Paris itinarary - Is it OK?

Old Apr 8th, 2008, 02:56 PM
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Paris itinarary - Is it OK?

Hubby and I (mid 30s)will be taking my parents (late 60s) to Paris for one week in mid May. I've done a lot of research here and came up with this itinarary. Any comments/suggestions are welcome.
Thank you!

Sun
Flight arrival @ 11am --- Take RER&Metro or Taxi (if too tired) to apartment (near the Louvre)
Arrive @ apartment @ ~ 1-2pm
Light lunch at a nearby deli
Monoprix
6:30pm: Seine cruise --- 1 hour
8 pm: Dinner @ Brasserie Ile St. Louis

4-day Museum Pass: Mon – Thurs
1-week metro/bus pass:Mon - Sun

Mon: pack lunch
Jardin de Tuileries
Louvre
Lunch: picnic in the garden
Musee de l’Orangerie (opens @ 12:30pm)
Place de Concorde
Place Vendome
Madeleine
Dinner: Chez Clement (before 7pm, 15 Euro fixed menu)

Tuesday:
Palais de la Decouverte, Petite Palais, Grand Palais
Arc of Triumph
Champs Elysees
Lunch: Laduree (great macaroons)
Hotels des Invalides
Musee de l’Armee
Musee National Rodin
Musee d’Orsay
Dinner: Home

Wed:
Musee Marmottan
Jardin de Trocadero
Tour Eiffel
Lunch: Crepes on Rue Cler
Pantheon
Jardin du Luxembourg
Musee Cluny
Walk around Latin quarter
Dinner: home or Brasserie Balzar
Louvre: closes at 9:45pm

Thurs:
Centre Culturel G. Pompidou, Musee d’Art Moderne
Musee Picasso
Place de Vosages, Maison de Victor Hugo
Lunch: falafel on Rue de Rosiers
St. Chapelle
Notre Dame
Berthillon
Dinner: Les Ombres 8pm

Fri: No museum pass
La Vallee Village outlet for half day
PM:
Basilique de Sacre
Montmartre
Moulin Rouge
Opera
Galaries Lafayette
Dinner: Leon de Bruxelles

Sat: Pack lunch
Versailles: Forfait Loisirs pass
Dinner: Last dinner in Paris, something nice?

Sun
Departure
elyang is offline  
Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:38 PM
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Monday = kill over and die

WAAYYY too much each day. You'll kill your parents. Trust me I'm mid 30's and just took my mid/late 60's parents to Paris. I had HALF of what you did each day and my parents were still asking me for sit down time.

You need to cut it in half or more.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:40 PM
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Minor point, but the Monoprix won't be open on Sunday. You can pick up some basics at a small grocery to hold you over.

Your schedule is well-thought out area wise, but I think you have too much scheduled. For instance, your Tuesday would be three days for me. But it all depends on how long you plan on staying in the various museums. I like museums but find that two a day are my limit.

I don't know where you're staying exactly but you can buy the museum pass at the tourist bureau next to the Pyramides metro stop. It right next to a Monoprix. That's if your apartment is nearby.

Sounds like a nice trip.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:42 PM
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It is a great plan if you want to collect your inheritance.

I am going in July (4th time)and the main focus will be museums. But I skip a day in between each museum visit. Museum walking for some reason is very tiring.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:51 PM
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The activities for each of your days would take most people 2 days. Don't know if you're all speed walkers and speed tourers - but to me you haven no time at all to relax, sit in a cafe, learn what Paris is like and enjoy life.

Seriously - you need to cut half the items you have listed - there simply isn't time to get in, see anything, get out and move to the next place.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:59 PM
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Sunday - I would not schedule a Seine cruise on arrival day. Good opportunity to fall asleep. Would also not deal with dinner at 8pm on Ile St. Louis (and I like that choice). Instead, I would walk over to the Tuileries and people watch... have a light lunch in one of those cafes. Have an early dinner and go to bed. Don't push it, you will be miserable. Also getting outside helps your body adjust to the time change.

Monday: Tuileries and Louvre in the am before lunch ? Don't worry about what time the Orangerie opens - you have a museum pass.

Tues - afternoon of Invalides, Rodin, and Orsay is waaaaay too much. I would schedule Orsay in the am when it is less likely to be crowded and stay for lunch there. Lunch there is one of the best museum lunches from what I've heard. Another option for eating (if you like to be outside) is Musee Rodin -- you can sit outside in the garden. Also makes a nice break.

Wed. - most of these things are things that I've opted not to do b/c I'm busy spreading out other days.

Thursday - Musee Picasso, Pompidou, Victor Hugo all before lunch ? I would skip one of those. (Personally, I love Musee Picasso and I find the Musee d'Art Moderne umm.... well... let's just say I'm clueless. This would not make my agenda.) Another good option for lunch is the rooftop terrace at Pompidou - gives you an excuse to go up the escalators without being overwhelmed (underwhelmed?) by the art.

