As the capital of France, including its suburbs Paris has a population of 12 million people. It has four separate seasons of tourism and in all four seasons remains one of the most popular global destinations every single year. Its history and aesthetic beauty as a center of art and culture solidifies its status as a truly romantic metropolitan city.
Paris's main airport Charles-de- Gaulle (CDG or also referred to as Roissy) is 32 km from the city center. There is a commuter rail service between Paris and the airport on the RER line B that gets you to the city center in 35 minutes and costs €9.50. Taxis cost around €50-60. Another option is RoissyBus, but that can take around 90 minutes due to heavy traffic. The easiest mode of transportation is the subway. The Paris metro has 16 separate lines on a common network, as well as the RER train network (to get the best rates, you can buy 10 tickets for €13.30. There are also rates that are region-specific, or 2-3 day passes and weekly passes). When the metro isn't working, buses that have "Noctilien" on the side of them operate as night buses. Bicycles, scooters, hop on-hop off buses, and tour boats on the Seine all are also great for transportation.
Every year, approximately 25 million tourists stay in the high priced hotels of Paris's city center. When you get farther away from the city center and when the number of highly starred hotels goes down a bit, the prices get significantly more affordable. Some of the city's more elegant hotels include the Four Seasons George V, Hotel Le Bristol , Hotel Fouquet's Barriere, Jays Paris, and the Plaza Athenee. If your budget is limited, you might want to think about the Lindbergh Hotel, Hotel Delambre , Hotel de Lille or the Avalon Hotel Paris. Le Regent Montmartre, St Christopher 's Inns and Arty Paris are also some of the better hostels in the city.
The Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, Arc de Triomphe, Sainte Chapelle, Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart) Basilica, the Pantheon Mausoleum, Palais Garnier (The national opera house), the river Seine and its bridges - especially the Pont Neuf and Pont Alexandre III, Saint-Germain-des-Prés Church and surroundings, other important regions of the city like Montmartre, Le Marais, Quartier Latin and Ile de la Cite (Cite Island), Paris's most famous boulevard the Champs-Elysees, Luxembourg Gardens and finally make sure you don't miss Versaille, which is 24 km outside the city. The reputation of the Musee D'Orsay, the Musee du Louvre, the Musee de l'Orangerie and the Musee Rodin also precede themselves and are all fantastic.
When you're in Paris one of the most enjoyable activities is unquestionably shopping. The super chic stores near Haussmann Boulevard, Rue de Rivoli and St. Germain de Pres aren't just for the shopaholics amongst you, but would be eye-catching for any tourist. In places like Galeries Lafayette and Primtemps, a large number of famous brands are housed under one roof. Also you need to remember that on Sundays only shops in the Marais are open. There's a flea market in Puces de St. Ouen that runs on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays. If you have a lot of time, there are more affordable prices in the malls on the outskirts of the city.
Quite possibly the most enjoyable activity to do in Paris is simply to sit in one of the many cafes and people-watch. In the Saint-Germain-des-Pres region of the city there are cafes like Les Deux Magot or Cafe de Flore where J.P. Sartre and other famous intellectuals frequented, as do modern Parisian intellectuals. About 30 km outside of the city is Disneyland, which is of course especially enjoyable for families and children to visit. In the summer months you can sunbathe with Parisians along the beaches that form around the River Seine. For amazing opera you can go to the Opera Garnier and Opera de la Bastille. For theatre there's Bobino, Mogador or Theatre de la Gaite-Montparnasse. For concerts go to Olympia. To watch cabaret there's of course the famous Moulin Rouge, or alternatively Lido or Folies Bergeres. Le Caveau des Oubliettes or L'Atelier Charonne are Paris's best known jazz clubs - go and decide for yourselves whether they've earned their reputations!