Help with Paris Metro Access

Apr 30th, 1998, 05:35 AM
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Help with Paris Metro Access

We will be traveling to Paris and London in Sept.
My husband has arthritis in his knees but is still
"game" to travel anywhere. Have heard there are
many many steps to most Metro stations. Does anyone know of stations with an escalator or less steps than usual that we could book our hotel near as that is the one we would use the most.
We traveled to Austria and Italy last year and thank you all for the help you gave me then.
Apr 30th, 1998, 05:59 AM
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Yes, there are many steps connected with all the Metro stops. You almost always have to change trains at least once to get where you are going, and that entails ever more steps. Remember, you are having to go up across tracks and then back down. A better solution would be to use the bus. Once we learned how to do it, we preferred it because (1) there are only the 2 or 3 steps onto the bus, and (2) you get to see so much more of Paris while in transit. Granted, the Metro is speedy quick, but the bus is far more delightful. By the way, tickets on both the Metro and bus are interchangeable. I wrote to some office in Paris before we went the second time and requested a bus map. I don't remember now where I wrote, but I found it in some guide book. Perhaps another forum reader can help you here. If not, you can get a bus map from any Metro station ticket office once you arrive in Paris. It takes a bit of study to figure out, but it is well worth it. Lots of times the bus will get you closer to where you want to go than the Metro. Good luck and have fun!
Apr 30th, 1998, 09:58 AM
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I think the bus suggestion is an excellent idea.
As for metro stops with fewer stairs, those would
tend to be the ones that are not major connection/
transfer stations. As I recall (I only know the
Left Bank very well), Luxembourg, Maubert,
Vavin, Raspail, and Odeon aren't bad. Definitely
avoid St-Michel/Cluny, Montparnasse and la Cite
(don't think there are hotels near la Cite, anyway)
on Left Bank. I think there are supposed to be
some with elevators (no escalators), but I can't
recall ever noticing one. It is very tough to get
around the metro system if you have trouble walking.
The previous poster had a good point, though, that
regardless of the one you stay near, the places you
go will have many steps and you may need to transfer.
Apr 30th, 1998, 03:19 PM
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The Paris metro is full of hallways and stairways, and only the occasional escalator. We were there Sunday-Sunday, and didn't try the busses until Thursday, but wish we had used them from the start. The stops are far more conveniently located to all the sights and attractions and the routes are more direct. Get yourself a copy of the booklet "Paris Mapguide". Excellent resource, especially for the bus routes. So detailed, even includes routes along one way streets. Saw this at the local Barnes & Noble the other day, but if you can't find it, go to, or e-mail me, and I'll dig mine out and send you the ISBN number. We loved the busses! Especially the ones with the "open air deck" on the back. You get to enjoy all the spectacular scenery along the way. And, you can hop off in an appealing looking neighborhood and continue on later. Actually, you can pick up a good bus map in the lobby of your hotel or any metro station, or even make do with the maps at the bus stops, if you know enough French to understand day, night, weekday, holiday and so forth.
Apr 30th, 1998, 03:22 PM
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P. S. The tour guides would have you believe that going by bus is much slower than the metro, but we did not find this to be true at all.
May 1st, 1998, 07:53 AM
Posts: n/a
Thanks for all the help. Found the Paris Mapguide on Also one for London. They are written by Michael Middleditch and published by Penguin.
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