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Family in Paris ( 3 x nights),Train trip to Genoa IT( Return)- Help Please

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Oct 27th, 2013, 04:38 PM
  #1
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Family in Paris ( 3 x nights),Train trip to Genoa IT( Return)- Help Please

Dear All

We are a NZ family , 2 adults (mid late 40's) with twins ( son and daughter , 16yr old) not an adventurous family love travels, landscapes, the cultural exchange, parks, walks,food, arts, museums , architecture , first timers in Europe, in Paris for 3 x nights from 10th Dec and set off for Genoa (IT) to do a 7 x night Mediterrenian cruise setting off on 14th Dec from Genoa . I have spent hours/days/weeks researching and compiled my findings and need some more assurance whether we are making the right move

We are very excited and need help/advise to plan our trip better with places to visit and stay etc etc. I shall do the the booking soon, and need to hear from you too, your thoughts/ideas suggestions.

Our itinerary (draft) looks like this and are we on right path, pls advise

Day1 - 10th Dec - lands in CDG airport at 6pm & will take RER B to come to our apartment at Appartements Basfroi 12 passage Basfroi, 75011 Paris

Questions: A) Is RER B is the right option for us,B) can we buy tickets from the station itself on the day after flights? C) will it take us near to our apartment, D) Apartment costs us approx $200per night -is this reasonable price wise and location near attractions?

NOTE: We have ONLY 2 x days in Paris, and need choosing the best attractions that may suit in closer proximity to save time and (Question E): what would you suggest in which order ( as a rough draft ) for DAY 1 and DAY 2 , I have found the following . Thank you so much for this in advance

11th Dec & 12 th Dec in Paris - attractions.
- The eiffel tower
- Le centre Pompidou = Musée Pompidou
- Les champs élisées -
- The district "Le marai"(3rd and 4th districts),
- Le Louvre museum.
- The garden and palace of "Les tuilleries" -
- Cathedral "Notre dame"
- The "Hotel des invalides"
- The "Hotel des invalides"
- The Pantheon
- Place Vendôme with all its luxury shops
- The district "Pigalle" with the Moulin Rouge (go there on the way up to Montmartre and the basilica Sacré coeur) -
- The basilica of "Le sacré coeur" at Montmartre district. Nestled on the top of the Montmartre hill, it is an iconic place of Paris

13th Dec
From Gare de Lyon, Paris, France train trip to Genoa , hope this is the correct train tickets for us ( change the train at Milano) http://www.raileurope.co.nz/spip.php...e_oper=results
we stay at http://www.hotelacquaverdegenova.it/home_eng.html at Via Balbi, 29
16126 Genova, which is near to port of MSC cruises

14th Dec morning to see some attractions -any particular attractions near by that you would recommend as we need to embark /and boarding start at 2pm we will not have much time left so , need some hand picked places to visit

14th Dec 21st Cruise

21st disembarkation and some local touring around (any places you consider we must go and see) and then hop back on ' night train' leaving Genoa for Paris. Must be fun any tips suggestions.

22nd morning in Paris chill out a bit and come to near airport CDG to stay over night Séjours & Affaires Roissy Village - found a motel and any interesting places you suggest there around CDG for us to fill us for following day 23rd Dec til afternoon / evening as our Return flight is on 23rd Dec.

Can''t wait to hear your tips /suggestions to make this happened!

Thank you again so much for your tips/advise.

Anita and family
nzsl is offline  
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Oct 27th, 2013, 06:33 PM
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First off, why are you flying in and out of Paris instead of an open-jaw ticket into Paris and out of Italy? Taking a night train back from Italy to Paris and staying at a hotel at CDG is such a waste of time and money when you could just fly into Paris and back home out of Italy. Night trains are NOT, IMO, "fun."

Second, you'll have a hard time fitting all those things into 2 days only in Paris. The Champs Elysées can easily be skipped, and so can Pigalle (the red-light district of Paris, though there are some lovely areas of Montmartre). I don't know what palace you're talking about in Les Tuileries (Le Louvre?) You desperately need a good map of Paris when you only have 2 days and need to group things logically together to move around the city without backtracking. And there are a few things I would consider rather essential to a first trip to Paris, such as Sainte-Chapelle and a cruise on the Seine, that you have left off - though of course everyone has his own list of essentials.
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Oct 27th, 2013, 06:40 PM
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Agree that your list for Paris is WAY too long. Days are short and cold and outdoor sights won't be that attractive that time of year. I would focus on indoor places and be aware of how short the daylight hours will be.

And if you don;t have flights ye t- why not return from Italy instead of trekking back to Paris?
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Oct 27th, 2013, 06:59 PM
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Agree with the advice above. Also, hope you have not bought train tickets from RailEurope.

See bahn.de for schedules. See seat61.com for loads of info on train travel and how to buy tickets at a reasonable price.
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Oct 27th, 2013, 09:57 PM
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Instead of RER B take a taxi from CDG - for the four of you it comes out roughly the same, and it’s much quicker, less unpleasant, less unsafe - you’ll be dead to the world and deserve every bit of comfort you can get.

