Flights to Paris (CDG)
Paris is, in many ways, a cliché of itself. From the Eiffel Tower to the sidewalks of the Champs-Élysées, there’s no city more photographed, talked-about and revered as Paris.
But peeling past the iconic imagery of the City of Light reveals the complexities that differentiate one arrondissement from the next – the culinary perfection found in the 11th, the hip shops and clubs of the Latin Quarter in the 5th, or the opulence of the 1st. Written about for centuries, it takes a lifetime to discover the city, and its ever-increasing diversity results in a metropolis in constant evolution.
Visitors flying into Charles De-Gaulle Airport (CDG) will of course be greeted by the traditional Parisian views once in the city, but digging deep requires time, a desire to explore, and maybe dipping into a brasserie for a glass or two of wine.
There are two airports that service Paris and its surrounding area: Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) and Paris Orly Airport (ORY). Charles de Gaulle, located 16 miles northeast of Paris, is the primary airport and one of the top ten busiest in the world. Orly, the alternate airport, is situated nine miles south of Paris. Though Orly is a secondary Parisian airport, it's still the busiest French airport for domestic traffic. Both airports are well outfitted with restaurants, cafes and bars, plus retail and duty-free shopping.
Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG)
Paris-Orly Airport (ORY)
MONUMENTS AND LANDMARKS
Even if you've never been to Paris, once you arrive, it's instantly recognizable. Of course the most iconic monument in town is the wrought iron lattice Eiffel Tower, built between 1887-1889 for the World's Fair. The tower has three levels for visitors and tickets are available for ascension either by foot or elevator.
The city's other triumphantly famous landmark is the Arc de Triomphe, commissioned by Emperor Napoleon and completed in 1836. It stands at the western end of the Champs-Élysées boulevard and is open to visitors who are well rewarded at its pinnacle with panoramic views of the city.
Of Paris' grand cathedrals, its most well known is Notre Dame. Built between 1163-1345 (yes, that’s almost 200 years), the medieval Catholic cathedral houses some of the religion's most important relics. Visit and marvel at its rose windows, flying buttresses and ornate gargoyles.
Of all the Parisian museums (and there are many), by far its most famous ¾ and vast ¾ is the Louvre. You’ll want to set aside the better part of a day to take in its collection. And still, you’ll only be dipping your toe in the water. The cavernous 782,910 square-foot museum houses Egyptian and Near Eastern antiquities, Greek, Etruscan and Roman works, Islamic art, sculpture, painting, decorative arts, prints and drawings. And all those people crowded into a single room? They’re trying to lay eyes on the Mona Lisa.
Other not-to-miss museums include the Musée d'Orsay with its Impressionist and post-Impressionist masterpieces, the Musée Rodin dedicated to the French sculptor most famous for The Thinker and the modern and architecturally high-tech Centre Pompidou.
There is no mistaking that Paris is a city for shopping. You might find here that even the corner drugstore sells fine perfumes and fancy handbags. Ground zero for lining your arms with shopping bags is the Champs-Élysées, where the flagship stores of luxury French labels like Hermès and Louis Vuitton mingle with other recognizable British, Italian and American names.
RESTAURANTS AND NIGHTLIFE
Ah, but the French cuisine…oui oui. Paris is as famous for its traditional bistros as it is for its five-star establishments. Dine fashionably at Le Chardenoux des Prés for traditional French cuisine by celebrity chef Cyril Lignac. Top it off with a double espresso if you're feeling sleepy - Paris nightlife has got something for everyone, and you don't want to miss it. Visit Showcase for the energetic partygoers or Chez Papa Jazz Club to listen to jazz all night long. The Bar Hemingway at the Ritz is perfect for those who like it low-key and underground.
The overall climate for Paris on an annual basis is mild and moderately wet. In summer, its average temperature hover between 59-77°F. Spring and autumn are generally mild and winters see scarce sunshine with low temperatures around 37°F. There is no real rainy season in Paris, but precipitation is distributed fairly evenly throughout the year.
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