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30 Best things to do in Paris | What to visit in Paris

Paris is one of the world’s most beautiful and most visited cities. What to do in Paris, the capital of France, to make your trip unforgettable? Here are the best things to do in Paris, the must-sees, and the best places to visit in Paris! Let’s go!

what to do and visit in paris france

1. Visit the Louvre

The most visited museum in the world. Moreover, the Louvre is also one of the TOP 3 of the largest museums in the world, with the Hermitage Museum of Saint-Petersburg and the National Museum of China. You can easily spend several days discovering all the treasures of the Louvre. To see the essentials, plan for at least 3 hours (book tickets in advance to save time).

Good to know! The Louvre has several entrances. Some are more crowded than others. Find our tips for visiting the Louvre in this blog post: How to visit the Louvre.

louvre visit paris

2. Take a walk in the Tuileries Garden

Relaxing. The Tuileries Garden (in French: Jardin des Tuileries) is located a stone’s throw from the Louvre Museum. After visiting the museum, a walk in this garden is a must in Paris. The main driveway is often packed with people in high tourist season, but other garden corners are much quieter.

tuileries must see paris

3. Take a boat trip on the Seine

Magical. Day or night, the cruise on the Seine is one of the essential activities in Paris! Several boat tours exist. Some include lunch or dinner (here is an example of a boat tour on the Seine). Find our comparison here: Best cruise on the Seine. Wonderful travel memories in perspective!

boat trip seine paris

4. Visit the Sacré-Cœur Basilica

Free entrance. The Basilica of the Sacred Heart is one of Paris’s most visited religious monuments. It is an essential place to discover as a couple. Entrance to the basilica is free. During the visit, it is crucial and necessary to preserve the silence of the place as a sign of respect.

Funicular or on foot. The Sacré-Coeur Basilica is on a hill that you can climb on foot or by funicular. If you look at the basilica from the front, the funicular is to the left of the stairs.

View of Paris! Once at the top, in addition to visiting the basilica, you will discover a beautiful panorama of Paris. For all these reasons, this visit is one of the essentials in Paris!

visiting sacre coeur paris travel

5. Take a walk in the Montmartre district

Neighborhood to visit! The Montmartre district of Paris is like a small village. Montmartre is undoubtedly the most romantic and bohemian neighborhood of the French capital. The charm of its alleys will seduce you. Feel free to move away from the most crowded streets to make the most of your visit. Visiting the Montmartre district is one of the best things to do in Paris and one of the best places to visit in Paris!

area montmartre paris trip

6. Climb on the top of the Eiffel Tower

One of the most visited monuments in Paris. If you visit Paris, the Eiffel Tower remains an absolute must. The Eiffel Tower is the most tourist place in Paris. Several options are available to you. You can climb only to the 2nd level of the Eiffel Tower without going to its top. The view from the top is much more spectacular. However, when the weather is cloudy and visibility not perfect, the 2nd level can be enough. More information on our post about visiting the Eiffel Tower.

Good to know! To avoid waiting, book tickets in advance. It is almost essential because the wait can be several hours. The prices for the 2nd level are lower than for the summit: see the prices for the 2nd level, or see the prices for going to the top of the Eiffel Tower. Compare the photos and choose the tickets that suit you best.

tour eiffel to do in paris

7. Admire a pretty view from the Trocadero

Discover the Eiffel Tower in all its splendor! The Trocadéro esplanade is slightly higher than the Eiffel Tower. It is an excellent vantage point to see the Eiffel Tower. In addition, Trocadéro is not far from the Champs-Élysées, particularly from the Arc de Triomphe. For example, you can visit the Champs-Élysées first, then go to the Eiffel Tower, or else go ahead. It is an excellent route to take to discover Paris.

Good to know! Like everywhere in Paris, you must move away from the busiest places to enjoy more. For example, if you want to take a quiet break near the TrocadĂ©ro, go to the depths of the Jardin du TrocadĂ©ro. Here, there are generally fewer people. Otherwise, go to the Pont de Bir Hakeim (open on Google Maps). This bridge has a pedestrian part, and the metro passes over it. It is an exciting walk in Paris to see the Eiffel Tower with fewer people and from another point of view.

trocadero paris france

8. Walk up the Champs-Élysées

The most beautiful avenue in Paris. The Champs-ÉlysĂ©es is 2 kilometers long. It is a beautiful avenue that starts from the majestic square Place de la Concorde and ends at the square Place de l’Etoile, where the Arc de Triomphe is located.

Good to know! We could divide the Champs-Élysées into two parts: one noisier and dedicated to shopping and another quieter or more tree-lined. The part where the shops are located is between the Franklin D. Roosevelt metro and the Arc de Triomphe. The part from Place de la Concorde to the Franklin D. Roosevelt metro is quieter. In this part is the Élysée Palace, the official residence of the French President.

visit arc de triomphe paris

9. Climb on the top of the Arc de Triomphe

Why this visit? From the Arc de Triomphe, we can better understand why the Place de l’Étoile is so-called. You can see the 5 avenues that arrive at this square. In addition, you can discover a magnificent 360-degree view of Paris and see the Eiffel Tower. Such a nice place to visit in Paris!

