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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’

France’s Six Nations campaign kicks off in Paris

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On February 14th France will continue their bid to regain the Six Nations Championship against Scotland at the iconic Stade de France in Paris.

France have been a powerful force in European rugby for years and they emerged triumphant from the Six Nations campaign in both 2006 and 2007, giving them a total of four championship wins since the tournament was expanded from five nations with the addition of Italy in 2000.

Les Bleus will be hoping to overcome the favourites Wales, who are hungry to retain the title following last year’s magnificent victory, not to mention an England side which could find form just at the right time under Martin Johnson following some poor results in last autumn.

Fans on Paris tours should take time out from their sightseeing and soak up some of the atmosphere of this occasion as the particular carnival atmosphere is something not found anywhere in the world.

Why not book the Hop on, Hop off Paris sights (ODP/TDP) tour before you travel?ADNFCR-1652-ID-18975343-ADNFCR

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Top tennis stars to compete in Paris

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The Open Gaz de France, a highlight on the WTA World Tour, will see many of world’s top women professional tennis players in competition once again this year at the famous Stade Pierre de Coubertin in Paris from February 7th.

There’s no doubt that defending champion, Russia’s Anna Chakvetadze will be looking to continue her rise to the top of the game which saw her record a superb run of seven wins in seven tournament finals by the time she defeated Agnes Szavay in last year’s event.

Elsewhere the draw will include top names such as US superstar and two-time Wimbledon champion Serena Williams, Polish prodigy 19-year-old Agnieszka Radwanska and perennial home favourite Amelie Mauresmo.

Visitors on Paris tours should look to secure tickets to this prestigious event because it will no doubt see some fierce competition as the world’s finest look to get into gear as the season progresses.

Why not book the Eiffel Tower Visit Cruise Illuminations in advance?ADNFCR-1652-ID-18973267-ADNFCR

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Ground-breaking hotel concept comes to Paris

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The innovative rooftop hotel pod concept Everland has arrived in the French capital, atop the Palais de Tokyo, where it will remain until April 2009.

Originally built for the 2002 Swiss Expo and having worked its way through Switzerland and Germany, the one-room hotel is in effect an art installation with a rather practical use.

The brainchild of Swiss design duo L/B, this is a futuristic meld of architecture, art and interior design, which takes the shape of a mobile hotel suite which can be theoretically be placed anywhere in a city environment and transported elsewhere at short notice.

Interactivity is a key theme too, as guests are invited to collaborate in the ever-changing nature of the design, such as by adding to the record collection or leaving a message in the guestbook.

The suite features a king-size bed, lounge with fully-stocked mini-bar, bathroom – and, of course, the breathtaking views of the City of Lights.

Guests also receive a breakfast delivery in the morning, but anyone planning on a lengthy sojourn will be disappointed – stays are for one night only.

Paris – Enjoy the view from the Eiffel Tower or see the Mona Lisa in the "city of light".ADNFCR-1652-ID-18906418-ADNFCR

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French circus gives a tour de force in Paris

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Ever since Cirque de Soleil emerged onto the world stage, French circus has been in rude health and the International Circus Festival of Tomorrow will once again wow the gathered Parisian crowds early in 2009.

From January 29th to February 1st, Festival Mondial de Cirque de Demain will celebrate its 30th birthday at Cirque Phoenix in the Peouse de Reuilly, with this special anniversary sure to be the most spectacular yet.

The festival is in essence a talent competition which gives a specially-selected jury the chance to seek out and reward the circus superstars of tomorrow.

As such the event has consistently been a breeding ground for the best young performers in the field and this looks set to continue as it finalises the line-up for this very special occasion.

Cirque de Soleil has several sell-out shows in Las Vegas and has performed for packed audiences at a number of top venues across the world.

Special Interest – Nightlife – From an extravagant meal to an eerie ghost walk – plenty of things to keep you entertained after the sun goes down.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18894862-ADNFCR

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Get fabulous, darling, at Paris Fashion Week

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Possibly the most important seven days in the entire fashion year, Paris Fashion Week gathers together just about everyone who’s anyone in the world of couture from January 22nd to 29th.

While the fashion shows are for professionals in the field only, during the event the whole of Paris comes alive in a flurry of chiffon and needlessly high heels as the glitterati of the industry turn out to celebrate in inimitable style.

Across the French capital parties and events far outnumber the fashion shows and every visitor is sure to catch a glimpse of someone famous or, at the least, very thin with excellent bone structure.

Split into three sections – Haute Couture, Pret-a-Porter and Men’s Fashion – the designer’s shows will feature everything from extravagant evening wear to the latest in smart men’s suits.

Paris is considered by many to be the fashion capital of the world and is the historic home to a raft of the biggest names in the business, from Chanel to Yves Saint Laurent.

Paris – Enjoy the view from the Eiffel Tower or see the Mona Lisa in the "city of light".ADNFCR-1652-ID-18885199-ADNFCR

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The City of Lights smiles for the camera in November

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Paris”s biennial Month of Photography will once again be held through November this year, marking its twentieth anniversary.

It was founded to promote the photographic arts on a global scale and ensure it was considered as a refined and legitimate art form alongside more traditional mediums.

The festival unites the best that the photographic world has to offer in exhibitions, masterclasses and events from the best-known photographers in the world.

All of this is, of course, set against one of the most beautiful and most photographed cities in the world.

Such is the scope of the affair, many events spill over into December and even January,

The Paris month is part of the wider European Month of Photography, which began in 2004 and now includes events across the continent including Berlin, Bratislava, Luxembourg, Rome, Vienna and Moscow.

At the centre of the festival is the Maison Europeenne de la Photographie, which is a major centre for contemporary photography.

