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Le Mans Guide

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Live the greatest race in the world ...and much more! Every year some 250,000 spectators descend on this "City of Art and History" in north-western France for the annual Le Mans 24 Hours Race , the most famous endurance race in the world. This year will be no exception with 56 cars competing in the legendary 'twice around the clock' race on the 16th and 17th of June 2018. As always you can be sure of an exciting race and a close finish. Ferrrari, BMW, Porsche, Corvette, Lotus, Aston Martin ... will all be there battling for the first place. Le Mans 24 Hours offers a full weekend of events proving that at Le Mans "every second is a new emotion". At Le Mans 24 Hours lasts a whole week! History Le Mans has hosted a 24-hour race since 1923, stopping only briefly for The Great Depression and the Second World War. The race was set up by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) to test both car and driver for endurance and reactions. This has led to car manufacturers being forced to innovate in order to allow better aerodynamics, fuel efficiency and braking and Le Mans regularly features new designs from some of the biggest names in racing (known as Le Mans Prototypes, or LMPs). Although the 13.6km track, named the Circuit de la Sarthe, has seen many tweaks over the years (most notably the inclusion of chicanes on the straight to stop drivers going too fast) the basic layout has remained the same. Some sections use public roads which can be driven on in the days leading up to the race before being closed off, giving you a unique opportunity to get an insight into the experience of the competitors (except at a slower and safer speed of course). The events Every year fans get the chance to meet their heroes with the Drivers' Autograph Session, and those lucky enough to get their hands on a General Enclosure, Grandstand, or VIP weekend ticket will get a chance to explore behind the scenes with guided pit walks, offering a unique first-hand experience of the track. One of the most popular non-race events traditionally occurs on the Friday, when the competitors take part in the Drivers' Parade through the centre of Le Mans. The carnival-style event not only gives spectators the opportunity to get up close to both classic cars and drivers, but also to enjoy a huge street party. Each year is more colourful and livelier than the previous; expect music, dancing and the odd cheeky display of bravado from some of the best drivers in the world today. If you're feeling the need for speed then the high velocity events begin mid-week, with free practice sessions and qualifying practice sessions warming up the tyre rubber. These are normally followed by more qualifying practice sessions in the following days. As the main race approaches on the Saturday there are a number of support races which make for an equally impressive spectacle. In the morning, the Le Mans Legend takes place, a unique event reserved for cars that have previously competed in Le Mans. Each year a different era is picked from the past and drivers range from amateurs to former champions, such as Sterling Moss. Of course, after all this excitement it's easy to forget that you have 24 hours of one of the greatest races on the planet to cap it all off. You can watch all the action first hand or on one of the eleven giant screens scattered around the race area, grandstand and village, so you don't have to miss one nail-biting minute.   Accommodation and tickets The ACO opens several campsites around the circuit for the event. Most are only a short walk from the track and are connected to the village by a small train. You will need to get a special camping ticket, normally one per vehicle required, and the best campsites sell out fast, so be sure to book as early as possible. Tickets can be bought directly from the ACO at the official Le Mans race website. To see the race you will need at least an Enceinte General ticket (general admission), but separate tickets are needed for the grandstands. For more tips and advice see our guide to camping in France. Other sights The city of Le Mans itself should not be overlooked, with its stunning architecture and amazingly-preserved old town. An ancient settlement, the remains of a Roman wall and amphitheatre can be seen in town and the cobbled streets may seem familiar as the setting for Gérard Depardieu's film adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac. Paris is just a 2 hour drive away, so if you want to take a break from the racing festivities and do something a little different why not check out our guide to shopping in Paris? Whether you're a huge racing fan or just interested in experiencing one of the most incredible and exciting events on the sports calendar then be sure not to miss the "24 Hours of Le Mans" event. Circuit des 24 Heures 72019 LE MANS CEDEX 2 Phone : 02 43 40 24 24 Fax : 02 43 40 24 15 Information and tickets at: www.24h-lemans.com Book your journey

Saint-Denis: the second Fanzone in Paris

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From football to art, we take a look at some of the best things to see and do in Saint-Dennis. Whether you’ve been to France or not, you’re more than likely to have heard of Saint-Denis, Paris, a northern suburb in the City of Love, which is home to the famous Stade de France. This summer, Saint-Denis will welcome visitors from all over the world for football matches between the likes of France, Romania, Iceland and Austria. As well as the football, visitors can enjoy ancient basilicas, modern shopping precincts and more. Read on to find out what Saint-Denis has to offer.   Fanzone Built in 1998, the Stade de France has long been a top destination for football fans. Over the years, this magnificent stadium has hosted some truly exciting matches, including their World-Cup-winning match in ’98. This year, visitors to Saint-Denis can join the football fanatics at the Stade or watch the matches from the designated football Fanzone. The official Fanzone will be held near the Basilica of Saint-Denis, with giant screens broadcasting the matches throughout the competition. The whole suburb will be buzzing with a contagious atmosphere, but nowhere will it be more exciting than at the Stade and the football Fanzone. The Stade de France will be full of football fans. ©Flickr user Mickaël T. What to do Rue Jean Jaurès market Every Tuesday, Friday and Sunday, Rue Jean Jaurès is transformed into a bustling marketplace, with over 300 market stalls selling everything from tasty treats to antique furniture. Rue Jean Jaurès is next to the Basilica of Saint-Denis in the centre of town, so it’s the perfect way to start your day exploring Saint-Denis. Pick up a crêpe and a Café au lait and browse the many stalls – you’re unlikely to walk away empty handed. Pick up a crêpe at the local market. ©Flickr user Marco Ooi. Museum of Art and History Not too far from the football Fanzone you’ll find the Museum of Art and History, one of Saint-Denis’ must-see attractions. The museum, which was established in 1901, was previously located at the former Hôtel-Dieu, before being moved to an ancient convent that once belonged to the Carmelites (a Roman Catholic religious order) in 1981. The museum houses an impressive collection, including an entire wing that is dedicated to the history of the Carmelites and a many works by multitalented artist, Francis Jourdain. In addition to the spectacular artworks and objects, the museum has a lovely garden which has been designed to stimulate the five senses, with over 30 types of plants. Where to eat Chez Rosette As you probably know, French cuisine is amongst the best in the world and the abundance of fresh produce and artisan products make dining out a real pleasure. There are plenty of great restaurants in Saint-Denis, so you’ll never have trouble picking a spot to eat. Chez Rosette is a popular choice, serving up fresh fish, hearty stews and, of course, delicious desserts. Dig in! Where to drink The Frog and Rosbif For delicious craft beer and tasty grub, The Frog and Rosbif is the place to be. This centrally located pub has a massive range of in-house beer, from crisp blonde lagers to dark ales. As well as the large selection of beers, The Frog and Rosbif serves up American-style food. Think pastrami sandwiches, mac and cheese and, of course, burgers. Where to stay Courtyard Paris Saint-Denis While there are plenty of hotels to choose from, the Courtyard Paris Saint-Denis is our top pick. This 4-star hotel has high-speed Wi-Fi, complimentary breakfast and is only a short Metro ride from the football Fanzone at the Basilica of Saint-Denis. If you’re lucky enough to have tickets to the Stade de France, transport is easy for you too – you can walk there in under 25 minutes!  Get to the football with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle. Drive to the football with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle – it takes just 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais. For suggestions on where you can stop during your drive from Calais to Saint-Denis, read our driving guide here

Travel to Paris for the Football 2016

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Travelling for the football? Make the most of your journey from Calais to Paris by planning a few fun stops along the way. This summer, thousands of football fans will be heading to France's capital to enjoy the football tournament. If you're going to be one of them, why not make the most of your trip and plan some fun stops along the way, between Calais and Paris? By car the journey takes about three hours if you take the A26 and then the A1, which will lead you directly to Paris. If you've got a little more time, you can take the coastal road via Le Touquet and Abbeville and see more of the landscape in northern-France. Located on the Seine River, the city of Paris is in the centre of the Île-de-France region, which is colloquially known as the Paris region. Here are some great places to stop on your way to Paris, when you're travelling to the football this summer. The scenic city of Amiens © Image by Flickr user ines s. Amiens Capital of the Somme department in Picardy, Amiens is a popular tourist spot in its own right. Amiens is home to a breath-taking Cathedral, which is the largest Gothic cathedral in France and the 19th largest cathedral in the world. It's also home to several markets, such as the book market at Place Alphonse-Fiquet, which takes place on the first Saturday of every month, and the iconic “floating market” (although today it sits on dry land) every Saturday. This famous food market is supplied by the nearby Hortillonnages gardens, which grow a range of fruits and vegetables. It's possible to tour the gardens both on foot or by boat, but a boat tour is especially pretty in the summer. Senlis Just north of Paris, the historic commune of Senlis is a delightful place to stop the car and stretch your legs. A quaint town with hundreds of years' worth of history in its walls, Senlis boasts a pretty Gallo-Roman centre, with cobbled streets and picturesque buildings. Explore medieval walls and the local royal castle, which boasts its own park and Romanesque tower. For a bite to eat, head to La Scaramouche, where you can dine on beautifully presented dishes such as saffron-seasoned hake aioli and braised pork shank. The contemporary restaurant boasts large windows, which give great views of the town's cathedral. Explore the cobbled streets of Senlis.© Guillaume Speurt Chantilly West of Senlis, Chantilly is in the heart of Chantilly Forest and is home to 11,000 residents. The first thing you'll notice when visiting Chantilly is the huge château, which sits in the middle of immaculately-kept gardens. Visiting in the summer means you'll see Chantilly Forest at its best, so there are plenty of walking and cycling options to enjoy. Fans of horseracing will want to check out the Chantilly racecourse, where thousands of horses are trained and raced each day. Stop by the Marche Decouvert, which takes place on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and stock up on picnic food to enjoy in the surrounding forests and parks – it's a great day out when you're not at the football. The stunning Chantilly Château. © vasse nicolas,antoine Beauvais Capital of the Oise department, Beauvais gained fame for producing some of France's best tapestries. Despite its status as a city, Beauvais is naturally very pretty and is home to a huge park, Canada Lake. If you're headed to Paris for the football, stopping off at Beauvais to enjoy water sports on the lake will provide a refreshing break. As well as a grand cathedral, Beauvais is home to an unusual astronomical clock, which was built between 1865 and 1868. This amazing clock features 52 dials that display the times in 18 cities around the globe, the rising and setting times of the sun and moon, as well as planetary positions and even tidal hours. The stunning astronomical clock at Beauvais cathedral. © Omar Bárcena Travelling to France for the football? With Eurotunnel Le Shuttle you can get from Folkestone to Calais in 35 minutes. Make the most of your drive to Paris and the rest of France using our other travel guides

