The complete guide to: Paris travel

August 06, 2017
Urban Adventures

If you’re travelling to the city of love and are in need of some help to plan your trip, read on! Our local Paris tour guides have the lowdown on all the necessary information you need to get around and see the sites, so that you don’t fall out of love with this beautiful city!

Canals, cobblestone, and sunny skies — perfect for long, leisurely walks

Getting to and from CDG, Orly, or Beauvais

From Roissy/Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG), it should cost approximately EUR 10 on the suburban train RER, line B (it’s about a 30-minute ride to Central Paris’s Châtelet-les-Halles). There is also a bus that leaves every 15-20 minutes that goes to Opera Station; however, it is slightly more expensive at EUR 12,50, and takes longer than the train (75 minutes for this ride versus 25 minutes on the train). We’d definitely recommend taking the train.

From CDG, the RER stops at several northern suburbs in Paris before entering the city proper, like Gare du Nord, Châtelet-les-Halles (the main metro and suburban rain stop in Paris), Saint-Michel (the Latin Quarter that is close to Notre-Dame), Luxembourg, Port-Royal, Denfert-Rochereau, and Cité Universitaire. Find out where you hotel is, and which metro station is closest. If you need to transfer on to a metro you can use the same ticket until the end of your trip.

From Paris Orly Airport, the Orly Bus from the airport to the metro station Denfert-Rochereau costs EUR 8,30 and is about 20-35 minutes depending on traffic conditions. From there, you can get on metro lines 4 or 6, or the suburban RER line B. You will have to purchase another ticket.

From Beauvais-Tillé Airport (for Ryanair and other low-cost airlines), your only option on public transit is the Beauvais bus. The trip lasts for about an hour and 15 minutes, and costs EUR 17 if bought on the spot or EUR 15,90 and EUR 29 for single and return tickets, respectively, purchased in advance online. It is particularly advantageous to buy your ticket beforehand for a child under 12, as the price goes from EUR 9,90 for pre-booked tickets to a regular adult fare of EUR 17 if bought on the bus. The bus will arrive at Porte Maillot in the East of Paris. From there you can jump on metro line 1.

From any of the train stations (Gare du Nord, de l’Est, Montparnasse, de Lyon), buy a regular metro ticket, which costs EUR 1,90 for a single ticket, or EUR 14,90 for a batch of 10 (the best option if you’re in the city for a few days!).

Please note that public transportation runs from approximately 6am to 12:30am. Outside of these hours, (even if some public transportation options still run), we recommend that you use an alternative form of transport.

Another option that is available to you is to take a taxi. Taxis are metered in Paris, but if you are departing from the airport you can agree on a price beforehand. The price from CDG to Paris should be about EUR 50-60. The price of a taxi trip from Orly to Paris should be roughly EUR 30-35. From any train station to a hotel in Paris, the cost of a taxi should never be more than EUR 30. Expect prices to be approximately 20% higher at nighttime, on weekends, or on public holidays. Taxis are generally a very safe method of transport, but at all costs avoid faux “taxi drivers” offering their services in airports or train stations — they are not official taxis and will rip you off. Always follow the taxi signs that are posted, which will lead you to official taxi drivers who will always be waiting in their cars, which are labelled with a taxi sign and have a green light on their roofs when not in use. Uber can also be a very good option, sometimes with better service and cheaper prices than regular taxis.

Getting around Paris

Public transit is definitely the best way to get around Paris. It costs EUR 1,80 for a single trip ticket (cheaper if you buy them in a batch of 10 or 20). Tickets are valid for 90 minutes on the metro or bus. You can transfer onto different lines within the 90-minute period, but not from the metro line onto the bus, or from the bus onto the metro line — you would need to validate another ticket.

The metro operates between 5:30am to 12:30am during the week, and between 5:30am and 1:30am on weekends and nights before public holidays. Night buses operate all night long.

Taking a taxi in the city is a viable option as well. Taxis in Paris are metered — so do not accept a ride in one if you do not see a meter. Also, a journey within Paris should never be more than EUR 30. Taxis are safe, even though some taxi drivers can be quite rude. Also, be aware that taxis can be quite hard to find during peak hours or on Friday and Saturday nights — so plan accordingly. Taxis with their green light on can be flashed on the street or found at taxi stations all throughout the city. Avoid taxi drivers who accost you in the street!

Like in any big cities, Uber or similar (Chauffeur Privé, Marcel and Snapcar), tend to be much cheaper than regular taxis. The costs tend to be 20% to 30% cheaper than Parisian cabs, although the price difference is shrinking as taxi companies become more competitive in the market.

If you love walking, you’ll be glad to know that Paris is a great place to walk! The city is very densely populated and you will very rarely be walking the streets alone.

