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Paris:: Top things to do according to you!

Paris:: Top things to do according to you!

Old Sep 20th, 2010, 10:16 AM
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Paris:: Top things to do according to you!

Found an old thread for the top 100 greatest things to do in Paris. Needless to say it way exceeded 100. Times have changed since the last post as well, so 10 years later, what are your favorite things to do in Paris?
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 11:20 AM
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You can easily find people's top things to do by reading Fodor's destination guide and numerous guidebooks--Louvre, d'Orsay, Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, concert at Ste. Chapelle, etc.

What I find gratifying is to read about Paris and find something to do that wouldn't make anyone's top ten list. Get off the beaten path and see or do something that is of particular interest to you. Maybe it would be to go someplace that is mentioned or associated with a novel set in Paris. In one of our visits, for example, I wanted to visit Lafayette's grave. It turned into an even more interesting trip because the cemetery was the site of a couple of the mass graves from the Bastille guillotine. I remember that more than getting lost in the Mesopotamia section of the Louvre and walking a mile to find the exit!

You'll have a wonderful visit and don't overschedule yourself. Allow time to wander.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 11:21 AM
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Definitely an evening cruise on the Seine, to see gorgeous Paris after dark. Does not have to include dinner, or be expensive. The Batobus is a convenient hop-on-hop-off way to get around Paris, day or evening. (Watch for its variable end time at night.)
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 11:30 AM
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Last trip I went to the Chapelle Expiatoire. Not soemthign you will ever see reocmmended. It is a shrine built over the spot where Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette's bodies were thrown after their executions. Nice little park, marble statues,etc..

While once in a while you hear about them, last trip I "ended up" at the entrance to a set of the covered passageways. Something very traditional (?) about these (often ornate) walking areas.

I've been a couple of times to the Louvre des Antiquaires. Across from the Louvre, it is a three story building housing high end antiquities dealers. Almost as good as visiting a museum.

On the Left Bank, along Seine, behind Notre Dame, there is a plaque of the spot where a soldier was killed defencing Paris during 1944. This, as well as the ones in the Marais/Ile St Louis talking about the deportation of Jewish families are poignant.

Arene de Lutece is a roman arena located in the thick of the Latin Quarter. Nice place for lunch, and some interesting stone carvings.

fete de la Musi
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 11:47 AM
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Fete de la Musique is held on the summer equinox and brings out all type of music, all over the city. Be it a guitar player and his buddy on drums, to a classical violinist on anothe street corner, to a stage on St Germain with the corwd singing frnch pop songs, a unique event.

I try to do at least one classical concert, held regularly in some of the Paris churches. Amazing acoustics, and some high quality musicians.

A to do...go watch the salsa dancers at the outdoor Musee sculpture en Plein Air, Left Bank at Seine. I've done a few Seine cruises and spotted people dancing by the Seine at night. And...it is also the outdoor sculture museum, so that's another reason to go.

I always plan on being near the Seine and its bridges at night. I never tire of just being at these spots, taking in the sights and sounds of Paris around me.

Ile St louis, Place des Vosges and Palais Royal are on my list of return places I like to go to every trip.

My last trip I stayed out in the 16th, found and went to "my" local cafe, dinner in the area, saw one of the top french movies at the local theatre, shopped at the nearby Monoprix. No tourists around.

Local markets/market streets are a nice exposure to french culture. Last trip was Montorgueil, Buci, and at the 4th arrondissements 'mairie'. I remeber going with my sister who lived in the 16th to her weekly market..and watching the vendor asking the little old lady when she was going to eat the potatoes, and picking out the right ones for her.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 12:20 PM
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Berthillon ice cream, of course!

And Ste. Chapelle, with its incredible windows. And the Opera Garnier... what a gorgeous place. And relaxing in the des Voges. And strolling through the Latin Quarter.

