How to spend the arrival day in Paris?

Jan 26th, 2006, 06:19 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 3,605
Incase you decided to take a Seine cruise, here's the site for Vedettes du Pont Neuf. Be sure to click on the Internet Discount for their coupon:

I like the idea of walking in the Luxembourg Gardens (which to me is a quintessential Parisian Sunday) and then heading over to see Notre Dame (be sure to go back later in the week for a proper visit).

If you'd like to squeeze in a museum too, I think a visit to the Cluny would be manageable and worthwhile:

mvor is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:24 AM
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Our typical first day would be to arrive, check in, find some lunch where we can relax & get into our proper 'Paris mode', enjoy some wine w/lunch of course. Wander back to our abode for a short nap. After, wander the neighborhood to locate the grocery, the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker, etc. & try to find a good place for dinner. But, basically, become familiar w/our immediate surroundings.
SAnParis is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:25 AM
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I will be staying in the same area as you and plan to take this walk by Degas:
Cato is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:27 AM
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Mvor, many thanks for the tip on the Internet coupon for the Vedettes du Pont-Neuf! I'm printing it out now for use this April.
sandykins is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:55 AM
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Personally, I never nap when I arrive in Europe because I find I sleep better at night when I don't. However, you and your body may have different needs.

For me, the danger of napping is that sometimes one ends up sleeping all afternoon, longer than expected, so that when one tries to go to bed in the evening, sleep just doesn't come. If you do nap, my advice is to make it as short as possible, using an alarm or a wake-up all.
JennaZ is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 07:43 AM
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Before you commit to Vedettes du Pont-Neuf, check out the Batobus [], better left until you have an entire day. Later in the year the last run is at 10pm.
RonZ is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 08:05 AM
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Naps are not only non-essential, they are a very bad idea. If you nap during the day, you stay on your original time zone, and you'll be jet-lagged for days. You must stay awake until evening, at least until 9 PM or so, or you will spend much of the night awake and you'll be practically right back where you started on the second day … and perhaps on the third, fourth, and so on.
AnthonyGA is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 08:10 AM
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Hi lh,

We keep awake until bedtime in order to get on Paris time.

>We are staying at a hotel in the 6th near the Luxembourg Garden.<

Go through the Luxembourg.

Walk down Rue Bonaparte.

Stop off at St. Sulpice. There is a Cafe facing the fountain. there are a number of restaurants off rue Guisard, make a reservation for the evening.

Alternatively, make reservations at La Mediteranee. They are open Sunday evening.

Continue walking North to the St. Germaine-des-Pres.

Les Deux Magots is across the street.

Continue on to the Seine.

Go East to the Pont Neuf. Walk back toward your restaurant or hotel.

Go to dinner.

Go to bed.

In the morning you will be on Paris time.

Have a lovely visit.

ira is online now  
Jan 26th, 2006, 08:42 AM
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When I flew from D.C. to Vienna for the Danube cruise last December I didn't take even a short nap on the day we arrived. The result was severe jet lag and trouble sleeping for the first four days or so, which I've never experienced before when I had a nap.
Underhill is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 02:38 PM
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wow...less than 24 hours with my cable modem down and look at this! So many responses I don't know where to start.
We have travelled overseas before but its been a few years and I just can't recall how the jetlag was for us. I actually recall it being worse for my husband than for me...he really wanted to nap.

We're staying at the Jardin de L'Odeon (hopefully that will get some good marks from the regulars here).

I like the idea of walking around, seeing the neighborhood and taking care of the business aspect of the trip...metro card, museum pass.

Thanks to everyone for their great ideas.
lhs624 is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 05:23 PM
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While taking iraís suggested walk (which is very similar to the one I took on my arrival day in Paris last November, when I also stayed in the 6th), you might want to stop in the Village Voice bookshop on the rue Princesse (assuming itís open on Sunday, which Iím not sure about). I like to go there whenever Iím in Paris, to buy new books that have been published in the U.K. but not yet in the U.S., and the arrival day is a good time to do it because bookstore browsing is guaranteed to keep me awake.
Bree is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:00 PM
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It's become my ritual to head to Deux Magots (outside, if possible) for a croissant and cafe creme while the hotel room is being made available and just marvel at the fact that I am, indeed, back in Paris again watching the world walk by that famous corner.

To nap or not seems to be a highly individual decision, and I do better with a short sleep when I get into my room.
grandmere is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 06:02 PM
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Take a casual look around some of the sights in the neighborhood and if you can get in the room early enough have a lie down (make sure youy get a wake up before you get into a deep sleep). If your energy keeps you up and around havew a light lunch to get you into the time frame. And dinner should be as early as the restaurant lets you in and then to bed.
a good nights sleep will let you wake up hopefully with jet lag behind you.
Bigal is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 07:55 PM
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The Bateau Mouches ride on the Seine will give you a good first view of the famous sites of pris and the breezes will keep you awake.
SuQue is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 08:03 PM
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Hi lhs624! Thanks for posting this question. I will be travelling to Paris for the first time in March and was also wondering how to function on arrival day. I will be staying at Jardin de L'Odeon from the 1st-10th. If you'd like, I'd be happy to email you my thoughts on the hotel and area upon my return. Happy planning!
thatgirldina is offline  
Jan 26th, 2006, 09:19 PM
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You will be located in a very nice area! When you arrive, take a walk-the Jardin du Luxembourg is beautiful-and get familiar with your surroundings. Perhaps go to a cafe and get something to eat and head back to your hotel and rest a bit before going out to dinner. Make it an early dinner so you can come back to sleep early.
francophile03 is offline  
Jan 27th, 2006, 06:10 AM
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It is very funny that so many people have suggested a boat ride on the Sienne. We traveled to Paris when our kids were 13, 11 and 8. I, too, thought that the boat ride would be a nice activity. Everyone but me totally slept through the entire boat ride. I have great pictures of the other four people in the family, sleeping away in a variety of funny positions.

I will tell you that I do fine until about 6 pm on the day of arrival. I avoid alcohol on the flight, which really helps. However, the rest of my family was totally wiped out.

I would advise you to have dinner "close to home." Walking back to our flat, I got pretty disoriented and we walked out of the way quite a few blocks.
missypie is offline  
Jan 27th, 2006, 07:18 AM
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I too will be staying at the Jardin de L'Odeon. Our trip is right around the corner - we are arriving Feb. 9. It's our first trip to Paris - we can't wait! I will post my thoughts on the hotel/trip when we return.
MAS16 is offline  
Jan 27th, 2006, 07:26 AM
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MAS16 and thatgirldina....please post your experiences at Jardin de L'Odeon. I hope that you have a wonderful time.

Thanks for the additional suggestions to everyone else. Not sure how I am going to wait until April!!
lhs624 is offline  
Jan 30th, 2006, 05:41 AM
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The 'nap' works for us, w/two small children we seldom get much rest on the plane. If you are tired, you should sleep, albeit for a very short period of time (more than an hour & I feel worse than before the nap). Ira's walk is a good one. There is also a book by Gilles Desmons "Walking Paris, 30 Walks..." which is very good.
SAnParis is offline  

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