Paris Travel Information
Paris - the very name conjoures up a multitude of images. Pavement
artists in Montmartre's lively Place du Tertre, evening cruises down
the majestic Seine under the famous bridges, dusty bookstalls along
the Left Bank and Bohemian restaurants in the Latin Quarter - and you
still haven't begun to describe this wonderful city!
This is a city of romance, elegance, light and life, where you can
promenade along the Champs Elysees at dusk or take in a razzle dazzle
cabaret show at the Moulin Rouge, one of the many superb cabarets in
Whatever your style and whatever your budget, Paris has something to
suit everyone, and is sure to delight you time and time again!
below some helpful travel information regarding flights and travelling to
Travel Information by Hessle Travel
Undoubtedly one of
the world's great cities, France's capital has a seemingly inexhaustible
supply of sights and attractions, from the iconic Eiffel Tower and
world-famous Louvre to the dramatically Gothic Notre Dame and the swanky
shops and cafes of the Champs-Elysees.
An amble within a 0.8km
(0.5mls) radius of the central hub of the Place de la Concorde with its
fountains and 3,000-year-old obelisk offers monuments, museums, grand
boulevards, formal gardens such as the Tuileries, superb 18th-century
colonnaded mansions and a plethora of cafe terraces where one can sit
and watch the world go by.
And when you are tired of walking, river
boats called "bateaux mouches" are a memorable way to see the city,
particularly atmospheric at night. The snaking River Seine bisects the
city, creating a left (Rive Gauche) and a right (Rive Droite) bank. The
left (south) bank is synonymous with the arty Bohemians of the Latin
Quarter, while the right (north) bank is associated with conservatism
The city is divided into 20 districts called
"arrondissements" – each with its own distinct personality – and is
enclosed by the "Peripherique", or ring-road motorway. 2 million people
live within this area, which is only a maximum of 12km (7.5mls) across,
with another 8 million in the suburbs beyond.
In north-central France, 205km (128mls) from the sea at Le Havre. 298km
(186mls) south of Calais. 14.5km (9mls) north of Orly international
airport; 26km (16mls) south west of Charles de Gaulle international
Straddling a loop in the
River Seine at a historically convenient crossroads for trade.
There are around 1,500 hotels of all
categories, from luxurious palaces to small family-run places. Prices
are generally lower than in London but one of the great luxuries in
Paris is space, so unless you are in a traditional palace, a room is
likely to be small for its price.
Some self-catering apartments
and aparthotels are featured by tour operators as an alternative to
traditional hotels. Straightforward apartment buildings are usually
referred to as "residences". However, some trendy small hotels include
the word in their name when, in fact, they offer only normal hotel
art galleries and museums; strolling along the banks of the Seine with
its beautiful bridges. A museum pass for 1, 2, 3 or 5 days allows
unlimited visits to all 60 of the city's museums and monuments at
Nightlife: A densely packed, year-round schedule of
festivals, theatre, ballet, opera, cinema and classical or pop concerts;
old favourites such as the Moulin Rouge and Lido; wide choice of bars
and nightclubs, mainly around St Michel, Pigalle and especially Les
Halles; Bastille for music and piano bars.
There is a lively club
scene and music from most parts of the world can be heard. Sophisticated
nightlife doesn't get going until after midnight and on Saturdays
traffic jams on the boulevards are quite common at 2am.
A bewildering range of restaurants with something to
suit any taste or pocket; set menus represent particularly good value.
Dinner in the evening is more of an event and correspondingly more
expensive than lunch. National dishes, such as duck a l'orange and steak
in Bearnaise sauce, are often found in British restaurants; for the more
adventurous, there are snails and frogs' legs.
however, seems to have passed the French by: sauces laden with butter
and cream feature heavily, and popular desserts include rich chocolate
mousse, creme caramel and pungent cheeses while patisseries sell
exquisite pastries, from flaky croissants to tartes aux pommes (apple
tarts). The best-quality ethnic cooking comes from the French regions, N
Africa and Vietnam, reflecting the city's cultural mix.
Large, enticing department stores on both sides of
the river include the traditional Bon Marche, the sophisticated
Samaritaine and the sprawling Galeries Lafayette. Renowned fashionable
shopping areas include the rue Faubourg Saint Honore, the Madeleine, the
Left Bank and the Grand Boulevards.
The Golden Triangle, between
the Champs Elysees and the Seine, is the most prestigious area with
boutiques of the most chic designer names. For trendy boutiques look in
the Marais, Place des Victoires and rue Etienne Marcel; it's also worth
exploring the jazzy, middlemarket Forum des Halles shopping centre and
innumerable small independent shops. Many street markets and at weekends
sprawling flea markets (most fairly commercial) are found at points on
Half day: River
trips, day and night; panoramic bus tours, day and night; visits to
Full day: Impressive Versailles chateau and
gardens; Chartres; Disneyland Paris.
The incredibly efficient, frequent and reasonably priced Metro is
augmented by express trains labelled RER (Reseau Express Regional), an
efficient bus network, 2 suburban tramways and taxis. Several ways of
securing advantageous fares are advertised at Metro stations and most
tobacconists. A "carnet" of 10 Metro tickets offers significant savings.
A Paris Visite pass, valid for Metro, bus and RER trains for 1, 2, 3
or 5 days, is good value. Free maps of the public-transport systems are
available at Metro stations. 15,000 taxis operate in the city, with
fares considerably lower than in London. A frequent bus service operates
between Charles de Gaulle airport and the centre.
terminal is situated at Gare du Nord.
Paris is cosmopolitan and urbane, and there is something here for
practically everyone; it is particularly popular for romantic weekends
throughout the year. The downside is the traffic, the hustling pace of
life and the prices. Paris can be reasonable – with good housekeeping,
but it is easy for expenditure to spiral out of control in the main
Direct flights from most UK airports are available and with the launch of Eurostar services it heralded a whole new era of
fast, comfortable rail travel options to Paris.
Travelling on the Continent at speeds of up to 186mph in air
conditioned comfort, this is an exciting way to enjoy a seamless
journey to Paris.
The Paris Metro, RER and bus services provide an excellent, frequent
and good value way to see the city.
If you are not in a hurry take a bus and benefit from a sightseeing tour
at the same time!
There's so much to see and do in Paris that we recommend planning
your trip before you go.
Make sure you see all the major sights, but also visit the Latin Quarter
in the streets around St Severin, stroll along the Seine between Pont de
la Concorde and Notre Dame including the two islands, and visit the
Tuileries Gardens and the Bois de Boulogne.
Apart from sightseeing, Paris museums are a must. See the Mona Lisa
in the Louvre, visit the galleries at the Musee d'Orsay or take the kids
to the Science and Industry Museum at La Villette.
If you fancy a bit of shopping, Paris is the city for you - top
boutiques are in rue du Faubourg St Honore and in St Germain, department
stores like Galeries Lafayette and Printemps are open Mon-Sat 0930-1830,
or try the weekend flea market at Porte de Clignancourt.
Visit the many galleries of Paris
Paris' cafe society is second to none, and the Cafe de la Paix in
the Grand Hotel by the Opera is one of the most famous.
For restaurants, try the areas around St Germain, Montmartre or the
boulevard du Montparnasse - look out for the 'Plat du Jour' and the Menu
Prix Fixe for good value dining.
For a special occasion take in one of the famous cabaret shows.
Book your city break to Paris with Hessle Travel.