Sainte Chappelle and Notre Dame obviously work well together. There will be long lines at Ste. Chappelle - please know with your museum pass you can bypass most of them. Are you planning on climbing to the top of Notre Dame ? If so, I would make this 1st and be there at 30 min. prior to opening or you will wait.

Berthillon is great - we've always had fun browing on Ile St. Louis. Could you combine and do them this way ?
- ice cream at Berthillon, walk down streets on Ile St. Louis, Notre Dame, come back across bridge for dinner at Ile St. Louis ?

Are you doing the Eiffel Tower ? This should be the first thing on that day since lines get huge.

Can't speak to Friday since I'm not familiar.

prioritize everything with an A, B, C. Do one A activity each day and one B activity. Throw the C's on a sheet of paper where they fit with regard to location knowing that likelihood of C's is low.

good luck
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 04:04 PM
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I just got back from a week in Paris with my adult daughter. We are both very high energy, and there is no way we could have done all the things that you have planned. What I'd suggest is prioritizing what you want to see, putting one or two "must-sees" on your list each day, and then fill in with the "hope-to-sees."

A few specific comments: We took the RER directly from CDG to Versailles, and it was brutal. We each had a fairly large suitcase, a carry-on bag and a purse, and trying to maneuver the escalators and the platform gaps (twice the suitcase wheels got stuck) was murder. After that experience, I would go without food in order to be able to afford a cab!

Parisians eat late. I understand the desire to save money by eating early, but we found that stamina-wise, it worked best for us to go back to the hotel and rest from 7-8 or so and then eat dinner at 9 or 9:30. That also gives you more time to do things during the day.

I don't remember the cost difference between a 4- and a 6-day museum pass, but we got the 6-day. That way we didn't feel like we had to crowd in all the museums in four days. If the difference isn't that significant, I'd suggest the 6-day. You can use it at Versailles, too.

You mention the Opera (I assume you mean Opera Garnier)on Friday. I don't know if this would fit would your budget or tastes, but actually attending a performance there is really neat, and gives you a chance to see the place, too. You can order tickets on line before you go.

As for Sainte-Chapelle, I'd suggest a musical performance there, too. We heard a cellist play there as the sun was setting and it was awesome. You can get tickets for that in Paris or before on line.

Personally, I wouldn't put seeing Galleries Lafayette on my list. It's nothing special. The Bon Marche in Sainte Germain is nicer if you just want to look around a Paris store, but in general, the prices are so high with the current exchange rate that we didn't do much shopping at all. For window shopping, walking along Rue St. Honore is fun.

We both thought the Pere Lachaisse Cemetery was interesing and got totally caught up in trying to find the graves of all the famous people. We spent an entire morning there. We were both surprised at how much we enjoyed it. I'd put it ahead of the Pompidou on my list.

Hope these ideas help.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 04:15 PM
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dear elyang,

well, if you haven't killed them on Monday, Tuesday should definitely do the trick

Seriously though, you have way too much each day. Your eyes will be glazed over and your feet numb. I'm pretty ambitious about Paris and art museums, and your itinerary would kill me. I'm a lot younger than your parents.

I love everything on your list and I appreciate how hard it is not to see it all, but I've worn out my family (and myself) on a few vacations and so I'm learning.

The D'Orsay and Louvre are pretty huge and I'd mix them with the churches or parks not with other art museums. Pompidou is a scene - fun, but crowded and tiring and hard on the feet so mix it with something restful.

I'd say, pick a big museum each morning and a small museum or church each afternoon. Then hit your other spots as you walk around from place to place. Rodin actually can take a few hours if you like this artist - don't rush through there - savor it. I wouldn't combine it with another art museum unless it was small like the L'Orangerie or just the tapestries at the Cluny. Well, I only liked the tapestries anyway, but you may love medieval art.

The Pantheon is near the Cluny and a peaceful, interesting and easy stop without wearing you out so that's a good combo...but then you have an awful lot else that day...

We love the Eiffel Tower best at night. How about seeing it after dinner at Les Hombres? It will be all yours and spectacular. Also, there is a balcony at Les Hombres where you can take photos of the tower or just gaze at it up close and personal.

Do get tickets for the Marie Antoinette exhibit at the Grand Palais - it is there until June. I loved it.

I love the Laduree in the 6th, upstairs, but thought the one on Champs was pretty dingy and dirty. Definitely needs a cleanup and renovation.

Have a wonderful trip!!

gruezi
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 04:15 PM
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Like others suggested, just prioritize the activities for each day. Get to what you can, but don't kill yourself doing it. Sometimes detours are fun!
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 05:12 AM
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HI E,

You are way too overplanned.

Example:
6:30pm: Seine cruise --- 1 hour
8 pm: Dinner @ Brasserie Ile St. Louis

What if the cruise takes 1:10 hr?

