Should we add Paris to our trip???

Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:06 AM
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Should we add Paris to our trip???

Please throw some advice my way. I'm torn. My husband, I, and two girls (almost 3 and 5 months) live in Italy (USAF). In November, we'll be heading up to Trier, Germany for a wedding. We'll leave here 21Nov, fly to Charleroi, Belgium, rent a car and drive to Trier, where we'll stay 5 nights and leave there Wednesday morning. We have no plans for Wed. and Thurs. nights, but need to be back in Belgium (Tongeren) by Friday night. We'll stay a couple nights there and then fly home to Venice on Monday out of Charleroi.

What I would like to do is to drive to Paris on Wednesday from Trier and then drive back to Tongeren Friday morning. This would really only give us Thursday to see the city. I know Paris is worth it, but is it really worth making the trip w/ the 2 kids for 2 nights? How is the drive in and around Paris? My husband hates driving in big European cities where we don't speak the language, but taking the train is just not going to happen this time. It's either drive or skip it.

We're leaving to go back to the states early next year, so I'm afraid we won't have the chance to go back to Paris until years from now.

If we don't try Paris, can you reccomend somewhere closer and slower that we might enjoy that's still in France?

Hope I made sense. Sorry it's so long!

Cricket
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:24 AM
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Others might say go for it, but IMHO Paris is too wonderful a place to visit under such a hurried and stressful situation. You are young and will have plenty of time to go to Paris later when you can enjoy it properly.
 
Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:31 AM
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Paris is very easy to reach by train from Belgium. The train from Brussels takes less than 2 hours, and you will be in Gare du Nord; no hassle with driving and parking, and your 3-year old will enjoy the Thalys train. I have been to Paris several times, and live in Antwerp, but I sometimes do a daytrip; early morning train there, 8.30 train back. You know your children best, and know if it will be possible. There are a few good threads on here about Paris with kids.
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:40 AM
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I agree with Dumas and I assume you meant it when you said the train trip isn't going to happen so will not try to change your mind on that score.

Paris is certainly a "fun" city to drive in but perhaps not any more so than other cities...I have never driven tghere just observed the traffic.

I think you would be doing yourself a grave disservice trying to see even a little bit of it under this sort of stressful circumstances, timeframe constraints, etc. I know right now it seems as if you don't do it the chance will never come again but I'd be patient and wait. The children certainly aren't going to miss seeing it and won't remember it even if you do go.

I am sure others who are in agreement might offer some possible alternative destinations.
 
Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:47 AM
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Thanks for the quick replies. As I was waiting for responses, my youngest woke up and wanted to eat, and my oldest woke up at the same time and she was crying about something else. I don't know what I was thinking. We're on the road a lot, and they're fairly good travelers, but I'm just not up for the stress. My husband will be elated that I've changed my mind.

I would love to hear some other suggestions on where we might enjoy touring through those 2 nights.

Thanks so much,
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:56 AM
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Instead of driving an extra 6 hours or so and instead of driving around a big Euro city (Paris), your husband might like visiting the WWII battlefields of the Battle of the Bulge in eastern Belgium (Bastogne) and in Luxembourg. There's some pretty scenery out that way.
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 05:57 AM
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Hi Cricket,

I agree with Dumas.

Trier is about 300 km from Reims
"The Champagne region owes its reputation to its sparkling wines. Champagne cellars are always a great attraction, the best 'tasting routes' being from Epernay to Reims and the area east of Troyes.
Reims is well known for its magnificent gothic cathedral, enlightened by two beautiful rose windows. It also has the largest Romanesque church in France: the Basilique Saint Rémi, not to mention museums such as the Palais du Tau and the Salle de Reddition (General Eisenhower's room in the second world war)".
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 06:03 AM
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Cricket, while in Tongeren, you may want to try and visit Maastricht. It's nearby (half an hour's drive probably), and an absolutely lovely small city.
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Old Oct 9th, 2003, 06:17 AM
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Thanks guys. I'm going to start researching the WWII battlefield area. We're going to daytrip to Lux while we're in Trier, so maybe we can do the Lux battlefield then. My husband WOULD love that. Didn't even occur to me. We're heading to Tongeren to shop for antiques, and to Christmas markets when we're in the Trier/Ramstein area. My husband is the anti-shopper, so this would be wonderful for him. Sounds like its all fairly close. =)

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