The Great City Off: London Vs. Paris

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travel, Paris, London

Paris and London are two greats steeped in history, rich in culture and both hives of commerce. The cities attract tourists from across the globe, and easy transport links between the two mean that visitors can explore both Paris and London in a short space of time. The English Channel Tunnel is a convenient way to hop across to the continent, with regular services offering speedy access for onward journeys to these two capitals. Considering a holiday, but can’t decide between home or abroad?

Weighing up the pros and cons of a trip can be tricky, so it may be helpful to examine both Paris and London in further detail: let the Great City-Off begin!

Sightseeing

Paris and London have some of the most recognised and visited landmarks in the world: think the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and Notre Dame and, closer to home the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. It is impossible to compare and contrast these historic sites as they are all integral parts of a trip to either city. Instead, why not look beyond the tourist trail and look for the lesser-known places to visit? London is busting at seams with quirky museums and attractions: a vault of music memorabilia hidden beneath the Hard Rock Café, the world’s only fan museum and Secret Cinema events can all be found in this city. Paris’s hidden gems include Le Musee de Vin which also has a restaurant and wine tasting room, and the pretty UNESCO Garden of Peace. If you’re seeking to experience an alternative scene and escape the tourist hoards, London wins hands down for its quirky offerings.

Food and Drink

Both cities offer a huge range of food and drink for all budgets. Well-known foodie spots like Borough and Camden markets attract hungry crowds, and pop-up street restaurants mean there is always something new and fresh to look out for in London. Paris is also a great destination for food lovers, and the French famously take their gastronomy very seriously. Enjoy the finer things in life? The wealth of wine bars in the city make great places to sample drinks whilst snacking on luxuries like oysters, snails and deluxe desserts. Patisseries, chocolate shops and specialist delicatessens abound in Paris like multinational coffee shops in London. For the sheer decadence and pride in their national staples then, Paris reigns supreme for food and drink.

Transport

If you are on a short break, practicalities like transport are all-important. To get around a city and see as much as possible in a short space of time you’ll need reliable, speedy and affordable public transport. Transport for London’s superb website means that planning your route is easy, as it offers maps and advice on buses, the Tube, trains, cycling, trams, river transport, the DLR and more! It is worth buying an Oyster card during your stay: top up, choose your mode of transport and avoid long queues! France’s RAPT and Transilien websites offer similar, though less comprehensive guides to Paris’s transport system. So, how to conclude? Trusty transport can make or break a short holiday, and in this respect, both cities are pretty evenly matched.

Holidaying at home or venturing to the continent can be tough choice, with many points to consider. The solution? With quick transport links between Paris and London, why not visit both!

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