People will tell you that you need a lot of money and a lot of time to do Paris. Not so. My partner and I went to Paris for less than 48 hours in January, saw all the highlights, and best of all, didn't break the bank. Here's how!
- When it comes to sightseeing, stick with the free stuff.
We travel very often so every dollar saved really counts for us. Paris is a pricey destination, so we decided to cut corners on sightseeing costs by sticking to the free attractions the city had on offer. Here is what we saw:
Resting majestically atop the hill in Montmartre (one of Paris' best known districts), the Sacred Heart Cathedral's white domes are probably one of Paris' most recognizable landmarks after the Eiffel Tower. From here you can also get the most amazing view of Paris- it's the second highest point in the city!
Stroll along the Champs-Elysées
Subject of many songs and literature, a stroll along the avenue is a must-do in Paris. A walk along this chic street also means that you can hit up other important monuments in the city. The Arc de Triomphe sits stoically at the top of the avenue, while the Place de la Concorde is found at the end.
It costs money to enter the Centre Pompidou, but hanging around in front and the watching street performers do their thing is free (and more fun, at least for me!).
We also visited the Petit Palais, walked around the Latin Quarter and around the highly entertaining, if a bit seedy, red light district found around Pigalle station. All of these things were also free!
|Walking past Moulin Rouge, which is found in the red light district near Pigalle|
- Eat in Paris on the cheap
Eating out in Paris, especially if you're not familiar with the city, or spending most of your time in the tourist areas, is expensive. I was shocked at the prices of food and drink in restaurants- I somehow remember things costing way less the last time I was in Paris in 2008. At any rate, it is possible to eat cheaply and heartily. My companion and I ate well during our stay, often opting to eat smaller, cheaper things during the day, then spending a bit more money to eat in the evening. My suggestions:
Roadside stands selling delectable treats are a way of life in Paris. Even better, roadside fare is often dirt cheap in comparison to eating in restos. My partner and I had crepes for 2 Euros each, a huge panini for 3.50 Euros, and ate pastries from the many boulangeries for as little as 65 cents of a Euro.
- Save money on accommodation
- Public transportation and your own two feet are the best way to get around
The above is only some of the things we did, ate, and saw during our short trip. Contrary to popular belief, Paris can be done quickly (though we would all love more time to explore!) and cheaply.
What do you think of our itinerary and budgeting tips for 48 hours in Paris? Were we way off base? Anything you'd like to add? Questions?
More of Oneika the Traveller's travel adventures and stories
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