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Exploring Rome and Paris in one week....

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Exploring Rome and Paris in one week....

Me and wife are going for a one week trip to Rome and Paris. We are planning to spend three days in Rome and 3 days in Paris. I know we won’t be able to see all of it in 3 days but still want to cover must see places. Any suggestions in terms of what to see? Where to eat? Local transit tips will be appreciated..

Thanks
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Apr 26, 2004
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This should be enough of the major highlights to cover each city:

Rome 3 days:
- Colosseum/Forum/Capitoline Hill
- Vatican Museums/St. Peter's
- Pantheon
- Piazza Navona
- Spanish Steps
- Trevi Fountain
- Capitoline Museums
- Campo de' Fiori
- Trastevere
- there are a huge amount of other museums, churches, and palazzi to visit as well


Paris 3 days:
- Louvre (could take up a whole day by itself) and Tuileries
- Eiffel Tower
- Notre Dame
- Musee d'Orsay
- Montmartre/Sacre Coeur
- Champs-Elysees/Arc de Triomphe
- Latin Quarter
- Versailles (daytrip)
- Cimetiere Pere Lachaise
- Catacombs
- Seine river cruise

Add to that the time spent walking around and eating, your week will be FULL! Most of the major sights in Rome are within walking distance of each other and it's a great way to see the city. Depending on where your hotel is, you may want to take the Metro to the Vatican to get there early (lineups can be very long). The Metro and RER are a great way to get around Paris.
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daonly wrote: Me and wife are going for a one week trip to Rome and Paris. We are planning to spend three days in Rome and 3 days in Paris. I know we won’t be able to see all of it in 3 days but still want to cover must see places. Any suggestions in terms of what to see? Where to eat? Local transit tips will be appreciated..

Thanks

I just got back from France (Paris & Bordeaux), with only three days you will be extremely limited in what you can see. I agree with Talamasca's suggestions, but you will not be able to see all those sights in 3 days.

I would suggest buying a carnet (10 pack) of tickets for the metro. The metro is very efficient and will take you close to all the tourist attractions.

As for food, head to the Latin Quarter and look for the small streets that are packed with restaurants! You can get a 3 course meal for 10euros.
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Jul 1, 2009
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Thanks guys your suggestions are much appreciated. I know we won’t be able to see all but want to see major attractions.
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Oct 6, 2005
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Another option could be to do Rome, Florence, Venice - that is doable in a week and you'll see a lot more. Personally I think Paris is overrated.

If you need a cab pickup in Rome, use romecabs - highly rated on Tripadvisor and excellent service.
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Mar 22, 2009
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Talamasca wrote: This should be enough of the major highlights to cover each city:

Rome 3 days:
- Colosseum/Forum/Capitoline Hill
- Vatican Museums/St. Peter's
- Pantheon
- Piazza Navona
- Spanish Steps
- Trevi Fountain
- Capitoline Museums
- Campo de' Fiori
- Trastevere
- there are a huge amount of other museums, churches, and palazzi to visit as well

I'm going to help break down Rome for the OP based on area for easy travel. FYI one could spend a few months in this city and not see everything worthwhile... honest!

DAY 1: Ancient Rome
Morning/Afternoon:
- Colosseum, Roman Forum + Forum of Augustus, Capitaline Hill (if you're eager... the Forums (both) will drain you!)
Night:
- Pantheon/Piazza Navona area

DAY 2:
Morning:
Spanish Steps (early for photos!) + Trevi Fountain + Piazza Republica
Evening:
Leisure

DAY 3: Catholic Rome
- Vatican Museum (early!) + climb duomo of St. Peter's afterward and visit the basilica thereafter
Evening:
Piazza Del Popolo + Piazza Del Republica


We're missing a sh_ ton of stuff here... gothic, baroque... you name it! Try and extend it to a week if you can?
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tail_duck wrote: DAY 3: Catholic Rome
- Vatican Museum (early!) + climb duomo of St. Peter's afterward and visit the basilica thereafter
Evening:
Piazza Del Popolo + Piazza Del Republica
You can easily spend a whole day at the Vatican museums. It's huge museum - easily a couple kilometer walk if you see all the exhibits.

Make sure you book the tickets online before your visit - it'll allow you to bypass the long line up and walk right up to the front doors.
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Mar 22, 2009
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coolspot wrote: You can easily spend a whole day at the Vatican museums. It's huge museum - easily a couple kilometer walk if you see all the exhibits.

Make sure you book the tickets online before your visit - it'll allow you to bypass the long line up and walk right up to the front doors.

Very true. When I went to the Vatican Museum, they told me it takes on average 4-6 hours (depending on how often you stop) to get through everything! We got there at 5:30am to be probably the 50th in line. Also we pre-purchased our tickets as well, fantastic idea.
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9394 wrote: I just got back from France (Paris & Bordeaux), with only three days you will be extremely limited in what you can see. I agree with Talamasca's suggestions, but you will not be able to see all those sights in 3 days.