Choose one morning thing and one afternoon thing each day and spend the rest of the time enjoying Paris.

Sunset is around 8:30 PM. I would schedule a sunset cruise on the Seine.

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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 08:20 AM
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LOL! You guys are cracking me up. No... I am not trying to get the inheritance... Haha...

I had no idea that my schedule was too full. I thought all the museums are small except for Louvre. None of us are artists, so we will most likely just see the most famous exhibits in each museum. But I will definitely cross some places off the list, and then proioritize it.

Thank you all! I will have to study each of your posts carefully and rethink about the schedule.

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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 09:38 AM
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The museums are SMALLER than the Louvre (which it would take 2/3 days to see most of) but not tiny.

If you don;t enjoy art museums that much why go to so many of them?

There are tons of other intrestig things to see/do in Paris if you're not intersted in art. I would pick what I REALLY wanted to do - not what's on th top of the list in some guide book.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 09:42 AM
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I'm in my sixties and very active. Been to Paris 5 times, and walk everywhere, but your schedule is a little overwhelming. Way too many museums in one day.

It's just my opinion but:

Invalides--gray and boring and huge.

Don't miss the Carnavalat Museum in the Marais--small and charming.

Eiffel Tower--better at night and shorter lines.

Skip Gallaries Layfayette--there will be plenty of things to buy at all the places you are visiting and in the shops right on the street.

Place de Concorde, Arch de Triumph, Champs Elysees--nice, but big and very busy, noisy, and alot more like New York than Paris. Again, just my opinion.

Moulin Rouge area--seedy and old and sometimes scary.

Everything is so wonderful in Paris, why not take your time and enjoy. That way there will be things to go back for.

Our favorites:

Seine river cruise(anything but BatObus). Day or night.

D'Orsay and the Rodin. The Louvre, if you have alot of time.

Luxembourg Gardens and Place Vosges(including the Carnavalat).

Notre Dame, Ste. Chapelle, and Isle St. Louis.

Eiffel tower at night.

The Seine around Notre Dame at night, especially on Fri. and Sat.

The Tuilleries.

Versailles--absolutely stunning.

Just cut your list in half and enjoy one of the most beautiful cities in the world!!!

We'll be looking for your trip report.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 09:52 AM
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For an ambitious schedule, IMO, pick three activities a day: morning, mid-day and night. That is what we did - my mom (early 60's) ended up losing one dress size due to the fast pace.

Can't wait to see your revised schedule.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 10:17 AM
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Your itinerary left me gasping. Definitely review your priorities AND the length of time required to get from one to the other. For example, the Marmottan museum is quite distant from central Paris. Omitting the half-day at the outlets would save you some valuable sightseeing time, and cutting down your schedule will save your from total exhaustion. It's just not possible to do so much in the time you have available and still enjoy yourselves.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 10:29 AM
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As the other posters have stated, your itinerary is ambitious. Re-evaluate it on your, and your parents styles, not on the style of posters here. If you are not huge museum/art fans, but want to see them, then do it, and don't be dissuaded by others here who are more "hip" or 'chic'. You have to travel according to your style, especially if you expect this to be a once in a lifetime type of trip.

I suspect that if this is your first time to Paris, though, you will certainly want to return after being there once. I certainly sampled everything I could when I went, now I'm pining to go back and take a more leisurely pace.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 10:38 AM
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Too many places to see on some days.

Comments:

Sun, if you are going to do an evening cruise, do it after dark, to get the wow factor of the lights. Eat first, last cruise of day. Iassume you are using Vedettes du Pont Neuf (since you were planning on going to Ile St Louis for dinner). There are several good places to eat near there. Adn...since it is the first day there, if a cruise is important, factor in possbility it may be the snooze cruise. Nice park where boat is loaded. I had lunch last time at Brasserie, good. About 20 minute walk to Vedettes.


Mon: you are going to carry a lunch with you to Louvre and carry waround/check it. Might be simpler to get a crepe/sandwich from local vendor. Busy morning. I liked Chez Clement.

Tues. Very busy afternoon. Pick one museum, and another if time permits

Wed...won't be able to do Marmottan and go up Eiffel. About a 15 minute walk from Metro to Marmottan. I'd eat lunch that area, then head to Trocadero. I like Cluny, Balzar looked good when I walked past last time.

Thurs, won;t be able to do that stuff in one morning. Clip some out. Place des Vosges ++. Ile de la Cite and Ile St Louis would be a full afternoon.

Fri, what is this outlet? Fairly busy afternoon but might be doable

Sat...perfect!

Personally I'd pick one museum a day, as well as stuff in that area. So I might go to Orsay, lunch, then toru around Eiffel Tower area...or Louvre and then Rivoli/Champs area. You have many things to see, with some travelling between them. I'd hope you have built in some time to just wander, and not feel you 'need to be somewhere'.
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