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Top 11 Tourist Mistakes in Paris
(and how to avoid them)

Paris tour buses

ABOVE: Why view Paris from a tour bus when the city is so easy to explore on foot?

Mistake #7: Booking unnecessary tours

Citroen 2CVEscorted sightseeing tours have their place. If you've got mobility problems or you're in Paris for only a short time, a guided tour from a company like Viator (a Paris for Visitors business partner) can help you enjoy the city without running short on energy or time.

Tours can also be handy if you want to go outside the city with minimum fuss--to Versailles and Giverny, for example--or if you have a specific interest, such as:

Paris par ArrondissementHowever, if all you want to do is see the sights, we recommend buying a good Paris tourist map (we especially like the Blay Foldex Paris par Arrodissement street atlas) and exploring the Paris on foot. You'll save money, you'll enjoy your own itinerary at your own pace, and you'll have more serendipitous encounters than you would in a tour group.

Our Paris sightseeing articles will give you ideas for planning an itinerary, and our Paris transportation articles will help you find your away around by Métro, bus, boat, and other forms of transit when you don't feel like walking.

Tour tip:

Boulangerie Patisserie Au Grand RichelieuFor an occasional break from do-it-yourself sightseeing, try one of the "Meet the Parisians at Work" tours that are co-sponsored by Meetingthefrench.com and the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau.

La Boulangerie par Veronique MauclercMost of the tours are quite reasonably priced, and they're a great way to see how Parisian artisans, designers, bakers, chocolatiers, instrument makers, and other craftsmen go about their daily tasks.

Read our La Boulangerie par Véronique Mauclerc and Boulangerie Patisserie Au Grand Richelieu articles to learn what to expect on these outstanding tours.

Next page: Mistake #8: Driving in Paris

Top photo copyright © Paris Tourist Office. Photographer: Catherine Balet.



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Need a car in Europe?

If you live outside the EU, a tax-free Renault or Peugeot tourist car lease can be cheaper than renting for visits of three weeks or longer--especially in France.

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