4 Days in Paris in May

Feb 5th, 2012, 07:54 AM
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4 Days in Paris in May

We are a couple in our mid-70's, visiting Paris for the first time in mid-May, for 4 days.
What should we absolutely not miss doing for those 4 days.?
Mahkeenac is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 08:06 AM
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Ste Chapelle is just gorgeous...go early to avoid lines
St Denis is very worthwhile although a longer ride on the Metro-we really enjoyed it
I prefer Musee D'Orsay over the Louvre...but I love Impressionism. I find the Louvre crowded and overwhelming but many adore it! I also like L'Orangerie for the Monet canvases.
If you are able to climb, the the towers at Notre Dame are funand offer a great view of Paris.

Have fun.
denisea is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 08:09 AM
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ooh, its kind of depends on what you like? museums? foodies? but for a starting point i would say three of my favourite things are

- Monmatre/sacre couer church walking- its far more touristy than it used to but would be a shame to miss when in Paris. If you want to walk further the moulin rouge district is worth seeing too.

-walking around the Marais district-Place de Voyges for lunch, cross over the bridge to isle St-louis for boutique shops and then across to Notre Dame.

-Walking the luxembourg gardens followed by a stroll around the arty left bank quarter
HG001London is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 08:27 AM
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Agree with above. If you like modern work, Pompidou Centre is interesting. It has a nice rooftop resto also.

Hub and I loved the entire Montparnasse area (and, as above Luxembourg Gardens).

Walk from the Arc de Triomphe (nice views from top) to Tuilleries via Champs Élysées.

Go to top of Eiffel Tower as well.
TDudette is online now  
Feb 5th, 2012, 08:41 AM
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Lux. gardens---especially on a Sunday

St. Germain stroll including the Cours de Commerce St. Andre. Charming streets with shops & restaurants.

Lunch or coffee at Place Vosges then The Carnavalet Museum(nearby, small, easy to navigate, closed Monday--our favorite museum)

Notre Dame & Ile St. Louis stroll (a flower shaped cone at Amorino) then a stroll along the Seine.

The Eiffel Tower (we like it best at night)

Seine boat ride (we prefer Vedettes at the Pont Neuff and we again prefer it at night)

Stroll through the Louvre plaza(the museum is way too overwhelming for a short visit IMO) and the Tuilleries.

If you'd like a large museum--D'Orsay, very nice.

We were hooked on our first 4 day trip and are now planning our 9th. If you want to read my trip reports(several) click on my name and scroll to bottom.

We'll be looking forward to your trip report.
TPAYT is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 10:18 AM
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You tagged this as a trip report, which may limit input a bit.

does 4 days mean 4 full days of Paris, or landing day1 leaving day 4?

With limited time, may leave Sacre coeur out of mix

Good ideas above. Assuming 4 full days, I might group an area into each day. Lunch and dinner there.

4 possible days: Louvre, Notre Dame, Marais and Left Bank.

museums..yes or no?

ok, Louvre area could include Louvre, tuileries gardens, Place de la Concorde, Palais Royal, place Vendome,covered Passageways (first indoor shopping arcades) champs Elysee and Arc de Triomphe.
...hot chocolate/desert at Angelina's, maybe take Metro up the Champs to Arc, champs is not as glamorous as in movies, Louvre is huge - plan well if visiting, can rest in Tuileries

Notre dame: ND, Sainte chapelle, deportation memorial, flower/bird market,Concergerie (maybe) Ile st louis next door (nice small main street), walks along Seine - above and below street level, Seine cruise, bouquinistes (old book sellers) along river
...many places for lunch/dinner on Ile st Louis, do seine cruise after dark, also candlelit classical concerts at Sainte Chapelle some nights,some good restos along Left Bank with patios/views of river

Marais: maybe start with morning tour from Paris Walks, lunch at Place des Vosges, then a wander of area.Village st Paul area nice, Carnavalet museum.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 10:25 AM
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Left bank..head from Seine into area along Blvd St Germain. Musee Moyen Age (aka cluny) is small museum of middle ages artifacts, house in old convent built over roman baths, Rue Ancien comedie/rue de buci is nice -food market, cobblestone street, restaurant where Ben Franklin ate, Luxembourg Gardens are an oasis - consider getting take out lunch and eating it there, many cafes where intellectuals in early 20th century hung out, St Sulpice church worth a peek
Michel_Paris is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 12:49 PM
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TPAYT has a wonderful list of things that we also love. In addition, I suggest the Cluny Museum for the beautiful tapestires of "The Lady and the Unicorn" and, since you will be in Paris in May, the Rodin Museum - a small museum set in a beautiful rose garden. The garden is a lovely place for a picnic lunch.

