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Old 01-07-2019, 07:46 AM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
27,860 posts, read 28,989,451 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapshotbob99 View Post
Going to make a decision possibly in a few days. At the very latest this weekend.....

Leaning 60-40 in favor of doing both cities.
You can see London and Paris in 7 days if you're okay with an overview of the 2 cities. However, you will definitely feel rushed if you want to go deeper. London and Paris are not just cities, they are world capitals.

You can spend 7 days just visiting Paris-Versailles and still feel like there is much more left to see.
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Old 01-07-2019, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Great Britain
27,675 posts, read 13,872,508 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapshotbob99 View Post
Hello,

Would you recommend 7 full days in London OR: 4 full days in London, 1 travel day, then 2 full days in Paris? Going this winter.

I'm really torn on this.

We're still relatively young, but this might be our last major vacation for several years (guess why....) so I want to make it count.

On the one hand, my wife is a major English history buff so maybe we should really maximize London & surrounding areas. She can start naming castles and queens, etc. Also, we keep hearing how London is this magnificent city.

On the other hand, Paris is "Paris." It has all these iconic landmarks and we'll finally get to use that French we learned in school . Although I've heard the city isn't as nice as London and has gone very much downhill in the past several years. Can I live without possibly ever seeing Paris? Maybe yes, maybe no.

Any advice is appreciated.

(BTW, we're originally from New York and have been to Barcelona and Rome if that helps in describing the cities....)
I would visit both, Paris is a beautiful city, even though France and more especially Paris is going through some turbulent political times at the moment.

Lille is another French city that is easy to get to from London on the Eurostar, and although much smaller than Paris it is a lovely city, and very underrated.

Lille is only 1 hour 22 minutes from London on the train, and has some lovely sites/culture and streets as well as reasonable priced shops, restaurants and bars.

Lille city breaks - visit Lille | Eurostar

Lille travel | France - Lonely Planet

Last edited by Brave New World; 01-07-2019 at 08:25 AM..
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Old 01-07-2019, 08:19 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
19,483 posts, read 28,085,506 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by settled00 View Post
As a fan of London and not so much a fan of Paris, I recommend four days in London and two in Paris. Paris is still worth seeing, but hopefully four days in London where the museums are FREE, your wife should love that. I'd highly recommend the Sir Winston Churchill War Room Tour. It was quite moving. Just writing this makes me want to rush back to visit again. What a great city. I hope it hasn't changed due to their open borders. Then when you head over to Paris, make sure to visit Notre Dame Cathedral -- there's just so much history to see there as well. But museums are $$$ so overpriced in Paris.

The world is beautiful. See it all while you can! Then you will have some time to plan your "re-visit" someday.
Very very good advice. Most people skip that Churchill museum, which is a shame.

Suggested: watch some movies or documentaries (or books) about Churchill and the Tudor kings and queens. You visit to London will be MUCH more satisfying and memorable.
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Old 01-07-2019, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Denver CO
24,201 posts, read 19,369,322 times
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Can you extend the trip at all? A week isn't really enough time to do both IMO, but if you could push it up to even 9 days, you'd be able to see a bit more of both. Honestly, I feel like 2 days in Paris would almost be more frustrating than not going at all because you'd have to skip so much of even the top must-see stuff with that short of a time.

They are both wonderful and amazing places, so it is very tough to say to skip one completely when your chances of getting back soon are limited but for 7 days, I'd stick with 1. Personally, I'd probably do Paris now as a couple and save London because you could still bring along young kiddo(s) for that and have a blast. Not that Paris isn't great for kids too, but I think there is more there I'd want to do that is less family friendly than in London and vicinity.
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
19,483 posts, read 28,085,506 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emm74 View Post
Can you extend the trip at all? A week isn't really enough time to do both IMO, but if you could push it up to even 9 days, you'd be able to see a bit more of both. Honestly, I feel like 2 days in Paris would almost be more frustrating than not going at all because you'd have to skip so much of even the top must-see stuff with that short of a time.

They are both wonderful and amazing places, so it is very tough to say to skip one completely when your chances of getting back soon are limited but for 7 days, I'd stick with 1. Personally, I'd probably do Paris now as a couple and save London because you could still bring along young kiddo(s) for that and have a blast. Not that Paris isn't great for kids too, but I think there is more there I'd want to do that is less family friendly than in London and vicinity.

I don't entirely disagree with you; however, the list of "must see stuff" in any large city includes a lot of stuff that not everybody has much interest in seeing.


