I just finished boking 2 tickets to london and return from Paris. Now what? it's about 2 weeks to split up how ever we like. Would love any suggestions that you have! Perhaps trips outside the city. Given all the great comments we have decided on the County Hall and the C-E in Paris.....and that is all the plans so far!! Thanks for all the tips so far. You are a big help to people like me that have not done this before. Thanks!
You have made a wise choice of a trip!
Having done the exact trip a number of times, let me share some tips for you:
Try to get a Thames room at CF.
Take the Big Red Bus and the similar tour bus in both London and Paris. Both will be easy to access from these hotels.
Take the Chunnel/Eurostar to Paris, buy your ticket at the station in London at least two days before departure.
Consider tube/metro passes to hotels and then in town, if you do not have a lot of luggage, you will save a bundle.
Stay in touch and have a great time!
Depends how long you have to see London but with cheap airfares and rail tickets at trip to other places such as Liverpool and Manchester is recommended.
Don't bring much clothing either as prices in uk are a real bargain at the moment and that goes for designer brands though you are better buying these from retail "outlet villages " or shopping centres (malls) rather than in the city centre of LOndon.
In fact you can see clothes prices on shop websites... such as "John Lewis " etc.
I'm a medievalist, so take this for what it's worth to you. But here are my absolute favorite places in or near Paris:
Sainte-Chapelle (on the same island as...);Notre-Dame; Conciergie (joint ticket with SC -- buy a museum pass which avoids lines); the basilica of Saint-Denis; the Cluny Museum; the Louvre; the Hotel Carnavelet (a museum of Paris in the house of a famous 17th-C. female writer); the Ile Saint-Louis; Chateau de Vincennes.
Day trips not to miss: Chartres; Fontainebleau, Versailles
In or near London:
The Tower; Inns of Court; Westminster Abbey; Westminster Cathedral; Parliament; British Museum; Southwark Cathedral; Globe Theatre; boat ride on the Thames
Day trips: Hampton Court; Greenwich; Canterbury
Hope this helps,
Split them up equally. They are both great places to be and there is more than you can do in either of them in a week.
My favorites in London are similar to Profs, but I would add the Victoria and Albert Museum (a fascinating collection of "stuff" including a lot of fake monuments - Victoria couldn't go to them so she brought them to herself). I also like walking in the parks. A day trip to Windsor is nice to add to the list, but with limited time I would go to Hampton Court instead.
In Paris, you can literally spend a week just going to the Louvre and Versailles. In the Louvre, visit the things that are most interesting to you - that are near each other. If you try to see everything, you will need a minimum of 2 days there. Focus on those things that are most important to you. The same at Versailles - take the tour of the rooms and then visit those parts of the grounds that are of most interest to you - that may be just the close gardens or one of the other private houses of the king or queen. Do go to San Denis, it is a lovely cathedral that not everyone goes to - the kings and queens are buried there (at least the pieces they could find of them after the revolution). Go to the Eiffel tower at night.
One piece of advice is to look up in advance when things are open - many things are closed at least 1 and sometimes 2 days of the week. Ususally Mondays or Tuesday, but it could be Sunday or Wednesday. Check beforehand and plan accordingly.
In both cities the public transportation is quite good - the tube and metro especially, but the bus system is good if you can figure it out.
One other little hint that we have found helpful in Paris if you don't speak French. Try to speak just a few French phrases. If you speak Engligh first, many people will act like they don't understand you. If you try a little French they will be so horrified at your pronunciation that many people will speak English back to you.
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