Paris Fanzone in Champ de Mars 2016

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France’s capital is home to some thrilling football matches this summer, so make the most of your trip to Paris with our handy guide. As the capital of France, Paris will play host to some incredible football matches this summer. Expect to see action from the likes of Turkey, Croatia, Romania, Switzerland, Portugal, Austria and Germany, to name just a few. Whether you’re travelling with a group or with family, Paris has a huge mix of sights, from galleries to gardens and theme parks. Home to the iconic Disneyland Paris, you might want to extend your trip and spend some time in this incredible resort. The Champ de Mars at the base of the Eiffel Tower will host the official fanzone in Paris © Image by Flickr user Hugh Millward Fanzone This summer, Paris will boast two football fanzones, with the main event taking place at the Champ de Mars. A beautiful stretch of park at the base of the Eiffel Tour, the Champ de Mars is big enough to hold 120,000 football fans, with plenty of giant screens so that everyone can see the matches taking place. The iconic park will also feature a stage, so you’re sure to catch some entertainment while you’re there. What to do The Louvre If you've come all the way to Paris for the football, you may as well make the most of the city's culture at the Louvre, found smack-bang in the middle of Paris. It's an amazing institution holding some of the world's finest artistic works, the most famous of which includes Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa. Over the years, the historic palace has been extended with wings such as the steel and glass pyramid and the “Richelieu Wing”. With so many parts to the museum, you'll need to decide what you want to see beforehand, while art enthusiasts can easily spend a whole day exploring! Even if you’re not big on art, Paris’ Louvre is worth a visit. © zoetnet The Latin Quarter Buzzing with live music, history and a great nightlife, Paris' Latin Quarter is famous for inspiring writers and artists over the years for its bohemian atmosphere. It was once the hub of student life in Paris (with Latin being the language most frequently spoken here back in 1257). Even though it's been gentrified over the years, it's still a great place to visit bars, bookshops, cafés and live music clubs. Its main street is Boulevard St-Michel, where you'll find shops and restaurants, while you can grab a post-football beer at a café down Place de la Sorbonne. The Latin Quarter by night is a lively hub of activity. © gadgetdude Where to eat Bouillon Chartier A legend in the Paris food scene, Bouillon Chartier has been serving customers great French food for over 100 years. One reason for its success is the quality of its food and the surprisingly reasonable prices. With so many restaurants in Paris to choose from, for traditional French cuisine this one is a must. Tables are laid in a huge listed building, while dishes include classics such as foie gras and escargot, accompanied by delicious herring, beef tartare and grilled lamb, amongst others. Prepare yourself for rich food and a good choice of French wine – the perfect end to a day of football. Le Coq Rico For more of a bistro, Le Coq Rico is an interesting restaurant focused on all things chicken. Located on the Montmartre butte, as soon as you walk into the restaurant you're welcomed by the smell of roasted chicken, which is enough to get any appetite going! Two or more people can feast on whole chicken with chips, macaroni cheese or seasonal vegetables, while starters include fried chicken wings with spiced cromesquis (a type of croquette). Rediscover chicken at Le Coq Rico in Paris. © Mon Œil Where to drink Monsieur le Zinc Monsieur le Zinc is a fun little bar serving beer and wine on tap, in a contemporary basement space. Customers load a card with the amount of their choice with one of the bartenders, before using the taps (creatively made using old gas pumps) to serve themselves a range of wines and beers. It's a twist on a self-serve bar, giving the customer an independent experience. Harry's New York Bar Historically Paris is known for being the favourite haunt of various celebrities, including footballers, artists and notable figures, with many of them frequenting Harry's New York Bar. Once the bar of choice of Ernest Hemingway, Rita Hayworth and Coco Chanel, Harry's has been serving delicious cocktails in its tasteful wood-panelled room since 1911. Check out the bar schedule for live piano and jazz performances. Be part of history at Harry’s New York Bar. © Frédéric de Villamil Where to stay Courtyard Paris Boulogne A 20-minute walk from the Parc des Princes stadium, which will host five football games throughout the tournament, the Courtyard Paris Boulogne is a spacious and clean hotel, with a distinctly European feel. There's a breakfast buffet and dinner options if you're looking to stay in, and the staff are friendly and welcoming with good spoken English. Travelling to Paris for the football? Use our guide to make the most of your trip. With Eurotunnel Le Shuttle you can get from Folkestone to Calais in just 35 minutes. Make the most of your drive to Paris and the rest of France using our other travel guides

Secret Paris

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The secretive side to Europe's romantic city So you've been to the Louvre, walked around the Arc de Triomphe, and you've looked out over the city from the top of the Eiffel Tower, but there's so much more to see in the world's most romantic city. We've overturned every paving slab and crept around hidden street corners to bring you a selection of Paris' best unknown gems, but don't tell anyone! Little-known day spots Parc de Bagatelle When you're exploring one of France's most unique cities, a trip around the usual tourist traps can mean missing out on the most interesting parts of a city. Paris is known for its beauty and many tourists head to the famous parks surrounding Champs-Elysée avenue. For a quieter spot, head to Parc de Bagatelle of the Château de Bagatelle in western Paris. This beautiful, quiet garden was created in the 18th century, and is home to a Chinese-style pagoda, as well as stunning rose gardens, which play host each year to an international competition. Parc de Belleville Another stunning green space, which provides great views over Paris is Parc de Belleville. If you're tired of the Eiffel Tower, this is a superb alternative that will give you panoramic views over the city, and it even has its own wooden children's park. Home to waterfalls, streams, and 140 wine-producing grape vines, take a picnic to the top of Belleville hill and watch as the city breathes below. Another interesting way to see the city is by taking a boat tour along the River Seine, an option that is surprisingly overlooked by many tourists. Views over the city at Parc de Belleville Marché Monge Paris has dozens of markets, both open air and covered, but one of the most delightful is Marché Monge. This food market is set in the quiet surroundings of Place Monge, which can be found just south of the River Seine in the city centre. You can spend an afternoon pleasantly browsing the high quality goods that are on sale, and we love the fact that you're able to buy produce directly from the source. Chat with the fishmonger and ask about sustainable fishing, or discuss local farming whilst buying fresh fruit and veg. Take some extra cash to this market though, as prices reflect the quality of goods on offer. Underground culture La Pagode Cinema If you're looking for something to do in the evenings, why not spend some time checking out Paris' movie theatres? La Pagode Cinema is celebrated amongst those who know its existence, as it's one of the most beautiful places to see a film in Paris. Located at 57 Rue de Babylone, in the southwest of Paris, La Pagode gets its name from its authentic pagoda, which is made from parts imported from Japan, and has been showing films on and off since the 1930s. There are also some exquisite gardens at the site, which are perfect to relax in whilst waiting for a film. Musée Carnavalet Tucked away in Paris' historic Le Marais district, Musée Carnavaletshowcases the history of Paris, housed within two beautiful mansion buildings. Formerly a famous Renaissance hotel, the setting of the museum has its own gardens, and houses a range of collections such as items from the Middle Ages, French furniture, art, and archaeology. The museum is known, but many overlook it in favour of the famous Louvre, and Le Marais is a fantastic district for museum addicts, as it's home to many different galleries and museums. Musee Carnavalet Bab-Ilo Paris has an ever-changing music scene, and one great way to get a glimpse of local culture is to head to a live music venue. We love the Bab-Ilo, a famous jazz club with the Parisian locale. You'll find it in the Montmartre neighbourhood, and whilst this area is packed with busy bars and clubs, Bab-Ilo is tucked away inside an old pub, which serves as a cosy setting within which local jazz musicians perform, as well as Brazilian and Caribbean bands during most nights of the week. Paris' Montmartre neighbourhood is well-trodden, but there are still secrets to uncover Secret eats Chez Ramona Within Paris' charming Belleville district, you'll find Chez Ramona. Serving up Spanish food, this restaurant is popular with locals who want to spend a long evening dining on classic Spanish dishes, whilst enjoying a lot of sangria! It's a little hidden away, and to get to the restaurant space you'll have to venture through the downstairs bakery, before climbing the narrow stairs which take you to the dining room. The décor is fun and typically Spanish, and the prices are very reasonable. Sip sangria and feast on paella at Chez Ramona L'Ebouillanté If you're after some more traditional French cuisine, head to L'Ebouillanté, in a low-key square just beyond the St-Gervais-St-Protais Church. It's technically a café, dishing up pastries, cakes and light meals, and in the evening you can dine on crêpes filled with meat and vegetables, whilst sipping on well-made cocktails. There's an art studio upstairs, so much of the clientele here reflects the bohemian vibes that L'Ebouillanté has managed to uphold in all its years in business. Hidden hotels Hotel Daniel This small, lavishly decorated hotel is perfect if you're looking for a luxury stay in Paris. Located between the Champs-Elysées avenue and Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, this hotel is a beautiful home away from home, decorated with comfortable furniture, tasteful artwork and flowers throughout. The hotel restaurant serves up consistently good food, from breakfast through to brunch and teatime, and you have the luxury of having breakfast at any time of day. During the evening, relax in the tasteful bar and enjoy a glass of champagne, or one of the select cocktails on offer. Hidden Hotel This hotel is situated down a peaceful street, near to the Arc de Triomphe. Despite the location, you don't feel as though you're in one of the busiest parts of Paris, as the noises of the nearby hustle and bustle are muted by the surrounding buildings, and the Hidden Hotel'swooden entrance feels like a secret door to another world. Inside you're greeted by an eco-friendly escape. The original building was renovated and replaced with all-natural fittings and materials, and the décor is chic and modern, and incredibly comfortable. Be aware though, that this part of town is very touristy, although the location is convenient if you want to see the main sights. Getting there and around Europe is just a 35 minute journey with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, so it's never been easier to take a city break! Book your journey

