The city of love is by no means only for luxury holidaymakers or couples who want to explain eternal love.
Paris is not just Disneyland, the Eiffel Tower and Notre-Dame. The capital of France is a diverse city with a colourful and varied nightlife. Paris is one of the most attractive holiday destinations in Europe for students from all over the world.
Paris and his “La Tour Eiffel” simply belong together. The most famous landmark of the city is the tallest building in Paris, 324 metres high. It was named after the huge steel construction by Gustave Eiffel, who built it in 1887. The Eiffel Tower is the most important transmission tower in Paris. There is also a restaurant and a lookout tower. Every evening, 20,000 lights illuminate “La Tour Eiffel”.
The Louvre and its pyramid of glass
The Louvre is the world’s third largest museum in terms of exhibition space. More than 380,000 works of art can be admired here. The Louvre was once the residence of the kings. It was not until 1791 that the building was named the first public museum in France. The famous glass pyramid, which today serves as the main entrance, was created in 1985 and was designed by the architect Ieoh Ming Pei.
The Musée d´Orsay was originally built in 1900 as a railway station. Today it is an art museum with more than 4000 exhibits. Every year, 3.8 million people visit the museum on the southern bank of the Seine opposite the Tuileri Garden.
The Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris (“Our Lady of Paris”) is located in the heart of Paris. For 200 years (1163 to 1345) this extraordinary church was built. Inside the cathedral, a 130-metre-long nave with a height of 35 metres awaits visitors. In 1804 Napoleon Bonaparte crowned himself emperor here. The cathedral achieved worldwide fame through Victor Hugo’s famous novel “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”.
Musée de l’Orangerie
For art lovers, a visit to the Musée de l’ Orangerie is a must. The art museum, which mainly displays Impressionism and Late Impressionism, is located north of the Seine in the beautiful Tuileri Garden. Monet, Renoir, Picasso and Gauguin are only a few famous names whose works can be found here.
Travel tips for students
Low budget works in a city like Paris
Like everywhere else in the world, in the city of love, travel does not necessarily have to be expensive to be fun. With a few tips and some preparation you can save money:
- Compare prices of hotels and youth hostels in advance and make a binding reservation.
- Explore Paris on foot or use the metro. You can choose between single trips, day tickets or the Carte Orange (weekend ticket). But beware: for some season tickets you need a passport photo. If you bring one with you from home, you will save on the spot.
- An international student ID card can give you some or all of the benefits in Paris. In the Espace Dalí Montmatre, for example, students save almost half the regular admission fee. In many museums, the entrance for students aged between 18 and 25 from the EU is now completely free of charge.
The early bird catches the worm as it prepares to travel. With enough time in advance and perhaps even a little bit of flexibility in terms of time, you can find great bargains for arriving and departing by train as well as by airlines.
Cheap accommodation in Paris
Youth hostels are probably the classic among the cheapest accommodation options. But beware, not all of them are so easily led and in the evening without having a curfew, such as the “Auberge Internationale des Jeunes”. This is especially true for some less expensive noname hotels in Paris. It’s practical to have tips hanging in youth hostels and meet like-minded people who can ask for the nearest supermarket or bakery. Without a credit card, however, bookings from Germany are usually not possible. There is a great danger of not finding a place to sleep on the spot. It is usual to pay for the first night immediately, the rest on site.
As in all other European cities, alternative options such as AirBNB and couchsurfing are being introduced in Paris. Both accommodations have their advantages and fans. Whereby couchsurfing is free of charge. It is therefore much cheaper, but it also requires more effort and flexibility. Often it is expected that the guest will also make his or her couch available to the community at home and get to know the host and guest digitally. AirBND serves as an intermediary between private landlords, usually for subletting. Both possibilities let especially students, who often find like-minded people during couchsurfing, feel a lot of local feeling.
Paris by metro
Basically, most of the places of interest can be reached by metro and on foot. Anyone who is reasonably independent and has used a subway or tram system in another city will quickly find their way around Paris. Incidentally, the fares for tickets are much simpler than those of certain transport associations in Germany. Many travel guides have lists of the places of interest close to which metro station. In the best case, they contain the information about which train stops there. If you think the stations are named after the places of interest, you are mistaken. The Eiffel Tower can be reached, for example, by getting off at the Bir-Hakeim or Trocadéro metro stations. The Louvre has two stops: the Louvre-Rivoli and the Palais-Royal-Musée du Louvre.
Fortunately, for some places of interest it is almost enough if you only see them from the outside for time or money and don’t visit them directly. If you are not an absolute fan of art, you don’t necessarily have to see the Louvre from the inside. The Notre-Dame is also very impressive from the outside.
Save money as a gourmet
Certainly, only very few students can afford to spend the entire time in restaurants. This does not necessarily detract from the good cuisine and the gourmet experience. Couchsurfers often get something home-cooked from their hosts. The supermarkets are full of French specialties, which are rarely found here. There are countless pies at a small price, which can be eaten with the typical French baguettes.
By the way, it’s better to buy baguettes at the baker’s than at the supermarket. There you can get a baguette for less than one euro. Unlike in Germany, sausage is almost always the typical French dry sausage. If it is to be a restaurant, the Cour du Faubourg is one of the cheapest.
Going out in Paris
There are special tips for low budget companies in Paris in travel guides and also on the net. Normally, 0.5 liters of beer cost about 7 euros. In some trendy bars and many nightclubs sometimes 10 Euro. However, almost all Nightclubs offer happy hours, which are usually between 18.00 and 22.00 hours. It is worthwhile to go out during this time. Outside of this happy hour you can find bargains in the middle of the 9th arrondissement: the Syphax, one of the cheapest bars in the city where a beer costs around 3 Euros.
If you try to speak French, you can get out of the typical tourist corners. Because that’s what the French love.