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Île-de-France Auberges de Jeunesse


Île-de-France


Île-de-France Commentaires

It was my first time in Paris in the summer of 2009. The architecture and old buildings are over whelming. La Louvre is outstanding. Go up the Eiffel Tower about an hour before sunset. Enjoy the view of this magnificent city, as it looks cleaner from up there -- otherwise Paris is very dirty. Watch where you walk and sit, even in the Metro. Wear good walking shoes that are easy to clean. There are lots of Gypsies especially in tourist areas -- just walk away. Yes, local Parisians can be rude too. Oh and some French would help but you get laughed at with Québécois French.
Paris is wonderful. I just finished backpacking across Europe for 5 weeks and it is my favourite place! Try the Berthillon gelato on the Island. Accept no substitutes...it is the best stuff you will ever eat. Also try a Chocolate Crepe with real chocolate (not Nutella). It may be on the menu as Crepe du Chocolate du Maison. And try to speak some French! The locals will laugh with you, try to help you and overall be friendlier. Oh, and watch for the dog poop on the sidewalks!
The Montmartre area is the "real" Paris, away from all of the tourist and stuff. Eat at a cafe. Watch out for pushy guys in the Red Light District.
I would rent an apartment for ten days, that's what I always do in the Latin Quarter. This way you immerse yourself in the local lifestyle. You can buy fresh croissants every morning and have coffee on your balcony overlooking the city (most apartments have some sort of terrace). Notre Dame, the beautiful Sainte-Chapelle (holy chapel), Eiffel Tower, and Arc de Triomphe is a one-day affair (start early) and you can even fit in a cocktail in the evening on the roof of La Samaritaine at Pont Neuf overlooking the Seine. You need at least a day for the Louvre or any museum for that matter. Versailles is a day trip or at least most of a day but worth seeing the extravagance. Don't cram in too much sightseeing or your trip will seem over in a flash. The best and only way to experience Paris is just walking, riding the Metro and getting lost, spend at least a day doing this. The Metro is very easy to navigate with color-coded maps in every station and on every car. You can never really get…
Just two tips for Paris: Take a bottle of red wine, some bread, and cheese up to the top of Mont Martre to the steps of the Sacre Coeur at dusk and just gaze. And two: do a Fat Tyre night bike tour from the base of the Eiffel Tower, a great way to review everything you've seen that day as the sun sets in summer!! A truly beautiful city!
You could stay in Paris forever — if you can afford to — and still not get enough. I ran the whole time day and night and did not see the half of it. And remember, please at least try to speak a little French and you will be surprised how pleasant Parisians will be—don’t try and you will experience the stereotypical aloofness. My advice, buy one of those language learning cd’s at your local book store before you leave home and get the basics like “Ou se trouve le WC”, the last part is pronounced VC (Where’s the restroom.)


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