Planning a trip to Disneyland

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When and where to meet characters With two huge parks to explore and so much to see it is advisable to work out a plan for your visit. There is more than enough in each park to occupy a day, so don't try to do them both at once.           Planning Your Visit There are scheduled events which occur daily in different areas of the parks, including parades and stage shows, so try to time your route so that you'll be in the right place at the right time. The park can get very busy and there are plenty of marvellous distractions to enjoy, so leave yourself plenty of time to get from area to area. If you or a member of your party is keen to meet their favourite Disney® hero, you can pick up a timetable of personal appearances, which will let you know where and when to be to get that all important photo.     Book your journey

Disneyland® Paris Parks Guide

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The magic starts here with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's guide to Disneyland® Paris With two parks to explore, including five magical kingdoms, daily parades, thrilling rides and behind the scenes action, there is something for everybody at this wonderful family resort. Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's guide can help you get the most out of your experience and ensure you don't miss out on any of the magic. Disneyland® Paris is split into two main parks – Disneyland® Park and Walt Disney® Studios Park and you can buy tickets for one or both, with plenty to see in each.           Disneyland® Park This original site, opened in 1992, is made up of five themed lands: Main Street USA®, Frontierland, Adventureland, Fantasyland and Discoveryland. Main Street USA®   Frontierland   Adventureland   Fantasyland   Discoveryland       Frontierland Strap on your spurs and head to Frontierland for some rootin' tootin' Wild West fun. This land includes one of the big thrill rides in the park, Big Thunder Mountain, the fastest wildest train west of the Mississippi.   For family fun exploring,hop aboard one of the park's paddle steamer river boats or take a wonder through Pocahontas Indian Village, where younger visitors swing between tepees while adults enjoy a relaxing riverside view. For spooky thrills the Phantom Manor, which is packed with spooky animated details, from stretching rooms to singing skeletons, this is one ghost hunt which is suitable for the whole family.     Adventureland Adventureland certainly lives up to its name, with swashbuckling pirates, magical genies and a certain whip-cracking archaeologist among its inhabitants.   See the ride that spawned the film with the yo-ho-hoing Pirates of the Caribbean boat adventure, featuring 119 animatronic characters, including monkeys and even skeletons. There's more swashbuckling adventure on the Adventure Isle, where you can cross swinging rope bridges and explore dark caves in search of gold doubloons. There's even an opportunity to sneak aboard Captain Hook's pirate ship, which is moored in the lagoon. For a whip cracking adventure head deep into the jungle to discover Indiana Jones' Temple of Peril (A French take on the Temple of Doom); here you will be whisked off in a runaway mine train, speeding through ancient ruins.     Fantasyland Once you've had your adrenaline fill head to Fantasyland where you will discover Sleeping Beauty Castle, take a closer look to reveal a magnificent stained glass gallery telling the story of Sleeping Beauty, and if you're feeling daring you can tiptoe into the cave beneath to catch a glimpse of the giant dragon who resides there.   Continue into the fairytale, where you can fly with Dumbo the elephant and taking a spin in the Mad Hatter's Teacups. Fairytales really do come to life here, with gentle rides exploring the tales of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and lovable puppet-boy Pinocchio. You can lose yourself (and others) in the twisting corridors of Alice's Curious Labyrinth, though be sure to look out for the Queen of Hearts and make sure that you keep your head!     Discoveryland Step into the future in Discoveryland, where you can blast off to space, fight evil aliens and pilot your own rocket ship. Grab a laser gun and help Buzz Lightyear fight the evil Zurg and his minions in an exciting indoor ride where you could win the title of Galactic Hero.   The bravest space explorers can be shot from a canon into the farthest reaches of the galaxy in Space Mountain: Mission 2 or pilot their own rocket ships on the Orbitron carousel. If you would rather take more of a back seat and watch the action unfold then 3-D movie Captain EO, which returned to the park in 2010 after nearly 20 years away, features Michael Jackson performing exclusive songs and the stunning special effects of movie master George Lucas.     In every area of Disneyland® Park there is always something going on, from spectacular shows to hidden details to seek out. So while it's worth planning what you want to see beforehand, leave some time for the little surprises which are guaranteed to pop up along the way. Book your journey

Walt Disney® Studios Park

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The fastest route to Disneyland® Paris by car Walt Disney® Studios Park was opened in 2002 as a second park on the Disneyland® Paris site. Here you can discover the magical world of cinema and television, with glimpses behind the scenes and a number of entertaining daily shows.           Walt Disney® Studios Park The park is divided into four studio lots – Front Lot, Toon Studio, Production Courtyard and Backlot – and in 2010 Disney® launched a major addition in the form of Pixar characters, including an entire Toy Story Playland. Front Lot   Toon Studio   Production Courtyard   Back Lot       Front Lot The Front Lot is, unsurprisingly, the first area which park visitors encounter upon entering and to get any further you have to step into the night into the impressive Disney® Studio 1.   This huge sound studio is designed to replicate a fantasy Sunset Boulevard, stuffed with ingenious Hollywood and film references for guests to seek out.     Toon Studio Head into Toon Studio, where some of Disney's® most memorable creations come to life and you can even try your hand at being an animator yourself. With the Art of Animation guided tour you can see behind the scenes in the animation process and find out how some of Disney's® most famous characters were created.   If this leaves you inspired to revisit some of your favourite moments from Disney® films then take a seat at the Animagique stage show, where Donald Duck is your host through a series of popular song and dance routines from classics such as Dumbo, The Jungle Book and The Little Mermaid. You can shrink to the size of Buzz, Woody and friends in the park's latest addition – Toy Story Playland. As well as experiencing all the bright colours and wonderful imagination of the Pixar film brought to life, thrill-seekers can take a ride on RC Racer, while younger visitors can enjoy the Slinky Dog ZigZag spin. If that's not enough for Pixar fans then hop aboard Crush's Coaster for a totally radical rollercoaster ride or get behind the wheel of a rookie racer for the Cars Race Rally.     Production Courtyard In the Production Courtyard you can explore behind the scenes of cinema and TV, including a tram tour through full-scale movie productions (though hold on to your hat when the tour takes a turn into the Catastrophe Canyon film set).   The CinéMagique and Stitch Live! shows provide some more relaxing sit-down excitement, the former providing a whistlestop tour through a series of Hollywood's most famous spectacles. But once you've rested your feet it's time to take on one of the park's most popular attractions - The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. The towering haunted hotel features hi-tech spooks and a thrilling elevator drop, which accelerates downwards faster than gravity. Prepare for fun frights!     Backlot In the Backlot you'll find big bangs and heartstopping special effects. The Moteurs... Action! Stunt Show Spectacular features car chases, motorbike jumps and spectacular explosions aplenty, to keep you gripped to the edge of your seat.   If you like your thrills accompanied by a hard rocking soundtrack then hop aboard the Rock'n'Roller Coaster, soundtracked by Aerosmith. A day in Walt Disney® Studios Park can really bring the magic of the movies to life, but with so many shows on offer make sure you plan what you want to see so that you don't end up missing out.     Book your journey

