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"Active Geezering" was created to promote healthy aging by highlighting activities that focus on exercise, travel, adventure, nutrition and good health for seniors. Our philosophy is simple: if you canít stop the aging process, then flaunt it!

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ActiveGeezering Feature
Paris Is For Seniors

Paris is a big, sprawling city that can be daunting to some; but with a little planning it’s a perfect place for seniors to visit and enjoy art, architecture, and an ambiance that is welcoming.


Like most large cities there are a variety of bus tours that can take you to all the famous spots. Or, you can take a cruise up and down the Seine River with stops along the way so you can venture to most of the famous museums and sites.  However, the ActiveGeezering way is to plan a trip that involves walking to the sites from a centrally located hotel.  But here’s a problem: more conveniently located hotels are usually the ones that are the most expensive.  This is where Priceline.com comes in.  By bidding on-line through Priceline (www.priceline.com) you can get a four star hotel near all the major sites for about $150 a night in the off-season.  That’s expensive in most places, but in Paris, it’s a bargain!


Although Paris is expensive that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune to enjoy the city.  If you aren’t quite up for long walks then you can use the bus or subway system and avoid the high cost of a cab.


There are four sites that are a must see in Paris: the Louvre, the Orsay Museum, the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower (The Louvre and the Orsay are free on the first Sunday of the month, but expect long lines.).   You should also visit Notre Dame Cathedral.  Notre Dame is a bit further away from the other sites so give yourself plenty of time for the walk.   Having a Rick Steves’ travel guide is a must in Paris (www.ricksteves.com).


Touring the Louvre will take most of the day. If you are trying to visit both the Louvre and Orsay in one day start as early as possible.  The Louvre is huge and filled with classic paintings and artifacts whereas the Orsay is smaller (an old train station) and filled with more contemporary and impressionists paintings.


The Arc de Triomphe is impressive and from the top gives you a bird’s eye view of the swank boulevard, Champs-Elysees.
At the Eiffel Tower you will likely encounter lines.  If you are fit, then climbing the stairs is a healthy and inexpensive alternative to get to the lower and middle level viewing decks.  Both of these decks have astonishing views.  Plus, you’ll avoid the lines.  If you want to go to the top then you’ll have to use the elevator and probably endure lines.  The elevator is also much more expensive than climbing the stairs.
Generally, the restaurants in Paris are quite good.  Also, see if your hotel has a breakfast buffet.  These buffets are much different than their North American counterparts and provide healthy eating choices, plus they have great cheeses, meats, and pastries.
 
Paris is a “bucket list” destination (one of those places you have to visit at least once in a lifetime).  If your visit to the city is properly planned you will not be disappointed. 
 
RECOMMENDATIONS

Airline
Check out Air France (www.airfrance.us) for good deals on flights to Paris. Plus, it’s an airline that pampers you with good food and wine and friendly service.
 
Hotel
Concorde Opera Hotel (www.operaparis.concorde-hotels.com) is a centrally located and within walking distance to most recommended sites.  The hotel has a beautiful lobby, adequate rooms, a good breakfast buffet, and fine nightly dining at affordable prices.  Plus, the staff is helpful and courteous.
 
DISAPPOINTMENTS
None.

Senior Profile

P7010006Jim MacLellan is an adventurer. The 64-year old retired school teacher from Knowlton, Quebec, rode his motorcycle 13,000 miles through 31 states and 7 Canadian provinces this past summer. During his 66-day odyssey he reconnected with friends and marveled at the sights he discovered and the people he met.

MacLellan's trip was a zigzag circumnavigation of the United States as he traveled westward along the Canadian side of the northern border through the cities of Ottawa and Toronto before heading to Chicago. He then swung south and traveled through the corn fields of Iowa and Nebraska then on to Colorado and north again up to Montana and into the Canadian province of Alberta, before heading west for Vancouver, British Columbia. He travelled down the entire western coast of the United States before heading east with stops along the way at Las Vegas, Nevada, the Grand Canyon, San Antonio, Texas, and New Orleans, Louisiana. P7270032 He then hugged the East Coast soaking up as much American history as possible as he traveled through such cities as Savannah, Georgia, Charleston, South Carolina, Williamsburg, Virginia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Boston, Massachusetts. His last segment of the trip took MacLellan northward along the Maine coast, up through the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and then over to Prince Edward Island before heading home where he completed his journey in the first week of September.

MacLellan has fond memories of his journey. "Wow" is the word that comes to his mind when he thinks back on the motorcycle ride up the 14,130-foot Mount Evan in Colorado including the last 15 miles of switchbacks to the summit. A Pretty damn spectacular sight, was his recollections of Yellowstone National Park, especially Old Faithful. The Canadian Rockies are, "lovely sights". The Pacific Coast Highway is beautiful and Big Sur, California is "spectacular." The highlight of the trip, according to MacLellan, was his trip to the Grand Canyon: "everyone should witness this fantastic natural wonder." P7310062The Cabot Trail on the Island of Cape Breton in Nova Scotia reminded him of the rugged coastline of the Pacific Coast Highway. He vividly remembers that his Cabot Trail ride, "was windy and by far the hardest day of riding on his trip."

MacLellan speaks glowingly about the people he met on his trip--not only his friend and relatives that he visited, but others as well. He talks fondly about the people of Henly, Texas and how friendly they were to him. He said, "I hated to leave those Texas hills, but the trek had to go on."

In one trip Jim MacLellan has seen more of the United States and Canada than most of us. He has shown all of us that with a keen desire for adventure along with proper planning we can all fulfill a dream.

Spot of the Week

Ka'anapali Beach Hotel, Maui, Hawaii:  It isn't the 'fanciest' or 'most elegant' or most upscale Hawaiian resort in Maui, but it occupies a primo stretch of white sand along Ka'anapali Beach in West Maui, tucked in between several larger and grander resorts. 

Read more about it here

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