Going to Paris for the first time!

  1. I'm planning a trip to Paris in September, this is my first time, so I am a bit nervous about everything.
    My bf couldn't take time off from his work, so I'm going alone because it will be the only time I will be able to get away for so long (5-7 days).

    I know a lot of TPFers frequent Paris, so I thought I might get good answers here.
    Any answer/ advice to the following questions will be GREATLY appreciated.

    1. Hotels - I am having a bit of dilemma with the hotel situation though... because I am going alone, I want to skip all the romantic/ fancy atmosphere and just get the basics (and spend the rest of the money on bags & shoes!). On the other hand, I don't want it to be in a dangerous area or far away from the metro stations.
    Any recommendations? I do not mind small rooms/ lack of amenities too much since I'll be outside most of the day.

    2. My sister assures me that Paris is pretty safe and unless you're wearing tourist attire, you'll blend in <--- is this true?

    3. Museums - which are the absolute must? Also, I heard that you can get a metro/ museum pass that you could use for all museums. Is this true and if so how long does the pass last?

    3. Any quirky/ unique shops/ events that you'd recommend?
    4. Shoes - my sister tells me forget about heels b/c of cobblestone streets. I don't like or have that many flats and this worries me, lol. Stick to Sneakers? Would Diesel sneakers look too touristy?

    5. I am not a big foodie, so I am thinking to go grocery shopping and make my own sandwiches for some meals. Bad idea?

    6. Little cafes or pattiseries that you absolutely loved?

    7. I want to visit LV store but I hate the crowd, etc. I know the one on Champs-Elysee is really popular, but would you recommend there? Just for eye shopping? What store would you actually go to make a purchase?

    8. Oh, and the flea market! I love going through old stuff... are there several locations? Do they open everyday?

    Okay, I think that's it for now... Sorry if my questions seem all over the place...
    Thanks in advance!
  2. Do a search on Paris, lots of threads have been posted about travel there. HAVE A GREAT TIME!
  3. All I can say is have a great time and enjoy! I´ve never been so lucky to go myself
  4. Congrats - you'll love it! Do search through old threads.
    I was the only one In the LV store on C-E one early morning in March! it was raining slightly so maybe that had something to do with it. But I recommed going as soon as the open. Cause I walked by at later date & there was a line outside like a blockbuster release!
    You have to go to Laduree for pastries & macaroons! Off the C-E.
    They did have a huge flea market but we didn't go.
    Near the Louvre, there is an antique mall building that has some truly fablous antiques that you could only find in an old country. And the Picasso ceramics, TDF!
  5. Hope you have a fabulous time!
  6. I hope you have fun, when I went i stayed at the franklin roosevelt,Its really nice and the hotel staff are very helpfull, its just of the champs - elysees but the double glazing is so good that you can't hear any of the traffic, its also very close to other nice shops and there is a really nice resteraunt 1 min walk up the road.
    I wouldn't worry about wearing sneakers, I did nearly everyday cos its a lot more comfy for walking.
    If you don't want to spend a lot of money on restraunts then I woulden't eat along the champs - elysees cos it is very overpriced.
    I went to LV in peak season and it wasn't that crowded but when you walk in i would recommend going upstairs, its a lot less busy and you get more of a selection. But its hard to find the upstairs bag section (at least it was for me) so you might want to ask someone.
    I loved Paris and i'm sure you will 2, have fun!
  7. I love Paris! I've only been there twice but I can't wait to go back.

    I stayed in the cutest little hotel across from the Sorbonne near Saint Michel. There is the most amazing creperie right around the corner but I can't remember the street name :crybaby:. Oh wait, it's Paris so there are amazing creperies everywhere!

    You have to go to the Louvre. I usually stay away from touristy stuff but it is the most amazing museum in the world.

    Wear sneakers. You will see women sweeping sidewalks in stilettos, taking the trash out in stilettos, etc. I have yet to see something a french woman does not do in stilettos. But don't try it: I fell a few times on the cobblestones in the old part so it's not worth it if you're going to be doing a lot of walking.

    Most importantly: relax and have lots of fun!!!
  8. OOOO totally go to Laduree!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :drool: I had a friend bring me some from London and they're TDF!
  9. Yep, there are lots of other threads on Paris, you should do a search and check them out.

    I always recommend people stay near E'Cole Militaire/Invalides. It is quiet, residential, close to metro stops and very safe (I really never felt unsafe ever in Paris though). Anyway, if you stay near there, for picking up a lot of your own food casually, there is this great littpe open air market on Rue Cler you can grab lots of things to eat for the day. I loved it.
  10. 2 books I recommend:

    The Food Lovers Guide to Paris
    Rick Steve's Paris (2007)

    The latter will explain everything you need to know about what to see and how to do it. The former I found necessary because food happens to be the most important thing to me on any holiday. The hot chocolate at La Duree is to die for.