Clearly it's a good move if you want to spend a few days in Paris, but you can just as easily fly into Paris and hop on the TGV to Strasbourg or Basel without leaving the airport.
I think it's fair to say that I've spent a lot of time at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris France.
It's usually the airport where I make my connection to the US when visiting my family back home.
CDG is a really big airport and it's not as wonderfully organized as some of the major hub airports in the US for sure.
at the same time I've always managed to find my way through Terminal 2
without asking for directions (and you will most likely spend some time
in Terminal 2 if you are on your way to Alsace by plane).
are signs everywhere and there are plenty of opportunities to ask for
information or directions (in English) if you feel the need to.
Getting around in the Charles de Gaulle Airport
The internal shuttle bus system in the Charles de Gaulle airport in
Paris France is CDGVAL. It will take you to Terminal 1, 2 or 3 as well
as to parking areas.
Terminals 1 and 2 are the
largest of the 3 terminals at CDG. Terminal 2 is where you will find the
national French train systems (SNCF), the TGV train station and the
local RER B train to Paris.
Terminal 2 is also
where you will likely find your departure gate for the Strasbourg
airport and the Basel Mulhouse Euroairport (usually terminal 2G).
Generally when you arrive from a long distance international
destination, there will be quite a few people standing in strategic
locations answering questions and directing traffic...
They are very quick, efficient and speak English.
And they will make sure you get on the right shuttle...and more importantly that you DON'T get on the wrong shuttle ; )
Terminal 2 has its own shuttle bus (the N1) that will take you from one end of the terminal to the other end.
The N1 shuttle will not take you to 2G. To get to Terminal 2G, you will need to
take the N2 shuttle bus (at the same place that you would wait for the
N1 bus, so pay attention to which bus it is.
Keep in mind that you can walk from one end of Terminal 2 to the other in about 15 to 20 minutes.
But you'll still have to take the shuttle bus to Terminal 2G. Fortunately it's only about a 10 minute ride.
How to Get to Paris from the Charles de Gaulle Airport
There are quite a few ways to get to the center of Paris from the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris France (which is technically in Roissy not Paris).
Most of them are
inexpensive (between 10€ and 20€ per person) and require about an hour
of your time.
They even run relatively regularly (between 6am and 10pm).
they will have fixed drop off points so you'll need to be ready to
carry your bags possibly up or down some stairs and along the streets of
More convenient options are taking a taxi
(which will run you approximately three to six times the cost of public
transportation) or arranging for a mini shuttle for small groups.
Going to Paris by Train
You can catch the local train to Paris (RER B) at Terminal 2 or 3. It runs every 10 to 15 minutes and runs from 5am to 12am.
From the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris France to Gare du Nord is about 30 minutes.
It makes quite a few stops. Certain trains will make more stops than others. Here are the main ones...
- Gare du Nord
- Châtelet-Les Halles
Taking the Bus to Paris
The Roissybus can take you from CDG to Paris-Opera and back. You can catch this bus at all 3 terminals from 6am to 11pm.
The Roissybus takes about 1 hour in each direction.
Bus Lines 350 and 351
bus lines are more like normal buses that go from CDG to Paris. Line
350 will take you to Gare de l'Est and line 351 will take you to
You will need a minimum of 1 hour (and likely much more because there are many stops).
You can catch these bus lines from all 3 terminals. These bus lines generally run every 15 to 20 minutes.
The Noctilien Bus
might have noticed that all of the other public transportation
available stops running from around 12am to 6am. So what are you going
to do if you find yourself at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris
France between the hours of 12am and 6am?
Catch one of the night buses to Paris!
run from around 12am to 4:30am. Their ultimate destination is
Paris-Gare de l'Est. They run about every half hour or hour depending on
which one it is.
The trip to Paris will take between 1 hour and 1 and a half hour.
Taking a Shuttle Bus to Paris
Cars Air France can take you from CDG to:
- Paris-Porte Maillot
- Place de l’Etoile (Arc de Triomphe)
- Paris-Gare de Lyon
- Gare Montparnasse
can expect somewhere between 45 minutes and 1 hour either from CDG to
Paris or Paris to CDG. Buses leave every 30 minutes from around 6am to
10pm to 11pm.
From CDG you can take this bus at a number of different gates in Terminals 1 and 2.
You can buy tickets from the bus drivers, in the airport or from Air France.
Taking a Taxi or Private car to Paris
The main advantage of taking a taxi or private car to Paris is being dropped off directly in front of your hotel or wherever you are staying.
And you will pay a good bit more for that convenience.
will vary depending on the amount of traffic and time of day. It could
be 30 minutes or more than an hour. Day time rates are different than
Going from the CDG Airport to Other French Regions
Driving a Car from the Charles de Gaulle Airport
Not that you're likely to rent a car at the Charles de Gaulle airport
in Paris France, but if you are, you'll find the car rental service
counters in Terminal 1 and 2.
Unless you have a very
good reason, I don't really recommend that you rent a car at the
Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris France.
on your way to Alsace (as I hope you are), there will be opportunities
to rent a car in Strasbourg, Colmar or the Basel Mulhouse airport.
Going to the Airport Train and TGV Station Directly
You can catch a train at the SNCF train station in Terminal 2 at CDG
to anywhere in Europe with a train connection to the national French
Check out train tickets prices and book a train here
If you think you'll do a lot of train travel on your trip, you can check out rail pass prices here
And go from the Paris airport to any TGV train destinations (examples of some of these destinations are listed below)...
Aix-en-Provence, Angers, Avignon, Basel, Bordeaux, Bruxelles, Grenoble, Le Mans, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Nantes, Nimes, Poitiers, Rennes, Strasbourg, Toulouse, Tours, Valence, Zurich...
More Information on Air Travel to Alsace
Looking for Airline Tickets to France
Your Strasbourg Flights and the Strasbourg Entzheim Airport