Roissy-Charles de Gaulle is the busiest airport serving Paris, seeing more than 73 million passengers per year. Operating as a hub for around 150 airlines, it's a perfect entry point for travels in France and throughout Europe. In fact, it's the second biggest airport on the entire continent. Charles de Gaulle is located about 22 miles (35 kilometers) from the center of Paris by road. You can get to the downtown area by taking a bus or a taxi, but because the train is cheap and is sometimes even faster than driving, it's the most popular option.
|Train||35 minutes||$11||Minding a budget|
|Bus||35 minutes to 1 hour||from $19||Getting close to your hotel|
|Car||30 minutes||22 miles (35 kilometers)||Arriving outside of peak traffic times|
What Is the Cheapest Way to Get From Charles de Gaulle to Paris?
The cheapest way to get from the airport to the center is by train. The RER Line B (suburban train) departs every 10 to 20 minutes from Terminals 1 and 2 and arrives in central Paris within 35 minutes. The trains run between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m. most days and stop at Gare du Nord (where you can transfer to Eurostar and Thalys international rail services), Chatelet-les-Halles, Saint-Michel/Notre Dame, Luxembourg, Port-Royal, and Denfert-Rochereau. The fare is $11 for a one-way ticket. This is the cheapest and sometimes the fastest (depending on what time of day you arrive) option, but it's not very practical if you have a lot of luggage.
What Is the Fastest Way to Get From Charles de Gaulle to Paris?
If you arrive outside of peak travel times (around 8:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.), driving into the center or taking a taxi is the fastest option. It can take as little as 30 minutes to drive the 22 miles (35 kilometers), which is only five minutes quicker than the train (hence why most people opt for the latter). However, if comfort is a priority or you have a lot of bulky bags, catching a cab from the terminal is perhaps the easiest option. Expect to pay about $55.
Is There a Bus That Goes From Charles de Gaulle to Paris?
There are buses that go from Charles de Gaulle to Paris and you might be interested in taking one if it gets you closer to your hotel than a train would. The Roissybus is an express bus service that departs every 15 to 20 minutes from all terminals. It runs all day, starting from 6 a.m., and takes an hour to get to the Opera in the 9th arrondissement. A one-way ticket costs about $19, but with that you get wifi, an outlet to plug in your devices, and assistance with your luggage. Tickets can be purchased from RATP vendors at the airport.
Another option is to take one of Air France's two shuttles, Le Bus Direct, both departing from Terminal 2 every 15 minutes, serving five stops in Paris. The first shuttle stops at Etoile (on the Champs-Elysées) and Porte Maillot, both in western Paris. The trip takes about 35 minutes. The second shuttle takes about 50 minutes to get to Gare de Lyon and Montparnasse. Both buses cost roughly $20 for a one-way ticket.
When Is the Best Time to Travel to Paris?
Summertime in Paris is simply unmatched, but it also draws quite the crowd. For quieter attractions and less busy streets, go during September or October, when the weather is still nice but the swarms of tourists have mostly gone. When you're traveling into the city, try to coordinate it with lighter traffic times (especially if you plan to take a taxi or bus). The traffic is at its lightest before 7:30 a.m. and around 1 p.m.
What Is There to Do in Paris?
There's so much to do in Paris that you could visit time and again and never have to do the same thing twice. However, if it's your first time, you'll surely want to swing by the famous landmarks: the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Champs-Élysées, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the Arc de Triomphe. For a great view, head to Montmartre in the 18th arrondissement (where Moulin Rouge is located) and sit on the steps of the Sacré-Cœur. When you work up an appetite, go on a quest for baguettes, pastries, cheese, and wine. You won't have to search very hard.