Wow! Thank you all so much for the thoughtful responses!! We leave three weeks from yesterday so this is pretty much all I can think about.
Jane: this is our first trip to Paris! We'd definitely like to go back but it will be a while before we do so as there are many other places on our list. Thanks for the tip on "downtime" after the Deportation Memorial! I've already made note of that. We will probably skip Giverny this time because the trip out there will take up time we don't have on this trip. I also agree, there's no such thing as too much time in Paris!
Wray: i so appreciate your advice on the Arc and Champs Elysee. What a cool perspective to view Paris from! Are there any specific reasons you'd remove the Army, Louvre, Orangerie and Picasso museums? Added Trocadero to my list!!
Pam: we'll be traveling this month but I think that since we have the museum pass we'll still take time to just see the lilies. I'd like to stroll through Rue Cler on our way to the Eiffel Tower to get food to have a picnic there (although it might be too cool, I can't imagine colder temps right now since it's currently 90 here ha!) but would you suggest somewhere else in that area where we could pick up those things that might be better to walk through that Rue Cler? Good note on the garden area at Rodin too.
Lisalu910: I'm debating right now on the Jardin du Luxembourg but I think my husband would love the Pantheon so it might be worth adding that to our schedule instead of something else. I also hadn't originally included Montmarte but would like to find some time to go there! Again just need to figure out what I'm going to cut. Maybe the Louvre?
Dorothy: thanks for the advice! we'll probably do that exact thing on Ile de la Cite and good to know about Ile Saint Louis. Definitely adding Galeries Lafayette while we're by the Palais Garnier. I've read about it a bit.
It looks like with all the places we want to see that we'll definitely be getting a museum pass. I think this will help us if we walk into a museum and decide we don't want to spend a lot of time there that we won't feel bad leaving! When we travel we really love to spend as much time exploring on our own as we do exploring the tourist sites. Since we are so short on time, it'll be interesting to see what actually wins out when we get there as I could see us making either one the priority. So with all that said, I want to at least have a general outline of what we want to do each day with flexibility in mind.
This is what I'm broadly thinking:
I'm trying to be realistic about how much we'll want to do after we land but still making use of this time.
- Land around lunchtime
- Check-in and drop off bags at the hotel
- Picasso Museum before it closes
- Explore Le Marais area
- Saint Chappelle (get there at opening)
- Notre Dame (walk by, sadly)
- Deportation Memorial
- Walk Champs Elysees
- Eat dinner
- Go up in Arc de Triomphe
Could we fit Montmarte/Sacre Coeur in this day? I hadn't originally planned on it but think we might enjoy it. Maybe we just nix the Louvre totally?
- Palais Garnier
- Place Vendome (specifically going to Goyard, if anyone has any experience there)
- The Louvre (they are open till 9:45 on this day so hoping to take advantage of that.)(my husband is more committed to the Louvre than I am so still deciding on this one)
- Rodin Museum
- Army Museum
- Rue Clur (pick up food for picnic at Eiffel Tower)
- Eiffel Tower (picnic, not go up)
These are my other questions/thoughts:
- We plan on just grabbing a taxi from the airport to the hotel vs the bus/metro in an effort to save time. Are taxis fairly easy to grab?
- Once I have a better idea of our days, I'd like to utilize the metro whenever it makes the most sense