I would suggest buying a carnet (10 pack) of tickets for the metro. The metro is very efficient and will take you close to all the tourist attractions.

As for food, head to the Latin Quarter and look for the small streets that are packed with restaurants! You can get a 3 course meal for 10euros.

I was in Paris last year for 4 days and am going back again in October.

Can you recommend any good places to eat?

I have walked around the last time I was there and really enjoyed it. Saw all the major sights by walking (16hrs a day), sometimes taking the Metro and doing a bike tour with Fat Tire (http://fattirebiketours.com/paris).

I plan to use the Velib (bike rental) while there this time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V%C3%A9lib%27
http://www.velib.paris.fr/
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Make sure to bring some binoculars and take good care of your neck, especially in Rome, since you'll need it to admire the beautiful ceilings that city has to offer.

And don't worry about the line-up at the Vatican museum. It goes pretty fast. You'll be inside in less than 15 minutes.
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tail_duck wrote: I'm going to help break down Rome for the OP based on area for easy travel. FYI one could spend a few months in this city and not see everything worthwhile... honest!


We're missing a sh_ ton of stuff here... gothic, baroque... you name it! Try and extend it to a week if you can?

I wish I could do a longer trip but it's just not possible to take more than a week off from new job. Thanks for breaking it down it looks very do able on in three days.
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I was in Paris for about a day and saw almost everything Talamasca mentioned.

I didn't do the Louvre or Catacombs though.
The Louvre is worth seeing though, as in checking out the physical building.

During my visit in Paris I saw:
Sacre Coeur, The Opera, Arc de Triomph, Eiffel Tower (saw it, walked around but didn't go up. Insane lineups and watch out for the aggressive vendors and gypsies), The Louvre (walked around), one of the universities whose name escapes me at not, walked around the city for 4 hours, checked out the Gallerie Lafayette and ran away when I saw the prices lol ,went up the Montparnasse which IMO has a MUCH better view than the Eiffel Tower, w/o the long lines and crowds and after enjoying a tea on a sidewalk Paris cafe, I walked along the Champ Elysees for a few blocks before heading back to the airport.
The next day, I was on a plane headed for Madrid.

What I'm getting at is, is that I was told by a few Parisian friends to just enjoy and take in the atmosphere of Paris and I did that.
I couldn've seen more stuff (got lost looking for the Eiffel Tower), but I was on a tight budget.
Really it comes down to research. I wouldn't spend my time or*€€€ in a museum though, but that's me...
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Dec 25, 2009
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coolspot wrote: Another option could be to do Rome, Florence, Venice - that is doable in a week and you'll see a lot more. Personally I think Paris is overrated.

If you need a cab pickup in Rome, use romecabs - highly rated on Tripadvisor and excellent service.
I'm doing the Rome, Florence, Venice trip! Leaving next week, but we have 13 days to cover all of that. Have a one year old baby, so we can't rush it like you are. Enjoy!
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Shaf wrote: I was in Paris last year for 4 days and am going back again in October.

Can you recommend any good places to eat?

I have walked around the last time I was there and really enjoyed it. Saw all the major sights by walking (16hrs a day), sometimes taking the Metro and doing a bike tour with Fat Tire (http://fattirebiketours.com/paris).

I plan to use the Velib (bike rental) while there this time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V%C3%A9lib%27
http://www.velib.paris.fr/
We did the Fattire bike tour to Versaillle and really enjoyed it!

One of the places in the Latin Quarter that we really enjoyed was Le Bistrot 30.

http://maps.google.ca/maps/place?hl=en& ... 3143911731

We also had a dinner at Le Bourbon and really enjoyed it as well (basically around the corner from Le Bistrot 30.

http://maps.google.ca/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF ... TCyQT08JRu
IceBlueShoes wrote: I was in Paris for about a day and saw almost everything Talamasca mentioned.

I didn't do the Louvre or Catacombs though.
The Louvre is worth seeing though, as in checking out the physical building.

During my visit in Paris I saw:
Sacre Coeur, The Opera, Arc de Triomph, Eiffel Tower (saw it, walked around but didn't go up. Insane lineups and watch out for the aggressive vendors and gypsies), The Louvre (walked around), one of the universities whose name escapes me at not, walked around the city for 4 hours, checked out the Gallerie Lafayette and ran away when I saw the prices lol ,went up the Montparnasse which IMO has a MUCH better view than the Eiffel Tower, w/o the long lines and crowds and after enjoying a tea on a sidewalk Paris cafe, I walked along the Champ Elysees for a few blocks before heading back to the airport.
The next day, I was on a plane headed for Madrid.

What I'm getting at is, is that I was told by a few Parisian friends to just enjoy and take in the atmosphere of Paris and I did that.
I couldn've seen more stuff (got lost looking for the Eiffel Tower), but I was on a tight budget.
Really it comes down to research. I wouldn't spend my time or*€€€ in a museum though, but that's me...
Wow, I am impressed that you saw all those places in one day. We took 3 days to do most of that stuff.
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Sep 7, 2006
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that way you don't waste time in line ups. Villa Farnesina is a must see in Rome. It's in Travastevere. If you want to see the Borghese Gallery, you need to book a reservation ahead of time. We called them directly from Canada. The Borghese Gallery was one of the highlights of our trip. With your limited time in Rome, I'd take a cab everywhere. They drive like maniacs in Italy and cheat you. You don't need to take cabs in Paris because the French know how to organize a city. Use the metro.

You've probably heard how rude Parisians are, but nothing they did to us compared to the rudeness/corruption we experienced in Venice. I loved observing Christmas mass in Notre Dame Cathedral. The spectacle and music were extraordinary--and I'm not Catholic.


Don't forget to see St. Peter's on your way out of the Sistine Chapel. It's the closest way to get into St. Peter's. It's free, but you have to pay to see some of the private areas. Wait for you change because the person taking your money will try not to give you change. Don't let your guard down in the churches. The gypsies frequent the churches, disguising as helpful locals and ask you for money. I understand that looking at the Pieta in St. Peter's is the perfect place to get pickpocketed. When we were there in June, there were very few tourists and there was nothing to worry about.

We stayed at a B&B in Rome (100E a night) and loved it. You go to the Rome B&B association website and book Via Lucullo 7 (This is the address): Milazzo Pecoraro Maria through that site. You have to bring your own hair dryer and shampoo. But you get breakfast, which was made up of cheese, sandwich meat, white bread, faux orange juice, yogurt, coffee, and apples. Lots of space and personal attention. Draw back: the hostess doesn't speak English; so bring a small Italian phrasebook. Two streets away is a nice, relatively inexpensive restaurant called Ristorante da Giovanni where we ate twice. They have a great minesterone soup that's a meal all by itself. There's a wonderful Sardinian restaurant in Rome within walking distance of the Quirinale. Don't have the name. I'd go back to eat there in a heartbeat. Don't make our mistake and stay near the train station. We did that our last night in Rome. It's an terrible area. The food there is enough to make you gag.

Don't be surprised about the food in Italy. We visited Venice, Rome, and Florence. Overall, we've eaten better Italian food in Chicago. I'm told you have to get out into the countryside to find out what real Italian cooking is all about. But the two restaurants in Rome I've mentioned were fine. The Sardinian one was great and the service was fab.

Make sure you take good hiking shoes with you. Those cobblestone streets in Rome are murder. Paris doesn't have cobblestone streets. We loved walking in Paris. There's a great evening cruise on the Seine that was strongly recommended to me by friends, which we didn't do. I hear the food is great on those boats, and if your time is limited, it's a great way to see the sights. We never had a great meal in Paris. But my husband did get into the museums for free because my husband was working as a teacher/ librarian for a college at the time and brought a letter stating where he was employed.
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9394 wrote: We did the Fattire bike tour to Versaillle and really enjoyed it!

One of the places in the Latin Quarter that we really enjoyed was Le Bistrot 30.

http://maps.google.ca/maps/place?hl=en& ... 3143911731

We also had a dinner at Le Bourbon and really enjoyed it as well (basically around the corner from Le Bistrot 30.

http://maps.google.ca/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF ... TCyQT08JRu

Thanks for the links! Will definitely check out those two places.

Any other suggestions on tips, places to see and eat that are off the regular touristy traps?

I have 3 days in Paris (not all in sequence). One and a half day when I get there (Sat afternoon and Sunday). Then have a course that I am attending in Chantilly Mon-Fri. Then have the Friday afternoon and Saturday before leaving Sunday morning.

Is Versailles worth visting and using up a whole day?
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Shaf wrote: Is Versailles worth visting and using up a whole day?
I think so. It's a pretty spectacular palace. The gardens are absolutely enormous, with statues, grottoes, and fountains everywhere. There are other ones like Fontainebleau in the area that are less visited Versailles has all the history in it, from the reign of Louis IV to the French Revolution and up to the end of WWI, where the Treaty of Versailles was signed in the Hall or Mirrors.
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Talamasca wrote: I think so. It's a pretty spectacular palace. The gardens are absolutely enormous, with statues, grottoes, and fountains everywhere. There are other ones like Fontainebleau in the area that are less visited Versailles has all the history in it, from the reign of Louis IV to the French Revolution and up to the end of WWI, where the Treaty of Versailles was signed in the Hall or Mirrors.

+1.

I would highly recommend the fat tire bike tour. It's basically from 9-5PM. Meet at their office in paris, ride your bike to the train, take train to versaillesm ride to the market to pick up your own lunch, ride around the chateau, have lunch and ride back.
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don't forget to see the statue of liberty in paris
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any good but inexpensive hotels to stay in rome?

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