How to Plan the Perfect 1-Day Stay in Paris

If all you have is 1 day in Paris, then you should plan your itinerary carefully to ensure you get the most out of your limited stay. A 1-day itinerary in Paris should ideally consist of all the major landmarks that quintessentially define Paris. Begin your day with a hearty French breakfast and head to Ile de la Cité, an island in the middle of the Seine that is home to some of the most popular tourist destinations in Paris. Take a stroll on the historic island before you make your way to the Eiffel Tower. Spend some time enjoying the stunning views of Paris from the summit of the tower. Once you've visited the Eiffel Tower, head for a sightseeing cruise on the Seine river that will show you important highlights and landmarks of the city. In the evening, head to the Louvre Museum to admire the most important works of art in the world. Finally, end your day at another iconic Parisian landmark, Arc de Triomphe.

1 Day in Paris - Notre Dame Cathedral, Eiffel Tower, Sightseeing Seine Cruise, Louvre Museum, Arc De Triomphe


Île de la Cité - Notre Dame Cathedral
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After the Catacombs, head to the Île de la Cité, a historic island in the heart of Paris full of beautiful historic buildings. The most important of them all is the Notre Dame Cathedral. The iconic church that was built almost eight centuries ago is another monument that is considered the pride of Paris. This notable cathedral is located on a small island (Île de la Cite) in the middle of river Seine. The 800 year old church displays its tragic as well as glorious moments through the history of Paris. Through its phase of being almost demolished to being restored to its former beauty, a visit to Notre Dame is nothing less than taking a stroll down the valiant history of France. Be sure to catch a glimpse of the sparkling river Seine as well as historical artefacts housed within the Church once you’re in it.

8:00 AM to 6:45 PM Monday to Friday
8:00 AM to 7:15 PM Saturdays and Sundays

6 Parvis Notre-Dame | Place Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France
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  • While there is no entry fee for the cathedral, you may still face queues. Go as early as possible.
  • It is recommended to visit the bell tower inside the church that comes with a small fee.
  • Keep an eye on your valuables as the crowds can draw the attention of many-a-pickpockets.

Recommended Experiences
Notre Dame Cathedral Guided Tour
Notre Dame Cathedral Tour & Sainte-Chapelle Tickets
Notre Dame and Gothic Paris

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Plan to stay
1 hour


Eiffel Tower
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After visiting Ile de la Cité, head to the iconic Eiffel Tower. The world famous Eiffel Tower definitely does not need an introduction unless you’ve been living under a rock. Built by Gustave Eiffel in the year 1889, the tower has become a symbol of France and is recognised world wide as a defining moment of the industrial era in the country. Today, this glorious work of art attracts as many as 7 million visitors annually, making the Eiffel Tower the most visited monument around the world. Comprising of three levels, you are greeted to a unique panoramic view of the city and the glittering skies during nighttime. In fact, the beautiful tower is also a renowned stage for numerous international events as well.

9:30 AM to 11 PM Monday to Thursday
9:30 AM to 12 AM Fridays and Saturdays

Champ de Mars, 5 Avenue Anatole France, 75007 Paris, France
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  • The Eiffel Tower displays a marvellous view during the day as well as the night. Make sure to visit both these times for a different experience.
  • It is advisable to take the stairs to cut down on the long waiting queues at the elevator.
  • Consider reserving a prepaid ticket to skip the tiring ticket line.

Recommended Experiences
Skip The Line: Eiffel Tower Summit Tickets with Host
Skip the line: Eiffel Tower 2nd Floor Tickets
Dinner at the Eiffel Tower

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Plan to stay
1-2 hours


Sightseeing Seine River Cruise
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This Seine river cruise begins at the foot of the Eiffel Tower and is hence the perfect experience after you are done visiting the Eiffel Tower. This leisurely, hour long cruise takes you past some of the most iconic Parisian monuments afloat. Admire prestigious landmarks such as Assemblee Nationale, Musee d'Orsay, Institut de France, Pantheon, Cite de la Mode, Hotel de Ville, Notre Dame, Conciergerie, and more. The mesmerising cruise also allows you to enjoy an exhilarating experience from on top of the boat’s terrace and passageways.

10:00 AM to 10:30 PM during Apr to Sep (every 30 minutes)
10:30 AM to 10:00 PM during Oct to Mar (every 60 minutes)

Port de la Bourdonnais, 75007, Paris, France
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  • Opt for the audio guide provided in the tour for better understanding.
  • Choose a seat at the front if you wish to capture the beauty within your camera.
  • Keep in mind that the narration and commentaries are only conducted downstairs.

Recommended Cruise
Bateaux Parisiens Seine River Sightseeing Cruise

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Cruise duration
1-1.5 hours


Louvre Museum
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After the cruise is over and you've enjoyed your lunch, head to the most famous museum in the world, the Louvre Museum. Considered as an iconic landmark, the Louvre is often on every tourist’s list while visiting Paris. This famous monument is best known for a plethora of art exhibits as well as collection from around the world. It witnesses a crowd of people who visit from across the globe to catch a glimpse of the famous Mona Lisa — painted by Leonardo da Vinci. The timeless glass pyramid that has now become a symbol of sophistication and elegance is also one of the most photographed monument of the city. Apart from a myriad of paintings, the museum also hosts intricate sculptures within its premises.

9:00 AM to 6:00 PM Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday
9:00 AM to 10:00 PM Fridays
Tuesday closed

Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France
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  • Visit during the nighttime to avoid crowd.
  • It is best to chart your visit according to a map of the museum, as it is nearly impossible to cover every exhibit of the Louvre.
  • Consider picking the audio guide if you’re not fluent with French.

Recommended Experiences
Dedicated Entrance Tickets to Louvre Museum
Guided Tour of the Louvre Museum with Skip the Line Entry

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Plan to stay
2 hours


Arc De Triomphe
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The final stop on your day 1 day in Paris trip will be Arc de Triomphe. Another well known monument of the city, the Arc de Triomphe stands tall at the western end of the famous Champs Élysées. The arch honours those who fought valiantly and died during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. With names of military soldiers engraved on its walls, the magnificent centrepiece is one of the biggest arches of the world. Visitors can benefit a panoramic view of Paris from atop this monument during the day and night. There is also a museum within the arch that retraces the history of Arc de Triomphe which is a must-visit for those interested to delve deeper into the roots of Paris.

10:00 AM to 11:00 PM every day

Place Charles de Gaulle, 75008 Paris, France
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  • There is no queue for those only visiting the exterior of the monument, so do not confuse yourself with the same.
  • It is best to book a museum pass or an online ticket to cut the queues.
  • The Arc de Triomphe has one of the best views of the Eiffel Tower, so make sure to carry your camera for plenty of photo ops.

Recommended Experiences
Skip The Line: Arc de Triomphe Rooftop Tickets
Louvre Museum Dedicated Entrance + Skip the Line Arc de Triomphe Tickets

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Plan to stay
1 hour

Comments (3)
  1. Kelly K says:

    Comfy and luxury city definitely defines it perfectly – this is definitely on my wish list!

  2. Shaun says:

    Thank you for putting this guide together. We only have one day in Paris and want to see as much as we possibly can!

  3. Thank you for your post.Keep it up.

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