But really, cw has it right. Don't be afraid to wander around, unscripted, and just experience the ordinary riches of this extraordinary city.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 12:58 PM
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If you want to do the Vedettes du Pont Neuf one hour boat ride, you can save a few euro by prepaying for the tickets online; you do not get a reservation for a specific day/time, so it can be used anytime. I would not do it now, however, for next spring, but shortly after the first of the year.

www.vedettesdupontneuf.com

I particularly like the 9:30 cruise, which gets you to the Eiffel Tower to see it sparkle on the hour.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 03:02 PM
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A meal at Le Train Bleu in the Gare de Lyon.
Wander around Jardin du Bagatelle.
Food section of Galleries Lafayette.
Eiffel Tower at 10 pm for light show.
Walk along the Seine at any time.
Boat trip on Canal St Martin.
Musee D'Orsay.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 03:08 PM
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St Chapelle (I gasped out loud when I first saw the windows)
Berthillon's ice cream
bread and cheese lunch beside the Seine
climbing to the top of Notre Dame's tower
Angelina's chocolate
reading a book at Shakespeare and Company
dinner at Florimond

But I loved just wandering the streets - especially in the St Germain area
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 03:10 PM
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Oh and the shops on the Ile St Louis - amazing
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 03:19 PM
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Sitting at sidewalk table in a cafe and watching Paris go by...
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 04:05 PM
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Musee d'Orsay.
Looking at the city below from Sacre Coeur.
Just sitting in the Tuilleries or Luxembourg and people watching.
Just seeing the Eiffel Tower twinkle. I still get a thrill even if it's on tv.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 05:14 PM
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Ooo, jscarbary reminded me of a morning at Sacre Coeur listening to a musician in the sun - must do!
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 05:19 PM
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Though worthwhile for a first-timer, you are going to be among the sweaty masses at all the above. Try instead:

*Place des Vosges, also in the Marais, Paris' most beautiful square
*Ma Bourgogne restaurant on the Place des Vosges
*The beautiful little square on the Ile de la Cite (no tourists go there).
*Chez Paul restaurant on the above Cite square. Go for lunch when all the lawyers from the court are there. Authentic very old place.
*Cluny Museum. Not crowded like the d'Orsay & Louvre, tho smack dab in the middle of touristy St. Germain.
*City of Paris museum
* Hot chocolate at Angelina on the Rue de Rivoli (this one is crowded)
* Picasso Museum (yes, popular, but one of the city's best)
* But a Time Out and see what's going on. There's always tons of gallery shows, movies (fun to see with French subtitles), concerts, etc. Plkus there are literally hundreds of tiny niche museums (musical instruments, dolls, hunting, etc.)
* Buy a baguette, some cheese, cold meats and wine at a market or deli and have lunch in a park or along the Seine.
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 05:48 PM
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Hi KayDoll,

I think you may be interested in this link below - it is a free walking tour and it is quite good for a newbie to Paris. They will take you around Paris basically pointing out the highlights. This lets you acquaint yourself with what to see and where everything is. It's not an indepth tour at each place you visit but a brief overview of what's to see and where it is located.

I did the tour with my DS March 2009 and thoroughly enjoyed it - the cost is whatever you choose to tip the guide.

http://www.newparistours.com/
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 06:56 PM
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Really, does ANYONE actually go to Paris and not have Berthillon? That's the only time I ever eat ice cream in the winter. LOL
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Old Sep 20th, 2010, 08:02 PM
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Sacre Coeur
St Sulpice
Musee d'Orsay
a glass of champagne every nite before turning in
a walk along the Seine
wine, cheese, cafe in a cafe along St Germain (as much as possible)
macaroons from Laduree or Gerard Mulot
a light picnic at Luxembourg Gardens
Rodin Museum
The Louvre-Greek & Roman antiquities section
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Old Sep 21st, 2010, 05:40 AM
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Great suggestions! I can't do all this in 9 days!
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Old Sep 21st, 2010, 05:52 AM
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That's why you have to keep going back! Leave in 14 days for our 20 something trip!

Street markets and street and metro musicans are always fun. For a more serious day the Shoah Museum should be on everyone's list
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Old Sep 21st, 2010, 06:00 AM
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There's a gelato place on Ile St. Louis, which some people prefer to Berthillon's.

I went by Saturday around noon and it was closed. But they were charging like 3.5 Euro for a scoop.
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