Paris is a city with a million and one things at your fingertips: culture, walking, eating, touring, wine-tasting.. all amazing things to do during a weekend or a vacation here (or even better, if you’re a local!) But if this is your first time, it can be SUPER overwhelming, especially since you don’t really know the distances between the places you’d like to see.
Coming from NY, I’m constantly comparing the two cities. Size wise, I’d compare Paris to the size of Manhattan. For trains, the metro (Paris subway number lines like the 1, 2, 3 etc.) are the same as the local subway lines in Manhattan that stop every few blocks (ex: the 6 or the 1 in Manhattan). You can pretty much walk between metro stations within 5-7 minutes. Paris RER lines (the letter lines like the RER A, B, C etc.) are the equivalent to NYC Express subway lines (the A or the 2/3 in Manhattan), and once they’re in the Paris suburbs, it’s more like the Metro North or LIRR stopping between towns and other neighboring cities.
It probably seems complicated but really, I find the Paris metro a lot easier than the NYC subway lines as you never have crazy track work or any trains running local after 10pm. (If you’ve ever gotten home late from work in NYC to find that your express is now a local through the upper west side, you know what I’m talking about.) Everything is clearly indicated and the metro is SO much cleaner. In 5 years, I’ve seen zero rats and 1 baby mouse. You see easily 5-6 rats DAILY in your morning NYC commute.
Okay, so back to the real reason I started this post: Around the Eiffel Tower there are beautiful and diverse locations that are SUPER easy to walk to AND They’re all ONLY about 10 minutes walking from each other. SUPER EASY!!
1. Let’s start with the Trocadero. It’s easily one of the best vistas of the Eiffel Tower. Especially if you’re planning on doing an photo session.. This is the main place where you’re going to want to head to to get an unobscured view of the tower. Here it is:
2. 10 minutes walk from the Trocadero, just over a bridge crossing the Seine, is the Champs de Mars. This is a LOVELY and vast garden around the Eiffel Tower. Here your views are stunning of the base. There are tree-lined alleys and beautiful buildings surrounding it. If you’re a runner, it’s a great location to head to in Paris because it’s always open and has dirt paths. For a photo session, it’s perfect for families with kids! You never have to worry about little ones running into the streets. A++
3. The streets around the Eiffel Tower like Avenue de Bourdonnais and Avenue de Suffren are beautiful because they are right next to the Champs de Mars, and have stunning buildings for your more casual Parisian backdrops.
To do all of these locations we could use 1-2 hours for a session depending on how quick everyone is and if there are little kids walking! Little legs take a bit longer and tire out more quickly for sure!
If you’re living in Paris or are here for only a few days, I hope this is helpful! The Eiffel Tower area can be really beautiful throughout the 4 seasons of the year so if the ET is an absolute MUST for your photo shoot, these places are perfect for you!