I rarely get a seat on a bus in Paris and I am an old lady. If you
want an overview of the city I would do a two hour Foxity bus tour and
sit upstairs on the open top. If you want to do a 'tour' on bus 69 you
probably need to board at the end of the line which as I recall is
around Gambetta on one end and Champ du Mars on the other. That way
you could get a window seat.
Thank you for that insight. I may want to go on the #69 bus so I'll grab it at one of the first/last stops.
I'd do a walking tour through the Luxembourg gardens and into St.
Germaine. You can find possible routes in 'Paris Walks' type books
that lay out different walking tours.....Luxembourg Gardens has a
refreshment kiosk where you can get an ice cream or coffee and of
course there are cafes and bakeries all over Paris to sit and grab
coffee on a walk. You can ask for a glass or carafe of tap water along
with whatever you buy to drink.
If it's not raining too hard, that sounds like a wonderful option.
The milky coffee in Paris is called a 'creme'; if you order cappuccino
here you get a rather icky thing with whipped cream and chocolate on
it and not the Italian drink. (and plenty of people order a creme in
the afternoon so don't fall for the idea that it is a terrible faux
pas since the 'French only have this for breakfast')
I'll be enjoying café crème; the word cappuccino won't enter my vocabulary in Paris. That first day especially the afternoon I might enjoy it quite a bit!
Outdoor markets which meet in a place once or twice a week are always
open on their designated days. Market streets like Rue Cler, Rue
Levis, etc etc are closed Sunday afternoon and Monday usually. None of
them would be closed on Nov 1. The days when shops and museums and
such are reliably closed in addition to their regular weekly museum
closing days are Jan 1, May 1 and Dec 25. Assume everything is closed
those days unless you have evidence to the contrary. Other
ecclesiastical holidays may give people a long weekend but they are
not shop holidays.
I avoid boat rides or anything sitting down. We did a canal ride once
in A'dam on a first day after our flight. My whole family was asleep
15 minutes in and I was having reptile blinks trying to stay awake.
I hadn't thought about the risk of falling asleep on a boat. I was thinking if I sat outside, I'd be awake! But that makes sense.
It helps if you can get some sleep on the plane over. My technique is
to adjust my watch for local time when I get to my departure gate.
From then on, I think only in destination local time - meal times, bed
times, etc. Since it's 6 or more hours later, you realize it's late
and time to get sleep so skip the entertainment, take a melatonin
(before boarding), put on a blindfold and earplugs (or soft music) and
sleep. If I get 4 or more hours, it really helps the next day.
I have a hard time sleeping on flights. Even when I get the chance to sit in business on transatlantic flights, I can't sleep. I'll be in the main cabin on this trip so that will make sleep for me even more unlikely. I wish I could. I'm hesitant to take pills to sleep. I might take a Nyquil but that's it. 4 hours sleep is very attractive! I'll be getting up early Monday, go to the gym, work 1/2 day from home, and go to JFK. Maybe that will help? My flight leaves at 6:38pm. I received noise cancellation headphones for my birthday so I'll bring them.
Buy a museum pass somewhere without a long line. The line is rarely
long at the Pantheon. It's not worth the normal admission price but a
good stop with a pass. You can buy it anytime and not activate it
until you're ready to start using it. For me, the first day is not a
good day to use the pass - but fine to pick one up.
Thanks for that info!