Travel Postcard: 48 hours in Paris

Fri Aug 27, 2010 11:21am EDT
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By John Irish

PARIS (Reuters Life!) - Got 48 hours in Paris? The city of revolution and love has endless things to do. If it's the end of a busy business week and your first time then throw yourself into the heady mix of heritage, culinary delights and entertainment.

Reuters correspondents with local knowledge help visitors get the most out of a visit to the French capital.


5 pm - So where best to start than overlooking the city. Perched 130 meters above Paris, Montmartre in the north will give you ample scope to build your appetite. From Pigalle metro wander up to the Basilique de Sacre Coeur, a Byzantine-inspired cathedral originally planned as a memorial for the lost soldiers of the Franco-Prussian war. The views from the top will give you a taste of what the city is all about. Head north to Place du Tertre to encounter artists sketching away, bustling cafes and a rabbit warren of cul-de-sacs with aging edifices.

7 pm - At the steps of Montmartre in the red-light district of the boulevard Clichy, lies the infamous Moulin Rouge. While a little touristy these days, the once favorite hangout of French society has a pricy menu that includes foie-gras trimmings, the finest bubbly and, of course, the famous dancers.


8 am - It's an early start, but how often are you in Paris? Exit your hotel, enter the first bakery, pick-up a mix of croissants, pain aux raisins and a brioche and take a seat in a cafe. Enjoy a creme or noisette with people-watching.

9 am - It will be a long day, but well worth it. Take a metro to Bir-Hakeim. Book your ticket online to avoid the hordes of tourists at the Eiffel Tower and then, be it by lift or foot, head up the 324-meter high structure. Originally supposed to be a temporary fixture for the Universal Exhibition in 1889, the tower remains the emblem of France.   Continued...

<p>The Eiffel Tower is illuminated during the traditional Bastille Day fireworks display in Paris, July 14, 2010. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes</p>