Paris

The capital of France, Paris, has been called the “City of Love”, “City of Lights” and “City of Life”. Sitting along-side the River Seine, Paris is France’s most visited city and hosts more than 45 million tourists each year. Paris has become one of the world’s most global cities and encompasses a leading business and cultural center as well as its political, educational, fashion and arts influences. 

Paris offers a variety of attractions both ancient and modern. It is a romantic vacation for those in love or Paris is great for families who are looking for a European vacation rich with tradition and culture. From its art to its cuisine Paris is a vibrant destination every traveler should experience once in their life.

Climate in Paris

Paris has a temperate climate. The average temperatures in Paris generally range about 41°F (5°C) during winter and 68°F (20°C) in the summer. July is the hottest month of the year, although August can be almost as hot, and January is the coldest. November through January can be a little windy but generally wind is not a problem in Paris. Rainfall is common throughout the year is common with March-May being the driest months. Paris is known for its short but sudden rain showers so an umbrella is always a good idea in the city. Snow is rare in Paris but the city does see some snowfalls now and again. 

Activities in Paris

Bastille Day commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution with ceremonies, dancing, parties and balls all over the city. The day celebrates the storming of the Bastille prison on the 16 July 1789. It is France’s most important national holiday and consists of a grand military parade along the Champs Elysees. The parade is the oldest and largest regular military parade in Europe. At the end of the day a fireworks display near the Eiffel Tower highlights the evening’s activities.  

The Arts Festival is held every autumn and is the largest of its kind in the world. The Arts Festival is a showcase for contemporary art in all forms from around the world, including theatre, film, music, dance, sculpture and literature. Special attention is given to foreign culture as well experimental work and the development of new talents. The festival takes place between September and December and has something for all ages.

Fete de la Musique takes place every year on the summer solstice. The Festival hosts amateur and professional musicians who perform in a variety of venues around the city, from public squares, streets and parks to opera houses and castles A large free concert is traditionally held featuring some big names in the music world, but there are the sounds of music, from jazz, salsa and techno, to choirs, orchestras and steel bands on every street corner. 

Considered by many to be the greatest annual sporting event on earth, The Tour De France is surely the world’s greatest bicycle race. Hundreds of local and international cyclists in a battle over 2,175 miles (3,500km) divided amongst 21 days from June to July every year. The Race completes a clockwise loop around the country and includes treacherous mountain roads in the Pyrenees and the Alps. The famous yellow jersey is worn by the overall General Classification leader who maintains the lowest overall time. Enthusiastic spectators and supporters line the course that winds through villages and cities.

Sightseeing in Paris

The Eiffel Tower has become Paris' signature sightseeing attraction and brings more than six million visitors a year. The tower is the single most visited paid monument in the world. It towers 984 feet (300m) above the Champ de Mars and until 1930 was the world's tallest building. Named after its designer, engineer Gustave Eiffel, the tower was built as the entrance arch for the 1889 World's Fair.

The Arc de Triomphe is the world’s largest triumphal arch. It stands 165 feet (51m) tall and the names of major victories won during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic periods are engraved around the top of the arch. Inside and surrounding the arch, are all of the names of generals and wars fought. Underneath, is the tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I.  

Avenue des Champs-Elysees is the notoriously prestigious avenue in Paris. The avenue extends from the Arc de Triomphe, to the Place de la Concorde. Tourists will find cinemas, al fresco cafes and luxury specialty shops along the chestnut tree lined street.

The Château de Versailles stands 15 miles (24km) southwest of Paris and is one of France's most noted attractions. The 'Old Château' still exists but is surrounded by the large white stone façade of the New Château. There is a small train that ferries visitors from the palace to the Grand Trianon and Petit Trianon, former love nests where both the Sun King and Napoleon enjoyed the company of their mistresses.

Paris Cuisine

Over 5,000 restaurants call Paris home from the world famous to the traditional French Bistro, Paris’ fare is known as “La Grande Cuisine”. From classic French cooking to Nouvelle Cuisine and French regional cooking styles, as well as many other international cuisines, there is something to satisfy every palate in Parisian cuisine.

Travel to Paris/Passports

Paris is one of Europe’s main travel hubs. There are dozens of scheduled direct cheap flights to Paris from the UK. Charles de Gaulle and Paris Orly airports are located on opposite poles of the city north and south. Flights from New York are not cheap but are direct. The flight from New York to Paris takes about seven and a half hours. Unless you are traveling from another area in France or a French territory you must provide a valid passport to get through customs at the airport.

 

 

 

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