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Q: What to do in Paris ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   8 Comments )
Subject: What to do in Paris
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: pcbene-ga
List Price: $12.00
Posted: 16 Nov 2005 17:19 PST
Expires: 16 Dec 2005 17:19 PST
Question ID: 593986
Can someone find a list of 10 great things for very intellectual
high-school students to do on a trip to Paris over thanksgiving?
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
Answered By: juggler-ga on 16 Nov 2005 17:46 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

Here are ten great things to do in Paris.  I've done them all myself,
and I'm sure that intellectual teens would enjoy these activities.

(1) The Louvre.
This is an obvious one, but you just can't miss Leonardo da Vinci's
Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, Winged Victory of Samothrace, and the
Coronation of

(2) Musée d'Orsay.
Housed in a former railway station, this museum has a spectacular
collection of paintings from such luminaries as Van Gogh, Gauguin,
Toulouse-Lautrec, Manet, Renoir, Monet, Degas, and Cézanne.

(3) The Latin Quarter.
 Wander the ancient streets of this university neighborhood. Browse
the bookstores and other shops. This neighborhood features numerous
sidewalk cafes.  Also be sure to visit the ancient Cluny monastery
where the famous Unicorn tapestries are housed. Photos:

(4) The Eiffel Tower.
You simply can't go to Paris and skip it.

(5) Notre Dame de Paris.
This is one of the most famous gothic cathedrals in the world. It was
the site of many coronations, royal weddings, etc. In modern times, it
has been also been the site of many state funerals (Charles de Gaulle,

(6) Musée Rodin.
This museum is dedicated to the works of famous sculptor Auguste
Rodin. Learn about Rodin's life and work.

(7) Champs-Elysées & Arc de Triomphe.
This is one of Paris' most famous streets. At one end of the
Champs-Elysées is the spectacular Arc de Triomphe. Inspired by the
ancient Romans' triumphal
arches, this monument was commissioned by Napoleon  and serves as a
memorial to those who have fought and died for France.

(8) Montmartre.
This is the neighborhood where the hit movie Amelie was filmed. It's a
lively neighborhood that was home to many of Paris' most famous
artists.  Street artists and others continue to gather near the
impressive Sacre Coeur basilica.

(9) Place de la Concorde & Orangerie.
Visit the famous obelisk at the Place de la Concorde.  The obelisk is 
more than 3000 years old and is an interesting sight.  Visit the
nearby Musée de l'Orangerie.  This museum is much smaller and less
crowded than the better known Louvre and Musée d'Orsay. The Orangerie
houses Monet's famous "Water Lilies" paintings, as well as many
Renoirs and Picassos.

(10) Versailles.
Take the train 12 miles outside of Paris to visit the famous palace at
Versailles. This is one of France's most interesting and historic
sites.  For 150 years, it was a palatial residence of the kings of
France.  In 1919, the treaty that ended World War I was signed at this
location. Visit the palace's famous Hall of Mirrors.

Finally, I would recommend that the teens consider purchasing the
Carte Musées pass.  This card offers a tremendous value as it allows
entrance to most of the attractions that I mentioned.  Also, as a
cardholder, you don't need to wait in the lines (and the lines at
places like the Louvre can be long).  You can buy the passes at Metro
stations or online.

search strategy:
My own experiences as a tourist in Paris.

I hope this helps. If you have any questions, please request
clarification. Thanks and bon voyage!
pcbene-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $3.00
Went above and beyond duty, even provided links to help explain
suggestions. I like that the researcher drew from his personal
experiences. Thank you.

Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: juggler-ga on 16 Nov 2005 18:56 PST
Thank you for the tip.
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: nelson-ga on 16 Nov 2005 19:53 PST
Duck and cover.  Run for your life.

You may wish to consider a less violence-prone country.
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: fengpost-ga on 17 Nov 2005 01:07 PST
Giverny is just outside of Paris.  It is where Monet lived and
painted.  You would love the garden there and understand the way he
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: iang-ga on 17 Nov 2005 01:56 PST
If you visit the Louvre, see the popular stuff early on - later in the
day the staff start closing galleries and it becomes well nigh
impossible to find your way around.

