourselves quite overwhelmed !! Not to mention the place was PACKED with people!! Took the little tour and left !!
Interesting you should mention Versailles. That was our biggest disppointment. Very little of the palace is open to the public. What is open is just about empty. To top it off the Hall of Mirrors was closed for renovation when we were there. The gardens are HUGE but nothing is marked in ANY language. It would be interesting (to me) to know the whys and wherefores about the many different statues, fountains, terraces, and small gardens, etc. We entered thru this kind of turnstyle gate to one side of the palace and were completely on our own. Not even a paper map or pamphlet. Confusing and BORING.
We were only in Paris one week and never got to take a bateau ride down the Seine. I can't wait to go back !! MG
MRYGirl... that was not my experience, we saw the entire palace, which as i rexcall consisted of maybe three different tours. There was the main area with the hall of mirrors, then there were the bedchamber areas of Louis XV!, and finally we saw the theater (beautiful) etc.
The grounds - we found maps showing us what is what. The Napolean thing you mentioned sounds interesting to me.
Must see Paris can fill weeks! My own favorite museum is the D'Orsay. An easy walk across the river from the Louve. One of the stary night versions is on permanent display and it's approachable size is great compared to the Louve.
An alternate cathedral would be the Sacred Heart bascilica at Montemarte. Especially fun at sunset when people are hanging out on the steps and a quick ride up and down the funicular to a variety of neighborhood cafes.
An arch tour is always fun to get different perspectives from all three main arches that are all oriented in a single line starting at the Toularies Gardens, then the Arc De Triumph, and finally the Grand Arc at La Defense.
Hanging out on the weekend in Toularies garden is fun, as is strolling through the art gallaries in St. Germain. Marais is an interesting neighborhood from historical and current shopping / dining perspectives.
On and on it goes... Paris is truly one of the world's greatest cities. You'll run out of time on your visit before you run out of things to do and experience. Finally, if you are on your own and on a short time budget, the tourist bus is a great way to get around and take in the major tourist sites.
Mrygirl - I agree with you regarding the Batobus. It is a great way to see the river and get between some of the major sites at low cost. Like Paul Motter, I also had a great time in Versaille - both at the palace and in the open air market up from the train station on Sunday.
Hi everyone !
I think you must go at "Jardin des Tuileries" beetween the Louvre and Concorde.
You just have to do a little ballade from the court of the Louvre to Concorde place, and if you have the courage to ride the city once more, you can go to Arc of triumph with feet because it's straight.
paris must -sees and other must -sees
Yeap, in fact you have to walk Paris, now, try Le Marais, this is quite an interesting neighborhood with cafés , shops and galerias... also, go to Montmartre, where the Sacre Coeur church is and walk around the village, eat a Grand Marnier crepe and watch Paris from the heights, then go for an Onion Soup where the artists are in the pintoresque square, the Salvador Dali museum is there, is not big and it is an awsome place. Walk in Saint Honoré street where all the chic boutiques are... Try eating dinner at the famous Buddah Bar... and yes, try Les Bateaux Mouches, but specially the one that is like a Bus, it drops you wherever you like and you can take it again in another stop.. you will experience Le Seine, plus you will see the top spots... another one is Saint Michel, in front of Notre Dame, the Quartier Latin is there and it is a pedestrian neighborhood full of funky restaurants from Greece, Turkey, Italy, etc...
Regarding the Louvre, after seeing the must-sees, go the other way and see the HUGE LIONS WITH WINGS from the Mesopotamian Gallery, it is an amazing gallery and it is always empty! Treasures from old Iran, you will not believe... Also, there are the old suites for Napoleon the III, the salons, living room , dining room, and also his dorm, AMAZING, some nice jewels also are exposed there, The Louvre is not only the Mona Lisa!
I agree also that the Orsay Museum is magnificent, all the impressionists are in one same gallery and it is easy to walk around. Another museum fun to see is the MODERN ART MUSEUM GEORGES POMPIDEU, it has great art, excellent gift shop and coffee shop area... finally, if you like to shop, got to La Samaritain, is it like a big SAKS in front of the Seine and go to the roof top terrace for lunch, you will be moved by the sights...ahhh, dont forget La Concergierie, where Marie Antoinette spend her last days, there is a great tour to the dungeons and the building is magnificent...uff Paris has a lot to see.. i hope you have the chance to go back again and enjoy other things... good luck!
Each time we visit we try & plan which area (or arrondissement) we are going to walk around, otherwise you just come away exhausted.
I did take us a couple of visits to get to understand the city. Okay, having tried to see everything we came away hating the place & only went back as I had to stay there for a few months with work, so got beneath the surface & became much more comfortable with everything. Once you know the city & the people, it really is a different place.
One (of many) great place for relaxing is the Jardin du Luxembourg, just behind the Latin Quarter, with it's lovely cool gardens & boat pond. Being off the tourist route, it is usually a lot quieter & easy to realx in. Also, we usually end at some point up siiting on the benches on the Pont des Arts over the Seine, just watching the people go by, the boats on the water, and some great sunsets.
Despite visiting the city regularly, it was until last year that we finally found time to take the train out to Versailles, and spent hours stolling around the gardens, palaces & the town itself.
Yes it's a hot, busy & confusing city, but if you get the chance to spend more time there, & take things slower, it does pay rewards. Honest ;o)
Alan & Katrina
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