The ultimate family holiday is with no doubt one that takes you to Disneyland Paris in the suburb of Marne-la-Vallée. Make your children’s dreams or maybe even your own childhood dreams come true by visiting Europe’s most famous and magical theme park filled with fantasy and fun for all. You don’t have to be a child to love Disneyland Paris; you just need to me young at heart. Visit Disneyland Park, Walt Disney Studios Park and Disney Village, a fantastic shopping district where you can buy your favourite Walt Disney character toys and take a piece of Disneyland home with you. Shake hands with Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Cinderella, participate in scheduled parades, watch various shows with your favourite cartoon characters and Disney songs and of course, what would be a visit to Disneyland Paris without going to Adventureland, Frontierland and Discoveryland and riding their sensational roller coasters?
Known as one of the most visited and photographed tourist attractions in the world, the ‘hard to miss’ Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel) in Paris has become a must see for all travellers to France. Built in 1889 by the French Civil Engineer Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, this gigantic 300 metre high wrought-iron construction is France’s most iconic monument. If you’re fit enough, you can choose to climb the 300 steps to the second level of the tower after which you will have to take the lift. When you get to the top of the Tower, take in the astonishing panoramic view over Paris. On your return back to the first and second levels take the opportunity to eat in one of the several restaurants. Over the years and with great influence from Hollywood films, the Eiffel Tower has become much associated with romance becoming a chosen spot for declarations of love or asking a loved one’s hand in marriage.
Official website: http://www.tour-eiffel.fr
Visit the world’s most famous art museum and its enormous collections. You do not have to be a lover of fine art to visit the Musée du Louvre in Paris which makes for an entertaining and cultural day out for anybody. Initially a palace for the kings of France, the Louvre museum was first opened to the public as a museum in 1793 and holds the most famous paintings and masterpieces of renowned artists and sculptors such as Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, Peter Paul Rubens and Rembrandt. Witness for yourself the mysterious Mona Lisa and the amazing statues of Aphrodite and Cupid. You can also see other Egyptian, Oriental, Greek, Roman and Etruscan antiquities, drawings and prints as well as the crown jewels of France. Certainly not something you’ll see every day.
Official website: http://www.louvre.fr/en
When in Paris, you must take the opportunity to check out one of Paris’ more recent attractions and now landmarks, the Louvre Pyramid, designed by I. M. Pei and completed in 1989. Standing in the main courtyard of the Louvre Palace, this 20 metre high glass pyramid is now the main entrance to the lobby of the illustrious Louvre Museum and is surrounded by three other miniature pyramids. What is most captivating about this attraction is its futuristic appearance juxtaposed with the classical architecture of the Palace before which its stands; something which has sparked much controversy over the years with many being for and others against this fusion of old with the new. Why not visit the Louvre Pyramid and decide for yourself?
The Notre Dame de Paris is one of the most stunning and prominent Gothic cathedrals in the world and is situated in the heart of Paris. Before entering its grounds, do take a moment to gaze up at this magnificent piece of architecture overlooking the River Seine. The main features of the Notre Dame Cathedral are its intimidating gargoyles, its assymetrical elements, its three rose windows, a 13-tonne bell named Emmanuel, its two magnificently tall towers and an amazing view over Paris which can be appreciated from the Dreams Gallery (Galeria des Chimères).
Official website: http://www.notredamedeparis.fr
Stroll around the Champs-Élysée, France’s most famous avenue which is situated in the northwestern part of the glamorous city of Paris. Known as the most expensive and beautiful strip in the world, the Champs-Élysée is 1.91 km long and is where you will find a league of France’s most luxurious shops, cafés and cinemas. Decorated with perfectly clipped horse-chestnut trees plus oozing charm and elegance, the Champs-Élysée is an attraction in itself but is also the location of various French monuments which include the Arc de Triomphe, a Statue of Napoléon Bonaparte and the Place de la Concorde. The Champs-Élysée is beautiful by day but even more stunning at night when all is lit up and is the perfect occasion to take a romantic evening stroll. A definite must!
Official website: http://www.champselysees.org
Located at the western end of the Champs-Élysée Avenue in Paris, the Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile is one of Paris’ most famous monuments and sits perfectly at the centre of twelve radiating avenues. Completed in 1836 and standing 50 metres tall, the Arc de Triomphe is a symbol of patriotism, erected to honour soldiers that fought and died for France during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Inscripted with all the names of French Victories and Generals, the Arc de Triomphe stands over the ‘Tomb of the Unknown Soldier’ from the 1st World War where an eternal flame burns in memory of those that lost their lives and were never identified.
Official website: http://www.arcdetriompheparis.com
For shopping lovers, being in the centre of the world’s most chic city full of glamorous boutiques and stores filled with designer brands is like being a child in a toy store. Paris is known as one of the birthplaces of Haute Couture for both men and women’s fashion and is where famous names such as Dior, Chanel, Yvez St. Laurent and Louis Vuitton originated. For a great shopping experience take to the one and only Triangle d’Or, the area which incorporates the Avenue Montaigne, Ave George V and Rue Francois 1er. The Champs-Élysée Avenue, the world’s most expensive and classy strip, is also a must if you’re looking for luxury and big-brand stores. To complete your ultimate fashion experience, why not follow in the footsteps of popular celebrities and take to the Parisian capital to attend one of its many organized fashion events and get to know about new trends before anyone else.