How to Go from Paris’ Gare de Lyon Railway Station
to Our Office, or to our Guest Apartments, in the Same Building
Welcome to Paris. You have just stepped off your train at the Gare de Lyon. Now you have to make your way to our office (above which are our guest apartments).
Our office is the glass-doored commerce, between the doors to numbers 2 & 4 of the rue Dussoubs, in Paris’ 2nd Arrondissement. Our phone is 01.42.36.02.34 (from abroad, +33 142 36 0234). The closest métro stop is Etienne-Marcel, on line 4, but there are two others almost as close: Châtelet - Les Halles, and Réaumur-Sebastopol. These instructions send you to Châtelet - Les Halles, since that is on a direct line from the Gare de Lyon.
Here is a link to the Google neighborhood map.
To Reach Us...
...you will be taking the Métro. Actually, a special division of the métro called the RER (a sort of express métro).
Locating the RER
When you step off of your main line train, your first job is to determine whether the track on which it has arrived is indentified by a letter (A, B, C, etc.) or by a number.
Be careful, smaller letters which identify car / carriage position (“repères”) confuse this issue. The track-identifying letter or number is large, and the opposite track will be identified by a sequential one. If the track is a "lettered" track, it will be indentified by a letter A through N. (Car / carriage position numbers are at the end of the alphabet, P - Z.) Example: if you are on track “E” the opposite track on the same platform will be either “D” or “F”.
If you are on a lettered track...
- ...walk to the middle point of the platform, roughly at repère T or U. These mid-platform stairs are at the point where the massive train shed ceases to protect the platform from the elements, and only individual platform canopies continue to do so.
- Use the stairs / escalator that you find there to go down (the only way you can go). This will bring you to an underground station concourse.
- Enter the underground station concourse. If you walked back along your train, in the direction by which it arrived (towards the open air), turn right as you enter the underground station concourse. If you walked forward, from the rear of your arriving train, continuing in its direction of travel (and thus towards the massive train shed that you think of as the station), turn left as you enter the underground station concourse.
- Walk towards the far end of this underground station concourse. Now skip to the common instructions, below.
If you are on a numbered track, walk to the front of your train. You will arrive at a concourse sheltered by the station canopy, but otherwise “outside.” Opposite track 13 is a down escalator, which will bring you to an underground concourse. Walk forward, 100m, to the far end of this underground concourse.
Common Instructions: wherever you came from, you will arrive at the far end of the underground station concourse to find a big sign hanging from the ceiling, reading RER A, D, and other things, and sending you down a long set of down stairs / escalators. RER line A (the letter A in a red circle) is your goal. Follow these stairs/ escalators to the bottom. At the bottom, turn left.
Photo of escalators down
Purchasing Your Ticket
You will find automatic ticket machines here, which speak better English than the locals (you select the language on the first screen). In French, you would buy “ticket t” > plein tarif > carnet (successive screens on the ticket machine). This is a batch of 10 tickets, valid for travel on all Paris métro and bus lines. Unless you are headed immediately out of town, you will have plenty of chances to use them. They are a bit more than half the price of single tickets, and we will take unused ones off your hands for a euro each if you have extra when you leave town.
General notes about riding the métro (and the RER):
- Always keep your ticket until the end of your trip, since it can be inspected at any time by teams of roving tax auditors, and may be required to exit the system or to change lines.
- If you are worried about being on the correct platform, there is a sign at the center of each platform telling you in which direction(s) the trains on that platform are travelling. The last station(s) on the line define(s) the direction of travel.
- Inside the train, over each door, you will find strip maps of the individual line on which the train is travelling, to help you follow your progress through the system.
Making Your Trip
Step 1, Finding and Riding the Train
- Look for the entrance to the “RER A” line (“A” in a red circle).
- Using one of the tickets you purchased (see “To Reach Us,” above), proceed through the turnstiles.
- Follow signs pointing you towards Direction St-Germain-en-Laye, Poissy, or Cergy - these places are all served by the same track. To reach it, you will go down a (very) long escalator, to a platform at the bottom, with a track on each side. You must choose between these two tracks. Choose wisely (they are clearly signed — if you choose wrong, you wind up at Disneyland).
- Take any train that comes on your track, and ride to the first stop, Châtelet - Les Halles, about 3 minutes.
Step 2, Exiting the Métro
- When you get off at Châtelet - Les Halles, walk to the front of the train.
- Go up the escalator that you find at the front of the platform.
- At the top of the escalator you will see dark blue Sortie signs, with different sorties (exits) indicated. The one you want is labeled Porte Rambuteau. If you have used the escalator at the very front of your train, you will need to turn left to follow them.
- Follow Porte Rambuteau signs to a set of ticket barriers. Use the ticket that brought you in to pass through the barriers. Go up another flight of stairs/escalators.
- At the top of these stairs / escalators, to your left, you will find a bank of elevators / lifts. Use these to get to street level (press “0”). You could continue climbing by stair / escalator if you preferred, but the lifts are easier with luggage.
- The elevator / lift will let you off outside. Turn left, to immediately come out to the pedestrian rue Rambuteau.
After 8p, or on most Sundays, you need to let yourself out of a protected enclosure via a security door. Don’t be afraid: liberty awaits on the far side!
Step 3, Walking to Our Office
- Turn left, onto the pedestrian rue Rambuteau. In front of you, 100 m away, is a large church. Walk towards it. But, before you get to it...
- ...slink along the wall that is now to your right, rounding the corner, thus putting the church on your left hand, and arriving at the top of a flight of stairs.
If you have heavy, rolling luggage, a wider circle can get you around the stairs.
- Straight in front of you, at the base of the stairs, and between two cafés, the pedestrian rue Montorgueil leads away. Take this.
- The third right (florest on the far right corner), is rue Tiquetonne. Turn right onto this.
- The first left, a long block away, is the rue Dussoubs, your destination.
Our storefront is the unprepossessing (it’s your money) glass door between numbers 2 and 4, on your right after you turn into the rue Dussoubs. If the iron curtain is still down it means we aren't up yet. If the curtain is up, but the front room is dark, it means that we've gone out for coffee, or are in the basement. Try knocking on the glass door with a key or a coin (so that we can hear you from the basement), or looking into local bars. Or wait: we’ll be back soon.
Our normal opening hours are here.