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Paris for 3 nights - enough time for Normandy?

Paris for 3 nights - enough time for Normandy?

Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:18 AM
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Paris for 3 nights - enough time for Normandy?

My husband, son and I will be arriving in Paris at 2 in the afternoon on March 30. We have 3 nights in Paris before flying to Munich. We've never been to Paris before. My husband and son are interested in history.

First day, after we arrive, we'll do some sightseeing (we always try to stay awake the first day by staying busy). The next day we'll probably see Eiffel Tower, Arch, maybe the museums.

Is it feasible to make a day trip to Normandy? We'd have to leave Paris, see Normandy and return the same day. Flight to Munich is at 12:45 the next day.

I don't want to do this if will have us too rushed. However, it would be a highlight of our visit for my husband and son. There is also the possibility that husband/son would go to Normandy and I would wander around Paris (oh, the joy!)

Thanks for any ideas.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:54 AM
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I don't think it is worth your while spending time on this question. Two full days in Paris plus a bit of the day of arrival is very little time to taste that remarkable city. While it seems possible that they could get to Normandy and see a little of the WW2 sites, it would be very little and would be rushed. There is more to history, even WW2 history, than the Normandy landings, and Paris offers many windows on the past.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:24 AM
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There are companies that offer day trips from Paris to the Normandy battle sites and I have read reports here by several people who went on them. A search should pull them up.

It would certainly make the Paris visit very brief, but if your husband and son really want to spend one of their two full days in Paris this way, I would say they should do it (especially since you seem to find the idea of a day on your own in Paris a joy!). Let them decide.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:28 AM
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Padraig is right. If Normandy is a must, then rent a car at CDG and spend your time there. But I wouldn't do both with such a short time.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:29 AM
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NO. Please don't do that. You know, there is quite a lot of history to be had in Paris!!
I would advise you to maximize your very short time in Paris and hire Michael Osman for at least a day.
It is just not reasonable to try to do Normandy.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:35 AM
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Normandy will wait for another trip.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:50 AM
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It is difficult to pass on something you really want to do but you just don't have enough time. Do not fear, husband and son will find more than enough to do in Paris. You'll all want to return for a longer visit and then you can include Normandy.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:06 AM
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I do not understand this at all: your husband and son would find a trip to Normandy a highlight and I gather much more so than spending time in Paris.

If that <b>is</b> the case then no amount of people here telling you that Paris is fabulous, wonderful, out of this world, not to be missed, the greatest city on the planet, etc., etc., etc., is going to change your husband and son's minds..or will it?

I agree fully with the others that Paris is wonderful...so are lots of <b>other</b> places in France.

Let them rent the car and go to Normandy for the day..what harm will it cause?
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:16 AM
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Um, it will definitely take you more than 1/2 a day to see &quot;the museums&quot; in Paris. There are dozens of great ones. If that is your interest, then definitely spend all 3 days in Paris. If you have no interest there and would prefer Normandy, then go there.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:24 AM
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Hi S,

&gt;The next day we'll probably see Eiffel Tower, Arch, maybe the museums. &lt;

Maybe A museum.

&gt;There is also the possibility that husband/son would go to Normandy and I would wander around Paris (oh, the joy!)&lt;

Sounds good to me.

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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:43 AM
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With only 3 nights (2 1/2 days or so, since you are getting in in the afternoon), I'd choose one place or the other. I LOVE Paris, I think that is where you should spend this trip. But if Normany is more important for you, I'd go and stay there only, not spend any appreciable time in Paris. You can't &quot;do&quot; Normandy in a day, we just stayed up at Mont St. Michel for 3 nights (last year for 2), and I still haven't seen the tip of the iceberg in the Normandy/Britanny area. Not all the beaches, not the bayeux tapestry, etc.

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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:50 AM
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Wow! So many responses in just a couple of hours!

Thanks for all your suggestions. I really don't want to pack too much into this trip. After Paris, we're going to Germany for 5 nights, and then Copenhagen for 1 night (courtesy of our frequent flier tickets), so we're going to be doing some running around anyway.

Our son (youngest of 3) is a senior in high school. He just told us recently (while my husband and I were on our anniversary trip to Hawaii!) that instead of going to college he wants to join the Marines. We are very much struggling with this decision of his. I don't know if seeing Normandy would dissuade him or get him more excited about the military. If it would dissuade him, then I'll definitely try to work it into our itinerary. So -- any thoughts?
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 04:58 AM
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Hi S,

&gt;Our son ...just told us recently ....that instead of going to college he wants to join the Marines. &lt;

I suggest that his career in the Marines would be greatly enhanced if he went to college first.

(It would also give him a chance to consider whether he really wants to join the military.)

Has he looked into getting an appointment to Annapolis?

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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 05:07 AM
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It is very difficult to give an advice to somebody that seems to travel in a very different mode than you. You have 3 + 1 + 5 = 9 days and plan to visit three countries. It is far too much in my opinion. Do you think that this is your only trip to Europe? If you are thinking about more trips in the future, why not stay now all the time in one country, for instance 5-6 days in Paris and 4 -3 days in Normandie?
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 05:16 AM
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If you've visited Paris before then with three days it would be okay to visit Normandy in my opinion. It's pretty much a full day trip to Normandy and there are sightseeing tour bus companies that offer tours there.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 06:19 AM
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Normandy might benefit your son - especially the D-Day beaches.

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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 06:26 AM
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This is definitely an inquiry, that it doesn't matter what the rest of us would or wouldn't do. Certainly you can go to Normandy. It's just a matter of you deciding your own priorities. best wishes, Suze
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 07:26 AM
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Normally we are much more relaxed travelers, but we are using frequent flier miles, so the only way to Munich was through Paris; and that's why we decided to stay in Paris 3 nights. We have to fly to Copenhagen for one night in order to get back to Atlanta. We usually prefer much more laid-back itineraries, but we figure our son will enjoy the faster pace.

Yeah, Ira, I totally agree with you that it would be better for him to go to college first. It's hard to convince an almost 18-year-old boy of that, though. But nothing has been signed, so there is still a chance he will change his mind.

Thank you, everybody, for your comments. I realize that it is our decision to make, but I was just wondering how feasible other people felt this plan was.
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 07:38 AM
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If you do decide to do a daytrip to Normandy. I can strongly recommend www.paris-trip.com. We did a daytrip with them to Normandy and it was the highlight of our week in Paris. We were able to see Ponte de Hoc (Omaha Beach), the new and old memorials, the American Cemtery, Arromanches and the Caen Peace Memorial Museum. A full day but worth it! Request Lionel as your guide.

Also, I second the recommendation for Michael Osman. He could really help you maximize a day in Paris and you will learn so much. His website is: http://www.geocities.com/parisfinder/
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Old Nov 30th, 2006, 07:52 AM
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I'd stay in Paris myself, since you've never been there. So much history there for your husband and son. What about Les Invalides, Napolean's tomb, etc, for 'military' history? Since your time is limited, I'd skip the Champs Elyssee and the Arch, and focus on the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre.

Otherwise, I'd opt for staying in Paris and sending the guys on to Normandy, if they are set on going there.

I'm sorry to hear your son's leaning toward joining the Marines instead of going to college. I have an 18 year old son myself. It would break my heart. Good luck with persuading him otherwise. Maybe have him watch Saving Private Ryan's very graphic scenes of battle.
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