To many people, Paris is the most romantic city in the world. Paris is the biggest city in Europe after London, and Paris is together with London, New York and Tokyo one of the four largest cities in the world. Paris, the "City of Lights", is a beautiful, monumental and fascinating place to live and visit. The city has lots of recognizable buildings and monuments, even for people who have never been there, for example the Eiffel Tower, the Notre Dame, the Seine river and the Louvre.
Paris is the capital of France and has about 2 million inhabitants. The city is known for its multicultural society. Since the Middle Ages, immigrants have been drawn to this city. Most Parisians are of French origin. In addition, many of the city's inhabitants come from Portugal, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, West-African countries, South-East Asia and the Caribbean.
Paris is situated in the north of France, at some 150 kilometers of the Seine Bay, which borders on the English Channel. The Seine originates in the mountains to the east of the city.
Paris is the political and economic center of France. The government provides many jobs in the city. In addition, large car manufacturers like Renault and Citroen have a positive impact on the economy. Also, the city has a thriving avionics and electrical appliances industry. Today, Paris's inner city is characterized by office blocks, although many office blocks have moved to the city's suburbs. The the city is also known for its tourism. Tourism is a vital source of income for the city. Every year, millions of people from all over the world visit the "City of Light". Popular attractions are the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Centre Pompidou, etc. In addition, the Parisian economy also thrives on its "Articles de Paris", examples of which are jewellery, perfumes and Haute Couture. Finally, Paris is a global banking and trading center.
Paris has three airports, the first of which is Aeroport Paris-Beauvais, which is located at about 80 kilometers to the north of Paris. It processes mostly flights from low cost carriers like Ryanair, for instance from Dublin and Glasgow.
The second airport is Aeroport Roissy Charles de Gaulle, which is situated 30 kilometers to the north-east of the city. It is a large domestic and international airport.
Finally, there is Aeroport d'Orly, located 18 kilometers to the south of Paris. d'Orly is a little smaller and older that Aeroport Roissy Charles de Gaulle. It processes flights from, among others, Iberia and TAP Air Portugal.
If you do not have a rental car at your disposal when you visit Paris, the following tips are intended to give you an idea of the public transport in and around the city of Paris.
From Aeroport Paris-Beauvais you can travel to the city by bus. This bus is synchronized with Ryanair flights. From Aeroport Roissy Charles de Gaulle the best way to reach the city is by train. You can also take the bus to the center. If you want to travel to Aeroport d'Orly, you can take either the shuttle or the train, or bus number three (free for Air France passengers). There are many ways to travel from Aeroport d'Orly to the city center. Tickets are sold on the bus. You can also take the train or shuttle.
Public transport in Paris is considered very efficient and cheap. Paris has a bus network, including night buses. It also has a subway and RER, two underground systems that are connected. We recommend that you buy a discount card, if you are not using a rental car and will have to make frequent use of the public transport system. Carte Orange is a discount card that is valid on buses as well as the metro and RER networks. You can buy a monthly or weekly card. There are more types of discount cards that you can ask about in situ.
Between March and October, there is a river boat that will take you to eight top locations, including the Notre Dame.
Traffic and Parking
Driving in Paris is quite tricky, though not impossible. The best way to move about in the city, is via the ring road, which is called the Boulevard Peripherique. In many parts of the city parking your car is a pricey business. Parking places in the street are often the cheapest, at € 1.50 to € 2 an hour. Large car parks charge around € 2.60 an hour and around € 22 per 24 hours.
In Paris, there are relatively many budget hotels. The mid-range hotels have a very good price-quality ratio. In this respect, the hotels in Paris have been called the best in Europe. There are also many luxury hotels. We recommend booking in advance, especially in the busy periods of the year, which are Spring, Summer and Christmas/New Year.
For more information about Paris, we recommend Google, and the following external sources: