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We’re funny (usually), controversial (sometimes) and insightful (always!). Our travel experts share their experiences below in hopes of hearing back from YOU. So read, comment and enjoy!

Posts in ‘Things to do in Paris’

Paris Vacation Apartment Rentals – Advantages for Family Vacations

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Nowadays, a wide selection of vacation accommodation options for family holidays are available. No longer are families obligated to pile into small hotel rooms, or pay astronomic prices for suites. Paris, especially, offers an enormous selection of vacation rental apartments ranging from comfortable studios to large luxurious lofts that are perfect for family vacations. Whatever size or price range, you will find a vacation apartment that suits your family’s needs. If you are thinking about renting a vacation apartment in Paris for your next family holiday here are some advantages:

Cost effective Renting a vacation apartment is one of the most cost-effective options for family holiday accommodations. In Paris, where hotel prices are extremely high, prices for vacation apartments are generally less expensive than booking multiple hotel rooms. In addition, the amount of additional space that you get with an apartment compared to the price paid makes this type of stay much more economical. Plus, all vacation apartments have fully equipped kitchens, so savings from cooking some meals at home can also be factored into overall cost savings.

Comfort Vacation apartments are more comfortable for families than other accommodation options. Even if you rent a studio, the size of the space is generally larger than an average hotel room in Paris, or any other big city. In some apartments, children often have their own bed, or even room. There is always a dining area and, as mentioned above,fully equipped kitchens where you can make homemade meals. Vacation apartments include all the comforts of home.

Practical Families with small children must consider their special needs when looking at holiday accommodations. Vacation apartments offer practical solutions to meet these needs such as a calm place to have naps without the worry of housekeeping knocking on the door or to prepare special meals that only mom can make! In addition, a kitchen offers the freedom for midnight feedings and an apartment provides space for playing.

As you can see, vacation apartment rentals are one of the most practical and cost-effective accommodation options for families traveling to Paris.

About the author

Donna has lived in Paris for over ten years and has traveled extensively throughout the world with her family. She recommends booking a vacation apartment for your next trip to Paris.

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May 6th: happy birthday Eiffel Tower, 122

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Eiffel Tower, Paris

Eiffel Tower, Paris

The Eiffel Tower is 122 years old!

Ok, yes, there are more important events today in the world, but it’s nice to learn a few interesting facts about the Tower on the anniversary of its opening to the public, during the Paris Universal Exhibition of 1889.

Leaving aside the controversy and the uphill battle that such an iconic building has had to go through during the 2 years of its construction, 122 years later we have to admit its success is unparalleled.

Less known facts and figures:

- it took 199 workers 2 years, 2 months and 2 days to put it together (hundreds more worked in the factories where the parts were produced);

- these workers managed to fix together some 2.5 million rivets…  remember Charlie Chaplins’s “Modern Times”?

- when opened in 1889 it was reaching a height of 312 meters, and it’s now at 324 thanks to TV and radio antennas;

- there are actually 116 TV and radio antennas installed on the top…

- the architect Mr Gustave Eiffel had planned to built its private apartments on the top of the tower, today the 3rd level platform, at 274 meters. But as the elevators did not get installed in time, walking the stairs up to “home” did not turn out to be a great idea.

- the tower is extremely resistant to winds, with its top oscillating of just 12 cm (5 inches) in strong winds.

- no one knows exactly the number of steps to get to the top… the number goes from 1665 to 1802. Anyone wants to go and count?

Here’s a list of all tours and tickets to see the Eiffel Tower, including a private behind the scenes Eiffel Tower tour of the areas not open to the public (very limited tickets available).

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Customer review: Paris Opentour Hop-On Hop-Off Bus

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I cannot reccommend the hop on hop off tour bus enough! It was so convenient educational and took away all the stress of trying to find my own way. I had 4 teenagers with me, but many had small children. Make the most off your holiday and enjoy the time instead of stressing out of how to get where.
I am going to Rome next year and will certainly be booking the bus tour there. Value for money & stress free!!
Great shopping at Sacre Coeur!, Kids didnt want to go originally, ended up having to return the next day because the views were amazing!

Sajdah, United Kingdom

Sajdah booked: Paris Opentour Hop-On Hop-Off Bus

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Magical Paris Tours

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City of lights, romance, and fine dining, Paris has consistently attracted guests from far and wide, all yearning to experience the splendour of the magical city. Paris is home to so many spectacular landmarks, museums, cobblestoned streets and charming cafes that there is never a shortage of things to do and places to see in the inspiring French metropolis. Paris tours ensure that you see as much of the beautiful city as you can so that as the sun sets over the Eiffel Tower at the end of each day, you’ll know you took in as much of the wonder as you could!

