Drive 'through' Paris or avoid?

Apr 25, 2010
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Hi

Due to drive from Calais to L'estartit (Costa Brava) in August, leaving early on a Thursday morning. Looking at a couple of stops on the way down as we are meeting up with family in Spain on the Saturday.

Upon checking popular routes with ViaMichelin, they all seem to almost go 'through' the middle of Paris before offering various routes south.
Is there a ringroad or similar that makes this ok as I always thought driving anywhere near Paris was a no-go.

Thanks

Paul
 
Sep 10, 2013
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Paris has the periferique a ring road that's very near the centre and is a real rat race. At certain times of the day it's ok but it's a difficult drive in a RHD van especially the first time out.
The alternative route usually favoured by MH drivers is from Calais down through Rouen. A lot easier..
 
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Paris has the periferique a ring road that's very near the centre and is a real rat race. At certain times of the day it's ok but it's a difficult drive in a RHD van especially the first time out.
The alternative route usually favoured by MH drivers is from Calais down through Rouen. A lot easier..

Isn’t Rouen where those low bridges are pops? X

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Oct 7, 2013
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Avoid Paris if you don’t wish to visit the City, although it’s beautiful and probably our favourite city.

Driving through the middle of the City can be a nightmare and the ring road, the Peripherique, is to be avoided, especially during rush hours. Four lanes of traffic interweaving as they join and leave. If you are experienced in driving in France then it’s possible, if you can avoid rush hour. If you are not experienced then that is not the place to learn.

Look to bypass if at all possible.
 

maxi77

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The main ring road is the periferique, not perhaps for the faint hearted though having driven it for very many years it's main problem is that it is more of a car park then the M25. There is a part bypass to the east which avoids a decent chunk when heading south. You must remember this is France and everything goes through Paris. There is a lot to be said for taking the ferry to Cherbourg and thus avoiding Paris and most of Northern France

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Pete5996

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They won't send you through the middle of Paris but probably by the inner ring road, the Boulevard Peripherique.

It's an easy enough route - come off the A1 just south of Charles de Gaulle Airport onto the A3, follow that through to the Porte de Bagnolet and onto the 3 o'clock position on the BP going south, always following the blue signs to Lyons. Once you reach the 6 o'clock position, you'll leave the BP at the Porte d'Italie, junction 6B. Follow the signs south onto the A6 towards Lyons. If you can avoid arriving at the obvious peak traffic times, the transit of Paris can usually be done in under an hour - it's a bit pot-luck, really.

There is an outer ring-road, the A86, which is well-signed, if you prefer to keep a little further out.

An alternative is to miss Paris altogether and go via Rouen and Chartres to Orleans, where you can pick up the A10 and then go south on the A75 via Clermont Ferrand - a very scenic route. The Calais-Orleans section is a combination of autoroute, dual- and single carriageway roads, with some town bypasses to negotiate - it's a lot more 'bitty'.....
 

funflair

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Done the peripherique a few times towing a caravan and then laterly with the motorhome, stick it in the sat nav and away you go, no problem.

Martin
 
OP
camel
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Thank you, I'm now looking at alternatives already lol.
We did go to the Vendee 3 years ago, stopping at Le Mans on the way. Is a trip heading to Rouen, then down to Chartres and then rejoining main road south a good option?

Thanks

Paul

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funflair

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Dec 11, 2013
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Thank you, I'm now looking at alternatives already lol.
We did go to the Vendee 3 years ago, stopping at Le Mans on the way. Is a trip heading to Rouen, then down to Chartres and then rejoining main road south a good option?

Thanks

Paul
Via Rouen and Chartres would be part of a toll free route South and a good alternative.

Martin
 
OP
camel
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Pete5996 - same thought I had re: Rouen to Chartres.
We would be leaving Calais around 8.30am, not sure what time we would then get to the Paris peripherique.
 
OP
camel
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Thank you everyone, great information, as always

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Enword

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Used to like Paris but got robbed there years ago, not been there since!
 

bobandjanie

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Done the peripherique quite a few times towing the trailer providing you stay one or two lanes in, :rolleyes:
( because if you don't you will get spat off ) :eek: and visit the eiffel tower. ;) Got the tee shirt. :LOL:
Know exactly what junction your getting off, ( because you will loose satellite on Sat nav as you come out the tunnel and sail past your turning ) :LOL:
:whistle: Its fine ;) No problem at all. :LOL:
We prefer Rouen. (y) Bob
 

Lenny HB

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Last time I went on the peripherique in a car it took me longer to do 10 miles than the rest of the journey which was 120 miles to Dieppe.

Another vote for Rouen, Chartes

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Mar 23, 2012
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We ended up in a very run down migrant area of Paris felt very unsafe and were glad to get through would not do it again.Usually go Reims Troyes Dijon Lyon as we visit my wifes sister on the way easy route wine stops on the way!!!

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magicsurfbus

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First time we did the Peripherique was in a classic Veedub with no satnav - it was interesting o_O

Done it in a MH a couple of times and the main problem then was traffic jams. Rouen is easier.
 

Lenny HB

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Tell that to ‘ Madeinengland ‘. They peeled their roof off last year in one! And there not blind, or idiots!! In fact there lovely people! Lol x

I bet their not the only ones on here?!
Must have had a senior moment them I can't see anyway you could drive through one by accident they are very well signposted and you have to change lanes onto a different carriageway to get into then. I been driving via Rouen for over 30 years keep in the correct lane no chance of going down one.
 
Aug 26, 2008
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I did drive through Paris in a car once, and ended up at the Arc de Triomphe which must be the scariest and most anarchic multi-lane roundabout in France. I don't even want to think about going there in a MH. :eek::eek::eek:

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Camdoon

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Normally do the red c route but was through Paris last year to the south and there last week for a visit.
If you want to travel via Paris:
1. Miss the obvious times.
2. You only go through about 5 junctions so use Google maps to know how the road is laid out and what the signposts say.
3. Never sit in the outside or near side lane.
4. Be prepared for cars from either side closing down space in front of you.
5. When you get out of Paris do not drive in the middle lane as some big truck will get upset.
 
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