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Paris off the beaten track: an amazing experience by Inge Pincket

Updated: May 20, 2022

Paris is one of the most romantic cities in Europe. Spending a weekend or a bit more is something that should be on everyone’s bucket list.

Why is Paris such a must-see city in Europe for people coming from all over the world?

The Eiffel tower is world famous of course, but Paris has to offer so much more…

Arriving in Paris

Most people arrive in Paris by train or plane. I would try to avoid coming by car as you really don’t need a car in the city. Paris has the second oldest metro in Europe and it’s very well organized and quite cheap too.

By train (TGV) you probably will arrive in ‘Gare du Nord’, you can take a metro to your accommodation from this station.

By airplane it will probably be Charles de Gaulle, which is the main airport of Paris. There’s a direct train to the heart of Paris from there as well.

Going around in the city

As mentioned above, the best way to get around in Paris is using its very well-organized public transport. The metro was founded in 1900 and at present there are about 302 different stations and 16 lines taking approximately 5 million people around the city each day.

Tip! Buy a carnet of 10 tickets to start with, it’s much cheaper than buying a single ticket or a multi-day pass. You can find all ticket prices here.

I would recommend you download the RATP app, this app will show you current timings, distances and even how crowded the trains will be.

Finding Accommodation

Hotels are very expensive in Paris. When traveling on a low budget would recommend you stay in an Air B&B or a hostel. We stayed @KubeHotelparis in the neighborhood between Gare du Nord and Montmartre. A very nice hotel with an excellent breakfast for only 11€ per person.

What and where to eat?

There are many restaurants, bistros and brasseries in Paris where you can have lunch or dinner. A good one always will offer water and bread (baguette) for free.

Some recommendations:

- For Italian foodlovers: Pink Mamma a very popular spot in Paris (ask for a topfloor table)

- French fine dining: Restaurant Korus This is the place where the locals go, always a good idea!

- Café De la Paix Very famous venue in Paris, close to the Opera Garnier.

Pink Mamma
Pink Mamma

Café de la Paix

What to see?

Of course, you will have to make a choice on what to see when you are only a few days in the city. Most people have the Eiffel tower on their bucket list but make sure to make a reservation in advance if you want to go up. A nice alternative to see Paris from above is the Tour Montparnasse and costs you about 1/3 of the price of the Eiffel tower.

Other favorite places to see are Notre Dame Cathedral, Gare d’Orsay, Centre Pompidou, Arc de Thriomphe, Musée du Louvre and the Champs Elysées.

This time we have chosen to go a bit off the beaten track and find some hidden gems:

1) Galerie Vivienne

This beautiful gallery is to be found in the 2nd arrondissement, behind the Bibliothèque Richelieu and near the Palais-Royal. It’s one of the most iconic covered arcades in Paris.