Cheap flights to Paris are available from Adelaide with Emirates flying via Dubai. Flights exiting Perth typically transfer in Doha on carrier Qatar Airways. Malaysia Airlines offers cheap flights with a stopover in Kuala Lumpur for departures from Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. Cathay Pacific also offers cheap flights exiting Brisbane, Sydney and Perth via Hong Kong. Other flight options from Brisbane and Melbourne could include a transfer in Singapore while China Eastern Airlines include a stopover in Shanghai for passengers leaving from Sydney. Taxis into the city centre can be expensive. The Roissybus is a 60 minute journey into the heart of Paris and the RER train leaves every 15 minutes. Shuttle services also operate every 15 minutes and the 5 stops serviced should get you close to where you need to be.
Plan ahead and the extensive public transport network in Paris will ensure smooth, stress-free travel around the city. The Paris Metro is easy to navigate, however services on the RER express trains typically service tourist needs a lot faster. Purchase a Paris Visite Pass or weekly pass for discounted, unlimited travel on the Metro and RER networks as well as bus and tramway (on the outskirts of the city) services. Paris is best explored on foot or bicycle and there are plenty of options to hire, including a city rental scheme – Vélib’ – similar to council run bike sharing in Australia. Taxis are surprisingly cheap of an evening and a combined transport effort will maximise your Paris experience.
The best of Paris is all about the planning and execution. Visit the Louvre, Musée de l’Orangerie, Musée d’Orsay and save some time for the lovely instruments at Musée de la Musique. Visit the Arc de Triomph, Eiffel Tower and Notre-Dame Cathedral and be blown away by the Sainte-Chapelle. Relax in the romantic green of Parc Monceau or enjoy a cheap afternoon picnic in the Luxembourg Gardens before being silenced by WWII atrocities, immortalized at the Deportation Museum. Explore the tunnels of the Catacombs and Marie-Antoinette’s prison cell at the Conciergerie . Round of your experience with a step away from iconic Paris at the Museum of Vampires and Imaginary Monsters, Museum of Hunting and Nature, Army Museum and of course the unquestionably sweet, albeit sometimes disturbing Doll Museum.
Paris shopping is as fancy as the price tag. La Bon Marché is like Paris compacted into a department store – elegant, fascinating, dramatic and the simplest of sophistication. Just outside the city centre, La Vallie Outlet Shopping Village will help the hip pocket and provide a beautiful Parisian retail experience. A 90 minute train ride from Paris, cheap designer labels and big brand names can be found at McArthur Glen and Marques Avenue in Troyes. Fine dining may cost more than your airfare, but try the truffle menu at Guy Savoy or the seasonal offerings at L’Astrance. Savour white chocolate-wasabi ice cream at Ze Kitchen Galerie and for a cheap escargot introduction, try Polidor. There are patisseries all over France, but for a cool sweet-tooth endeavour, take a cupcake class at Sugar Daze. The bar at Alcazar is an exquisite place to sip cocktails or dare to not to be captivated by the allure of Paris in the modern setting of La Vue, the 34th floor outlook over city lights and the Eiffel Tower. Party on the river at docked boat nightclub Batofar or dance like a rockstar at La Machine du Moulin Rouge.
24 September 2017
12 September 2017
22 September 2017
Diane J, Oxfordshire