You should know some facts about Paris, France before starting you start your journey.
Paris, France Must knows:
Paris is divided into 20 areas or arrondissements. The first arrondissement is at the center of Paris turning clockwise till the 20th. It is very common to refer to areas of Paris by their number, like Paris 1, or Paris 8.
Paris Left Bank areas: 5, 6, 7, 13, 14, 15
Right Bank areas: 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20
Take a look at our MAP if you need a visual guide.
The Seine river divides Paris into the Left and Right Bank. Champs-Elysées, Rue de Rivoli and Montmartre are some of the highlights of the Right Bank whereas St. Germain-des-Prés, Latin Quarter, and La Sorbonne are the highlights of the Left side.
You will probably spend more time in the right bank than in the left since there is more to explore and see.
Good to Know:
Paris is one hour ahead of Greenwich or London time.
Metric system is used in France and the electricity is 220 volts. Euros is the currency used in France. The days of travellers cheques are gone and bank cards and credit cards are the most popular way of shopping.
Most shops in Paris are open from 9 am – 7 pm, and closed on Sundays. Smaller shops may close during lunch hours as well. During holidays and sales season, some shops may decide to stay open later and open on Sundays. Smaller retailers may even close for the month of July / August.
Most people in Paris eat between 8 – 10 pm and restaurants are open accordingly. You can always eat earlier at the cafes or brasseries.
Public Holiday in France:
Most shops, banks, businesses, some restaurant and museums close on these days.
Jan 1 – New Years Day
Easter Sunday / Monday
Ascension Thursday ( 40 Days after Easter)
May 1- Labour Day
May 8 – WWII Victory Day
Whit Monday – Pentecost – day varies – Usually 49 days after Easter
July 14 – French National Holiday – Bastille Day
Aug 15 – Assumption of the Virgin Mary
Nov 1 – All Saint’s Day
Nov 11 – Armistice Day
Dec 25 – Christmas
Paris Travel Tips:
Beware of purse snatchers in Paris. They are all over. Try carrying your purse across your shoulder for more security!
Other Facts about Paris:
Paris is the most visited city in the World.
Paris is also known as the City of Light.
French like to kiss 4 times on the cheek.