Five Paris Tips and Recommendations!
One of my favorite experiences in life is falling in love with a place.
Every time I visit or even think about Paris, I get all the feels and butterflies in my stomach. People fall in love with Paris in different ways, and those who feel a connection to this city will find it extremely hard not to “favorite” a plethora of items to see and do. If you do a quick search for Paris Travel Guides, you can’t really go wrong with any of the recommendations because they are just as special and worth doing as the next.
In this post, I would like to share with you 5 very specific tips and recommendations to consider for your next trip to Paris, and I hope they serve as great complements to your Paris to-do list:
- BEST WAY TO GET AROUND: Purchase the “Paris Navigo Decouverte” pass at Charles de Gaulle Airport! (Not the same as a conventional Paris metro ticket!)
- Make a reservation at a restaurant where the menu is up to the Chef!
- Visit Versailles 30 minutes before they close!
- Attend Paris Museum Night!
- Book a professional photographer for your last full day in Paris!
Continue reading for more details about each tip and recommendation!
1. Purchase the "Paris Navigo Decourverte" pass at Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG)!
CDG Airport has two train stations (as illustrated above). Both sell the “Paris Navigo Decouverte” passes as well as conventional train tickets.
If you are planning to stay in Paris for more than one-day, I recommend getting the Navigo pass as it covers all metro zones (1-5) and the pass is good for Monday midnight – Sunday midnight.
The Navigo pass is a weekly pass and the total cost is €32.80 (this amount includes a one-time card fee as well as €5 photo booth fee), compared to the conventional 5-day train ticket covering zones 1-5 for €65.80!
The Navigo pass allows you to ride the entire Paris Metro, Paris RER, all RATP city buses, all Trams and all Noctilien night buses. You are pretty much set with this pass and you cannot beat €32.80!
You can also save an additional €5 by bringing your own passport sized (or smaller) picture. But also, there are plenty easy-to-locate photo booths by the ticket office because when else will you get the chance to have a head shot of what you look like after a 9 hour plane ride!? It is a souvenir by itself, and you get 8 of them faces! I wanted to smile, but there was a HUGE list of what not to do during the picture and smiling was one of them. Hence the creepy smirk!
The Navigo card itself has a little sticker you peel off so you can stick your picture on it. If you need help, there are a lot of employees that are super friendly and ready to help you!
IMPORTANT TIP: DOWNLOAD THE PARIS METRO APP!!! I swear by this App! It is so easy to use and has so much useful information. Let me show y’all!
Click on “ROUTE PLANNER” to view your options. Let’s say you want to go from CDG Airport to the Eiffel Tower. (Please note that time options and times below will differ from when you are in Paris because it is live, so right now as I enter the information, it is 4pm CST in the US, and 11pm in Paris time.)
The first option is their recommended route so I will pick that one for illustration purposes.
I love that it tells you there the Line goes towards! The Paris public transportation system is already user-friendly, and this app makes it fool proof!
If you are a visual person like me, then you will love the fact that you can see your route on the Metro map! The little circles will light up on your initial station, the stations where you will change metros and finally your destination.
Note the little circles around the stations you change trains at. They will flash on the app itself so it is super easy to locate.
2. Make a reservation at a restaurant where the menu is up to the Chef!
Book a dinner at Les Papilles right now by clicking here! There is no menu, instead, the Chef will cook a four-course meal using fresh ingredients found at the market. This was one of the best dinners I have ever had in my life paired with the friendliest service!
Les Papilles is closed on Sundays and Mondays, and the four-course dinner reservation is available Tuesday through Saturday from 7pm – 10:30pm. Make sure you make a reservation as soon as possible because there are only a few tables available and it fills out pretty quickly. When you fill out the form from the link below, make sure you send an alternative date in case your original date is already full.
It is the perfect spot for dinner after walking through The Pantheon, the Luxembourg Gardens, and the Seine!-
Starter: This cauliflower soup with cream cheese and bacon WAS TO DIE FOR!!! The cauliflower soup is served separately in a bowl and you pour it on top of all the garnishes.
Main Dish: This was the most tender beef roast I had ever tasted! It melted in my mouth and the pieces were so generous.
The flavors are so rich. My friend and I are still talking about those potatoes to date.
Blue cheese and a date to clean the palate!
I was so full by dessert, but honestly, would have eaten a whole bowl of this mango panna cotta!
3. Visit Versailles 30 minutes before they close!
If you would like to experience Versailles pretty much EMPTY, go in the evening right before the ticket office closes at 5:50pm! The gardens are free and will usually close at 8:30pm depending on the time of the year, and the palace itself closes at 7:30pm.
Make sure you check the hours here before you go because it changes depending on the season!
During normal hours, Versailles is PACKED. It was such a great surprise to see the palace in all its splendor with almost no one inside!
An almost empty Hall of Mirrors!? WHAT!? Also, that photo above was the MOST people we ever saw at Versailles!
Oh hey! Don’t mind me, just twirling in the The Gallery of Great Battles with only 3 other souls!
4. Attend Late Night at a Museum!
Different museums in Paris will alternate their late night hours. For example, The Musée d’Orsay has late nights on Thursdays until 9:45pm and the Louvre has late nights on Wednesdays and Fridays until 9:45pm as well. These are super fun to go to, especially if you want to avoid the huge crowds during busier times during the day.
We went on a Thursday night to the Musée d’Orsay, and there was a beautiful choir concert going on in the main hall. Also, there is just something magical about strolling in a museum at night! Afterwards, walk down by the Seine towards Champ de Mars to see the gorgeous Iron Lady in all her splendor!
5. Book a professional photographer for your last full day in Paris!
Y’all. Booking a professional photo shoot in Paris was one of the best decisions ever! Since I knew I was having a photo shoot by my favorite landmarks, I did not have to worry about getting a ton of shoots when I was sightseeing. I decided to book it for my last full day in Paris in case I wanted to change or add a location for the photos.
I am usually the person that takes a thousand photos a day on my phone because I want to capture everything. But for this trip, I decided to do it differently and NOT focus on the sites through a camera lens. I
ended up with only 100ish pictures for my ENTIRE 5-DAY TRIP, but so many memories in my heart!
I went down a rabbit hole looking for photographers in Paris and The Parisian Photographers stole my heart because they had portfolios of all of their photographers so you can look at their styles. I sent a short message about what I liked and they came back with their recommended photographer.
Everything was SO SMOOTH (from booking to the delivery of the photos) and more than I could ever wished for. My photographer, Jordan, made me feel like we had this whole city all to ourselves and provided wonderful recommendations. If you would like to read my full detailed review, click here. This is a huge deal because I rarely leave reviews on Google!
I ended up with 70 gorgeous pictures and I LOVE LOVE LOVE going through each one of them and reminiscing Paris.
Feel free to send me a message for Jordan’s contact information–I wholeheartedly recommend him!
Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to hear about your own love stories with Paris as I am always in the lookout for recommendations and unique things to do!