I agree that is makes no sense to go back to Paris just to catch a plane. You wouldn’t go from Christchurch to Auckland to board a plane if you could board on in Christchurch...
What kind of dollars are you talking about? 200 US is cheap for the four of you, so if it’s Kiwi dollars that’s even better.

Don’t book with raileurope, they offer less and charge more. Tell your credit-card company and bank that you’re about to make some purchases from Europe and book with the train companies themselves, thello or www.voyages-sncf.com and www.trenitalia.com. Take a moment to learn how they work, then go for it.

www.seat61.com can be a help, especially for the following:

Take sleeper compartments on the Thello night train (www.thello.com) to Milan then switch to a train for Genoa, it saves you a night in Paris and it’s a bit of a civilized adventure traversing France during the night. It leaves Paris at 19:59, gets into Milan at 06:00, and you have trains leaving for Genova at 6:10, 6:25, 7:05, 7:25 and so on, lots of trains!

Why not leave your bags at the Servizio Bagagli counter and go exploring Milan - at least the area of the Duomo (go up on the roof!!!) and the Gallerie and walk back, it will do you good.
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Oct 28th, 2013, 04:41 AM
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The Thello night train mentioned by Mike Huebeli is the best solution by far. If you take day trains (at least 2 changes), you loose a whole day and don't see much of the landscape anyway as it will be dark between 4pm and 8am.
As an alternative, you could fly with http://www.easyjet.com from Paris Orly (dp 12.15, 15.10, 17.00, 18.55, 20.55) to Nice (fares start at 50 EUR/pax) and go from there by train up to Genoa (3 hrs trip; trains every second hr from 7.55 until 17.55).

Via Balbi is in the center of everyting (Palazzo Ducale, Museo del Mare, churches, palaces ....
The cruise port can theoretically be reached by metro, but a taxi is much easier.
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Oct 28th, 2013, 04:56 AM
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All the advice above--particularly forgetting Champs and Pigalle.
You might try to engage Michael Osman for at LEAST one of your days. It would be the best spent money of your trip to maximize a very small amount of time in Paris.
Just stay IN Paris your last night (assuming you are still doing this) and take a taxi in the morning.
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Oct 28th, 2013, 05:54 AM
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I agree with all of the advice above. Hope you have not purchased plane tickets yet and can book an open jaw flight into Paris and out of Milan. In addition to Pigalle and the Champs Elysee, I would skip the Pantheon and the Pompidou. I would consider adding the Ste. Chapelle and the Musee D'Orsay.

Hope you will be able to simplify your visit by taking much of the advice above.
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Oct 28th, 2013, 06:33 AM
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I agree with taking a taxi from CDG to your apartment in the 11th. From what I can tell, if you do use the RER, you'll have to transfer at least once and arguably twice if you want to actually get the closest Metro stop to your apartment. I typcially prefer using the RER to/from CDG, but I stay in areas where I can travel directly on the train to my hotel with no other Metro transfers.

As for your Paris itinerary, I agree with cutting out Pigalle and Montmarte. With respect to the museums on your list and those suggested by other (d'Orsay), I'd ask yourself and your group what type of art/artifacts they're interested in. I, personally, love modern art and go to the Pompidou on every trip to Paris. I think, too, that it offers some appeal to the younger folks because the building itself is just so different. I also love some of the smaller museums in Paris, e.g., the Rodin, Picasso and l'Orangerie. In contrast, it took me three trips and a really rainy, cold day to go into the gallery portion of the Louvre. And even once I was finally in the Louvre, I couldn't wait to get out. I just find it to be an overwhelming place and enjoy some of the smaller museums and more intimate sites better. I know that may seem like sacrilege, but I think it's far better to follow your interests than follow the crowd.
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Oct 28th, 2013, 08:15 AM
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@neckervd - why would you recommend flying into Nice and making a three or four hour train trip with a change of train, when they could fly Easyjet to Milan and take a direct Intercity for an hour and a half?
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Oct 28th, 2013, 09:06 AM
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You are right thursdaysd, Milan is another possibility. If nzsl doesn't want to waste the whole day with his Paris - Genoa transfer, he can either

Leave CDG at 19.15 or 21.25 for MXP ar 20.45 resp 22.55 (fares start at 75 EUR/pax with 1 piece of checked in luggage) and sleep at an airport hotel, leave MXP the following morning by train at 9.43 and arrive at Genova PP at 12.42, Fare 30 EUR

or

leave ORY at 18.55 or 20.55 for NCE ar 20.20 resp 22.20 (fares start at 107 EUR/pax with 1 piece of checked in luggage) sleep at Nice, leave Nice Ville by train the following morning at 9.55 and arrive at Genova PP at 13.06, Fare 25 EUR

BTW: AirFrance offers a direct CDG - Genoa flight for 88 EUR, but it leaves at 15.45 and cuts almost the whole day (departure from Paris city cente around noon).
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