Bonjour! We’re away to visit Paris

Eiffel Tower

The mere mention of Paris immediately conjures up thoughts of the Eiffel Tower, the  Mona Lisa, the Moulin Rouge, the Seine, the Arc de Triomphe, markets, and doubtless others.  So where do we start?  We will first of all, try the website of Oman Air where you’ll see there are flights four times a week, so your trip could be for 2 weeks or more, or just a few days.

Summer in Paris – with temperatures ranging from a minimum of 13C and maximum of mid-20s – is the season of heady outdoor culture, and a major part is, of course, the summer festivals.  Beginning with  June:  don’t miss a one-day event on Thursday 2lst June in Paris, Nice and other cities – this is the Street Music Festival when 100s of musicians gather in the streets, bars and cafes, regaling crowds with free performances  of everything from jazz and rock to hip-hop and electronic music.

Meanwhile the Paris Jazz Festival, held in the beautiful Parc Floral, brings together jazz musicians from around the world for day and evening shows, so why not relax on the grass with a picnic.  In 2012 this event will be from the 9th of June to the 29th of July.

Next in July – Starting on Bastile Day (14th July) the month-long Paris Summer Arts Festival overtakes the streets of the city with (mostly free) dance, music, theatre and circus performances from artists living and working around the globe.

Next the decision where to head depends upon whether you have children in tow.

The Eiffel Tower is of course the global cultural icon of France.   Did you know that it is the most-visited paid monument in the world?  It was built in 1889 as the entrance arch to the World’s Fair and stands at a height of 320 metres.  Why not combine this visit with an evening cruise on the River Seine and a cabaret show at the Moulin Rouge.

The Mona Lisa – no trip to Paris is complete without seeing her enigmatic smile in the Louvre Museum, nor should a stroll among the outdoor markets is to be missed.  They sell everything from delicious cheeses, to a choice of wines from the vine-growing areas, and handicrafts made in the countryside.

If you have young kids with you, definitely the place to head for is the eastern part of the city, to Disneyland in the Maree La Vallee area.  However, for this we suggest you book in advance an all-inclusive ‘hotel and entrance’ deal for say 3 days/2 nights as there’s something for everyone and for every age e.g. parks, hotels a 9—hole golf course and Disney village with its unique entertainment area.

And last, but not least, if you have more time and fancy a trip out why not visit the Palace of Versailles with its magnificent gardens.

Some tips:

  • Visa:  If you’re a non EU passport holder, apply for a Schengen visa –this will entitle you to visit any one of 26 Schengen countries.  Visit the Embassy of the country which will be your main destination, ie the French Embassy in A’Sarooj, Qurm.
  • Credit cards are used widely, ATMs are frequent, but Euros is always useful for taxis, buses and tips.

Keen to go?  Why not have a look at    They’re great value!  So for now, Bon Voyage!