Ian G.
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: myoarin-ga on 17 Nov 2005 05:45 PST
Nelson raises a general point:  The kids should obviously watch out
for one another, especially for the girls and stay with adult crowds
and steer shy of North African youths.  (My daughter studied in Paris
for a year, speaks French and is city-wise, but did not always feel
comfortable.)  But I would not get too worried about the present
problems, they are in areas where you all shouldn't go anyway  - like
in NYC.

Juggler has presented lots of highlights  - I hope the kids are really
into a few days of intensive history, art and archtecture.
On the island with Notre Dame is also Ste. Chapelle  in a courtyard of
the major court of justice.  The "chapel" has fantastic stained glass
windows.  For a little relief from religious art, a glance into the
entrance foyer of the court building is (was to me) interesting, the
lawyers in the their robes and lace jabots (?) talking with clients. 
(reminded me of Daumier cartoons)

There is also the Picasso Museum and Centre Pompidou on the Right Bank

I don't know how large and homogeneous your group is, but you might
consider letting it split up for a day as relief from everyone having
to stick together.

Knowing from my own experience that after two days, memory of what was
seen and where becomes jumbled,  I would insist that they each keep a
diary  - in any form they choose.  "Post-it"s in the guidebook or on
the map might appeal to some.  (Someone is paying for their trip;
returning to tell only that they saw some old buildings, churches, the
Seine and Eifel Tower, "and that museum with the Mona Lisa" is not the
way to express appreciation.)

I would start the visit with a half-day bus tour of Paris (the
standard tourist guided tour).

Check the web for more information.
Good luck, myoarin
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: philnj-ga on 17 Nov 2005 10:07 PST
You will never get all ten things done in one trip.  I know high
school kids are best kept busy, but there is no better way to
experience Paris than planting yourself at a cafe and watching the
world go by.  Eat a bowl of Escargot.  Buy a crepe on the street. 
Hang out at the Pompidou Center and check out the street performers.

A place then never fails to move me is the Pantheon in the Latin
Quarter.  The architecture is amazing and Voltaire is buried in the
Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: mongolia-ga on 17 Nov 2005 11:25 PST
Have done 6 out of the 10 things recommended. All 6 were wonderful especially 
Musee D'Orsay.

Only disapointment Visited the Louvre. Unfortunately had not time to
view paintints Only had time to sample the Cheese Cake in the

Despite not seeing the paintings the Cheese Cake was delicious.

and there is always a next time


Subject: Re: What to do in Paris
From: doctawood-ga on 18 Nov 2005 16:59 PST
After spending a summer studying art history in Paris I have to agree
with the fine list posted, but here's some other random thoughts...

If you can only see 1 or 2 museums there are 2 schools of thought: (1)
go to La Louvre and wait in lines to take the ubiquitous picture in
front of the Mona Lisa and have a commemorative photo that includes a
dozen Japanese tourists doing the same thing in the foreground (I hate
to stereotype, but of the 50 some times I went into that museum I
would say 80% of the time there was a Japanese tour group parked in
front of it).  Then walk past the litany of royal portraits to bask
under the truly remarkable Winged Victory.  (2) go to D' Orsay and
Orangerie and see the multitude of Impressionism that most people
think of when they picture French art... Personally I went to La
Louvre once for the experience, a 2nd time to revist Winged Victory,
and 48 times for assignments prior to racing over to the other two to
stare at the Monet's.

You can't appreciate European pop culture w/o football.  La Bleu, the
french national team aren't playing that weekend, but a load of Ligue
1 teams are.  Paris St. Germaine is on the road that weekend but
plenty a restaurant/bar/cafe will have televisions tuned to a showdown
between #2 Bordeaux and #3 St Etienne... if your students are allowed
near bars, take them to the Greek quarter near Notre Dame to catch the
match (and hopefully a pint of Leffe).

Some practical advice:  Make sure to get a Carte Orange at a Metro
station for each person (I photoboth produced ID) if you plan on using
the Metro frequently.  Fine when I was there for not having an ID when
asked for it was 250 francs, probably higher now.

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