Disney® Village

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The magic starts here with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's guide to Disney® Village Just because the parks close for the night it doesn't mean the magic has to end. Head to the Disney® Village, situated between the two parks, for an evening of excitement, entertainment and eating.           Disney® Village Mosey on down to the ranch at Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, where you will be greeted by Mickey, Goofy and pals, before settling in for dinner and a rip-roaring show. While you enjoy your meal you can watch Buffalo Bill, Sitting Bull, Annie Oakley and the Rough Riders as they grab their lassos and six-shooters for a western spectacular.   If you're looking for something a little different then take a ride up in the PanoraMagique balloon, which offers spectacular views across both parks and Lake Disney®. Disney® Village contains a host of eateries to pick from, including a Planet Hollywood, but if you want to get up close and personal with the world's most famous mouse then Café Mickey is the place for you. Book early to avoid disappointment and you could enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner with Mickey and chums, a great bookend to the magical excitement of the parks.     Book your journey

Accommodation

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Staying on site allows you Extra Magic Hours With Eurotunnel Le Shuttle the magic is not so far from where you are.           Accommodation There are seven official Disney® hotels on site, from the luxurious Disneyland® Hotel, with spa, swimming pool and kids' playroom, to the more fun themed hotels, like the Davy Crocket Ranch, which has individual cabins and its own grocery store.   Staying on site allows you Extra Magic Hours, so you get to be in the park before regular opening time, enjoying minimal queues and ensuring you're first in line when the parks open to all and last to leave at the end of the day. You can book hotel packages to get entrance and meals included. Selected associate hotels can provide an alternative to on-site accommodation, with shuttle buses to take you to and from the park. Find hotels near Disneyland Paris.     Book your journey

A literary tour of Paris

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In Hemingway's footsteps "If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast." Ernest Hemingway was just one of the many writers to find his muse in Paris over the centuries - and whilst many aspiring authors still tinker with their work outside the city's many pavement cafés, just as many tourists are inspired to visit Paris for its rich literary heritage. We've rounded up the best and most interesting bars, restaurants and other destinations, all of which have attracted famous names in French and English literature - just right for a fascinating and evocative city break to Paris. Cafe Procope 13 Rue de l'Ancienne Comédie, 75006 Paris' oldest restaurant, the Procope has been continuously open since 1686 - that's ninety years before America declared its independence! French philosophers such as Rousseau and Voltaire frequently dropped in for an exotic drink of coffee, whilst a few years later the restaurant was popular amongst Robespierre and other architects of the French Revolution. These days, however, the Procope steers clear of civil unrest in favour of hearty traditional cooking in beautiful period surroundings. And if you want to soak up some more atmosphere, Voltaire's own desk - a gift from Frederick the Great - has been preserved in one of the side rooms. Maison de Victor Hugo 6, Place des Vosges, 75004 Stately and serene, the Place des Vosges is a beautiful spot for a stroll at any time of the day or night. However, the south-eastern corner of the square holds a particular treat for visitors interested in literature - the grandly named Hôtel de Rohan-Guéménée was for sixteen years the home of Victor Hugo, and his apartment has been preserved as a museum. The modest space (which is open Tuesday-Sunday) replicates Hugo's surroundings through the three crucial stages of his life - before, during and after his self-imposed exile during the reign of Napoleon II - as well as preserving the bedroom in which he died in 1885. Two temporary exhibitions are hosted by the museum each year to showcase Hugo's work as not only a writer, but a supremely talented illustrator. Les Deux Magots 6, Place Saint-Germain-des-Prés, 75006 Along with its principal rival, the nearby Café de Flore, Les Deux Magots is the archetypal Left Bank café. In its early days it played host to poets including Rimbaud and Mallarmé, but it really came into its own as a hub for two burgeoning inter-war movements in art and philosophy. André Breton presided over the bold young Surrealist artists, whilst existentialist writers gathered under the aegis of Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. Camus, Picasso and Bertolt Brecht all spent their time and money in Les Deux Magots too, cementing its reputation as a haven for all manner of creative types - although it's no longer cheap and cheerful enough for the current generation of aspiring artists! Shakespeare and Company 37 rue Bûcherie, 75005 Sylvia Beach's legendary English language bookshop and lending library on the rue de l'Odéon was a fixture of the Lost Generation. Hemingway, Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein and others all spent time there, whilst James Joyce - whose masterwork Ulysses was first published by Beach - referred to it as Stratford-on-Odéon. The original bookshop closed during the Second World War and was never reopened (according to legend, the final straw was Beach's refusal to sell a German officer her last copy of Finnegans Wake), but its spiritual successor on rue Bûcherie has all the charm of the original and still welcomes penniless writers. Père Lachaise Cemetery 16 Rue du Repos, 75020 Paris is the city of love, the city of light… but all things pass, and no literary tour of Paris would be complete without a visit to the final resting place of so many of its great talents. Located in the 20th arrondissement, the Cimetière du Père-Lachaise attracts literary pilgrims from across the world, who come to pay their respects to luminaries including Molière, Marcel Proust and Oscar Wilde (whose tomb is now encased in glass to protect it from the lipsticked kisses of his disciples). Visit the grave of Gertrude Stein and her partner Alice B. Toklas, brave the permanent crowd of Doors fans that surrounds Jim Morrison's simple headstone - and then head back to the Rive Gauche for a restorative drink. It's what Hemingway would have done. Getting there and around When George Orwell returned to London from Paris, he travelled third class on a ship from Dunkirk to Tilbury, sharing the saloon with another forty-two impoverished voyagers. Happily, things have improved a lot since 1929! Eurotunnel Le Shuttle can whisk you and your car from Folkestone to Calais in just 35 minutes, and from there it’s a gentle three-hour drive to Paris itself. You can choose to leave your car at a park’n’ride type carpark outside the city itself, or park it in a garage in Paris (although this is likely to cost €18-25 per day). It’s easier to navigate the city by public transport, especially if you’re not used to driving in Paris - but the beauty of taking a car is that you can set your own schedule. And there’s no luggage restriction on Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, so you’ll have plenty of space for mementos - books, paintings or perhaps a case of wine - to help keep you inspired when you head for home. After all, Paris is a moveable feast. Book your journey

Family holiday in Paris

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Plan ahead to get the most from your visit. Paris is known for its bustling streets, chic cafés, rich history and beautiful art. But when visiting with the whole family, you'll need to ensure that everyone's tastes are catered for. Young children can be particularly difficult to please, as many museums involve long queues, especially during the busier seasons, and walking for long periods of time can prove tiring. With this in mind, creating a rough plan at the very least can be really helpful when visiting Paris. A river tour along the Seine can prove to be a relaxing way of seeing the city from a different viewpoint, and it might even be worth checking out the city's local walking tours. Disneyland Paris A trip Disneyland is at the top of the itinerary for many families. Today the park includes many different attractions within both the Disneyland Park and the Walt Disney Studios Park. In Walt Disney Studios, you can see how Disney animations are made, from the classics to the more modern computer-generated creations. Animagique shows stage performances of Disney stories, and even features the flying pink elephants from Dumbo's imagination. Older members of the family will enjoy Aerosmith's Rock 'n' Roller Coaster which blasts you from 0 to 100km/h in less than three seconds! The original Disneyland Park has rides and shows for all the family to enjoy, including the iconic Sleeping Beauty's Castle and the chance to launch into space in Space Mountain. After sunset, catch one of the evening shows and see the castle come alive with fireworks and lasers, as well as some of your favourite characters dancing across its walls. Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris If your family is after a more realistic architectural wonder, then a visit to the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris is a must. One of the most iconic structures in Paris, many enjoy spotting the gargoyles that are dotted along the cathedral's exterior walls, and parents retell the fictional story surrounding it to young fans of The Hunchback of Notre Dame – the story of the deaf bell-ringer, Quasimodo, and the kind-hearted Esmerelda. A beautiful example of French Gothic architecture, the cathedral's features include large stained-glass windows, with the South Rose Window being the most memorable, the South Tower (387 steps to the top!) and an archaeological crypt. Whilst entry to the main cathedral is free, there are some small fees to enter the crypt and climb the South Tower. Food, glorious food! During the busy weekends, hundreds flock to the food markets in Paris to purchase quality local produce. If you're looking to cook your own food during your stay, food markets provide fantastic inspiration in the form of charcuterie, freshly baked breads, cheeses, fruit and veg, butchers and fish stalls. With a mouth-watering selection of foods to feast the eyes (and stomach) on, the Marché Beauvau-Aligre is the perfect spot for an entertaining stroll, but if you want to avoid the crowds then it's probably best to miss out a Sunday visit. One of Paris' most well-known covered markets, here you'll see the wonderful huge cheese wheels and warm treats from the local bakeries that make it a favourite destination for locals and visitors alike. The Rue Mouffetard is another wonderful street market to visit, overflowing with sweet stalls, fresh seafood and yet more delicious cheese! The fairly narrow street market delivers some of the best organic and fair-trade goods the city has to offer, and is dotted with small, inexpensive restaurants, serving up delicious local cuisine. It is possible to fall into the occasional tourist trap here, so be sure to poke your head into a few places before deciding on somewhere to eat. The best day of the week to visit Rue Mouffetard is a Saturday, when you'll still feel the hustle and bustle of a busy market without feeling too overwhelmed by the crowds. Discover the city's greener side The parks of Paris provide quiet havens away from the city centre, and can be a great place for a picnic, or for the kids to have a run around. Parc Monceau is located in Paris' 8th arrondissement, and is very accessible if you have a wheelchair, or are with young children. The original sections of the park were designed by painter and writer Louis Carrogis Carmontelle in the late 18th century. Some of its most beautiful features include a classical Roman colonnade and a mini Egyptian pyramid, and a stroll through the gardens will lead you past water lily-speckled ponds, and benches that line the pathways that weave between informally placed plants and bushes. For those willing to travel a little further out, the Parc des Buttes Chaumont lies to the north east of the city centre. A saunter through these gardens can be more of a strain if you're with children as the park has steeper slopes, but the panoramic city views are well worth it. The park boasts a lake, several hidden grottoes, waterfalls, temples and the grassy knolls are ideal for picnicking. Within the park, you'll also find a suspension bridge and a 98ft tall brick bridge, with a slightly unfortunate nickname (Suicide Bridge). The park is one of unmatched beauty in Paris, and on a sunny day is a must for visitors to the city. Wildlife, science and art Paris is bursting with museums and galleries to visit, and whilst a trip to the Louvre can be the cornerstone of any visit, a walk through the hushed corridors of an art gallery might not be suitable for all ages. The Menagerie due Jardin des Plantes is the zoo located in Paris' botanical gardens, and is a fantastic place to take the family for the chance to see all kinds of animals, from reptiles and spiders, to adorable red pandas, flamingos and orangutans. The Museum of Science and Industry (Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie) is a fantastic interactive experience and stands as Europe's biggest science museum. Educational and inspiring, the museum features an impressive selection of temporary and permanent exhibitions, covering everything from the human brain, to the science of light and colour. 'The Great Story of the Universe' takes visitors through time to discover the theories of how the universe began, and how the laws of physics were established. Lovers of art and culture should head to the Centre Georges Pompidou which has been hailed as the cultural hub of Paris, and contains the largest museum for modern art in Europe – the Musee National d'Art Moderne. Paris is a city like no other, and when travelling by car is roughly three hours from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's Calais terminal. Book your journey

