"Don't leave for Paris without 'em" Footwear Tip by davequ
Footwear, Paris: 38 reviews and 33 photos
Luggage and bags: As little and as light as possible, you will be on the move in the most exciting, electrifying city in the world.
My best purchase was a SMALL, microfiber day-bag with shoulder strap that fit snug under my arm.
Dave's "girlie-man" bag
Here went the map, kleenex (see toiletries), guidebook, pen, small digital camera and bottle of water.
Also a slim money-belt "wallet" that hid under my outer clothes for passport and money/credit cards to frustrate the thieves on the Metro, at Eiffel Tower, Pigalle, and Versailles.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Good professional and broken-in walking shoes (Mephisto, Ecco, Dansko, with arch supports, whatever works for you). Don't underestimate this tip. Your feet will KILL you if you do.
Also shirts/blouses made with synthetic, wrinkle-resistant fibers. One decent black outfit for the opera, upscale dinners, etc.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Lots of Euro coins for public toilets. Don't leave the hotel without 'em. Put some kleenex in your day bag also for tp.
Photo Equipment: Hi-res (8Mb or better if possible) digital camera for personal shots, or a good solid 35mm with haze filters & lenses if you're really a serious photog.
A small portable tripod for night shots is a must unless you have the ability to freeze/turn to stone when you push the shutter - maybe "image stabilization" feature fixes this. Bring/buy beaucoup batteries or a euro rechargables kit
Also (just my opinion) don't waste valuable film or even finite digital "bits" on digital hand-held shots of the standard tourist spots like the Eiffel tower when you can download better ones anywhere, ... unless being able to "prove" you were there is important to you.
I buy high quality photos / postcards for the standard places (Eiffel, Arc, etc.)
My personal photos that I took and share here were of special, personal people, places & moments I don't want to forget.
When in doubt though, shoot it. It's amazing how much your pix and your journal mean to you a year later.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Don't forget your Metro Map
Paris Metro Map
This is for online: Paris Metro Map online
ask for a petite hard copy "plan de métro" when you buy your first carnet of 10 tickets or carte orange:
Miscellaneous: Marling Menu Master for France.... menu translator that will liberate you from English-speaking tourist traps and open up the heavenly delight of local cuisine.
A biggie: I am so glad I remembered to bring & keep a journal:
I could write feelings, impressions, and info into my journal at night in my hotel room. I forced myself to use it every day.
It was like gold to me about 6 months after I returned.
Also: Carry a small writing pad & pen at all times so you can communicate in an emergency: ("Écrivez svp?")
My favorite Paris Map - Michelin's Paris Plan et Index (resolution 1/10,000)... an excellent waterproof fold-up map with all info and just the right size.
Last (for now): a small phrase book with survival phrases in French (especially helpful in train stations under moments of stress when you forget all your French).
Good luck. Au Revoir!
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