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Your Favorite/Most Useful Paris Maps

Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:14 AM
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Your Favorite/Most Useful Paris Maps

I will be spending eight nights in Paris in early March. Plan to do tons of walking. Staying in the 7th in a Paris Perfect apartment. The only map I currently have is the huge Michelin one which is starting to shred after 14 years of use. Some of you have many Paris maps, I've read here (like Travelnut). Please advise the ones you like the best, and where I can find them. Whoops, I also have a Metro map, but I'd like a good bus map, too. Merci!
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:20 AM
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All the Paris maps you will ever need are explained at

http://tinyurl.com/dm3dq

Note that many of them (and all of the large ones) are available free from the RATP.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:25 AM
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Most big box bookstores (Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc.) stock the laminated fold-out maps of major European cities. These maps usually have subway system insets and other useful summaries.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:26 AM
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The best maps for Paris are those that you buy there from the news kiosks for 6-12€, depending on which version you want. The 6€ (prices are estimates) one is pocket-size with each arrond. on a 2-page spread, showing the metro stops (but not the buses, tho there is a bus map). It's called something like "Paris par Arrondissement" by l'Indesponsible...

Most first-timers get by fine on the Streetwise laminated maps, which gives you a better feel for positioning, because it isn't 'chopped up' as much as the one above.

The "Paris Mapguide" by Middleditch has been updated and is very good also; it's a thin booklet and can be found at most bookstores for about $8-10...
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:29 AM
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Thank you, all! Just what I needed.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:30 AM
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Sorry, but I can't resist adding that I haven't used paper maps for years. I carry hundreds of maps in a PocketPC running Microsoft Pocket Streets. It will pinpoint any address as well as displaying any of 24 categories of points of interest. The maps are zoomable from entire city scale down to street level.

Both PPCs and Palm Pilots can display maps like the dozens at ratp.fr in pdf form, and both palmtops (as well as some SmartPhones) will run a free subway navigating program you can find at http://nanika.net/metro
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:31 AM
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Another vote for the Streetwise, or Artwise, laminated maps. You won't have to worry about using them in the rain (God forbid!).
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:39 AM
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We've been using Streetwise Paris (available at Borders or Barnes and Noble) for our last several trips to Paris. We've used others along the way but it remains my favorite - handy, easy to carry, easy to read, easy to fold and waterproof. There is a Metro map included but I don't recall whether it includes a bus map, too.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:43 AM
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Agree with Travelnut on both counts. For the bus lines we like l'Indespensible map. Like the Middleditch book, it shows the exact streets the buses run on.
And the maps in the DK Paris book are good.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 09:48 AM
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The bus map you can get free from the RATP also shows the exact streets the buses run on. Download it into your computer from here:

http://www.ratp.info/orienter/f_plan.php?nompdf=bus_paris_geo&loc=secteur&fm=pdf

By the way, you can print out a section of a pdf file. Pan and zoom to the area you want to print, then hit the printer icon on the Acrobat Reader toolbar. Select "Current view" on the "Print Range" menu, and then OK.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 10:25 AM
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On a recent trip to Paris, I went to Staples with the metro map, had it enlarged to approximately 10x12 size in color. When asking directions from the concierge at my hotel I used my prepared map. He was pleased at its size and wanted one himself but his machine couldn't copy it in color.
The point is, the free maps have very small print so if you have a map., go to a place to have it enlarged before your trip.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 10:28 AM
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We've also used Streetwise for years and love them. They are small and fold-up, very easy to carry around and not too difficult to pull out and read on the street if you are lost.

Tracy
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 10:31 AM
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Yet another vote for Streetwise. I have had good luck getting them from Amazon.com.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 10:49 AM
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Having a Métro map enlarged seems a rather extreme measure to me, seeing as how the Grand Plan de Paris measures 51.38 x 39.96 inches.

When you download these maps from ratp.fr and display them on a 15" monitor, they render about actual size at 100% zoom factor.

One more time: these large-format maps are all given away by the RATP. Some are available in Métro stations, some from the boutiques.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 11:03 AM
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Another enthusiastic vote for the Middleditch Paris Mapguide. It's much more detailed than the Streetwise maps, and therefore more likely to be helpful if you're not sure where you are and you only know the name of the little one-block-long street you're on.

It's lightweight, fits easily in the outside pocket of a bag, and mine is still in good shape despite having been used extensively on several trips to Paris.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 11:16 AM
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Thanks for all these excellent suggestions. Now I have no excuse for getting lost, but I probably still will!
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 11:31 AM
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Gariem, I too enjoy the Streetwise series. As far as getting lost, I have done my fair share of that also. I now have a small compass attached to a hook on the outside of my purse. Now we can find north and orientate our map accordingly. It is quite helpful!
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 12:24 PM
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Robe,
Thanks for the link to your Frommer post with the rapt info. I wasn't able to open the pdf for the bus map; in the pdf browser, I have the active link for the map but I keep getting an error on download. Any ideas?
Thanks,
Whitey
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 12:33 PM
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PS The Paris metro and bus street maps open up fine. It's only the tourist bus services that I'm having trouble with.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 12:53 PM
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I swear by the ROUGH GUIDE Paris map. Not the one in the book- the separate map.

It is NOT laminated. Rather, it is made of untearable, wipeable tyvek! You can just crumple it into a ball and then smooth it out later if you have to. I also find it MUCH easier to read than Streetwise and a lot more portable since it can be folded.

It's $7 or $8.
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