Easter in Disneyland Paris

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The perfect Easter break with your kids Join Mickey and Minnie, and the rest of the Disney crew, for an exciting Easter in Paris. Not only is Easter a time for chocolate eggs and delicious treats, it's also the perfect time of the year to spoil the family with a fun-filled trip away to Disneyland® Paris. And, between the 1st March and the 31st May 2015, the resort will be hosting a range of enchanting Easter and spring celebrations. From floral-coated floats in the spring parades to exhilarating rollercoasters, there's plenty to keep the whole family entertained over the Easter holiday. Disneyland® Easter highlights If you decide to head to Disneyland® Paris for Easter this year, then you'll get to be a part of the resort's Swing into Spring. Throughout the season, the park will really come to life, providing guests with fantastic flower displays, such as flowerbeds dotted with pops of colour, and floral statues of your favourite characters. From the adorable pups of 101 Dalmatians, to the furry AristoCats and Simba the lion, as you wander through the park, you'll get to take in the latest flowery incarnations. Get ready for spring with some special friends As a way to celebrate the start of Spring, Disneyland® Paris will also give you the chance to meet with some of your favourite characters, up close and personal! From Thumper the bunny, to red-headed Merida from Brave, you and your family will get to chat away with your real-life heroes, and even pose for photos with them for those all important holiday souvenirs. Goofy's Garden Party Once you've met all of your Disney heroes and heroines, be sure to swing by Goofy's Garden Party. Goofy and his friends have been hard at work over the last year, creating the Enchanted Garden just in time for the spring bloom. Dressed in bright, spring-time colours, Goofy, Mickey and the rest of the gang will come together to celebrate this beautiful season with a vibrant and fun parade, riding on flower-covered floats as they glide down the resort's Main Street U.S.A. Once the parade has finished, you can look forward to exploring the Enchanted Garden for yourself, where you'll be greeted with bursts of colour, blossoming flowers and creatively shaped topiaries. For more on what's going on during spring, check out Disneyland® Paris' events page. Something for the thrill seekers Toy Soldier's Parachute Drop Without needing to shrink in size, you can transform into a toy soldier for the day, as you parachute down on this daring ride. The ride begins with you being strapped into the parachute pod, and once secure, you're lifted high up into the air. Then, just like a real parachute, you'll find yourself quickly floating to the ground! The height requirement for this ride is only 81-centimetres, meaning more of the family can be a part of the fun. Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin The area surrounding the ride is set up to resemble the contents of Toy Story's Andy's toy box, so as you line up you'll be treated to gigantic reminders of childhood games. Once you hop on-board, you'll find yourself snaking your way around the ride, just like Slinky the dog does in the Toy Story films. You can be of any height to ride the Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin, so even your little ones can join in. Crush's Coaster If your kids loved Finding Nemo, they'll definitely want to give Crush's Coaster a go during a trip to the Paris resort. Sat on a twirling turtle shell, you'll be catapulted into an underwater world, where Dory and Marlin will join you as you take on the whirling sea's current. If you can't wait to ride Crush's Coaster, be aware that you'll need to be a minimum of 1.07-metres in height, so make sure you measure up. Fun food Rollercoasters and parades aren't the only fun things available within Disneyland® Paris' resort, with dining out being one of the top highlights of a Disneyland® trip. Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show For entertainment and mouth-watering food, be sure to head over to Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. Dig into delicious Texan cuisine, such as rich beef chili, cornbread and seasoned potato wedges, as you sit back to watch Mickey, Minnie, and the rest of the Disney gang sing and dance, as our cowboys join up with Goofy, Chip and Dale to herd up the real-life cows and horses. Rainforest Café As you wander in, you'll come face-to-face with toy gorilla's beating their chests, the humming sound of busy insects and a towering aquarium that is filled with darting beautiful, exotic fish.   On top of all that, there are also sculptures of zebras, elephants and a veil of jungle plant life that hangs across the ceilings. And, once you've finished exploring the restaurant, you can look forward to digging into a plate of Southwestern cuisine, with a tropical twist. After dinner, be sure to swing by the Rainforest Café shop, where you can stock up on some unusual holiday souvenirs. Buzz Lightyear's Pizza Planet Restaurant For something quick between rides, head over into outer space for a slice of pizza or two at Buzz Lightyear's Pizza Planet Restaurant. Wonder at the giant robot toys as you enjoy a hot margherita, or use the onsite claw machines to grab yourself one of Toy Story's Little Green Men. Easter delights As it's a time for all things chocolate, be sure to treat you and your family to something sweet from one of Disneyland®'s many cafes and desserts shops. If you're a fan of the animated film, Fantasia, then you'll love Fantasia Gelati, a beautiful Italian ice-cream parlour that offers a range of delectable flavours. Alternatively, if you fancy something a little warmer, pop by the Cookie Kitchen, a wonderful little café that produces excellent coffee and delicious freshly baked cookies and pastries. Getting there and around Getting to Disneyland® Paris is easy, with the route providing drivers with a scenic journey past Saint-Omer Longuenesse, Béthune and Parc Naturel Régional Oise Pays de France. After your 35-minute trip across the Channel with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, take the Four à Chaux Street and on to the D245 and A16. After this, follow the A26, A1 and A104 to Paul Séramy Avenue, which is in Bailly-Romainvilles. From there take exit 14 from the A4, and continue to follow Paul Séramy Avenue and Boulevard du Parc until you reach the signs for Disneyland® Paris. Your guide to Disneyland®Paris Book your journey

Paris Agricultural Show

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Visit the largest farm in France The Agricultural Show is a real family event. Offering new stands and activities every year, the show provides an opportunity to seek out and meet 1,050 exhibitors and to discover around 4,000 farm animals, including horses, sheep, pigs, hens and many others – perfect for animal lovers! From the competition for the biggest cow in France, to wine and cheese tastings, the Agricultural Show is an unmissable event for anyone who wants to immerse themselves in French culture! 330 breeds of animal, all under one roof! First of all, in the area dedicated to "Livestock Breeding Sectors", you will find 330 breeds of animals – some more familiar than others – ranging from cows and ponies to rabbits and dogs, amongst others. A real treat for young and old alike! A world of flavours! Then, why not make the most of the area "Farming and Delicacies from around the World"? This year, more than 18 countries are represented, to the immense delight of your taste buds! Whether it is wine, regional produce or even the dishes on offer from restaurants from France and around the world, we are convinced you will find something to take your culinary fancy! Yum! Growing green… To help you digest all these lovely treats, how about a little breath of fresh air in the "Crops and Plants" zone! There you will find field crops and cereals, and find out about the latest trends for your garden. And, with activities and workshops scheduled all day, you'll soon have all the knowledge you need to help your plants flourish! Learn from the professionals To top off this wonderful day of discovery, the "Agricultural Services and Professions" zone gives you the opportunity to put your questions to French farming professionals. The curiosity of both children and their parents will be satisfied by the various activities on offer. An itinerary for everyone If the above activities don't take your fancy, you could always opt for one of the itineraries recommended by the Agricultural Show itself: Short of time? With the express itinerary, you can visit all the unmissable attractions of the biggest farm in France in just three hours. The "Regional and Quality-Labelled Products" itinerary is just the thing to whet your appetite! There are lots of delicious dishes and taste sensations waiting to be tried. Do you have younger visitors in your party? They'll be beaming from ear to ear with the "Children" itinerary, which has everything you need for an unforgettable experience. You will also get a backpack full of surprises. Getting there and around By car: it takes approximately three hours (299 km) to drive from the Eurotunnel Le Shuttle Calais terminal. International Agricultural Show Paris Porte de Versailles 1, place de la Porte de Versailles Paris 75015 Email: sia_support@leni-france.fr en.salon-agriculture.com To find out more about other trails So, are you ready to discover all that France has to offer? Book your journey