Paris is a city that is not only one of Europe’s current desirable vacation spots, but one with a rich and fascinating history and culture. The beautiful Notre Dame, the cathedral where Napoleon Bonaparte crowned himself emperor in 1804, has been standing since 1345, while the magnificent Eiffel Tower has towered above the city as a national symbol since the 1889 Exposition Universelle, a world’s fair marking the 100 year anniversary of the French Revolution. The Louvre, the most visited art museum in the world, is home to some of the world’s most renowned work, including the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, and Liberty Leading the People. These iconic landmarks and more are all incorporated into tours that enable you to explore the sights as well as gain a wealth of information about some of the world’s most renowned places.

Paris tours range from activities such as climbing the Arc de Triomphe to champagne tasting on the Seine, and perfume making with an intimate group in a workshop setting. All encompassing Paris tours guarantee that visitors see all the main attractions that Paris has to offer–stroll up and down the glamorous Champs Elysees in style, climb the bell tower of Notre Dame, and ascend the Eiffel Tower for breathtaking views of what many deem to be the most amazing city in the world. Cruise along the glistening waters of the Seine as you pass artists and vendors and take in the enticing aromas of warm crepes and fresh baguettes, all while experiencing spectacular views of landmarks you’ve only dreamed about! Paris boat tours, walking tours, bus tours, and even segway tours are available so that you can experience the magical city by whatever method of transportation you please.

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Versailles Palace Tours.

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Visiting the French capital of Paris is something which many people strive to do in their lifetime. But why not think outside the box and aim to see some of the finer things located in the regions around Paris; for example, the Palace of Versailles.

Versailles Palace tours are somewhat popular, with people coming from far and wide in the hope to see one of the grandest palaces in the western world. History fans are also drawn in by the pull of the Versailles Palace as so much has previously happened on these grounds. After all, it is one of the places that sparked enough controversy during the French Revolution to play a significant role in it. continue reading

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Discover the Moulin Rouge Paris.

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blog-picRoll up, roll up! The prancing Moulin Rouge girls are calling all Parisians and visitors alike to come see their breathtaking dancing. Despite the numerous attempts to recreate this famous cabaret club, nothing else quite compares with the exquisite Moulin Rouge Paris.

It takes some skill to become a Moulin Rouge dancer, with all the acrobatic high-kicks and elaborate twirling. Only the best dancers are selected and only after vigorous training are they finally allowed to take to the stage and perform with the rest of the glamorous Doriss girls.

But it is not only the beautiful girls that take centre stage at the Moulin Rouge Paris. The costumes, made of feathers, rhinestones and sequins, attract their own audiences, and small ponies and snakes which grace the performance only add to the allure of the world’s most famous nightclub.

The Moulin Rouge Paris was built in 1889 in Pigalle, the Red Light District of Paris. It has always had a certain amount of fame, originally creating a sense of stigma as the courtesans lifted their skirts to reveal their undergarments to the viewing men. Nowadays the stigma has been replaced by a touch of inspiring glamour, especially after the 2001 film which starred Nicole Kidman as leading lady, Satine, who lived in an elephant and was admired by every man in Montmartre.

The Moulin Rouge Paris has had its own fair share of inspirational people pass through the doorways of its entrance; for example, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, the famous 19th century artist who used the Moulin Rouge as the setting for many of his pieces. Toulouse-Lautrec was famed for his night-time antics, the Moulin Rouge Paris being one of his most favoured hang-outs. A place where he could spend the evening drinking alcohol and dancing with beautiful girls; who at the time used the same area as the spectating men to wow the audience with their sensational moves.

For an evening cram packed with history and glamour, be sure to experience the Moulin Rouge Paris.

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See The Grand Palace of Versailles with Versailles Tours

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blog-picture2 Versailles, once the capital of the Kingdom of France, is now famous for the grand palace situated there. The Palace itself is steeped in history, and Versailles tours are the best way to discover the stories and facts behind what happened there.

The Palace was transformed from a royal hunting lodge and the royal court and government was moved there by King Louis XIV in the 1682. The Palace subsequently grew in size and in luxury. One of the grandest rooms is the Hall of Mirrors, which was used as a meeting place in the 17th century. Seventeen impressive mirrors line this room which faces out onto the stunning gardens. Other magnificent rooms include the Kings Grand Apartment, the Kings Chamber and the Royal Chapel. Versailles Palace tours ensure that the whole of the Palace is seen, and in depth knowledge is given about everything in which they signify.

It is not only the rooms of the Palace which aim to impress. Versailles tours also encourage garden visits as they are equally spectacular. Water features are ample, with the Grand Canal and numerous fountains and groves all adding to the wonders of these beautiful gardens. Walks are plentiful with sculptures and the orangerie lining the way. The relaxing atmosphere of the garden is perfect for picnicking on a hot day.

Also pay a visit to Marie Antoinette’s Hamlet; the private place where the former queen of France used to escape from the stresses of the palace. Also see the Grand Trianon, a group of buildings where Louis XIV escaped the palace with his mistress Madame de Montespan.

