Other sights to see in Paris

Old Jun 24th, 2002, 01:57 PM
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Other sights to see in Paris

On previous trips we've seen the "major" sights of Paris. Anyone wish to share their personal/special "not so well known" places to visit in Paris? We will be spending 3 nights there in October before heading to Beaune and Lyon. Thanks much!
Old Jun 24th, 2002, 03:49 PM
Bob Brown
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Vaux le Vicomte is not in Paris, strictly speaking, but seeing it is a real treat.

For places inside the Peripherique, I have these locations on my list:
Musee Nationale de Ceramique de Sevres which unfortunately is near the end of the line for Metro line 9 at Pont du Sevres.
Musee Jacquemart-Andre 158 boulevard Haussmann
Musee Nissim de Camondo at 63 rue de Monceau near Parc Monceau
Hotel de Soubise 60 rue des Francs Bourgeois
Hotel de Rohan at 87 rue Vielle-du-Temple in the Old Marais
I have seen these recommended elsewhere as good secondary attractions.
Old Jun 24th, 2002, 04:54 PM
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Actually I see that Pont Sevres is outside the beltway around Paris, or so it looks on my map.
Old Jun 24th, 2002, 06:34 PM
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Were these seen on previous visits?
Musée Picasso
Musée Victor Hugo (at Place des Vosges)
Musée Dali (by Place du Tertre)
Catacombs (Metro Denfort-Rochereau)
Parc Monceau – perhaps not a destination but certainly a lovely park
Basilique St-Denis (older than Notre Dame, wonderful crypts, pleasant town center,) – reachable by Metro
Arc de Defense – good for a couple of hours

Do you like flea markets? My favorite is Puce des Vanves (Metro Port de Vanves)

Also, if you will be there the first Saturday, there is a celebration of the wine harvest of the vineyard in Montmartre, street parade etc.

I haven’t been to St Germain en Laye, but others on this board speak well of it being charming and interesting for an outing via RER.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 07:09 AM
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Dog and Cat Cemetery in Asnieres (Metro or RER)

Versailles - not the palace, the town. Great markets. Versailles (the palace) also opens its kitchen gardens one Sunday a month.

Cooking class/demo: Ritz-Escoffier and Le Cordon Bleu are the two famous ones; there are individual chefs who offer classes in their homes.

Bois de Vincennes: the chateau, the gorgeous gardens, the little white train, the miniature golf, the exhibits in the various buildings (the butterfly one was pretty cool)

Edith Piaf Museum

Walks, based on various themes: Americans in Paris; Writers and/or painters in Paris; architects and their buildings; the Three Musketeers; The
-est tout: the smallest, tallest, oldest, shortest, deepest, narrowest...

One neighborhood, read all about it in books and on the web, go exploring (an example: 15eme from Georges Brassens Park east through the St Lambert area).

Stop at the Hotel de Ville and as for a list of artist studios open to the public (various neighborhoods have "open houses" and the city hall has a list). At the Hotel de Ville, check out exhibits - they're free and focus, usually, on life in Paris.

The Textile and Fashion Museum - it's in the same building as the Louvre, and is open for special displays and exhibits (one time, it was the Duchess of Windsor's stuff).

Hotel de Soubise/history of France museum - all sorts of papers like edicts from Louis Quatorze and letters from Marie Antoinette while she awaited execution. Not exactly cheery, but definitely worth seeing.

The "permanent" flea markets like Vanves are great, but keep your eyes open for posters "brocantes". These are flea markets that are on a random schedule (like outside Pere Lachaise or rue Maubert, as examples) and sometimes offer the best junk (I always look for the table "tout 1 Euro!").
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 07:23 AM
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Have you been to the Carnavalet and Cluny museums?
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 07:32 AM
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I highly recommend the Carnavalet. Especially if you are interested in the French Revolution...however it covers much much more
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 07:44 AM
Uncle Sam
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This may be considered a major atraction, but I found the Rodin Museum to be outstanding. The Thinker, The Burghers of Calais and the Gates of Hell along with a hundred or more lesser sculptures make this an outstanding museum.