Getting around Paris

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Escape the tourists and travel like a local in Paris Along with London, New York and a few other global cities, Paris is a must-see destination regardless of your interests. Everybody is either desperate to visit or desperate to go back. But despite its enviable reputation as a hotspot for culture, shopping, architecture, nightlife and sport, the prospect of visiting a capital city can be daunting - especially if you don't speak the language or aren't used to getting around this urban area. Not only is Paris one of the most interesting and beautiful cities in the world - it's also one of the easiest to navigate. Getting around in Paris requires nothing more than a Paris Visite pass, this is a metro map which gives you an idea of where you want to go. Whether you're looking for high fashion in St-Germain, street culture in the Marais or an incredible view from Montmartre, the Paris public transport network will be your first port of call. Getting a ticket For people visiting Paris the best option is a Paris Visite pass, which is either available online or from train or Metro stations. These offer unlimited travel in either Zones 1-3 (central Paris and the inner suburbs) or Zones 1-5 (for those wishing to head further afield or travel to the airport). You can choose a pass valid for 1, 2, 3 or 5 days to suit your stay. If you're planning a longer and more travel-intensive trip, the Navigo card grants you unlimited travel for either a week or a month - prices start at approximately €20, plus €5 for the card itself, and you'll also need a passport-sized photograph Ways to travel in Paris Metro Like the London Underground, the Paris Metro network is formed of underground train lines that criss-cross the city. Unlike the London Underground, the Metro is fast, cheap and uncomplicated, making it the perfect option for savvy travellers. Composed of fourteen main lines and two small branch lines, the Paris Metro map is surprisingly easy to follow. Each line is simply numbered, and the direction of travel is described by the terminus towards which the train is travelling. Many of the stations are worth a visit in themselves - the Jules Verne-inspired Arts et Métiers, with its gleaming brass and rivets, is especially memorable. Bus There are fifty-eight bus lines operating in Paris, and with the recent introduction of new bus-only lanes on many of the city's busier roads it's a very convenient way to travel. Most bus services run from around 5:45am until 12:30am, with a few night buses covering the early morning. Generally speaking, it's best to be within walking distance of your hotel by midnight if you're relying on public transport. Taxi If you prefer a little privacy while getting around Paris, look no further. The city has more than 15,000 taxis, and with journeys costing around €1/km (depending on time of day) it's an inexpensive way to explore Paris. You can easily spot available taxis when the roof light is switched on and when travelling this light is then dimmed; go ahead and hail one, or ask the reception staff at your hotel to call a taxi firm if you prefer. If you're out and about and can't see a free car, the central taxi switchboard (+33 (0)1 45 30 30 30) is available 24 hours a day. RER If you're staying in an outlying district or fancy getting out of central Paris, the RER network runs larger trains deep into the suburbs. There are five lines named A to E, all of which connect up with the Metro once you're back in the centre. A, B and D all pass through the busy central station of Châtelet - Les Halles, which is a useful starting point if you're planning a Metro journey once you get to town. Vélib Paris is perfect for cycling, and the popular Vélib scheme means you don't have to worry about fitting bicycles onto your roofrack. Vélib, which inspired the similar cycle hire scheme in London, lets you pick up a sleek, unisex three-speed bike from one of hundreds of plug-in points, ride it to your destination and drop it off for the next rider. The first 30 minutes of each journey are free, but if you're planning on riding a lot then a one day pass is just €1.70 and a weekly pass is €8. Top Paris sights to visit by public transport Musée du Louvre Home to France's masterpieces, the Louvre is one of the most richly endowed museums on earth. You can fight through the crowds around the glass pyramid in the Cour Carrée - or travel by Metro and skip straight into the heart of the museum. Head to the Palais Royal Musé du Louvre stop (lines 1 and 7) and you'll see a passageway leading directly to the palace - no crowd-dodging necessary. Basilica Sacré-Coeur If you're feeling energetic, the hill leading to one of Paris' most memorable churches has more than 300 steps - it's the perfect way to justify a glass of beer or a cappuccino at the summit. Otherwise, hop on the Montmartre funicular railway to speed up to the Sacré-Coeur in under a minute, enjoying the view as you climb. Any Paris travelcard will cover your journey. Eiffel Tower, Pont de l'Alma, Place de la Concorde... If you fancy feeling like a real Parisian for an hour or so, catch the 42 bus towards Gare du Nord from the Eiffel Tower. It's a fraction of the cost of a tourist coach tour, and passes by many of Paris' most memorable sights. Keep an eye out for haute couture on Avenue Montaigne, the perfectly appointed Tuileries gardens and the gold statues atop the Opéra. The French Connection Paris is an incredibly well-connected city; but if having the flexibility to make your own plans is important to you, then the ease and accessibility of Eurotunnel Le Shuttle make it an ideal choice. It takes just 35 minutes to transport you and your car from Folkestone to Calais, which is less than three hours from Paris by car. Simply take the A16 autoroute, conveniently located less than two miles from the Eurotunnel terminal, and follow it all the way to the outskirts of Paris. On your way you'll pass through the idyllic Caps et Marais d'Opale natural park and the cathedral city of Amiens - there's plenty to see, don't forget that Paris is waiting for you! Book your journey

Cyclists Guide to the Tour de France 2017

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One of the most famous bike races! Covering more than 3,000 miles, from mountain roads of the Pyrenees to the glamorous streets of Paris, the Tour de France is arguably the greatest spectacle in the competitive cycling calendar. For cycling enthusiasts wishing to follow the race, the journey across the Channel is quicker than you think with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, lasting just 35 minutes. There's no need to fret about getting your bike there either; we run a cycle service with a standard return cost of just £32. The pick-up and drop-off points are the Holiday Inn Express Folkestone and the car park of the Centre d'Affaires in Calais respectively. If you're not overly familiar with France, but are keen to be a part of the action, please read on for Tour de France facts, tips on where to stay, must-see attractions and ultimate "must-dos" if it is your first time at "La Grande Boucle". A brief Tour de France history A journalist with a dream was the initial driving force behind the idea of the Tour de France back in 1903. Géo Lefèvre, as part of a group of sixty fellow cyclists, set out onto the streets of Montgeron, attracting much attention and gathering a significant crowd of spectators. From this point on, the Tour de France was born and France was set under a global sporting spotlight. Miguel Indurain, Jacques Anquetil, Bernard Hinault and Eddy Merckx currently hold the record for the highest number of Tour de France wins, having won five times each. This comes after Lance Armstrong was stripped of his seven consecutive titles due to allegations of doping in 2012. The media An integral part of the event, taking place an hour before the race starts, is known as the Tour de France publicity caravan. This parade features sponsors of the Tour de France, who throw candies and souvenirs out into the crowd below. More recently sponsors have introduced dancing girls to further increase the popularity of this event. If you are attending for the first time, be sure to get involved. In order to keep track of the progress of the riders, you need only to look up into the sky for helicopters. Being a highly publicised sporting event, the helicopters, with camera crew in tow, are a good indication of where all the action is happening. The decisive stages – the mountains It is never easy to predict the "decisive" stage in the Tour de France when the eventual winner "breaks" the rest of the peloton and establishes himself as the leader, although the General Classification (GC or Overall Competition) for the Yellow Jersey tends to be won by a number of small victories (a matter of seconds over stages lasting for 100+ miles). The days in which the favourites look to establish themselves tend to be on the "mountain stages". The nice thing about the mountain stages is that it slows down the riders. Rather than seeing a blur as the peloton passes through a small village, the mountain stages usually split the riders apart and if you stand in the right place you may be able to get a great photo of your favourite rider, hand them a water bottle, and cheer the riders on as individuals. In order to watch the mountain stages it is important to arrive on the mountain-side well before the publicity caravans come by as these treacherous roads tend to close in plenty of time to allow the riders and the spectators' safety. If you have brought your bicycle along and fancy a ride up some of the most gruelling stages of the Tour de France, be our guest, though for many finding a stage that is accessible by car may make more sense. Please be aware that generally you must stop riding your bike an hour or so before the publicity caravan arrives, so please allow plenty of time to get to your viewing spot (or bring a tent and camp out for the full experience). As a general rule we would advise arriving to the mountain-top or the part of the climb from where you wish to view the stage at least 3-4 hours before the peloton is due to arrive. This is to ensure you have a view of the road but also will allow you to take in the atmosphere before the race. Some people arrive days or even weeks in advance so depending on what the aim of your holiday is, please be sure to plan accordingly. Rest Days and the Individual Time Trial The "rest days" for the riders and spectators are often not rest days at all, but rather transit days from one stage to the next – most years anyhow. The individual time trial marks the end of the official competition and another great chance for the spectators to cheer along each of the riders. Although it is a great opportunity to watch the individuals, some of the newer visitors will want to be in Paris to see the eventual winner pull on the winner's jersey and lift the winner's trophy high into the air. It is tradition that no-one try to pass the leader of the GC on the final day so that they and their team may enjoy the parade into Paris as a celebration for their hard work – and the riders on the winning team have been known to enjoy a glass of champagne or two on the ride in. Once in Paris, however, the sprinters are back on form and fighting for the final few points in the Green Jersey competition. A Trip to Paris for the Final Stage Although the route of the Tour de France varies each year, the final stage has always been hosted by the country's capital, Paris. Climaxing along the Champs-Élysées, the finale has become a long standing French tradition, attracting a magnificent crowd each year without fail. If you wish to be a part of this extraordinary experience, be sure to plan ahead in order to secure a good viewing spot – seats along the finish line can be very pricey, although you are certain to rub shoulders with some cycling royalty. If you haven't yet visited one of the world's most recognisable monuments, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, then it's well worth visiting whilst in the capital. The Arc de Triomphe with its beautiful arc and fabulous view is the perfect location for an impressive Tour photo. For those with a strong appreciation for art, a must-do is the Louvre Museum. The glass pyramid houses the world famous Mona Lisa by Leonardo Da Vinci. As a break from site-seeing, shopping in one of the world's fashion capitals is an exciting alternative. For some hot tips on where to go, why not try our guide to shopping in Paris? In terms of places to eat, Café Delmas in Place Contrescarpe is a relaxed, stylish and child-friendly café to try. You can rest assured that the food is of a high-quality as the café is a trusted hotspot for locals wanting a tasty Sunday brunch. If you're looking to spoil yourself with the ultimate 5-star experience during your stay in Paris, you might like to try the Hôtel Royal Saint-Honoré or the Hôtel Pont Royal. Book your journey