Versailles holds so much history to it. And there is more to Versailles than just this grand Palace; it is also a prosperous city too. Let Versailles tours help you discover the wonders of this brilliant place.

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See everything with Paris hop on hop off bus tours.

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blog-picture1Paris is filled with some extraordinary famous landmarks and monuments which everyone should aim to explore at least once in their lifetime. The intricate designs provide a pathway into the city’s deep and meaningful past, and show how rich in culture and glamour the French capital has always been. The Paris hop on hop off bus is a great way to discover as much of Paris as you can in a short time. Just simply use the pass for the desired number of days and explore the best of Paris to your hearts content.

The Eiffel Tower winds high above the city, giving amazing 360 degree panoramic views of the picturesque capital. It is the most iconic landmark in Paris, and it is impossible to visit this breathtaking city without experiencing the Eiffel Tower. Its steel exterior was shunned by Parisians at the time it was built due to its ugliness, but now draws in visitors from far and wide. It houses three floors and two restaurants, in which visitors can either climb or take a lift to dine on the scrumptious food, or simply peer out over the most spectacular views of the French capital.

The Notre Dame is one of the most famous cathedrals in the Western world. Great novels have been set here, with Quasimodo, the Hunchback of Notre Dame, hiding away from the world in the bell tower. However, there is so much more to this beautiful cathedral than works of fiction. The cathedral was fully completed in 1345, after almost two centuries of construction. Many historic figures held coronation celebrations in the Notre Dame, such as Napoleon I and his wife Josephine.

The Paris hop on hop off bus stops right outside these attractions and more. Be sure not to miss a thing with the Paris hop on hop off bus.

Image courtesy of Flickr

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Hop on Hop off Paris tours are so convenient.

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Hop on hop off bus tours are the best, most convenient way to explore any town or city that you are visiting for the first time. Hop on hop off bus tours are especially set up with first time tourists in mind. The passes are flexible and can be used as much as required within the validity of the pass. What’s more, it means you can plan what you want to see, when you want to see it, and spend as much time as you please at the attractions, without the restrictions of following around a tour guide who tells you how long you can stay there. Hop on hop off buses drive at regular intervals on well devised routes, stopping outside some of the major attractions of that city. They are certainly the easiest way of making sure that all the noteworthy attractions are seen and experienced, in the most cost effective way.

Paris, with its extensive sightseeing attractions and masses of monuments, is a city in which it makes sense to invest in a hop on hop off Paris bus pass. The hop on hop off Paris bus pass has over 50 different stops on four, interlinked routes, making finding your way around easy and convenient.

See the Notre Dame, the beautiful cathedral which was originally erected in 1160 by Bishop Maurice de Sully. The Notre Dame is steeped in history, and also the setting for Victor Hugo’s famous novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

Hop on hop off Paris buses also stop at the Arc de Triumph, the historical military monument commissioned by Napoleon, the Louvre Museum, the Moulin Rouge, the Champs Elysees, to name a few.

Hop on hop off Paris also includes personal headphones with commentary available in 8 languages and an optional Seine River cruise. You really can’t go wrong with hop on hop off Paris bus tours.

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Paris tourist attractions

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I don’t want to be rude about Paris or anything but it is hard to get excited about the Paris tourist attractions that you see on postcards, on film, in your friends’ photographs all the time. This attitude normally lasts until you get there as the romance and humbling nature of the great sights still has the ability to captivate despite being so well-known throughout the world. So, get to know the city all over again in a new light and find there is much more to see in so many more ways than most guide books will tell you.
The best way to see Paris in another dimension, as with any other city in any continent on the planet is to take a tour. The real life equivalent of taking a more informative Wikipedia with you on holiday can open your eyes to the huge amounts of history, bizarre facts and exciting happenings that surround the buildings and streets you thought you knew so well. The more obscure ways to see Paris can also be the most enlightening; the new and futuristic (and not at all dangerous)  Segways, floating along the Seine or even by horse and carriage will open the city up to a whole new world of interpretation. T here are a multitude of different personas this city can take on if you look at from a different angle.
It is not just how you choose to travel around the city but also what you do when you get there. Have you ever considered immersing yourself in a kitchen in France rather than just enjoying the food? Learn to cook with the experts, sip wine with those in the know and stimulate the nasal passage with a perfume making experience in the capital splashed on a thousand perfume adverts. New smells and sights reawaken the sense at night when Paris and its tourist attractions are reborn under a different guise and more alluring light. The illuminations at the Eiffel Tower can be seen for miles around but can be the highlight of a nighttime bike tour around the city and are best enjoyed from the Trocadero in front of the monument.
However well you thought you knew the city that never fails to surprise, elate and provide some of the most fantastic sights with the richest history in all of Europe, be prepared to fall in love again, as with an old flame rekindled. There is a reason why people visit this city again and again and always leave asking each other: Encore une fois?

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