First Time in Paris

Jan 2nd, 2018, 11:54 AM
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First Time in Paris

My husband and I will be spending 4 full days in Paris in April. This is our first visit there. Looking for suggestions in neighborhood to stay in, hotels, itinerary and restaurants. We want to be near the center of Paris, preferably close to Metro and spend about $200/ night. We prefer something with a Parisian feel vs a chain hotel. We like cultural sites, opera, theatre etc and we are used to walking. For restaurant suggestions, interested in casual fare as well as a "splurge" dinner. Would you recommend a day trip outside of Paris? Thank you.
erp is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 12:28 PM
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With 4 days most will not recommend a daytrip as there is so much to see and do in Paris but a half-day or so at nearby Versailles would be great - Versailles just a 30 minute RER(metro) ride right to near the palace.
PalenQ is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 12:59 PM
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Four full days is barely enough to scratch the surface of Paris. I agree with PalenQ, you really don't have time for a day trip. Our first visit to Paris we had 10 full days and couldn't tear ourselves away for a day trip.

Location-wise, the most important factor will be being close to a metro station.
Kathie is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 02:20 PM
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Google "place maubert hotels" and you will get a map of hotels in the Quartier Latin. Place Maubert has a métro stop.
Michael is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 03:26 PM
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You can use Google Maps to link to hotels around a certain landmark or in a neighbourhood. No guarantee that all hotels are shown, nor judged on quality, but the links are a good start. I like the area between Place de la Bastille and Gare Lyon, on the east side.
Central Paris is compact so a hotel near a busy Metro station will help you get around; here's the Metro link, which includes an itinerary planner:
And of courses you will check the Destinations button at the top of this page where the website stores lots of answers to Paris already.
Southam is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 04:48 PM
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The Fifth near Maubert is a very good area for what you want. Plenty of good restaurants, hotels, walking, Metro, bus lines. We stayed there in September and there is a trip report:
AJPeabody is online now  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 05:41 PM
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Last spring we stayed at a hotel near Parc Luxembourg in the St. Germain area. We were near the metro as well as the RER B to and from the airport. It is popular area with tourists but that it because it is well located near many tourist sites.

I agree that you don’t really have time for a day trip. Do you have a travel guide? Make a list of the sites you would like to visit. Where are they centered? I would suggest staying in an area close to them so you can sightsee all day and easily return to the hotel to rest up before dinner.

Once you narrow down where you think you would like to stay, come back for hotel and restaurant recommendations. There are lots of both here!
allisonm is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2018, 06:03 PM
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In case you haven't already booked your opera tickets.
Envierges is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2018, 12:25 AM
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I would recommend the 6th arrondissement, because that is what people imagine what Paris is like.
Hotel Villa Madame
Hotel Madison
These are all under your budget.

Use GoogleMaps Street View to look at the neighborhood to see what you think.
fuzzbucket is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2018, 07:18 AM
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An added recommendation: If you can choose your days, Wednesday through Friday avoids the Monday or Tuesday museum and official site closures and the weekends with the usual weekend problems of either crowding or closure.
AJPeabody is online now  
Jan 3rd, 2018, 07:49 AM
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I usually do a day trip when I'm in a city for 4 days, I think that's a fine idea of there is something you really want to do. So I don't agree that you don't have time for it. If there really is nothing in particular that you are really wanting to see on a day trip (it sounds like there isn't), then fine.
Christina is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2018, 04:45 PM
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Personally I think anything in the first seven arrondissements is good for a first visit. I don't know why people keep saying the 6eme is what people think Paris is like... the 6eme is in Paris... so it pretty much is what the 6eme in Paris is like.

For a trip outside of Paris you may want to consider either Versailles or Giverney.

For a special dinner, take a look Les Ombres on top of Musee Quai Branley for excellent food, great service and a spectacular view. More expensive but also very good is L'Oiseau Blanc at the Paris Peninsula Hotel.

Enjoy Paris!
Belinda is online now  
Jan 4th, 2018, 12:29 AM
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The 6eme arrondissement is included in the 7eme arrondissements.
I suggested it because it is not like the 7eme arrondissement, and there are more transportation options and more things to do.
fuzzbucket is offline  
Jan 9th, 2018, 12:09 PM
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I’m considering Hotlel Madison, Villa Madame or Hotel doc st Simone. They are all in the same vicinity. Any thoughts on these hotels?
erp is offline  
Jan 9th, 2018, 12:50 PM
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Theater and opera are good evening activities in Paris; just be aware that many restaurants don’t open early enough to have a pre-theater dinner, so plan to eat at brasseries or cafes the evenings you go out, or have a nice lunch somewhere that day.

There are operas in the two opera houses, the Opera Bastille and the Palais Garnier. Both are accessed through the Opera de Paris website. There are also sometimes opera productions at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees. I always check their websites for schedules.

Most theater productions are in French, so if you speak French, that’s a great activity. But if you don’t, there is an organization that has arrangements with some of the theaters to display surtitles in English. You pay a bit more for tickets and may sit in the balcony if the titles are more easily visible from that location.
Nikki is online now  
Jan 11th, 2018, 05:00 AM
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Thank you for these suggestions. We booked opera tickets as they were nearly sold out. I will look into these other theatres.
erp is offline  
Jan 11th, 2018, 10:06 PM
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Sorry to interrupt...

Why don't links work in these posts? Have I missed something?
Adelaidean is offline  
Jan 12th, 2018, 03:51 AM
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You mean like this?

Just use the tools in the line above the text box.
kerouac is offline  
Jan 12th, 2018, 04:30 AM
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Why don't links work in these posts? Have I missed something?[/QUOTE]

On the thread about forum technical issues, IBobI says that the tech team is working on activating the links posted in the old format. He implied it would be fast, but it isn't done yet.
AJPeabody is online now  
Jan 14th, 2018, 02:52 PM
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You could take a day trip but I wouldn't if I only had 4 days in Paris and had never been before. Depends on how much you want to visit something that will take more time to get to. Versailles is a good choice if you decide to take a day trip or maybe Giverny.

I like the location of Hotel Madison as it is very close to several Metro stations, St Sulpice, St Germain des Pres church, restaurants and nice shopping. Musee d' Orsay, Pantheon, the Cluny and Musee Rodin are all easy to get to from the area. We really loved our food tour of St Germain with Paris by Mouth, so I would recommend that if you are interested in sampling the wonderful cheeses, chocolates, charcuterie and wines that France has to offer.

I hope you enjoy your trip. Paris is a great city to visit. You won't even come close to seeing everything so you will have to make a second trip!
denisea is offline  

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