We flew from Houston on Air France to CDG in Economy on the 777-300ER. It was a mostly miserable flight because it was so very hot in our section (seats 28HG). The entertainment system was limited. The food was palatable but weird. The seats were cramped. But the biggest problem was the excessive warmth. Oh well, next time we'll spring for the Premium Economy seats. We arrived at 8am but by the time we were getting into the buses to the terminal it was 830am, when we were supposed to arrive.
|Taking the bus to the terminal at CDG|
|On the TGV to Lyon|
|Mercure Hotel at Perrache Train Station|
After we checked in, we wanted to explore. We got a map and the concierge helped us find a grocery store to buy some toiletries that were left back home. We grabbed delicious pastries at a convenient patticerie. This was an interesting stop because the attendant did not touch our money; rather we placed it in a machine that automatically dispended the change. That way she kept her hands clean--brilliant! We passed by Pizzeria Napoli and decided to try it for dinner. We stopped at the Orange store where they helped us activate our SIM card. We walked all the way to Place Bellacour and took the metro back. The weather was ugly, rainy and cool.
After showers, drinks in the bar, and catching up with the family at home, we walked to Pizzeria Napoli (45 rue Franklin). It was 645pm. Thankfully we arrived at that time because the restaurant was fully booked. But they took pity on my sad face and my very limited Italian, ("mangiamo rapido"), and allowed us in since we would be quick. We were too tired to linger, seriously.
|The bar was quite pretty|
|He seated us because we promised to eat quickly!|
1. We did not love taking the train--we had a long wait between arrival at CDG and train departure. It was cheap only because we bought the non-refundable fare far in advance but you pay way more for flexibility: we could have made the 958 departure but didn't want to take the risk with a non-refundable fare. We like having our own wheels.
2. Make reservations for dinner! So many places were fully booked that we missed out on well reviewed options.
3. Waiting for an attendant at the Orange store was worth it. We didn't know enough French to activate our SIM card and they did it easily. Having our phone for in-country communication was worth the effort.
4. Big beds are fabulous!
Next: Walk with a Lyon Greeter, Beaux Arts Museum, "no reservation" and a fun bouchon