When you prepare to travel to Paris everyone is going to tell you to visit Mona Lisa, take the elevator of the Tour Eiffel or sip a coffee in a high visibility cafe. The problem is Paris is not only very beautiful, but also very crowded. Tourists gather each year in Paris and they always go to visit the same local attractions. This means you will have to deal with looooong queue and you might not have the chance to actually see the attraction. Here are all the things to avoid in Paris for a really amazing trip.
Head the opposite way of Louvre
About 99% percent of all tourists who visit Paris flock to Louvre to see Mona Lisa. This not only makes a long queue, which is going to take hours to finish, but it also means you will have to fight a lot to get a glimpse of the actual paint, which is pretty small and can easily be blocked by another tourist. Moreover, the price of the tickets is skyrocketing!
To skip all the hassle, head to the Musee D’Orsay or go really alternative and visit the original building which housed Louvre or Napoleon 3rd’ s apartments. None of these locations are crowded and you will also save a lot for the tickets, while you will have the opportunity to see the core of the Parisian culture.
Pick your tour wisely
Da Vinci tours are very popular, but they come with a huge problem: you will be disappointed if you expect the tour to show you the places you’ve read about in the book. Your pocket will also be disappointed, because Da Vinci tour is expensive. To invest your money better, just pick your tour carefully. There is the Rive Gauche tour, the Paris Food Crawl and the Montmartre, just to name a few, which feature multiple sightings.
Skip Tour Eiffel
The line for visiting Tour Eiffel is extra long and you actually have to wait in seven distinct lines. Skip this altogether and go visit L’Arc de Triomphe or Montparnasse. There are no lines for these two, or very short waiting lines and when you do reach the top of the building, the city view is just as amazing as it is from Eiffel. Moreover, you can take a picture of the entire panorama, including the Eiffel itself.
Avoid famous cafes
Everyone is going to tell you how chic it is to have a coffee at Cafe de Flore or Les Deux Magots, but this is only going to increase your expenses, without any actual benefit. To really experience the culture of Parisian cafes, go to the smaller, lesser known establishments, where you will get the full service: amazing drinks and snacks, perfect service and affordable prices. As you drink a coffee in one of the sidewalk cafes of Paris, you might even get the chance to share couple of ideas with French citizens.
Avoid flights from Beauvais
Paris has nearby airports, but Beauvais is not one of them, so avoid landing on it. The ride from Beauvais to Paris and vice-verse is about 90 minutes long, if the road is clear, so it’s obvious it will cost a lot. Save the money and pick a closer airport, like Charles de Gaulle. Another option is to find a cheap, or, at least, affordable, Paris airport transfer to hotel or a shuttle. From Charles de Gaulle you can also take the metro, if you arrive after 5AM. In the worst case, you can take the taxi, which is going to cost a lot, but still less than a ride between Paris and Beauvais.