Eurostar deals for Paris breaks
The fabulous highspeed Eurostar train service runs from London to Paris or Brussels with intermediate stops but this hub page restricts itself to being concerned with eurostar deals from London for Paris breaks. So we're talking about starting out from the UK and visiting Paris, staying overnight for a few days and then returning to London.
St Pancras for the London eurostar to Paris
Avoid weekday mornings for the best eurostar deals
The new high speed track from London St Pancras through Ebbsfleet and Kent to Folkestone and the channel tunnel has brough about an increase in passenger numbers which means that on a weekday the facilities at St Pancras are often somewhat overstretched. Most of the trains travelling in the direcion of France in the mornings are full or operating at near capacity so if you are looking for the best value and most convenient eurostar deals then it's better to have a look at afternoon departure times, or at least late morning.
Central Hotel for Short Paris Breaks
Eurostar deals with Hotel
Hotel on spec
For short breaks to Paris I think the choice is really quite simple. Either book up one of the full eurostar deals with a parisian hotel included in advance or else take a chance on being able to find somewhere to stay by walking in right off the street and asking if they have any vacancies for the same night. I've done the later many times and it certainly works, but the downside of going to Paris on spec is that you might end up walking around with all your luggage trying one or two places, maybe even three or four before finding somewhere suitable. It can cost a little bit more than you expect as well, since the days of the little old Parisian no-stars cheap hotel seem to be well and truly numbered. You want somewhere comfortable anyway, with modern conveniences and stuff but maybe not a TV if you find that's something you'd normally insist upon. There's so much to do in Paris who needs cnn and bbc world?
Eurostar deals with hotel included
The other option is to book an inclusive eurostar deal with hotel as one package in advance. That's probably going to save a little bit of expense as well as anxiety but you do need to check exactly where the hotel is going to be located. Some modern hotels built for the tourist trade are actually on the outside of Paris, what we would call the suburbs, beyond the peripherique circular motorway so if you were to stay there you'd be dependent on catching the metro to go anywhere and to get back to your room at the end of an evening out. That's not so good as being in the central area, especially for short Paris breaks. You don't necessarily need to be right on a busy crossroads like the petit trianon hotel illustrated above, although that is fun, but it is nice to be able to walk five minutes and find a busy area with cafes for breakfast, things to do and see, places to sit and enjoy the wonderful Paris atmosphere. Being close to the river Seine might also be considered an advantage if you enjoy strolling along the banks at night with all the wonderful historic bulidings lit up like fairyland.