One's never more than 1/2 a mile from a metro station when inside the Peripherique (like the M25, only further in), so any district can be left easily. Trains are every 6 minutes off-peak, more than London's 2.5, & this system goes at only 30mph, but this system seems so much more efficient than London's. Maybe that's because the stations are always deserted because most of them are in a seemingly random place, rather than the centre of attention at a bus station. Trains stop for less than 10 seconds & seem to do everything to minimise that, such as unlocking doors while the train is still moving. but at walking speed, rather than making passengers wait 5 seconds for the driver to get used to the train being stopped. Travelling on the metro is nothing like in London. The stations are way-points that are ticked off, rather than major events, one will spend more time waiting for the train than getting to the platform & will usually be able to hear if they've missed their train when they've entered the station, & journeys feel more like téléportation. The only problem I had was that the ticket machines wouldn't accept Visa, so I had to wait in the queue for tickets
Sunday. We arrived about 6:10pm. Got our luggage right away and headed to the Metro (RER). First you board a bus and take a 10 minute ride to the Metro station. It was a $10 ticket per person, one way to Paris (Les Halles).
We got to the apartment about 7:30. We checked-in with our liaison and did a walk-thru and inventory (very thorough) of the apartment. We dropped our bags and barely unpacked. Famished, we were out the door searching for a place to eat at about 8:30pm. Fortunately, the owner of the apartment gave us a list of restaurants and cafes in the area before we left. I took some time to look them up online several days before leaving. Nothing worse than arriving in a strange town, hungry and not knowing where to go or where to eat. We found a lovely restaurant and settled into a good hearty meal of steak and frites. 10:00pm and we went for a stroll and headed back to the apartment to 'try' and get some sleep.
70+ years ago when I was a teen-ager in NYC, standing at the window in the front car of the train and peering out into the dark tunnel with the white lights dimly sketching the walls was a thrill of which I never tired. I have over the generations tried to introduce my children and then grandchildren to this experience wherever it presented itself. (None of them live near any "undergrounds".) The Paris Metro is an ideal first experience. The trains run right->forward, so finding the first car is easy. Before the age of 10 most children do not immediately recognize the dynamics and cannot put themselves in the place of the driver
Coming from New York, the Metro stations in Paris were a revelation. Not only were they clean and bright, but many stations had wall decor reflecting the particular stop. For the Bastille, a rendition of the fall. For Varenne, Rodin copies including The Kiss. And for the Louvre copied antiquities.
I use it on every visit ... The MAIN train stations, Gare du Nord, Gare du San Lazarre, Gare du ??? Those trains take you to suburban areas (Versailles included).
The METRO is the local city subway. It is super easy to navigate, clean and actually entertaining. I always love the musicians and buskers who ride playing their accordian.
Try learn IN FRENCH how to BUY tickets on the METRO. The clerks in the booth are NOT friendly. As a matter of fact, my friend and I purchased packets of 10 tickets and 1/2 of them were BAD! Thank goodness I could speak enough French to fight with the clerk and get the BAD one's replaced.
I enjoy all the wild, creative posters the french use for promotion in the metro and on the street.
This poster was the hot one in fall 2005.
It was everywhere, even on the big angle / streetfront of Gallerie Lafayette. When you get an upclose look at the message and the models it is in my opinion easy to see why. (l'arf ! )
Maybe it is just because the culture is a change from what I see everyday or maybe also the more natural and relaxed attitude the french have about sex and using it in advertising,
but part of the fun for me everytime I go to Paris is simply some of the advertising on the street.
I kept my old hogs-head one from 2003 just for nostalgia.
When in Paris see all the things that every tourist sees. Paris is a beautiful city and even if you're not 'touristy" take the metro to every major sight you possibly can because 1)when will you be there again? and 2) the metro is so well connected in the city that you can see virtually everything in a day if you wanted to really rush it!!
It was amazing to see the Arc De Triomphe in lights at night as well as the Eiffel Tower. You can't go to Paris and not see the obvious!! When you're in the city you can see the Eiffel Tower pretty much at every turn in the distance...we didn't go up the tower but we did go to it.....the line-ups can get pretty bad!!
This is something that you cannot avoid seeing - but I think that you should hold your steps for a few minutes and really LOOK.
Many of the old Art Noveau/Jugend barriers and lamp posts still exist. The picture shows the one at Montmartre station Anvers.
This is as much Art Noveau as you can get! The flower stems, the red buds (lamps), the organic frame holding the Metro sign. It is 100 percent. Look at the barrier that surrounds the stairs as well - also total Art Noveau. And very good craftsmanship at that!
Hmm... this is somewhat manipulative but it's a :"tip" nevertheless.... haha
In a nutshell, when the parisians go on strike, the poor backpackers get free metro rides.... :*) ie, the gates will usually be left open following the counter/metro staff being somewhat distracted with strikes or worst, in the strike... :*)
Beware when you are on the metro!!! There are many pickpockets both on the train & in the tunnels. This picture was taken in the Montmartre district of Paris when we were on our way to the Sacré Coeur. Not all of the metro entrances look like this one, so I had to take a picture of it.
Let's see, it took me almost 1 1/2 hours to get a taxi to my hotel which is only less than 10 mins away from Montparnasse.
Yikes, strikes are awful! Look at all these people queing for the taxis! What a unique experience! ;-)
Of course you will get a subway to go some place. Be sure you will listen to good music. Acordeon… Reminds me the sounds of Caruaru, a small city near Recife where we have many many many many acordeonists (is it the name of who plays acordeon).
A wonderful music played just for 50c.
I went to the Congres Centre with some English friends for a workmeeting and i went through Paris by car and by metro but i prefer the metro its very quick. U wont have worries about the car getting crashed!
U should see the Eiffeltower offcourse and the Champs Elysees, museums and many other places. We stayed at a nice quiet hotel but i forgot the name .
I went by train from Eindhoven to Bruxelles and then went on the train to Paris. I had a fantastic time.
Trust me, you can't say you have been to Paris alreay if you don't have pic of Paris' Metro.
Well, can you recognise which station it is in the pic? ( I can tell you it's on Line 4)
Tis an excellent way to get around the city. Tix are cheap and include most trains and buses. The system is very well planned and easy to get around even if you don't speak French.