New Year`s Eve in Paris

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Charge your glasses and let the countdown begin. What better way to celebrate the year coming to a close and launch yourself into 2018 in style than heading to France for New Year's Eve? When it comes to celebrating in style the French do it best, so charge your glasses and let the countdown begin with our Eurotunnel Le Shuttle guide to the places to be, come midnight on December 31, 2017. Tradition New Year's Eve in France is known as la Saint-Sylvestre, in honour of 4th Century Pope Sylvester I, who was buried on December 31 335. However, that is where any religious connotations end and most French people see the day as an opportunity for some good food, fine wine and a cheery celebration with family and friends. It really is nothing but the best to see out the year in France - the traditional food of choice is oysters and foie gras and raised glasses should be filled with wonderfully fizzy Champagne, or at the very least a sparkling wine of choice. When the countdown reaches its climax get ready to know your neighbour that little bit better, as kisses are exchanged (on the cheek) and everybody wishes each other an enthusiastic 'bonne annee', or 'happy new year'. For the French the celebration period continues until January 6, so be prepared to receive (and return) happy New Year's wishes for several days following.  New Year's Eve in Paris With its iconic scenery and fun-loving populace Paris turns into one giant street party on New Year's Eve every year. Before the celebrations begin in earnest ensure that you dine in style by booking a restaurant table. Paris has numerous seafood restaurants where you can enjoy the traditional oysters and Champagne as you wait for the midnight hour; some of the best can be found along the Rue de Montparnasse near the famous Montparnasse cemetery. The French don't like to rush their food (or their service), so ensure you book early enough to be back outside before midnight, as the street is the place to be when the clock strikes. Street vendors will often sell cheap bottles of sparkling wine (be sure not to call it Champagne within earshot of any French people) and a chorus of popping corks can be heard across the city when the time comes. One of the best places to get a great view of the festivities is the Esplanade du Trocadéro, across the Seine from the Eiffel Tower, this gives the classic view of the monument and its surrounding gardens and is the perfect spot to view the traditional fireworks. If you're looking for a wider view why not climb the steps to the Sacré-Cœur Cathedral plaza, in Montmatre? From here you can look out across all of Paris and watch the celebrations unfold beneath you. Getting there Paris is a 3 hour drive from the Eurotunnel Le Shuttle terminal at Calais. New Year's Eve in La Rochelle If you're looking for a real New Year's Eve party then the faded seaside glamour of La Rochelle may be the place for you. Although traditionally quiet over the Christmas period, the town's bars and restaurants come alive on December 31, as residents and visitors gather together to raise a glass to the end of the year. Head to the Vieux Port, or Old Harbour, to find the finest in fresh seafood and the liveliest bars, with an unrivalled view out across the bay. Getting there La Rochelle is 7 hours 10 minutes' drive from the Eurotunnel Le Shuttle terminal at Calais. Book your journey

Paris Marathon

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Paris marathon One of the five biggest marathons in the world with New York, London, Berlin and Chicago Held annually on a Sunday in April With 40,000 participants, Paris's annual marathon is one of the five biggest marathons in the world and is on equal standing with New York, London, Berlin and Chicago. For participants, this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity allows them to take in the sights of Paris while completing one of the top 26-mile courses in the world. Starting at the Champs-Elysées, diverting through the Place de la Concorde and finishing at Foch Avenue. The course is dotted with a wealth of things to do for the average runner and spectator, with Paris hosting a running expo a few days before the big event. Held annually on a Sunday in April, it's best to get planning early to make the most out of the occasion.    History In 1896 a large crowd gathered to watch 191 runners participate in the first ever Paris Marathon. A distance of 40km was covered over a course that is slightly different from its modern day cousin, but invariably set the standard for the famous race we know today. The first race encouraged competitor spirit by awarding all those who finished in less than 4 hours a commemorative medal. Over a hundred years later and the race remains almost the same. The distance has been altered to match that of the London Marathon (42km) and the course has changed somewhat from its origins. Instead of running from Paris to Conflains-Sainte-Honorine via Versaillies, runners now get to take in the scenery from the Champs-Elysees to Foch Avenue. Sights Runners in this marathon have noted how beautiful the surroundings are. Starting out at the Arc de Triomphe, runners get the honour of running en masse down the broad Champs Elysées, a rare opportunity as it is usually packed with traffic. The route continues on from here and passes through two Parisian woods as it follows the banks of the river Seine. Once you're past the Champs Elysées, the first landmark you're going to encounter is the Arc de Triomphe, one of the most famous monuments in France which sits on the centre of the Place Charles de Gaulle. This is the crutch of the Axe Historique (Historic axis), a sequence of monuments and thoroughfares that extend from the centre of Paris towards the west. Further along the route and you will come across the Place de la Concorde. This major public square is the largest within Paris and hosts a famous equestrian statue of King Louis XV, made of a combination of lime and blue stone and leading on towards the beautiful fortress Bastille.   The course loops back on itself and soon you'll be running right next to some internationally renowned buildings. Of note are the Tour Eiffel and the Cathedral Notre-Dame. Both magnificent in their own right, but combined with the thrill of cheering crowds they become spectacular markers on your marathon and let you know that you'll soon be finished. The finish line is situated at Porte Dauphine. Thanks to the race organisers you'll also be able to enjoy a glass of wine to celebrate. Facilities and Tickets If you're interested in completing in this epic race then signing up is easy. It can be done online or by downloading an entry form and posting it to the correct address. It's good to note that the marathon itself is open to all athletes of any nationality born before 1991 and that a medical note is required before you can compete. Once you've received your race number you can sort out your travel arrangements with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle.   On the race day itself you'll find that there are refreshments provided as you run. Raisins, oranges, water and energy drinks are all provided at intervals of the race. First aid help is also available if requested. The aforementioned running expo is a great place to pick up tips and equipment and meet fellow runners before the big day. Make sure you have a rough estimate of your race timings as you'll be divided into time groups at the beginning of the race. Get there early if you're expecting to finish within 4 hours so you can join the leading group. This forever growing event is one that will be marked in thousands of people's calendars and should be in yours too. Even if you're not competing, experiencing the marathon buzz within the centre of Paris is something that occurs rarely and is a unique spectacle to witness. How to get there Paris is around 3 hours drive from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle's Calais terminal. Book your journey 