It’s a great way to discover the city, and while you may get lost once in a while, you’ll probably discover charming local areas that otherwise would’ve missed out on. (It’s also a great way to burn off all the additional calories from your morning croissant.)

Small alleyways like this one are where local favourites tend to be

If you want something more active, but a little quicker than walking, biking is a great option. Vélib’, the bike rental system in the city, is a cheap way to discover France’s capital. A 24 hour bike rental will cost you EUR 1,70, and a seven-day rental is EUR 8.

Things to do in Paris

In a city that attracts millions of visitors every year, there is always something interesting happening. Not matter your interests, you’ll likely find something that intrigues you. From speakeasies to microbreweries, to museums, art galleries, concerts, shopping, cafés, restaurants — you name it all — there will be something that piques your interest. If you need a little inspiration and a few ideas on what’s out there, check out our list of things to do in Paris . If you’re only in the city for layover or for one night, check out some ideas on how to spend 24 hours in Paris.

Watch a Paris Saint-Germain, F.C. (PSG) game and see France’s best team in action. Tickets start at EUR 30 and can be purchased online before the game. Games run during the football season, which is roughly August to May.

It’s difficult to find a city with more museums and galleries than Paris. Depending on your tastes and your mood, you might feel like spending time admiring the iconic art in the Louvre, wandering through the contemporary art of the Pompidou Centre, or focus on a free historical collection at the Musée Carnavalet.

If you think the Louvre is beautiful from the outside, wait till you get inside!

If you’re looking to check out some of Paris’ great markets, check out Marché des Enfants Rouges, the oldest Parisian market, which is nestled in a beautiful Marais courtyard. There you can sample some delicious Moroccan tagines, fresh Italian food, or spicy Caribbean specialties.

Paris Day Tours

Looking for more things to do? Urban Adventures offers several day tours in Paris, all led by local experts that will give you a taste for local life in the city:

Secret Paris: Cheese, Art, and Local Life
Cheese? Check. Macarons? Check. Art? Check. Join a local guide on this Paris tour to experience the mindblowing gastronomic feats, instantly recognisable architectural icons, and secret spots that make Paris so endearing.

Experience Bohemian Paris
Paris has certainly cornered the ‘effortlessly cool’ market, so why not join this Paris tour to infiltrate the scene? You’ll walk the boho beat of Saint Germain, sample wine, meat and cheese in a traditional wine house and hit the park for a casual game of petanque (+ wine!) for the win.

Gourmet Marais
The best-preserved medieval area in Paris, the heart of the Jewish community, the centre of the gay scene — the neighbourhood of Marais is as eclectic as the gastronomic treats you’ll try on this tour! Get ready to eat, drink, and explore your way through the city’s gourmet charms!

Beer vs. Wine: Bastille Bites Tour
Wine + French food + craft beer = a fantastic way to discover Paris! Join this laid-back, food and drink-focused walking tour to discover Paris through its bistrots, wine bars, brasseries, and cool local neighbourhoods. Soak up French culture, learn more about the city, and get your fill of wine, craft beer, and local treats along the way.

Total Paris Tour
A bit of glamour, a dose of history, a dash of quirk, and a whole lot of food — this total Paris tour is packed with everything you could ever need to see, do, and taste to become an honourary Parisian!


Paris on the big screen

Certainly the most iconic movie about Paris is probably Amélie. It’s set the city’s Montmartre area, and is loved by both Paris aficionados and film critics alike.

Alternately, prep for your upcoming visit with a viewing of Woody Allen’s fabulous Midnight in Paris for some magical realism in the era of Ernest Hemingway, Salvador Dali, and Gertrude Stein, set on the streets of romantic, literary Paris.

Paris on record

If you’re looking to create a soundtrack to your adventures in Paris, look no further than Edith Piaf’s Sous le Ciel de Paris, Serge Gainsbourg’s Le Poinçonneur des Lilas, Charles Aznavour’s La Bohême, or Nina Simone’s J’ai Deux Amours. You’ll be ready to take on Paris in no time!

Paris in books

If literature is more up your alley, A Movable Feast by Ernest Hemingway is always a good read. Hemingway describes his time in Paris as a young 20-year-old in the 1920s. Reading this book is like being immersed in the Bohemian feel of Saint-Germain and the Latin Quarter during Paris’ golden era.

Get in touch with us

If you have any questions about Urban Adventures tours in Paris, feel free to reach us at +33 7 82 36 74 64 or +33 6 44 28 08 90.

If social media is more your thing, follow us on Instagram at @parisurbanadventures. We’d love to have you comment on our photos, or use our hashtags #parisurbanadventures or #localsknow in one of your own photos of Paris!

Also, we can always be reached by email for more information at