Alternative to the Eiffel Tower? Once on the Eiffel Tower, you can no longer see it. Therefore, it is more interesting to discover a view of Paris, including the Eiffel Tower. The Arc de Triomphe offers this option! Discover the prices for this visit here: see photos and prices for visiting the Arc de Triomphe.

view panorama paris thing to do

10. Visit the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais

Located a stone’s throw from the Champs-ÉlysĂ©es, these two palaces have splendid architecture. Moreover, they are also not far from the magnificent Pont Alexandre III (see below).

The Petit Palais (or the Museum of Fine Arts of Paris). Admission to the permanent collections is free.

The Grand Palace. The temporary exhibitions of the Grand Palais attract a lot of visitors. It is a place not to be missed if you appreciate art. However, visiting the Grand Palais is optional if you visit Paris in just 3 or 4 days.

petit palais little palace

11. See the Alexandre III Bridge

Majestic! The Pont Alexandre III is undoubtedly the most beautiful bridge in Paris. Inaugurated for the Universal Exhibition of 1900, this bridge symbolized the Franco-Russian alliance signed in 1891. Upstream, the Seine Nymphs surround Paris’s arms, while downstream, the Neva and its Nymphs’ figure accompany Russia’s golden arms. The Neva is the name of the river that flows through Saint Petersburg, the capital of Russia at the time.

bridge alexandre paris travel

12. Visit the HĂ´tel National des Invalides

Built in 1679 under the order of Louis XIV, this building was to accommodate disabled soldiers. What is worth the visit is the Cathedral of Saint-Louis des Invalides and the mausoleum, where you can see the tomb of Napoleon.

invalides place to visit in paris france

13. See Notre-Dame-de-Paris Cathedral

Under renovation. In 2019, a fire seized Notre-Dame-de-Paris Cathedral and caused lots of damage. Built in 1163, the cathedral has become a symbol for Paris. Renovation’s end is planned for 2024 when it will be possible to revisit this magnificent cathedral.

notre dame de paris

14. Visit the Sainte-Chapelle

A gothic gem. On the Ile de la Cité is another monument not to be missed: the Sainte-Chapelle. It was built in 1248. Here are sheltered the precious relics of Christianity, such as the Holy Crown of Thorns and a piece of the True Cross. The stained glass windows and architecture of the Sainte-Chapelle leave you speechless. Find out more here: photos, timetables, and prices for visiting the Sainte-Chapelle.

sainte chapelle paris

15. Visit the Latin Quarter of Paris

One of the oldest neighborhoods in Paris. The district’s name’s origin dates back to the Middle Ages. In this area, we can imagine the life of Parisians at that time. The streets are narrow and do not look like the ample Haussmann-style avenues. Visiting this neighborhood is one of the best things to do in Paris.

Haussmann architecture. Between 1853 and 1870, Napoleon III and Baron Haussmann started the overall modernization of the French capital. The aim is to make Paris more modern with wide boulevards and avenues. The Latin Quarter is one of the districts of Paris that has not been affected by this modernization project (find out more on Wiki).

16. Visit the Pantheon

Among the great things to do in Paris in the Latin Quarter, there is of course the Pantheon. In the crypt of the Pantheon are buried great personalities such as Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas, or Voltaire. You can buy the tickets here: see the entrance prices to the Pantheon.

visit pantheon paris

17. Walk the Pont des Arts

“Lovers’ Bridge”. It is also called the Pont des Arts. This pedestrian bridge offers a nice view of the Seine and the magnificent architecture of Paris. The Pont des Arts is a stone’s throw from the Louvre. So, before or after visiting the Louvre, don’t miss it!

Nice spot. If you come from the Louvre, on your right, you will see a boat when you cross the bridge. It is an excellent place for a dinner cruise. The reviews are praising. This restaurant is called Le Calife (see location and photos on Google Maps).

pont des arts paris best things to do

18. Visit the Palace of Versailles

Royal residence. Visiting the Palace of Versailles is one of the best things to do in Paris! On the other hand, the castle is not in the city center of Paris, but in the city of Versailles. You can go there by public transport and buy the entrance tickets (see the tickets to visit Versailles), or take a visit including transport (it’s more practical: see the features for a guided visit including transport to return).

Learn more about Versailles. To prepare for your visit to the Palace of Versailles, you can read our detailed blog post: Everything you need to know before visiting the Palace of Versailles.

visiting versailles palace chateau paris france tips

19. See the magnificent show at the Moulin Rouge cabaret

An unforgettable evening awaits you. During your trip to Paris, don’t miss this opportunity to see the splendid show at the Moulin Rouge cabaret (read our blog post about Moulin Rouge)! Visiting a cabaret is one of the best things to do in Paris.