For example, when I was in Paris, the Louvre museum was a big nothing-burger. But I'm NOT an art lover/museum person. I would have been better off spending that time at a bistro, sitting outside watching people, soaking up the atmosphere, with a bottle of wine.


Another example: when we were in Dublin last year, we opted to skip two of the 'supposed' must see sites. The Guinness Storehouse, because I don't drink beer AT ALL, and DH doesn't care for Guinness. We skipped the Book of Kells, preferring to spend our limited time talking with locals in the pubs, taking the train along the very pretty seacoast and stopping for a seafood lunch, Kilmaren Gaol, and other things that interested US. We gave up trying to cram everything into one trip a long time ago. If we miss something we wanted to see, maybe we'll go back, or maybe not. the "if this is Tuesday, it must be Belguim" type of visit is not fun for us.
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:48 AM
 
2,149 posts, read 4,168,285 times
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I proposed to my wife in Paris. If we didn't go anywhere else for the rest of our lives, we at least have that moment. If you've never been to Paris and won't have a chance to go any time soon, you should go. If you have 7 full days, meaning not including travel to and from the EU, you can do 4 days in 1, and 3 in the other. The train from London to Paris is about 2.5 hours, it's not like you're losing a day by traveling. Just leave early in the AM.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Sunshine state
2,543 posts, read 3,755,595 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jkgourmet View Post
I don't entirely disagree with you; however, the list of "must see stuff" in any large city includes a lot of stuff that not everybody has much interest in seeing.

For example, when I was in Paris, the Louvre museum was a big nothing-burger. But I'm NOT an art lover/museum person. I would have been better off spending that time at a bistro, sitting outside watching people, soaking up the atmosphere, with a bottle of wine.
I agree. However, I find that relatively novice travelers tend to follow 'must see' list more religiously than seasoned travelers. I think it does take a few mistakes before you realize what works for you and feel confident enough to buck the trend and build your own customized itinerary instead of following popular 'must see' list.

OP, you can certainly do both. Fly into London, take Eurostar to Paris (book months in advance for a good deal, I got mine for $39 per person a couple of years ago), then fly out of Paris. Build your itinerary based on what you like and want to see, as opposed to what other people think you should see. It's ok to skip the Louvre if you're not an artsy fartsy type. You won't be able to see Monalisa up close anyway since it's a small picture and roped off for security reason.

If you like people watching and food, do not miss Rue Montorgueil - a street food market not too far from Notre Dame. If you can find a hotel near or on this street, even better! The area around Notre Dame is my favorite area of all Paris, and you can catch a boat ride from there if you want to see the city from the water.

London's winter is also mild and very similar to Seattle's winter, which means it's cloudy and rainy most of the time - not the heavy downpour type, but the annoying misty / drizzle / foggy type that is not enough for an umbrella but will make you damp and wet in no time. So definitely pack a waterproof jacket with a hoodie.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:28 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
1,665 posts, read 1,774,911 times
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My wife and I liked Paris better than London. I'd go back to Paris anytime.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
24,201 posts, read 19,369,322 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jkgourmet View Post
I don't entirely disagree with you; however, the list of "must see stuff" in any large city includes a lot of stuff that not everybody has much interest in seeing.


For example, when I was in Paris, the Louvre museum was a big nothing-burger. But I'm NOT an art lover/museum person. I would have been better off spending that time at a bistro, sitting outside watching people, soaking up the atmosphere, with a bottle of wine.


Another example: when we were in Dublin last year, we opted to skip two of the 'supposed' must see sites. The Guinness Storehouse, because I don't drink beer AT ALL, and DH doesn't care for Guinness. We skipped the Book of Kells, preferring to spend our limited time talking with locals in the pubs, taking the train along the very pretty seacoast and stopping for a seafood lunch, Kilmaren Gaol, and other things that interested US. We gave up trying to cram everything into one trip a long time ago. If we miss something we wanted to see, maybe we'll go back, or maybe not. the "if this is Tuesday, it must be Belguim" type of visit is not fun for us.
Of course people can and should create their own must see list.

But I would venture to guess that the majority of visitors to Paris do not consider the Louvre a "big nothing-burger" nor any of the dozens of exquisite smaller museums that are available for interests of all kinds that someone can pick and choose from.

I would stand by my point that there is far than 2 days worth of things that should be on a must see/do list for Paris, regardless of the specific content of such a list.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:51 PM
DKM
 
Location: California
6,766 posts, read 3,920,699 times
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A week in London is an appropriate allocation of your time. You can do Paris later. You don't have to be young to visit Paris.
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