Want to see Paris without the tour group but you're afraid of getting lost? Don't worry; do what the Parisians do. Use a small discreet booklet map. Paris taxi drivers use this map!
I highly recommend the "Paris Pratique Par Arrondissement" which is a dark blue 5 x 7 inch booklet map that has a complete index. An arrondissement is a district so each page is a distinct district of Paris. Each arrondissement is on a separate double page (larger districts on two double pages) and there is a Metro map, an RER map, bus map and emergency phone numbers for Paris. You can't possibly get lost with this little booklet. It fits into a pocket or purse and is easy to open and view even in close quarters (like the Metro). Update: For some reason the 2014 edition removed the emergency phone numbers. It has been replaced by an alphabetized list of famous sights and map locations. In an emergency dial 112. Just program it into your phone.
You can get the little map booklet at most news stands, tabacs, bookstores, FNAC stores or at Amazon.com online. We update at a news stand because there are so many on the street. The last time I checked amazon.com it was $14.15 so I'd recommend waiting and buying it in Paris or getting a used one. When the trip is over, it's a great souvenir. Amazon also offers an English-French version and it is a waste of money. You need the French street names because that's what you see on the street signs. There are no explanations so the English is an unnecessary expense ($39+) and FNAC sells the booklet for 5 euros.
Update: Be sure to get a 2014 edition or later since they have changed the end stations of four Metro lines. You need the name of the last station on the line to navigate the system. If you have an older edition of the map, stop at any Metro entrance and get a new and free map of the Metro to use with your Paris map.
I cant imagine anyone in Paris without walking, just choose an area and enjoy this amazing city. Walk along the Seine river too, cross the bridges, find hidden corners.
Another alternative is to cycle! You can try Velib bicycle system that has many spots with bicycles, you can rent one for the day (1.70e) or get a weekly ticket (8e).
The metro network in Paris is huge as it covers every little corner of the city, there is a station everywhere so it will help you to go quickly to your destination, choose wisely the lines you take though when you change lines, sometimes you have to walk a lot between them and maybe it’s quicker to walk on the street.
Inside the stations (don’t forget to get a free map of the metro network) you will see signs(pic 1) that clearly point to specific lines with different numbers and colors. There are many metro lines. For exit always follow SORTIE.
Use this site for metro search: http://www.ratp.fr/en/ratp/c_5000/accueil/
The single ticket costs 1.70e but you can buy a carne of 10 tickets for 13,30euro
The day ticket (it’s called Ticket Mobilis) is also handy, just check that there are different zones
1-2 zones (1 day 6,60e)
1-3 zones (1day 8,80e)
1-4 zones (1day 10,85e)
1-5 zones (1day 15,65e)
if you plan to use the metro more than 3-4 times per day like we did you may buy Carte Paris Visite, it’s a multi day ticket (that gives also a discount in some attractions) available in 3 and 5 zone versions.
1-3 zones (1d 10,55e, 2d 17,15e, 3d23,40e, 5d 33,70e)
1-5 zones+DCG/ORY(1d 22,20e, 2d 33,70e, 3d 47,25e, 5days 57,75e)
We used the 5days version because we used the metro at least 4 times per day and it was included the trip from/to the airport, the trips to Versailles and Disneyland and we also had some discounts at some sites like Triumph of Arc, Disneyland etc check this site for more info: www.ratp.fr
RER trains a suburban lines (you will need them for Versailles or Disneyland)
The tickets for Rer Trains are different when it comes to places like Versailles/Disneyland because they are on different zones.
Check the monitors for your destination (pic 2), on the left column you see the name of the train which can be anything, this is what you will see on the front panel of the train
There numerous boats that will take you on cruise along Seine, it’s a great way to see the beautiful buildings from another point of view but due to cold weather we didn’t try it. We saw many people boarding on them near Eiffel tower (pic 3).
Like in every touristic city there are hop on hop off buses that do a specific route with different stops. There are different companies (pic 4) but one day pass costs about 24euro
Near Abbeses metro station you will find a funicular (pic 5) that will take uphill to Sacre Coeur in 2’ without getting tired on the numerous steps. You need a metro ticket or you card. We did it once just for the fun of it
Nothing beats strolling Paris’ boulevards and backstreets but the city also has an ultra-efficient public transport system encompassing the metro, RER (regional) commuter trains, and buses, as well as the hugely successful Vélib’ bike-share scheme and world’s first electric-car-share scheme, Autolib’. To combine a river cruise with land transport, hop on and off the Batobus (www.batobus.com), with eight key stops along the Seine between the Eiffel Tower and Paris’ botanic gardens, the Jardin des Plantes. I spent four days in Paris this past December and spent nearly one entire day visiting the Eiffel Tower, Musee d'Orsay, Cathedral de Notre Dame, the Louvre, and the Trocadero with only the Batobus and my feet for transportation. It rained more than it didn't during this particular visit so it was very nice to be able to retreat to the (relatively) warm comfort of the boats between stops on my overly compressed tour, but I still came home with my worst cold in years, which I am still trying to shake after three weeks.
Paris is certainly for walking.
You get to see so much that is missed by getting around Paris any other way.
For instance there are Artistic plaques in many places, Many statues, small parks and gardens that are gems, Historic places that are only really accessable on foot, and so the list goes on.
There is no better way to explore a city like Paris than on foot. There is so much that is missed when riding the metro or in car. Exploring small side streets and back alleys can lead to interesting shops, small churches or a long forgotten statue.
After all the best way to discover Paris is on foot.