Paris on a shoestring

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It’s easy to let your budget run away with you on holiday Often paying for things in a foreign currency can feel like not spending real money at all. This can be particularly difficult in a big city such as Paris, where it seems that everybody is selling something. However, the savvy traveller can survive on the most meagre of budgets while still experiencing the best that France’s magnificent capital has to offer. So give your credit card a break and let Eurotunnel guide you through the best way to see Paris on a shoestring. Getting around The centre of Paris is surprisingly navigable on foot, wide avenues mean that you rarely feel hemmed in and the ever-visible Eiffel Tower means that you always have a point of reference to get your bearings by. There will be times however when you find it necessary to use the Metro. In this case it is advised to get a Carnet (10 tickets for €11.60) which saves you money compared with buying individual tickets at €1.60 each. Palais du Louvre Nine hundred years in the making the Palais du Louvre is more than just somewhere to keep the Mona Lisa. It will cost you €9 to get inside the extensive former lodging for France’s royalty (before all the unfortunate business with the guillotines) and view the extensive museum collection, but if you find your funds falling short then there is still plenty to see from the outside. The buildings themselves are a triumph of constant development, with extra wings being added throughout the centuries, right up to the infamous glass pyramid, constructed in 1989. Once you’re done admiring the architecture, why not take a stroll in the Jardin des Tuileries? Open to the public since the 16th Century these gardens feature several casts of statues displayed within the museum and a funfair during Summer. Once through the gardens you can continue your stroll up the spectacular Champs-Elysées, known in France as ‘The Most Beautiful Avenue in the World’. At the other end you are rewarded with the iconic Arc de Triomphe, which towers above the tomb of the Unknown Soldier and its eternally burning flame. Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris There’s much more to this impressive Gothic landmark than just running around with a jumper stuffed up the back of your coat shouting “The bells! The bells!” (though that is fun). In fact the creator of everybody’s favourite Hunchback did more than just popularise the cathedral; Victor Hugo led the successful campaign for its restoration during the 19th Century. Today the cathedral is a stunning must-see landmark on a small island in the middle of the Seine. Entrance is free so it won’t hurt your budget, though if you do want to splash the cash it will cost €8 to go up the towers. Cimetière du Père-Lachaise and Cimetière du Montparnasse Hanging around in a cemetery may not be your first pick for a day out, but Paris’s two great graveyards, Père-Lachaise and Montparnasse, should not be missed. Both are free to enter and feature some wonderful examples of elaborate and artistic gravestones and tombs which show that in Paris even the dead have style. And if the ornate carvings and sculptures are not enough then both cemeteries feature a host of famous names, both French and international, for the keen dead-celeb spotter. In Père-Lachaise the biggest draw for British tourists is probably split between former Doors front man Jim Morrison’s final resting place and the magnificent Sir Jacob Epstein-designed tomb for Oscar Wilde, which visitors traditionally adorn with lipstick kisses. Other big names buried there include Édith Piaf, Marcel Marceau and Pissarro. In Montparnasse you can find the graves of Jean-Paul Sartre, Serge Gainsbourg and Samuel Beckett amongst a host of other famous and influential names from the annals of history. Jardin des Plantes For something with a bit more life in it, why not head to this charmingly dishevelled botanical garden on the left bank of the Seine, just a small walk from Notre-Dame? With more than 10,000 species of plants this garden was started in 1626 and provided a model for the foliage of painter Henri Rousseau’s famous jungle pictures. Entrance to the gardens is free, though if you’re willing to shell out €8 there’s also a small zoo (menagerie) on site. Basilique du Sacré-Cœur The skyline of north Paris is dominated by the majestic dome of the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur. Constructed between 1877-1914 it can be found at the summit of the butte Montmartre, the highest point in the city. Its height can really be appreciated by visitors after you’ve climbed the winding flights of stairs which lead up to the Basilica, affording a spectacular panoramic view of Paris. If your surroundings seem familiar it may be because the area is a popular filming location for both film and television, having made appearances in the movie Amélie and music videos for U2 and Savage Garden. Entry to the Basilica is free and visitors can view the spectacular pipe organ and elaborately tiled interior. Once you’ve experienced the religious atmosphere of the Basilica you can take a short walk around the corner to see a very different Paris landmark in the shape of the infamous Moulin Rouge. Galeries Lafayette A department store may not seem like the ideal destination for the cash-strapped tourist, but Galeries Lafayette has to be seen to be believed. Marvel at the magnificent glass dome which dominates the main shop and wander up and down the fabulous art deco staircases while feigning interest in whatever products are on offer nearby (which could be anything from fashion, cosmetics and jewellery to books, music, and electronics). Eiffel Tower If there’s one place where you’re guaranteed value for money it’s with a trip up the Eiffel Tower. An absolute must for any visitor to Paris, you can enjoy incredible panoramic views of the whole city and the satisfaction of standing on top of one of the most recognisable monuments in the world. It will cost you €13 to get all the way to the top, but it is worth every cent. Book your journey

Shopping in Paris

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Paris, the perfect place for shopping. Paris is synonymous with shopping. With its high fashion, street chic, the finest foods and fine art antiques, you may want to take a spare suitcase when you visit, because there's no way you're leaving empty handed. Whether you're looking for a gift for the family or a whole new wardrobe, let Eurotunnel Le Shuttle help you find the shopping district which best suits you. Avenue Montaigne and Champs-Élysées The Champs-Élysées will be the first stop for many tourists looking to experience the shops of Paris. Running in one long glorious sweep from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde, the avenue is known in France as 'La plus belle avenue du monde' – 'the most beautiful avenue in the world'. However you feel about its looks, the Champs-Élysées offers a mixture of big brands and high quality. A special committee, formed 150 years ago, oversees the avenue and lobbies to keep unwanted shops out (in 2007 they successfully banned H&M from opening a branch there), meaning that retailers work hard to maintain the highest standards and give you the best possible shopping experience. At the east end of the Champs-Élysées turn off onto Avenue Montaigne for a more exclusive shopping experience with many of the big fashion labels. Here you can pick up exclusive clothing and jewellery while also acquiring a terrifying credit card bill, but then you are on holiday. BEST FOR: Big name shops – Adidas, Benetton, Disney Store, Nike, Zara, Cartier, Bel Air Fashion, Toyota, Gap, Sephora, Virgin Megastore, Dior, Chanel, Valentino, Ralph Lauren, Bulgari and more. PARKING: Parking Claridge, 60 Rue Ponthieu, €27 per day. Vinci Park Services, 18 Avenue Champs Elysées, €3.30 per hour. Q Park, 79 Avenue Marceau, €3.10 for one hour. Boulevard Haussmann This tree-lined avenue running from the 8th to the 9th Arrondissement is dominated by two of Paris's largest and oldest department stores; Galeries Lafayette and Au Printemps. Galeries Lafayette began as a haberdasher's in 1893 and today occupies three buildings on Boulevard Haussmann. The main building, Lafayette Coupole, is worth a visit for the grand architecture alone, standing ten storeys high and dominated by a magnificent glass dome. Once you've finished marvelling at your surrounding you can find anything from fashion, cosmetics and jewellery to books, music, and electronics. Just down the street Au Printemps offers similar architectural wonders, with a stunning stained glass cupola sheltering diners in the store's restaurant. Again, the shopping is spread across three buildings, with a variety of big name fashion brands, from Chanel to Calvin Klein, and home furnishings. BEST FOR: Everything you need in one place, clothes and home furnishing. PARKING: Vinci Park Gestion, 45 Boulevard Haussmann. Parc Stationnement, 164 Boulevard Haussmann. Haussmann Galeries Lafayette, junction of Rue Mogador and Boulevard Haussman. Le Marais The hip heart of Paris lies in Le Marais, a district spread across the 3rd and 4th arrondissements, populated with fashion boutiques, antique shops and cafes scattered amongst historic buildings and sights. The Rue des Francs-Bourgeois is one of the few places in Paris to ignore France's strict Sunday closing law, so is a perfect destination for the weekend visitor. The long road has numerous fashion boutiques crammed between magnificent traditional hotels. And when you're done shopping the Paris History Museum is just round the corner. More top fashion shops can be found on the Rue des Rosiers, the heart of the city's Jewish quarter. Here you will find a mixture of kosher boulangeries, charcuteries and restaurants mixed in with independent fashion boutiques. BEST FOR: Small boutiques, antique shops, putting the legwork in to find a bargain. PARKING: Parc Baudoyer, Place Baudoyer, €28 for one day. Vinci Park France, 48 Rue de l'hotel de ville. Hotel de Ville, 3 rue de la Tâcherie, €26 for one day. Les Halles and Rue de Rivoli If food is your thing then Les Halles is the district for you. Not only does the area boast the biggest indoor shopping mall in central Paris, but it also has a plethora of bakeries, fish stores, cheese shops, wine shops, produce stands and flower shops, many of which can be found on the Rue Montorgueil. The mall (Forum des Halles) has five floors, mostly underground, and a wide variety of shops and restaurants, from small boutiques to well known brands and even a cinema. The nearby Rue de Rivoli is another of Paris's most famous streets, though less exclusive than the Champs-Élysées. As well as leading tourists to some of the city's biggest museums (including The Louvre) Rue de Rivoli features shopping opportunities ranging in size from department stores to book stalls. BEST FOR: Food, shopping in bad weather. PARKING: Parking Rambuteau and Parking Berger, access from the tunnels of the rue des Halles, rue de Turbigo, the rue Coquillière or rue du Pont-Neuf, €15 for one day. Louvre-Tuileries and Faubourg Saint-Honoré Faubourg Saint-Honoré has been dubbed 'the most fashionable street in Europe' thanks to the presence of nearly every major fashion house in Europe. This is the perfect place to splash out on that exclusive outfit to be seen wearing in a chic Parisian nightspot. The surrounding area hosts the world-famous Louvre museum and Tuileries gardens and is host to numerous cafes where you can give sore shopped-out feet a break while enjoying the scenery. BEST FOR: Exclusive fashion – Lanvin, Hermès, Lancôme, Dalloyau, Dior, Roger Vivier, Vogue, Givenchy, Salvatore Ferragamo and more. PARKING: Parking du Carrousel, Avenue du Général Lemonnier. Getting there and around Paris is the perfect place to make some shopping! Just a few hours drive on the motorway from Eurotunnel's Calais Terminal. Book your journey

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