Special Interest – Nightlife – From an extravagant meal to an eerie ghost walk – plenty of things to keep you entertained after the sun goes down.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18814359-ADNFCR

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Art and culture illuminate the city of lights

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In a city as well-known for its art as anywhere in the world, Nuit Blanche, or White Night, represents one of the latest additions to Parisian cultural history.

White Night is the nocturnal cultural festival [that] will again take place over the first weekend of October this year[does this have actual dates yet?].

It was founded in 2002 by the mayor, Bertrand Delanoe, who was also responsible for opening the Paris Plages – a series of urban beaches along the banks of the Seine in the same year.

Around the city centre art galleries, museums and other institutions open their doors and offer free entry to all in a celebration of culture.

Throughout the event other venues not normally associated with the arts are given over to the cause, becoming galleries and performance spaces for the duration.

Public transport is also specially extended until the small hours to make getting around the city easy, safe and affordable.

The idea has spread to several of destinations across the world, with such cities as Madrid, Chicago, Toronto and Sao Paolo all holding their own celebrations.

But the event in Paris stands as one the biggest and most famous of all night-time festivals.

Paris – Enjoy the view from the Eiffel Tower or see the Mona Lisa in the "city of light".ADNFCR-1652-ID-18792163-ADNFCR

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High School Musical heads to Paris

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The cast of television sensation High School Musical will be performing special sets at Disneyland in Paris.

With the performance live at the world-famous theme park, the audiences will be given the chance to sing along and dance to the music.

High School Musical began as a modest addition to the Disney Channel”s television schedules, but instant success saw it become one of the most-watched TV shows that year.

Two sequels have since followed, the latest of which received a cinema release across the world.

The Disneyland show will feature a collection of the best-loved songs from the TV series, as the Disney looks to spread enthusiasm for the format across continental Europe.

Disney”s High School Musical franchise has become a huge winner for company and sports one of the biggest merchandising lines in recent memory.

The studio is clearly keen to repeat the process across the world, with a touring version of the show having already travelled across the United States.

Visit Disneyland Paris anytime between October 4th and November 2nd to enjoy Halloween at the theme park.

Treat the family to a day at one of the Disney resorts or to a splashing day out at a Spanish waterpark.
ADNFCR-1652-ID-18777901-ADNFCR

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Celebrate the great outdoors in Paris

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Visitors are invited to celebrate the great outdoors in Paris when the Festival of Paris Gardens runs over September 27th and 28th.

The two-day event, held annually in the French capital, opens up many of the city”s most stunning private gardens that often remain closed to the public for the rest of the year.

Hundreds of free events are held across the city, with tours, exhibitions and concerts organised to promote the city and introduce its hidden wonders to new eyes.

Picturesque gardens such as the Jardins des Tuileries the Jardins du Luxembourg, the Parc de la Villette and the Jardin des Plantes are all open to the public to showcase the city at its most beautiful and opulent.

Also of note is the Garden Festival Village, which occupies the area outside Notre Dame for the duration of the festival and promotes environmental techniques, landscape gardening and a host of other ideas which are communicated through demonstrations, shows and one-to-one discussions.

In addition, October 4th will see Prix De L”Arc De Triomphe held at Longchamp Race Course in the city.

Paris – Enjoy the view from the Eiffel Tower or see the Mona Lisa in the "city of light".
ADNFCR-1652-ID-18775791-ADNFCR

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Really low fares from London to Paris? Try the train!

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I have been flying across Europe for years, both for business and leisure, and I have to admit I have never had any amazing flight experiences. Not one single great story to tell about equipment, food or service. Sure, I have a slight preference for major carriers due to greater amount of leg room and (usually) easier to reach gates, but I most often end up travelling on low-cost carriers due to the price difference.

But now, I have something to say. Since my move to Paris I have been using the Eurostar train very frequently. THIS is travel!!!

To start, obviously, the train goes from Paris city center to London city center, so I avoid wasting time and money to reach remote airports terminals.

Next big thing: the Eurostar check-in is fully automated and takes about 10 seconds. Security is slightly faster than in airports but a similar process.

The next step is simply to sit down in your comfortable, wide seat and enjoy (or work, as I often do). No queuing up at the gate, no queuing up at the aircraft, no seatbelts, no security demonstrations and, more specifically, if you have to work on a laptop or can’t live without music (or both), no downtime switching off during take-off and landing. No complimentary coffee spilling over your book, no toilets for contortionists, no shaky situations.

Even more significantly: there is relatively little engine noise, so you can enjoy music, focus on work and have real conversations. Not to mention a large bar/restaurant area, where you can stretch and walk around.

The Eurostar booking process is also quite easy. The website is not top notch modern and sometimes goes bezerk, but it allows you to find the best fares and to select your own seat. You can pay online and just pickup your ticket at the machine once you show up for departure.

The Eurostar fares can be just as dramatically low as they can be high. Booking 3-4 weeks in advance gives you fares for 77 euros (60 pounds) Paris-London or London-Paris round trip! But booking within one week can take you north of 600 euros (500 pounds). If you’ve missed the good fares, try to search for ‘secondhand’ tickets on Google: there is one French website where you will easily find tickets. The fine print says that Eurostar tickets cannot be resold (the name is printed on the ticket). In practice, check-in and passport control are separate, and I have never heard of anyone being caught.

The only bad news is there can be queues at peak times.  If you’re travelling on a Friday evening London to Paris, for example, the station will be full of cosmopolitan commuters going home for the weekend.

Bottom line: I am surprised there are still flights operating between London and Paris at all. Unless you live or work next to an airport, or are on a connecting flight, there is no doubt in my mind: you should book early and ride the train.

Oh yes, and one more advantage: at arrival, get off the train, and you’re done! No taxing to gate, no shuttles, no luggage belts, no passport checks, not even customs….

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