French ponderings.....

French ponderings.....
Dreaming of France in The Land Down Under.......


Monday, September 30, 2013

Charles de Gaulle airport to city centre / CDG à centre ville

Woops....4 weeks and no blog I hear you say? Well, yes I know, but I'm hoping for forgiveness as I've been jaunting around France with Monsieur! Forgiven then? Great!

The first couple of days on arrival in Paris are always a mixed bag....EXHAUSTION  being the first thing that  comes to mind!

  But then there is also that feeling on stepping from the flight into  Charles de Gaulle airport... for me, it's a wonderful sensory  overload......

I close my eyes and breathe in deeply.....there is nowhere else I could be....this is Paris! There is a certain something in the air and I love it!  Below is a Charles de Gaulle airport promo video you may enjoy...must admit they paint a very 'friendly' picture.......;)

The loud speakers break out into a foreign language.....I gulp, knowing the weight of conversing with these parisians  is placed firmly on MY shoulders......I try to settle myself a little ...but alas my brain seems to have  gone and  lost itself in a sleepless fog!

Not to worry, we just follow along like sheep to  baggage claim, straight through customs etc  then , with the help of good signage (french AND english) we head to the shuttle train which takes us to the station to catch the RER into town.

I have made my way into the city before with several different forms of transport....

First visit , not knowing what we were doing, we booked a private car.....I can remember being SOOO elated when I saw MY surname  being held up in CDG...I was famous!! Chauffeur driven  into town in a gorgeous Mercedes ,  and taking in the sights I had only ever seen in photos, it rendered me almost speechless when I caught my first glimpse of  Hotel des Invalides (the resting place of ole Napoleon himself)

  The bill actually DID  leave me speechless! ;)

Then there was the hair raising  trip in on a shared shuttle bus......going through dark tunnels, passing other cars at the speed of sound....seated what felt like an inch from the window screen, I truly thought I was going to die!  Everyone else in the bus thought I was going to die too, apparently that's how it sounded.... This guy was looking for a tip too !..and what's more is  I gave him one..... for NOT KILLING ME! So ok,  I'm not the worlds' best passenger, but what I'm saying is if you enjoyed the Fast and the Furious flicks..perhaps this is for YOU :)

Another time I thought I would try a taxi...but I made sure to instruct the cabby to drive  'slowly'...I think he thought I was a madwoman! So off we  went  with speedy gonzales at the wheel, mmm, I'm thinking..mmm this isn't exactly slow..but I'll cope.That was until  out of nowhere, a car that had been going the opposite direction decided to flip itself over the middle barricade and land squarely in the middle of the highway in front of us..on its head! Uuuummm..THAT'S WHY I ASK TO GO SLOW!!!

Anyway, my preferable transport into town is definitely the RER and kind of ride :)

Lots of 'frenchy' things to share with you , so keep sneeking a peek through the window !

A Bientôt,  Gigi


  1. Ha, ha, that's very good! RER train ... safe and inexpensive. I'm glad you didn't have our almost-theft problem but you probably weren't silly enough to take your purse out of your backpack.

  2. Uumm yes, I guess it's only safe if you chain your baggage to your body, and inexpensive if nothing stolen! So far so good for us tho. Touch wood ;)

  3. I've included your post in my bloggers round-up so that people won't be discouraged by my experience and will take the RER anyway!
    I still think it's the most efficient.

  4. Merci Madame :) personally I wouldn't recommend it for first timers, as the views leave a little to be desired, and perhaps inexperience may be like waving a red flag to thieves (obviously they don't discriminate against the experienced either!)

  5. I'd still be confused by the 2 signs: what's the difference between the 2 choices shown?
    thank you.
    Linda C.

    1. Ok, well the RER is a high speed train that can get across the city very quickly as there are a lot less stops than the metro system . This can get you from the airport to the city , or city to Versailles, or city to Disneyworld etc... whereas the SNCF trains go from one city to another, such as Paris airport to Bordeaux etc. Hope that makes sense! but if not, here is an explanation from a post on tripadvisor Thanks for reading me :) Merci mille fois!