paris Travel Guide

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For Paris Cyclists, Green Means 'Go' And Red Means 'Eh, Whatever'

Where: Paris, France
July 17, 2015 at 7:41 AM | by | ()

Cyclists may find that their next ride through Paris is a bit faster (though hopefully not more dangerous) because there are some new rules of the road for pedal-powered vehicles.

This certainly should make your next Vélib' bicycle rental that much more interesting: BBC News is reporting that Paris will now allow cyclists to ride through red lights when traveling about the city. Apparently studies and analyses have shown that riding right through the red lights probably won’t cause an increase in accidents. (Just make sure that you can see the traffic up ahead over that baguette in your bicycle’s basket.)

Now, this isn't to say that bike travel will suddenly become lawless in Paris. You see, separate traffic signals for bikes will be installed right under those for cars, and these lights will indicate when cyclists can turn right or just keep moving forward — even though the traditional traffic signals require cars to stop. The roll-out is beginning this month and should be complete in September, and it’s all in the effort to encourage more green-friendly traffic to flow around the city —and maybe cut down on some of that smog along the way.

[Photo: malias]

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Where to Find a Little Bit of America in Paris

Where: Paris, France
July 10, 2015 at 4:54 PM | by | ()

The other week in Paris while crossing over the Seine, we snapped this shot of the Tour Eiffel. But if you look closely, you'll also see a pint-sized version of the Statue of Liberty. #nofilter

This tiny version of Lady Liberty stands on the end of Île aux Cygnes (Isle of Swans.) It was gifted to Paris in 1889 by the Parisian community of America to commemorate the centennial of the French Revolution. This was three years after the French gave America the original Statue of Liberty. According to Wikipedia, the statue used to face the Eiffel Tower but now faces West. Another fun fact? The tablet in the statue's hand is inscribed with both the dates of the American Independence and Bastille Day. #nowyouknow

But sorry, you can't go up inside this statue. It's too small. However, if you want to see the real Statue of Liberty, you can reserve your tickets online here. Pedestal access starts at $18 for adults and $9 for children while going up into the crown is $21 for adults and $12 for children.

[Photo: Juliana Shallcross/Jaunted]

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Paris Cracks Down on Cutesy 'Love Locks' Vandalism

Where: Paris, France
November 28, 2014 at 10:31 AM | by | ()

Travelers to Paris this winter (and from now on) will enjoy improved views as a popular form of tourist graffiti has been cleared from bridges over the Seine River.

The "No Love Locks" movement of earlier this year, which protested the practice of attaching a heavy-duty lock to a bridge rail to "secure" a relationship, has been successful. While gaining signatures for the petition, No Love Locks estimated that the Pont de Arts Bridge alone was covered with 93 metric tons of extraneous metal. Aside from their being unsightly, the heavy use of these locks is a problem for the structural integrity of the historic bridges.

Are they art? No. Are they romantic? Maybe for the fleeting minute you attach a lock and then leave the bridge, making its clean-up Paris' problem. "It's vandalism, and it's taken the ambiance away from the bridges."

City officials began a mass removal of the locks in September, replacing them with plastic panels over the bridge architecture to prevent tourists from attaching more. And the difference is definitely noticeable.

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Autumn is Europe Shopping Spree Season for Robert Pattinson and Oprah Winfrey

Where: Paris, France
October 16, 2014 at 3:18 PM | by | ()

Oprah Winfrey and Robert Pattinson embarked on two very different European shopping sprees this week.

On Tuesday, Pattinson and his girlfriend FKA Twigs perused the clothing racks at Harmony in Paris, a retail store that carries mostly casual clothing for men and women. The couple, who were traveling through the city alone, was spotted laughing and trying on clothes before they moved onto a few other shops in the trendy Marais district.

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Travel Contest Roundup: Four Ways to Visit Paris for Free

Where: Paris, France
September 19, 2014 at 12:20 PM | by | ()

We realize travel budgets may be limited, but it’s free to dream. This is where contests come into the picture, and there's always the chance that you could be the big winner—just don't forget to tell us if you are!

Here are 4 Paris contests to enter right now:

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What is 'Paris Syndrome' and Who Has It Now?

Where: Paris, France
August 18, 2014 at 7:31 AM | by | ()

We have all been in that travel situation where things don’t exactly meet—or live up to—expectations. The place wasn’t as good as it looked in pictures, the folks weren’t as friendly, or that imagined utopia just doesn’t exist outside your mind. Apparently this is somewhat common for some visitors to Paris, and that’s why Paris Syndrome is a thing.