Our favorite walks from Square of the Star and Arc de Triomphe down the Champs-Elysees to the Louvre.
We also suggest the river banks; the walk: from the Eiffel Tower >> Champ de Mars >> to the Ecole Militaire >> to Invalides >> Pont Alexandre III >> Grand Palais & Petit Palais >> Champs-Elysees >> Place de la Concorde .
Use The Ile de la Cite with Notre-Dame as a starting point >> to Luxembourg through the Latin quarter >> to Hotel de Ville (City Hall) >> Centre Pompidou >> to Le Marais and Place des Vosges through Ile Saint-Louis.
One of the best ways to fully experience a place is on foot. The same goes for Paris. It gives you a chance to get lost in its streets, feel the atmosphere, closely admire the architecture... not to say take pictures from different, maybe unusual angles.
One recommendation is to have a good, sturdy umbrella type stroller. I saw people trying to navigate the large stroller system and/or jogging strollers and it is really hard. We purchased a Maclaren Volo and absolutely love it. It is light weight and easy to open/close in a hurry. It is also comfortable for my little girl and has storage room underneath. Another recommendation is a good bag. We purchased the SkipHop bag. It fits perfectly over the handles of the stroller and holds a lot of stuff without being too heavy. This was the only bag that I carried the whole time we were there.
“The plaques receiving a street name inscription will be rectangular and will have different dimensions depending on the size of the name being inscribed.”
— from a 1938 law about Parisian street signs
The best way to experience Paris, or any great city, is on foot. Your feet always are the best mode of transportation; this is also cheap!
To find the city’s many sights knowledge of its street signs would be helpful. The street signs in Paris are designed with an old-style appearance; this helps reinforce the notion that the city is so romantic.
Generally street signs are fixed to the sides of the buildings at either end of a street block. They are much higher than eye level, and even higher than signs affixed to polls in the USA, so look up! Traditionally they are dark blue trimmed in green with white lettering and accents. Paris is sectioned off into 21 arrondissements. The number of the arrondissement is often shown in the little semicircular space above the street name.
Most of the time, I walked. I probably walked about 5-6 kilometers per day while I was in Europe. In Paris, I walked about 10 kilometers. Just looking for the restaurant for our VT meet, I walked 50 blocks!
I don't have problem in walking because I can see more and upclose.
I bought a good pair of shoes and although it was a bit expensive, it was a good investment for me. The shoes gave me better posture and better physiological walk.
My friend talked me into buying an MBT Physiological Footwear before I left for Europe. I bought it at Walking Company. If you wanted to buy one, just go to their website.
I thought Paris was a great city to walk - the streets are charming and there is a lot to soak up that you would otherwise miss by taking the Metro everywhere. Get yourself a good map and go for a stroll (I prefer the Knopf pop-up mapguide books - they break up the city by section and provide detailed street-maps of each section so it is easy to get your bearings). It took me about 4 hours to walk from the Sorbonne to the Louvre, through the Tuileries to the Place de la Concorde, back across the Seine to the Eiffel Tower, across the Seine again to the Trocadero and up the Champs-Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe. It was a great way to see the city and I didn't feel so guilty when indulging in all the delicious bread, wine and pastries!
No matter what type of transportation you use, you will do some walking in Paris, especially with the metro system. However, walking around is a good thing. You can not experience the beauty of Paris in a bus or a car. For my group, walking kept us awake during long days without sleep. Also, it was great exercise after being on a plane for eight hours.
In conclusion, no matter what type of transportation you plan to use, bring comfortable shoes. I cannot stress that enough.
With only one line, the T3 tram, running within Paris city limits, coverage is still limited and concerns mainly south Paris, but the Paris tramway is expected to grow in the coming years.
You can ride the Paris tramway using regular metro tickets and passes.
For itineraries on the Paris tramway, consult the RATP itinerary-finder page.
I think one of the best one on-line interactive maps available is the Paris Yellow Pages website, Les Pages Jaunes:
Plug in the address you want to go to, click "itineraire", plug in the address (or metro or train station) you're walking from, click the radio button "piéton" and it'll provide you with walking distances and approximate time. I've been doing this since my first trip in 2001 and it works brilliantly. In fact, I've used this website for extensive research on a book of walking itineraries I'm currently finishing up!
You may also click on the photos and "walk" down the streets. They have photos of practically every building excepting those areas that are private residences such as la Cour de Rohan (an interlocking series of 3 beautiful courtyard in the 6th arrondissement).
It also gives you phone & fax numbers (always handy).
There's also the "Vue aérienne" or "Vue 3D" functions to see aerial views of Paris (excellent for finding green space in Paris).
And, of course, they have maps!
This and cityvox's web page are the 2 best sources I've found for official websites.
Or use http://ratp.fr/ to figure out time, walking time & distances with use of busses, metro & RER (regional train system).
stroll, walk fast, eye left, right, up down, front and back
the neck muscles ire, but who cares, stop for a cafe latte or aqua efferescent
blast why did i not learn to parley fraahnsay in my youth
had the opportunity with an Alliance F teacher for free
but was 2 friggn lazy
however the mensch and humansm will get me around the next trip
fyi, bus and %L[Within central Paris cost is the same as Métro tickets, and the same ticket is ... There are 3500 cars which transport roughly 6 million people per day. ...
www.paris.org/Metro/ - 32k - Cached - Similar pages]metro are useful
for the no walking tourist, try the open upper deck bus
better still Paris Rapide 1 to 6 day ticket