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Side trip from London: Paris or Berlin?

I'll be studying in London fall semester 2019. When my parents visit for eight days we'll be taking a side trip for three days or so. We're thinking Paris or Berlin. Which would you choose and do you have other suggestions?

Posted by
14153 posts


Take the Eurostar train which goes from city center to city center. Buy the tickets as soon as they go on sale which is 6 months out for the cheapest prices.

You'll be there in a little more than 2 hours so if you have just 3 days you'll be able to maximize your touring time even thought you'll wind up killing a half a day what with travel to St Pancras International in London, getting there an hour ahead to check in and go thru security, train time, then the time from Gare du Nord to your hotel.

Three days will barely scratch the surface in Paris as will 8 days in London, lol!

Posted by
805 posts

Speaking as a one time Francophobe, I would definitely do Paris. The travel time is short, it is a beautiful city and there is so much to see that three days will go by in a flash.

Posted by
740 posts

I am NOT a big fan of France but It is not even a contest.

Assuming you three have not been to either before.
You can get from City center to city center (a huge plus) you don’t have to take a plane so the security is easier (not easy just easier). You get more seat room so the ytrip is nicer.
And of course it is Paris.

Notre Dame,

the Louvre
The Arc De Triumph
The River Seine.
And the Eiffel Tower to name but a few.
The parks. The museums the food, even if it is just capes across from Notre Dame, or Hot Chocolate and a pastry in the Trocaderio, or a Gelato walking around the Eiffel Tower .

As much as I like Germany you can’t compare Berlin (or any other city in Germany) to Paris. Rome and London? Sure but that is it.
If you gave me three days in Germany and ignored travel time (The Rhine, Neu Schwanstein And it’s sister castles, and anything else you want) I would STILL pick Paris.

Thier is so much to do in Paris and the options are so diverse that you will find something for everyone be it food, art, history, architecture you name it. That with two obvious exceptions no other city can come close.
And I am not a goody, or a huge art buff, nor a big fan of the French. But the have one of the three most amazing cities in the world. And while Rome is great and my favorite city in the world is London (I would move there if I could afford to) I have to say the French have probably the greatest city for tourists in existence.

Posted by
16656 posts

In the 2.5 - 3 hours it would take you to travel to Heathrow, go through security, and wait to board a plane to Berlin, you could be in Paris on the Eurostar ( not counting security time at St. Pancras).

Posted by
25 posts


Reading the other replies, I am almost feeling sad for poor Berlin!

But Paris wins, hands down. Easy journey on the Chunnel, fabulous city to explore, wonderful food, majestic museums, super shopping, and WARM BAGUETTES.

Posted by
11294 posts

Berlin and Paris are both fabulous. But with only a few days away from London, Paris is much easier, since you can take a fast train instead of a flight.

Tickets for this Eurostar train become available 180 days out. They start out inexpensive if booked in advance as non-refundable and non-exchangeable, and can skyrocket if you wait until the last minute. So, book these as soon as you are sure of your plans.

Everything you need to know about this train:

Posted by
11350 posts

London to Paris by train, so easy and fun too. A perfect combo!
Put Berlin on your list for a future trip. It combines well with Dresden, Germany and Krakow, Poland.

Posted by
1205 posts

My vote is for Paris as it is a wonderful city and easy to get to from London. Leave Berlin for another time as this is also a great city but longer period of time to get to and you want to get to a city quickly when you only have three days.

Posted by
613 posts

Regrettably, we have wasted 13 days in Paris & 3 days in Berlin on our travels. We would trade them all for 3 days in Prague, Vienna or Rome.

Posted by
33114 posts

Regrettably, we have wasted 13 days in Paris & 3 days in Berlin on our travels

Maybe stop going back to Paris and Berlin if you hate them????

Posted by
15640 posts

Both are great, but Paris is a shorter journey, thus it is the better choice.