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12 hours in Paris--what to do?

12 hours in Paris--what to do?

Old Apr 9, 04, 11:08 pm
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12 hours in Paris--what to do?

So, I just jiggered a connection on my RTW and have a 12 hour layover at CDG as I go from Cairo to Johannesburg. 11 AM to 11 PM on a Friday in September.

I was there once before for about 24 hours and took in the Eiffle Tower, Arche de Triumphe, and Notre Dame. (I was pretty jet lagged and felt like the Eiffle Tower was swaying while I was up in it...)

So--any suggestions for a pleasant, flexible, not too packed day? Nice district to walk through? Smaller museum? Cafe's to read the paper at? People watching?

Logistical question--are there lockers in CDG to stow my daypack?

Thanks!

JP
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Old Apr 10, 04, 2:27 am
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What are your interests?
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Old Apr 10, 04, 3:09 am
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There is no luggage storage facility whatsoever in CDG. Baggage lockers at the Gare du Nord railway station should be unavailable, within the framework of a high level of alert status (VigiPirate).
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Old Apr 10, 04, 8:02 am
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Walk the Islands.

Take a guide book to identify the places.
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Old Apr 10, 04, 8:25 pm
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A favorite small museum of mine is the Musee de Cluny. It is the museum of the middle ages. It is pretty close to Notre Dame on the Left Bank. It was an old monestary (or convent, forget which) and is on a site occupied since the early days of Paris. It was built on top of Roman baths which have been restored in the basement including some statues from the time of Augusta. Another interesting thing are the heads from some of the statues on the outside of Notre Dame. They were ceremoniously beheaded during the revolution because they were thought to be statues of the nobility. The heads were buried and turned up many years later. They are on display here. Also lots of stuff from the middle ages. The highpoint is the tapestry "The Lady and the Unicorn". Fair amount on the web about this such as http://www.licornedecluny.com/GBpage...amlicornGB.htm. But I found it really wonderful.

For a nice walk I would suggest the Mouffatard walk. Starts near Notre Dame/Sorbonne and goes through some real nice neighborhood for walking and markets.
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Old Apr 10, 04, 10:49 pm
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Originally Posted by GadgetFreak
...I would suggest the Mouffatard walk. Starts near Notre Dame/Sorbonne and goes through some real nice neighborhood for walking and markets.
Thanks! These are the kind of things I'm looking for! Is this walk mapped with signs, or something I'd pick up a map for in a tourist office?

Interests? Really kind of low-brain-usage stuff, since I'll be between flights. Maybe a cafe with some music, nice architecture, nice parks. Maybe I'll end up with a picnic supper and park in the grass by the Eiffel Tower.

JP
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Old Apr 11, 04, 1:58 am
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Mindless in Paris ... is the only way ...

Originally Posted by j379pa
Interests? Really kind of low-brain-usage stuff, since I'll be between flights. Maybe a cafe with some music, nice architecture, nice parks. Maybe I'll end up with a picnic supper and park in the grass by the Eiffel Tower.

JP
The Tuilieries gardens in front of the Louvre has several cafe kisoks where you can buy a beer and a baguette. There's also lots of green chairs - some specially designed to doze on - so this might be an option. Luxembourg gardens has a feeling of the communual gardens for the area and there is a cafe - more like a shed - with two or so dinner suited waiters. Next to Luxembourg is a stunning and nearly always overlooked church called St Sulpice. It's a gem - and not so much a religous thing but the inside - particularly behind the altar area is stunning. If you are into atmosphere's and real peace then this is so, so so restful and de-stressing. Particularly after lunch.

Around the Luxembourg St Sulpice area is an ideal eating area in the early evening - St Germain. A possible is Brasserie Lipp for typical Alsace brasserie fayre. Downstairs rather than up if you can manage it.

For a typical brasserie meal I'd go for either Bofinger or La Coupole. La coupole is convenient from the Luxembourg area. It's a piece of history. Sometimes difficult to negotiate - but if you go in = head straight for the bar at the back left hand corner and order a drink and ask one of the waiters around the bar to collar you a table. Metro Vavin for Coupole. Bofinger is near Bastille.

If you go for the picnic supper at the Eiffel Tower, suggest you make your way via Tracadero in good time just before the hour. You'll go via Palais de Chaillot. After dark on the hour every hour there's a light show on the tower that has to be seen from across the water from the steps of the Palais rather than from underneath the tower.

Remember to allow lot's of time at CDG if you're returning by train - for the bus shuttle at the other end.

You said nice architecture. Worth a thought if you fancy a short ride on the metro is to go to La defense and take the last exit "up" (in the direction that the train is traveling it is up past the front of the train. Mrs uk1 was astonished to see the Grand Arche from underneath. Designed by "Otto" (a Dane) and from the top has great views of Paris. Thr same line in the opposite direction takes you to Disney.

If it's mindless stuff - but you asked for it - then a day at Disney might fit. You can get entrance and train tickets at CDG.

Enjoy your day.
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Old Apr 11, 04, 6:42 am
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There's no shortage of good places for a picnic, but mt favorite is the little park at the western end of Ile de la Cite, access from the Pont Neuf. Great views of both people and the city. Other favorite places for picnic/peopl-watch are Luxembourg Gardens (convenient if you do the Mouffetard thing), the Jardin du Palais Royal, or one of the cemeteries.
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Old Apr 11, 04, 11:18 am
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Luxemburg Gardens is a great suggestion, especially as noted if you combine with the Mouffetard walk. You end up very close to there coming back from the walk. Also, I would second the suggestion about Brasserie Lipp. One of my favorite less formal restaurants in Paris.
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Old Apr 11, 04, 11:21 pm
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Wonderful information! I'll print it up & file in my travel folder.

Many, many thanks!--JP
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Old Apr 12, 04, 9:15 am
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Originally Posted by j379pa
Thanks! These are the kind of things I'm looking for! Is this walk mapped with signs, or something I'd pick up a map for in a tourist office?

JP
We took the Mouffetard Walk with Paris Walking tours (Hemingway's Paris)
http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homep...g/thismnth.htm

Their other tours are excellent also, including Montmartre and The Marais.

Here is another link to do it on your own
http://www.paris.org/Kiosque/dec96/mouffetard.html

We did it a 2nd time on our own, but I cannot find the link telling the exact streets to walk from Notre Dame. Maybe you can do a Goolge search if you decide to pursue this walk. I seem to remember Fodor's or Frommer's may have had suggestions.

If you go to Montmartre, on the way back, do the walk along Rue Lepic, past all the markets, down to the Metro Stop by the Moulin Rouge.

Last edited by ChgoBob; Apr 12, 04 at 9:21 am Reason: Edited to add something
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Old Oct 27, 07, 4:03 pm
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I have a similar layover -- about 13 hours -- in connecting from Newark to Johannesburg (in on CO, out on Air France) next Sunday.

My concern is this -- can we keep our checked baggage checked through to Johannesburg and just leave the airport with our carry-on stuff? I've never tried such a thing, and I don't know how this all works with customs, etc. Some international connections seem to keep you in a secure international area from plane to plane, so I wasn't sure how to handle this at CDG.

Thanks in advance for your help!!

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Old Oct 28, 07, 7:16 am
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This may be of some use.

A quick guide to days out in Paris in today's London Sunday Times.

http://travel.timesonline.co.uk/tol/...cle2690911.ece
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