2017 Paris Itinerary

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ARCHIVE (2017)
Here is an draft of the Paris Itinerary
What follows is simply a suggestion

Saturday, December 23rd 2017
Depart for Paris
Depending on your flight, you might leave late morning or afternoon
We prefer to arrive in Paris early in the day, on Christmas Eve

Sunday, December 24th (Christmas Eve)
Arrive in Paris (CDG)
Conduct Airport Business (Museum Pass, Postage Stamps, Metro Tickets)
Buy an RER ticket into Paris and a stack of 10 Metro Tickets “a Carnet” for travel through Paris
Be Careful: It’s Jet-Lag-Day – your nerves with be frayed and your patience has been spent,
So it’s time to engage your “sangfroid
Check-in to Montmartre Hotel
Don’t take a Nap. Take a hot bath and change clothes
Discover Montmartre, the Artists District
Shop for Groceries and Supplies in some stores which will be closed on Christmas Day
Purchase Advance Tickets for a Christmas Day Movie
Our best way to adjust your body-clock to Paris time is to go to bed early and get up and get out of bed early the next morning.

Monday, December 25th (Christmas)
A Sunrise Church Service at Notre Dame is a good plan
(Notre-Dame de Paris)
Afterwards, the narrow streets of the Latin Quarter are uncharacteristically desolate, so are the iconic (overpriced and touristy) cafes which we have yet to visit
Last year we visited Au Pied de Cochon after mass for a great bowl of onion soup, served on white table cloth
It’s an easy walk over to Centre Pompidou, which is open of Christmas morning
Then it’s back to Montmartre and up to Sacre Couer
A great and storied area to explore along with the Montmartre Cemetery
Sometimes there is a first run movie worth seeing, Christmas Evening
Or a Matinee Performance at l’Opéra-Comique (Le Comte Ory)

Tuesday, December 26th
Moving Day (from Montmartre to Versailles)
Up and Out, Early and in-line when the Museums Open
Musee D’Orsay is the only major museum open on Tuesdays
Get in line early after visiting Eric Kaiser for a Pain au chocolat or Pain aux raisins and our daily Baguette aux céréales

Back to Montmartre for Check-out
Travel to Versailles on RER train
Check-in to Versailles Hotel
Discover Versailles, located in the western suburbs of Paris
Tour the Chateau (if the line is manageable)
Otherwise tour the grounds and outlying buildings
There are a variety of bakeries and groceries in historic Versailles, we avoid the other touristy side of town

Wednesday, December 27th
Up and Out Early into Paris and In-Line when Le Louvre Opens
Back to Versailles on RER
Tour the Chateau or the Grounds of Versailles

Thursday, December 28th
Moving Day (From Versailles to Bercy)
This is a day to enjoy the morning, sleep-in, RUN the grounds of Versailles and buy something for breakfast at the outdoor Marché
The hotel has an excellent breakfast, it’s one of the few Paris Hotel Breakfasts worth paying for
Check-out of Versailles

Travel over to Bercy
Check-in to Hotel
Discover Bercy, a less congested area with local grocery and parks
Bercy provides a great Velib bike opportunity
Despite our tendancy to get lost in Paris (which is not always a bad thing) the ride into Paris along the Seine is a no-brainer

Friday, December 29th
Weather permitting bike into Paris along the Seine for an early church service, perhaps the best time to visit a Paris church
Le Louvre
Then bike to L’Orangerie, Centre Pompidou or the Pantheon.
Maybe enjoy a Flaffel or Soup

Saturday, December 30th
Moving Day (from Bercy to La Defense)
Up and Out Early (maybe bike)and in-line when the Le Louvre Opens
Option for another RUN with Paris Meet Up Group
Check-out of Bercy
Ride RER through Paris to La Defense
Check-in to La Defense
Discover La Défense, a major business district just west of the city limits of Paris
Or return to Paris and Climb up into Arc de Triomphe or Visit the Opera House
Lunch: It’s a weekday in Paris, you might find someplace for lunch
Grocery Shopping downtown (we haven’t found any grocery stores in La Defense)
Evening Meal at Chartier or a concert

Sunday, December 31st (New Years Eve)
Final Day in Paris
It’s guaranteed to be a wacked-out crowded, crazy day in Paris
Up and Out Early and in-line when the Museums Open
Le Louvre
OR maybe we join a Paris Meetup Group (Run Paris) for their Saturday morning run
Then Tie Up Loose Ends
Do some final shopping
Finish your correspondence and write Postcards
(Best Selection of Postcards on ground floor of le Louvre and a post office to buy French stamps)
Buy some groceries and New Years Eve goodies, maybe some Champagne
Relax and enjoy your last afternoon in Paris
The last two (3) years we purchased theater tickets, but it is not the best night to be out in the Metro returning to our hotel at 11p while people rush through the subway on the way to midnight celebrations. So celebrate early and visit churches and theaters the night before (you can be practical in Paris or you can succumb to the tourist experience)
There have been no fireworks in Paris on New Years Eve for several years
Last year there was an impressive light-show at the Arc de Triomphe
Although we are seldom up for midnight, La Defense has an spectacular plaza overlooking the City Lights of Paris

Monday, January 1st 2017 (New Years Day)
Up Early and Out for a RUN, with several paths about La Defense
Mail your postcards (or leave them at the Front Desk – to amuse the staff)
Check-out then ride Metro into Paris and RER train to Airport
(All trains are free from late New Years Eve through New Years Day)
Departure from Paris (CDG)

* A good traveler has no fixed plan and is not intent upon arriving” – Lao Tzu

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