Paris, France’s capital, is a major European city and a global centre for art, fashion, gastronomy and culture. Beyond such landmarks as the Eiffel Tower and the 12th-century, Gothic Notre-Dame cathedral, the city is known for its cafe culture and designer boutiques along the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.
Before visiting any town or city make sure you know the basics. General details and important information.
- Emergency Services: 112
- Language: French, English
- Currency: Euro
- Country Code: FR
- Travel Visa: None required
- Population: 2,234,000
Researching various official sources, we perceive the risk to holiday makers and travellers are as follows;
Top travel advice and interesting tip bits of information from experienced travellers.
For the Emergency services just dial 112 from any phone.
The Paris public transport system consists of the Métro (underground), Tram, RER suburban express train (which interconnects with the Métro inside Paris), bus and Noctilien (night bus).
Zones 1 and 2 cover the city centre and all Métro lines.
Charles de Gaulle (CDG) is the main airport serving Paris. Click the text below to visit the website.
Gare du Nord is the main train station serving central Paris. Click the text below for more information.
How can I keep up with the news?
Where should I take extra care?
Be aware when travelling alone around metro Les Halles, Chatelet, Gare du Nord and Stalingrad.
Take extra care late at night or when the streets appear empty, as this is when you could leave yourself open to opportunists.
What are the common crimes?
Credit Card Fraud
Credit card fraud, cloning cards can be an issue be careful where you use your cards. Also if you are withdrawing money from cash machines make sure you cover your pin and be discreet about the amount of cash you withdraw.
Gold Ring Scam
Con artists will pretend to find a gold ring on the floor, then they make out that it is real gold, a gift for you and then try and sell it or ask for something back for good fortune.
Pick pocketing is always a problem in large cities and Paris is no exception, watch our for young people in busy streets. Tourist areas are another hazard be aware of people distracting you with pointless conversation.
What are the top safety tips?
– Be careful on or around the roads if you are driving or a pedestrian, French drivers can be unpredictable in their actions and road laws are not always obeyed.
– Bracelet scam. Be aware that men or woman might approach you, take your wrist and try and attach a piece of string or friendship bracelet to it. They will tell you it is free so you let them do it, after they will try charge you 5 euros. These people can be fairly aggressive if you refuse to pay.
– Charity workers scam, sorry to say that is this a problem. Always remember that legitimate workers have badges and ID’s stating their charity. If they do not don’t hand over your details.
– Pickpockets. Like is most major cities this is a problem. Make sure you keep important documents safe in your hotel. If you need to carry them on you use a money belt or front pocket. Do not get distracted by people bumping in to you or crowding you as this can happens a lot in Paris.
– When withdrawing cash from ATM try to go inside the bank. Beware of withdrawing cash from cash points on pedestrian walkways. Try to withdraw small sums and don’t flash your cash around even in the bank.
Improve Your Personal Safety
Knowledge – the more you have the better equipped you are.
Awareness – the more you see the safer you become.
Response – the right reaction can change a situation.
Annual events allow a city come together for some amazing experiences. If visiting at this time, make sure you have your accommodation booked and are always aware of your surroundings when travelling around.
Antique Books Fair
If you are a fan of physical paper bound books you can visit a flea market in the 5th arrondissement, near the Panthéon books are sold and traded. You can also find some antique books and one of a king first editions at the Brocante des Livres Anciens, held at the Halle Freyssinet. Venue: Halle Freyssinet. Métro: Chevaleret. The fair takes place in February each year.
St Patrick’s Day
It is on 17 March across the whole city. Even though it is an Irish holiday French love to celebrate it too! Grab yourself a pint of Guinness in the nearest pub or bar and enjoy a street parade afterwards. Since parades vary each year you can check with reception at the St Christopher’s Inn hostel in Paris to see what is on for your visit.
Nuit des Musées
This idea was pursued in order to encourage appreciation for art and culture by the French Department of Culture in 2005. For one night nearly every museum in Paris will open for free between 19.00 and 01.00. Museums in Paris and across Europe participate in this endeavour and they host debates, art lectures, exhibitions and competitions.
The Christmas markets in France originated from the northeastern region of Alsace on the border with Germany. Mulled wine, traditional food and gift shopping create an incredibly festive mood! Some of the highlights are the Champs-Elysées (the largest market), Trocadero (complete with ice-skating rink), La Défense, place Saint-Sulpice, boulevard Saint Germain and Montparnasse.
Where can I see great art?
The site of the world’s largest selection of pre 20th century painting and sculpture. The Louvre is definitely one of the cities highlights and not to be missed. The gallery is famously home to the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo.
Paris Museum of Modern Art
With nearly 15,000 works, the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in Paris represent the richness of artistic creation in the 20th and 21st centuries and bear witness to the dynamism of the contemporary artistic scene.
Modus Art Gallery
The Modus Art Gallery is meant to present an intimate and remarkable art selection that delights collectors coming from al around the world and express their passion for modern and contemporary art.
Where else is great to visit?
The Arc de Triomphe
Built by Napoleon in 1806 to commemorate France’s military, the arch is around 50 meters tall and stands at the west end of the Champs-Elysées. Amazing views of the city can be had from the top, with a 360 degree view and all the avenues leading to different parts of the city. On a clear day you will be able to see the Eiffel Tower, business district, all the way to the Sacre Coeur and beyond.
Centre Georges Pompidou
Considered to be the cultural heart of Paris. This modern art museum and cultural centre, located in the neighbourhood called Beaubourg by locals. The Center’s signature skeletal design gives the impression of bones and blood vessels, interesting to behold.
The Sacre Coeur
One of the highest point of Paris at the Montmartre knoll. The basilica is best-known for its gold mosaic interiors and the dramatic terrace. You get to see one of the most amazing views of Paris. There are lots of stairs and walking involved but the building and views well worth the effort.
Notre Dame Cathedral
One of the most stunning Gothic cathedral’s you will see, and of course one of the most famous. Work started in the 12th century and it took 200 years to complete. It was made even more famous in the 19th century by writer Victor Hugo in his novel “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”.
The Latin Quarter
Some of the world’s most famous artists, philosophers, and writers have lived and visited the area. Many of them getting great inspiration and insight from the energy and vibrancy of the busy streets and markets.
What are the highlight attractions?
The most iconic structure in the city, views from the top are breathtaking. You can also visit at night and the views are stunning. It is sometimes better to pre book tickets is you plan to visit in peak hours.
A great day trip when visiting Paris, family attractions and rides to keep you busy all day.
Bateaux Vedettes du Pont-Neuf
A great way to see some of the most beautiful monuments of Paris, like the Eiffel Tower, Louvre and Notre-Dame Cathedral. On one of the river cruises you will also get information about the sights as well as a unique view. The boat in the centre is next to the Pont-Neuf bridge.
Musee Grevin (Paris Wax Museum)
One of Europe’s oldest wax museums, today the museum holds around 300 full size wax figures, from Marilyn Monroe and former French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Well worth a visit to see the amazing lifelike creations of wax art.
Located at the Jardin des Plantes.
The Menagerie, which was founded as a public zoo after the French Revolution, housing lots of rare animals. The zoo is dated but still has something special, and can provide a change of scene when visiting Paris.