Costumes, music, and dances. Immerse yourself in the world of the Moulin Rouge! Find out more: see photos of the shows, prices, and schedules. Entrance tickets include a glass of champagne, but there are also tickets including dinner (see prices with diner). The show will leave you with unforgettable memories of your trip to Paris.

moulin rouge things to do in paris

20. Visit the MusĂ©e d’Orsay

What a museum! The MusĂ©e d’Orsay houses the world’s richest collection of impressionist and post-impressionist paintings. If you appreciate Impressionist art, a visit to the MusĂ©e d’Orsay is one of the essential things to do in Paris during your trip. Find more information here: see the prices for visiting the MusĂ©e d’Orsay.

visit museum orsay paris must see

21. See Place de la Concorde

The largest square in Paris. Place de la Concorde is located in the historical center of Paris, between the Louvre and the Arc de Triomphe. Even if this square can sometimes be too noisy, it is a pretty place that offers beautiful views of Paris. Moreover, in the evening, after dark, Place de la Concorde is much quieter.

Obelisk of Luxor. This impressive obelisk originally comes from the Temple of Amun at Luxor in Egypt. It was offered to the King of France, Charles X, by the Viceroy of Egypt, Mehemet Ali, as a token of friendship.

nice place concorde paris

22. Visit the Church of the Madeleine

Ancient church or temple? The Eglise de la Madeleine is a stone’s throw from Place de la Concorde. You can see it from the square and get there in a few minutes. The Church of the Madeleine architecture is inspired by ancient architecture, which gives it the appearance of an ancient temple.

23. See Place VendĂ´me

French luxury and refinement. Place Vendôme is typical of classic French town planning. This square attracts travelers from all over the world with its architecture and charm and famous luxury boutiques. If you come to Paris for shopping, Place Vendôme and its surroundings are for you! It’s one of the most amazing places to visit in Paris.

place vendome place to visit in paris

24. Take a walk in the Jardin du Palais Royal

A moment of relaxation. Treat yourself to a moment of peace in the Jardin du Palais Royal. Find greenery, a fountain, stunning sculptures, and the famous columns of Daniel Buren.

royal palace visiting paris

25. See the Opera Garnier

Opéra Garnier. It is one of the world’s most influential lyrical and choreographic stages. The architecture of the Opéra Garnier is remarkable. Plus, it’s just as pretty on the outside as on the inside. The richness of the interior decorations is splendid and worth the detour.

How to visit? You can attend a performance or take a guided tour to see the interior of the Opéra Garnier. Discover the program of the Opéra Garnier on the official website of the Opéra de Paris. Otherwise, you can find information for guided tours here: guided tour at the Opéra Garnier (photos, prices). The Opéra Garnier is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Paris.

opera garnier paris place to visit

26.Take a walk in the Luxembourg Gardens

Statues, fountains, Parisian atmosphere. During your trip to Paris, find peace and relaxation in the Jardin du Luxembourg. This place is a must to do in Paris if you want to soak up the Parisian atmosphere.

gardens luxembiourg travel tips

27. Visit the Pompidou Center (Beaubourg)

Modern Art Museum. The architecture of the Center Pompidou is surprising. If you are a lover of modern and contemporary art, visiting this museum is one of the essential things to do in Paris during your trip. Find more information on the Center Pompidou website.

centre pompidou must see paris

28. Go into the Catacombs of Paris

Surprising visit. The Catacombs of Paris is a veritable underground labyrinth! These are old quarry galleries. Here, at the end of the 18th century, the remains of about six million individuals were transferred. The catacombs are enormous and are more than 10,000 m2, of which only 0.5% are open to the public.

Book in advance. The Catacombs are among the most visited places in Paris. So there is a long wait at the entrance. You can book tickets in advance to avoid the queue and to save time. The audio guide is included in skip-the-line tickets.

catacombs unusual things to do in paris

29. Visit Disneyland Paris Park

A family activity. The Disneyland Paris park is made up of several parts. Plan at least a full day’s visit (book tickets here). Discover our tips and advice in the blog post: Visit Disneyland Paris.

30. Visit the Père Lachaise Cemetery

The largest cemetery in Paris and among the most famous in the world. The Père Lachaise cemetery is a timeless place. With a guide, the visit to this place is extraordinary: legends, anecdotes, and surprising facts. During the guided tour, this place comes back to life. Find more information about this guided tour here: guided tour at Père Lachaise Cemetery. The Père Lachaise is one of the fascinating places to visit in Paris.

visit pere lachaise

What to do in Paris? Among the fabulous must-see places to visit in Paris, we obviously find the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Champs-Élysées, or the Pont Alexandre III. If you want to visit Paris and get off the beaten track, you can discover unique places like the Catacombs of Paris or the Center Pompidou.

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Louis and Emilie

We once heard visitors in Paris saying that the French are not the most welcoming people. It made us sad. That's why we started this blog! So you can get the best information for your travel to France! Of course, we love Paris. We have lived in multiple areas, from Canal St Martin to right next to the Eiffel Tower. We also explore regions of France whenever we can. Our favorites for a weekend away from Paris are Etretat and Mont Saint Michel. The beautiful French Riviera is a marvelous place to explore for a week.

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