By all means, visit Ste. Chapelle - exquisite stained glass. Try to visit morning or late afternoon on a sunny day to see it at its best. Ste. Chapelle also has lovely concerts in the evening.
mamcalice is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 12:53 PM
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eurocheapo.com/paris great budget city tips parisvoice.com difficult to advise without knowing likes dislikes Paris walking tour ssome free a cruise Versailles lots of museums you like willkeep u busy.. viator.com many other great options
qwovadis is offline  
Feb 5th, 2012, 01:21 PM
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I would strongly suggest getting a museum card - you may not save any money, but you will avoid waiting around in all those queues which is worth quite a lot!

then prioritise what you want to do, and try to group places together - for example Notre Dame, St. Chappelle, the concierge, a wander around the isle st louis - not Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower and l'arc du Triomphe.
annhig is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 04:07 AM
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Pick up a guide book now and read through it to familiarize yourselves with the attractions in Paris and where they are located relative to where you are staying and what appeals to you The Michelin Green Guide is a good one and there are others as well. Planning and thinking about your trip is half the fun!
There are a lot of great suggestions in this thread. Some feedback might help generate/refine additional ideas.
waterdog is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 05:50 AM
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Are you arriving on day 1?

One thing you might consider, is a coach tour of the city. This way you see the big sites once, and then you can go back with your remaining time to see particular sites/neighbourhoods.

The reason I ask if you arriving on Day 1 is that taking a coach tour when jet-lagged can be an opportunity to sleep, not see city.


Another possibility is the Hop-On Hop-Off bus. Essentially a bus that juast loops around some of the main sites all day long. You buy a ticket for the day, and then you can get on at any of the stops and off at any of the stops.

Michel_Paris is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 06:09 AM
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We have 4 full days in Paris.
We are also into culture, such as opera, symphonies, etc.
Mahkeenac is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 06:12 AM
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I would try to contact Michael Osman to design a day (or more) touring with you. You will see SO much more, and appreciate what you are seeing. He is a totally engaging man, an artist himself, an American. He is VERY reasonable in price for what he does for you.
Gretchen is online now  
Feb 6th, 2012, 06:22 AM
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We are a couple in our mid 70's also and one time we only had a 3day stopover in Paris and took the Batobus to see a quick view of sites along the Seine,attended a concert in one of the CHurches, strolled the Isle ST Louis and had lunch there, hung out around Notre Dame and an evening cruise on the Seine also which is always the prettiest. Took time for wine and people watching at a cafe. You will be surprised what you can do in a few days but also we dido not have jet lag as we had been in Italy so that makes a difference too. Going again in May also but for 10days so will take things slow and leisurely with a picnic in a park for sure..
cornelius01 is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 06:32 AM
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For classical music...


There is a tradition of holding concerts at night in local churches. Acoustics can be amazing. the above link is good, you can also buy Pariscope and Officiel des Spectacles: these are weekly small format magazines listing upcoming events.


There are two main venues for ballet/opera,etc : Palais Garnier and Opera Bastille.

The Garnier is a gem, and is worth going just to see the entrance and foyer. You can also arrange tours. Phantom of the Opera is supposedly inspired by this building.

FNAC is also a good site/stores to get tickets and event info:
Michel_Paris is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 07:09 AM
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The only escorted tour we have taken in our many trips to Paris was an English speaking tour of the Opera Garnier and we absolutely loved it. Here's the company we used to book it ahead of time. There are many others & I think you can also take a chance & go right to the Opera house & pick up a tour.


It was so interesting to hear all the details of the opera house. After learning about it I can only imagine how wonderful a live opera or ballet would be.
TPAYT is offline  
Feb 6th, 2012, 07:55 PM
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excited_confused is offline  
Feb 7th, 2012, 12:12 AM
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We went to an evening concert in Ste Chapelle. The acoustics were in fact awful (Mozart Clarinet Quintet) but the experience was magical because there were only about 75 people in what is a zoo during the day. Then we walked back to the Marais along the Seine. It was seriously magical for people who go to bed most nights at 9!
Ackislander is offline  
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