We’ve mentioned it before, and it even has is very own Wikipedia page—so you know it has to be true. There’s all kinds of signs and symptoms, but basically it boils down to culture shock and things not being exactly as what was imagined. Japanese tourists seem to be one of the groups that suffers from things the most, but now there are reports that Chinese tourists are getting bummed out as well.

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The Louvre Has a Pest Control Problem

Where: Paris, France
August 13, 2014 at 12:02 PM | by | ()

First it was pickpockets, and now there’s another kind of pest hanging out around the Louvre over in Paris.

It seems like the inside of the museum is safe, but the gardens that surround the place are kind of infested with rats—gross. Apparently visitors and tourists enjoy leaving bits and pieces of trash and picnic debris behind, and that encourages the rats to come out and snack. Unfortunately a real life version of Ratatouille it is not.

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Say Bonjour to 'Ratatouille' at Disneyland Paris

Where: Paris, France
July 7, 2014 at 12:03 PM | by | ()

The parks over at Disneyland Paris don’t seem to get the new rides and attractions as often as we do here in the states, but that’s not the case this week as a fresh bit of Disney magic is headed overseas.

The new attraction is showing off a little fun from the movie Ratatouille, and it's scheduled to debut July 10. It’s the very first ride based on this film, and of course it only makes sense for Ratatouille to make a first amusement park showing in Paris, seeing as how the animated film was based there.

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Expedia Sees a Trip to Paris as the Answer to Life's Problems

Where: Paris, France
June 10, 2014 at 3:55 PM | by | ()

A few years ago Google published an ad about finding love in Paris, which ended with a guy...well, finding love in Paris. The purpose of the spot was to highlight all of the different things you can find by using the search engine (information, flights, locations) and it was widely acknowledged as a successful bit of advertising that left everybody with a nice, pleasant feeling.

This new video that just came out from Expedia Mexico is the opposite of that. We're not saying that it doesn't work—it definitely makes us want to travel to France, as France-themed travel advertising ought to do—but it's not exactly designed to generate warm fuzzies. Crushing regret is closer to what this commercial seems to be aiming for.

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Before and After: Piscine Molitor Is Ready For Swimming Once Again in Paris

Where: Paris, France
May 30, 2014 at 10:51 AM | by | ()

For those headed to Paris this summer, we have something else that you can add to your must-see list, as the city’s Piscine Molitor is back and better than ever. Over 25 years have passed since the public swimming pool was closed and turned into a canvas for graffiti artists, but now things are ready to welcome swimmers once again.

Head over to The Verge to read even more, as they have a great rundown of the before and after—as well as some great pictures of how things have changed over the decades.

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Chinese Police to Patrol Paris This Summer

Where: Paris, France
May 7, 2014 at 10:09 AM | by | ()

In response to a number of muggings and attacks against Chinese tourists, it was announced today that the French government has called upon the Chinese police force to help patrol the streets of Paris this summer. According to reports, at least ten Chinese police officers will help strengthen the security at popular tourist spots and public transportation hubs. They will also help translate between Chinese tourists and local police offers.

We cover a lot within the travel industry, but this has to be one of the most significant stories we've seen in a long time. The implications and fallout of this industry first are absolutely huge, and it goes to show how far countries are willing to go in order to get a piece of the world's largest tourism market. Reading between the lines, it seems like this is a move by France to appease China and keep the tour buses coming. Last year, 1.5 million Chinese tourists visited France, and that number is expected to increase by 40% this year after France relaxed its visa process.

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Where to Go with Your Tax Refund: Paris, Of Course

Where: Paris, France
April 18, 2014 at 11:18 AM | by | ()

Tax day is here, and you're probably excited...but not because you love sifting through receipts and credit card statements. You're excited because you're getting a fat refund. Probably. The economy may be on its way back up, but you should try to stretch that tax refund as far as you can...like with a little "you did a great job last year" trip—a Tax Refund Vacation.

If you haven't yet had the opportunity to fall in love with the Paris, know that spending some extra cash on a trip to the City of Light is worth it. If you have been to the French capital, then you know what we're talking about and it's high time for a return trip.

Not only does the city have a laundry list of landmarks, from the Eiffel Tower and Champs-Elysees to the Louvre and Latin Quarter, but both new and return visitors don't have to be told that the culinary delights alone are tempting enough to deserve a trip.

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