Old Jun 25th, 2002, 08:10 AM
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I'm with you on the Rodin Museum, Uncle Sam! In fact given a choice I would go there rather than the Louvre warehouse. Seeing the "story" of the affair with Camille in sculpture was fascinating. And the Gates of Hell..WOW! Sitting in the garden for a coffee while writing postcards was a welcome respite in pretty surroundings.
Before anyone gets their nose out of joint...I'm sure the Louvre is fantastic and I always wanted to go. But when we were there it was very crowded so we saw the most famous exhibits and left. My husband said he's glad we went to the D'Orsay first otherwise he'd have been put off museums for the whole stay.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 08:20 AM
Uncle Sam
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I agree that the Rodin is a great place to get away from the maddening crowds for some peace and solitude. We also sat out in the back and wrote post cards.

I also agree with your husband about the D'Orsay, also one of my favorites since I'm an Impressionist fan.

The Louvre, while large, IMHO is too impersonal and not as intimate as I like. I also visited the Musee Dali which was small and noticably more relaxing than the Louvre.

OTOH, when in Paris I suppose at least a run at the Louvre is in order.

Old Jun 25th, 2002, 02:43 PM
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Hi Lucy as Alice I highly recommend the Basilique st Denis, you can get there by metro, a gothic church where almost every single king of France is buried. fascinating
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 04:23 PM
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In the 16th, visit Balzac's House and the Wine Museum.

I also completely agree about Rodin, that's one of my favorite places in all of Paris! I've been in both the summer and winter and the contract between the two seasons is wonderful, it's like visiting two different museums.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 04:23 PM
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Les Arenes du Lutece
Tour Montparnasse
Montparnasse Cemetery
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 04:54 PM
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Thanks so much to everyone who replied (and who may yet!)with many great ideas. I'm sure we will quickly fill up the 3 days we are there. I'm quite nervous about travelling by metro, tho, after reading everything on this forum about the pickpockets. If we are reasonably cautious is there really that much to worry about?
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 05:03 PM
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We just returned from paris and the best thing we did was waking up at 5am and watching paris wake up. I know that it sounds sappy but Paris is very congested and it is a joy to walk around and not worry about getting run over. We took the RER to Notre Dame and found this wonderful pastry shop that had just opened and grabbed some goodies and sat in the square in front of Notre Dame and fiested. One of my best mornings ever.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 05:19 PM
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Lucy, don't worry about the Metro. I've been to Paris twice in the past year, and took the metro constantly,alone, with never a problem. If you heed all the advice about wearing a money belt, don't keep wallet in pocket, and all those obvious things, you should be fine! (I have never come across the hoards of Gypsy children I keep hearing about). Also, I think it pays to try not to look like a tourist.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 05:39 PM
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I second this recommendation, it is one of my favorites and Parc Monceau is delightful - Musee Nissim de Camondo at 63 rue de Monceau near Parc Monceau. I noticed that the Carnavalet and Cluny were mentioned and they, too, are great. I'm supposing that if you covered the highlights you've been to the Rodin. I would go there on every visit. I also enjoyed the Jewish Museum.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 05:46 PM
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There are definitely pickpockets browsing the metro. Just keep your valuables in a money belt or at least in front of you with your hand/arm over your purse. My sister insisted on using a very small backpack and someone tried to unzip it (I thwarted the guy by shoving him away!). After that, she wore it in front (not very pretty!). Otherwise, I wouldn't be scared to go on a metro.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 06:48 PM
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It will help if you plan your route prior to descending into the metro. Find a not-so-conspicuous place, ie. while you're having your coffee or lunch at a cafe table, and peruse the Metro plan. Find the stop that you want to end up at, then backtrace the route to best stop where you are, try to minimize the number of changes (correspondences). Then when you go down into the subway, you know which stops to look for on the overhead signs, and you can be more alert. I've been 6 times so far, never been picked (in Paris, anyway). Have been approached by people who "need a few francs/lira/ whatever" to get home. Know a coworker who saw someone get their bag snatched off the metro car as the door was closing. So, anyway, be sensible as you would in any crowded place, and don't keep important/valuable things in your outer pockets. The Paris metro is a wonderful transportation system.
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