Paris

Paris Travel Guide – Best Things to do in Paris

Paris does not need an introduction. It is one of the most beautiful cities on Earth and occupies the top spot in many a traveller's lists. Brimming with history, beauty and romance; Paris is home to over 200 museums, 2100 listed historic monuments, 1000 art galleries and 3 opera houses. A simple stroll through its charming streets will help you realise the beauty of Paris - whether its the emphatic Eiffel Tower or the beautiful Jardin des Tuileries gardens, there is something to see in every street in the city. To help you experience the best of Paris. In this guide, we will take a look at the 10 best things do in Paris - whether you're looking at art museums, historic architecture or royal palaces, you will find them in this list. However, if you want to take a deeper look into the different activities based on any given genre, then click on the markers above to go to that list.

1

Louvre Museum

Museums

#2 of 233 Museums in Paris on TripAdvisor

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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.

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

Address
Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • 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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2

Eiffel Tower

Sightseeing

#2 of 1,182 things to do in Paris on TripAdvisor

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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.

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

Address
Champ de Mars, 5 Avenue Anatole France, 75007 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • 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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3

Notre Dame Cathedral

Sightseeing

#4 of 1,182 things to do in Paris on TripAdvisor

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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 (Ile 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.

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

Address
6 Parvis Notre-Dame | Place Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • 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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4

Arc De Triomphe

Sightseeing

#12 of 1,182 things to do in Paris on TripAdvisor

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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.

Hours
10:00 AM to 11:00 PM every day

Address
Place Charles de Gaulle, 75008 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • 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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5

Paris Catacombs

Sightseeing

#58 of 1,182 things to do in Paris on TripAdvisor

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Although often referred to as the city of lights, there is a dark, almost enigmatic past of the city that is retold within the catacombs of Paris. The underground ossuaries hold the remains of more than 6 million people. These ancient quarries were built as an effort to eliminate city’s overflowing cemeteries. Although slightly twisted, the catacombs have now begun gaining importance and is recognised as museum in Paris. The catacombs makes a perfect destination for those vying for an eerie, yet a curious story of the elaborate city.

Hours
10:00 AM to 8:00 PM Tuesday to Sunday
Monday closed

Address
1 Avenue du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy, 75014 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • Keep a flashlight handy as the tunnels can be dark.
  • It is advisable to wear covered shoes or boots as the quarry is prone to muck during the rains.
  • Show up at least 20 to 30 minutes before they open as the museum is prone to long queues.

Recommended Experiences
Skip the Line Catacombs Tickets with Audioguide
Skip the Line: Catacombs & Arc de Triomphe Rooftop Access Combo

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6

Orsay Museum

Museums

#1 of 233 Museums in Paris on TripAdvisor

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Located on the scenic banks of river Seine, the Museum of Orsay houses an impressive collection of impressionist (400 paintings) and post-impressionist (1,100 paintings) masterpieces of the world. Visitors can get a chance to view famous artworks from artists such as Monet, Degas, Sisley and Van Gogh as the Museum of Orsay is one of the largest art museums in Europe. Originally a railway station, you can still trace the origins of Gare d’Orsay in its opulent architecture. The museum also creates several temporary exhibits throughout the year and it tops on the list of Paris’s interesting attraction.

Hours
9:30 AM to 6:00 PM every day except Thursday
9:30 AM to 9:45 PM on Thursday

Address
1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, 75007 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • Make a list of the paintings you’d like to view before heading here, as that will save some time on your hands.
  • The museum is least crowded during the noons and off-season.
  • There are several lines for individuals, groups and professionals - make sure you save time by getting into the right queue.

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

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7

Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Sightseeing

#10 of 1,182 things to do in Paris on TripAdvisor

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Dedicated to the sacred heart of Jesus, Sacre-Coeur Basilica is one of the most visited monuments of this city. Now standing as a sacred site, the artistic church is constructed using a white marble stone that gives it a stunning, chalky appearance. Visitors can make a trip to this church and avail a fantastic view of Paris since the church is constructed at an altitude of 130 meters above sea level. This makes it the second highest monument of Paris after the Eiffel Tower.

Hours
6:00 AM to 10:30 PM every day

Address
35 Rue du Chevalier-De-La-Barre, 75018 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • Pick late afternoons when the crowd is relatively lesser within the church.
  • Be wary of pickpockets if you’re venturing into the crowded areas.
  • The church observes a strict no-photography rule.

Recommended Experiences
Sacré-Coeur and Dome with Expert Tour Guide
Montmartre & Belle Époque Private Tour

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8

Sightseeing Seine River Cruise

Cruise

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This leisurely, hour long cruise takes you past some of the most iconic Parisian monuments afloat. Admire prestigious landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, 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.

Hours
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)

Address
Port de la Bourdonnais, 75007, Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • 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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9

Musee Rodin

Museums

#4 of 233 Museums in Paris on TripAdvisor

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Opened in 1919, Musee Rodin holds a host of some of Auguste Rodin’s impeccable artworks. Situated amongst well manicured lawns and a sprawling property, the museum is housed in a n 18th century private mansion. You can take a stroll down the pristine gardens and discover some of his prominent works such as ‘The Thinker’ or ‘The Gates of Hell’ within the lawns. You can also admire some of his drawings, prints, paintings, ceramics, photographs and antiques amongst the many collections in this museum. Visitors can also spend some leisure time frolicking around a small lake in the premises and catch a cup of coffee at the casual restaurant at this museum.

Hours
Monday closed
10:00 AM to 5.45 Tuesday to Sunday

Address
79 rue de Varenne, 75007 Paris, France
Get Directions

Tips

  • It is highly recommended to visit the ornamental and rose gardens of the museum that is accessible with a small fee.
  • Be sure to invest in an audio-guide to learn more about the sculptures in the premises.
  • If you plan on buying the tickets from the counter, make sure you arrive before 5.15 PM as that’s when the desk closes down for the day.

Recommended Experiences
Rodin Museum Skip the Line Tickets with Garden of Sculptures

10

Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais

Museums

#25 of 233 Museums in Paris on TripAdvisor

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One of the most iconic Parisian architecture, one simply can’t miss the striking Grand Palais located on the buzzing streets of Champs Elysees. The architectural masterpiece comprises of three major sites: the Nave, the National Galleries and the Palais de la Decouverte. There are several national and international events being held every year at the Nave that include horse riding, contemporary art and many others. Apart from that, visitors have the privilege to view some eye-catching collections by Picasso, Hopper and several other renowned artists that have set a milestone in the history of art. In fact, children too can make the most of the knowledge imparted at this museum by spending some time at The Palais de la Decouverte. There are numerous cultural hotspots within the museum for kids, that are dedicated to science and fun learning.

Hours
Tuesday closed
10:00 AM TO 8:00 PM Thursday to Monday
10:00 AM TO 10:00 PM Wednesday

Address
Avenue des Champs Elysees, 75008 Paris, France
Get Directions

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