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Mommylew Mar 24th, 2014 03:47 PM

What city outside of France to visit with an 8 day trip to Paris?
My family decided to take a first time trip to Paris and want to visit another city as well. We originally planned on Barcelona but are wondering if there's somewhere else in Spain, Italy or elsewhere to see on our 8 day trip from the US that would make more sense time-wise. We've been to the UK, so wanted to see something new. We only have the total of 8 days including travel time.

Would appreciate any input. Thanks for your time!

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 03:54 PM

>>We only have the total of 8 days including travel time. << . . . which only leaves you 5.5 days free to see/do anything. If you travel to some other country you'll lose another .5 to 1 full day so down to less than 5 days. And that is only if you fly open jaw into Paris and home from elsewhere. If you must return to Paris to fly home, you lose another half+ day.

So stick to Paris IMO.

Cowboy1968 Mar 24th, 2014 03:55 PM

With a total of 8 days you have day #1 with an early arrival and probably a jetlag, and day #8 with an AM departure. So you have 6 full days in Paris. Which is not bad to get to know the city, incl. the typical day trip to Versailles.
If the "other destination" was a total must, I'd get an open jaw ticket so you won't have to backtrack to Paris (and lose more time). Brussels and Amsterdam are in easy reach by highspeed trains.
Though I would not cut my first time visit to Paris short to only five days.

thursdaysd Mar 24th, 2014 03:57 PM

If you have to see somewhere other than Paris on such a short trip at least make it somewhere an hour or two away, IN France. I would vote for Chartres, which is a charming small town in its own right, and also has one of the best cathedrals anywhere, but I have no idea whether that is the kind of thing you would like.

StCirq Mar 24th, 2014 03:58 PM

"including travel time" means you have 6 days, and one of them with jetlag. NOT enough time to throw in another country, IMO.

Judy Mar 24th, 2014 03:59 PM

Stay in Paris and do a couple of day trips if you'd like to get away from the city.

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 04:06 PM

The reason I said 5.5 days . . . you arrive in the AM, have to get to central Paris, leave your bags, get a bite to eat, return sometime later when your room is ready and check in. Plus you'll be jet lagged - so day one nets you <i>maybe</i> half a day if you are lucky.

You sure ain't going to do the Louvre or the Musee de Orsay or any other serious sightseeing your first day in Paris.

Mommylew Mar 24th, 2014 04:11 PM

What if we were able to add 2 more days?

Ruby99 Mar 24th, 2014 04:14 PM

I could easily stay in Paris for a whole month and see new stuff every day, and I've been 5 times already. But, if you absolutely must go elsewhere, I would go to Brussels or Bruges, Belgium. Makes for a long day trip, but it will let you see another totally different country. We did this in 2008 (11 days in Paris, 1 day in Bruges) and it gave us the Belgium bug and we returned there for 2 weeks in 2010 concentrating only on Belgium.

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 04:15 PM

Then you'd have a week in Paris . . which is wonderful!

Or you could do a day or two in Normandy, or visit the Loire, or visit Giverney, or visit Chartres . . . .

Mimar Mar 24th, 2014 05:13 PM

How about a couple days in Amsterdam and then fly home from there? The fast train from Paris to Amsterdam takes 3 hours 20 minutes.

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 05:19 PM

Amsterdam is definitely a possibility - just don't think that 3+ hour train ride means you get a full day in the next city. By the time you check out, get to the station, take the train, get to your next hotel and check in - even that 3 hour 20 minute train ride eats up half a day.

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 05:22 PM

I just read on your other thread . . . w/ your health issues (best wishes w/ that) it is even MORE important to limit your travel hassles. 8 days minus flights minus jet lag . . . even if you can add 2 days stick to Paris. You can always take a day trip or on overnight to somewhere in the countryside.

KTtravel Mar 24th, 2014 07:52 PM

If you really feel the need to visit another place, you could consider flying into Paris and out of London and taking the Eurostar train in between.

However, given the health issues mentioned, I would stick with France -- either do day trips from Paris or visit another area.

Christina Mar 25th, 2014 04:18 AM

I can understand wanting to see more than Paris on a trip to Europe, most people do. Of course 8 days isn't long, but most people do visit more than one city in that time period on a trip, I sure do.

But the options are just the obvious, which is close enough. Of course London is, but you don't want to go there. So that leaves Amsterdam or Brussels (outside France, of course there are places in France you can easily get to in a few hours by TGV train). YOu could go to Switzerland, also, you can get to Lausanne by TGV in only 4 hours, direct.

I don't know about health issues, that's your call.

I think a lot of people on Fodors think people should never go anywhere but Paris, and talk about spending months there. Most people don't want to do that and do want to see other things in the world.

colduphere Mar 25th, 2014 05:08 AM


FrenchMystiqueTours Mar 25th, 2014 05:45 AM

I'll meet you in Barcelona cold. Can we do that as a day trip?

colduphere Mar 25th, 2014 06:00 AM

FMT - ask the folks up above with the stopwatches if a day trip is possible. They can figure out things to the minute.

colduphere Mar 25th, 2014 06:03 AM

((They always remind me fondly of this movie.))

KTtravel Mar 25th, 2014 06:26 AM

Oh I didn't read carefully enough to realize you had already been to London. Another option is taking a cheap flight from Paris to another city. You might take a look at to see cheap flights from Paris to other cities.

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