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Paris Sightseeing

Three Places to Visit instead of the Monet Exhibition

The Grand Palais is an immense exhibition space, with lines to match. If you must see the Monet exhibition, be sure to reserve your tickets in advance. If you’d like to avoid the crowds, try the lesser-known Parisian sites. These are three of my favorites:

– The Eglise Saint Eustache (Rue Rambuteau, metro Les Halles) is a 16th-century gothic church with gorgeous Renaissance décor (the south wing has just been cleaned), and an 8000-pipe organ (free recitals every Sunday at 5:30pm).

– The 12th-century Château de Vincennes is not only the only French castle you can reach by metro (at the end of Line 1, station Château de Vincennes), it also has the highest keep in Europe (the recently restored “donjon”) and the “other” Sainte-Chapelle (also built to hold the Relics of the Passion). Audio-guided tours in English.

– The famous Parisian artists’ squat known as Le 59 Rivoli (at 59 rue de Rivoli) was closed for two years while the building was brought up to code, and is now a legalized “aftersquat” open to the public with 25 permanent artists and 5 visiting artists in residence. Open Tues-Sun 1-8pm (Sat from 11am), free entry. 


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  • The rooftop outdoor deck of the Arab Institute offers great views , especially of Notre Dame and the Seine and buildings alongside. There is a cafe located on the roof top level. Ther Institute has Exhibitions to consider as well. Check out the basement for an unusual view of stainless steel clad columns – makes for an interesting photo.

  • Kilby do not hesitate to ask reception for assistance and congratulations for staying in the Marais area.Be sure to use the wonderful Paris buses you should go down to your nearest metro station and buy your Paris Visite card for free rides on bus and metro but do take the buses you will get a free bus map if you ask for it and English is more spoken than you think.There is always a map inside every bus so you cannot get lost. A great way of mixing with the Parisians.And restful too once you get a seat.>Taxi is cheap, write address on a piece of paper ALWAYS INCLUDE THE NUMBER OF ADRESSARRONDISSEMENT and show him before getting into cab.In Paris taxi drivers very reliable and honest, leave a small tip rounding the sum upwards.Not all speak English.FIRST RULE IN PARIS: WHEN ADDRESSING YOURSELF TO ANYONE ALWAYS BEGIN WITHSAYING BONJOUR MONSIEUR OR IF A LADY BONJOUR MADAME.This is very important, you never put a question of any kind without first saying the BONJOUR MONSIEUR and also when entering a small shop or when about to order at a bistrot.Wishing a waiter' s attention always say "S ' il vous plait monsieur " meaning "please monsieur"The French are terribly fussy about adding a "monsieur" or "madame" .Above all do not be too ambitious about the sights.. Skip the Eiffel tower and its long waiting lines and pick the department stores Lafayette and Printemps near the Opera and take elevator to top floor and terrasses for great views free of charge plus beverages and snacks served.

  • Just got back from three weeks in Paris. Visited the Garnier Opera and the Jacquemart Andre museum-absolutely stunning. If one wants to see more Monet, try the Marmottan in the 16th arrondissement.

  • I find the most interesting thing about St. Eustache is the large three-dimensional l sculpture of the fruit and vegetalble dellers leaving the old Les Halles market . It's by Raymond Masom and fills one chapel. Yoj can view iit by googlinh Raymond Mason sculpture St. Eusctqache but you really nreed to see io appreciate it. Regards,, BarneyKirchhoff

  • Hi! I'm taking my husband for his first trip to Paris. We are staying in the Marais Arrondisement. Is there a "ticket" place there, once we arrive, that we can purchase tickets for the week (ahead of time)? Would you mind sharing what they are called? We are also new to this great website of Heather's. My Thanks!Kilby