Is there any other city in the world quite as romantic as Paris? With whimsical Montmartre and its’ many artists or St Germain and its’ many boutiques, there’s always something to see in this magical city. But what about the must see Paris attractions! From the Eiffel Tower to a day trip outside of the city to historic Versailles Palace, here’s everything you must see and do whilst in Paris…
1. Eiffel Tower
It should come at little surprise that the Eiffel Tower is the world’s most-visited paid monument – with at least a whopping 7 million visitors a year. Tickets will set you back €15, but be sure to book through the site or at the tower itself, as some tourist agencies can charge up to three times that amount.
2. The Louvre
As one of the world’s largest and arguably most impressive museums (though the Hermitage in St Petersburg certainly competes), The Louvre is an absolute must-see whilst in Paris. Be sure to schedule a half or an entire day to visit, as much of your time will be spent waiting in line to enter! Of course, the Mona Lisa is a highlight, but be sure to grab a program so you can find some other delightful works amongst the many hallways.
3. Arc de Triomphe
The Arc de Triomphe stand proudly at the ‘top’ of the Champs Elysees and offers one of the best, if not the best views over the city. The price to climb the stairs to the top is 9,50 € and can be paid on arrival. Entrance is via the Champs Elysees, walking underground (look for the signs).
Sacre-Coeur church stands tall above the city of Paris, at around 130 metres high. Be sure to walk the famous Sacre-Coeur stairs, and perhaps even stop for a bite of takeaway lunch there to enjoy he views. Don’t miss the chance to explore Montmartre, the neighbourhood in which Sacre Coeur resides, and enjoy one of Paris’ most authentic areas.
5. Jardin du Luxembourg
Located in the 6th arrondisement, the Luxembourg Garden is one of the most enjoyable summer attractions in Paris. Whether you take a bite to eat for lunch or kick back on the public chairs and people watch, you’ll be sure to enjoy the summer sunshine for a few hours in the gardens.
6. Musee d’Orsay
Located on the Left Bank of the Seine, the Musee d’Orsay is Paris’ “lesser known” museum, but has become equally as popular in recent years.
7. Notre Dame Cathedral
If you make your way down to Notre Dame Cathedral, be sure to arrive early and line up for entrance to the towers (located on the left of the cathedral, when facing the building front-on). Here you will be able to enjoy a fantastic view over the city and see the famous gargoyles.
8. Day Trip to Versailles Palace
Although technically outside of Paris itself, the Palace of Versailles has long held a high significance for Paris and France. Once the royal residence of King Louis XIV, Versailles and its many hallways are a living history in itself. If you visit during the summer, don’t miss the Palace Gardens. For a great bite to eat, you’ll be delighted to find an Angelina bakery inside the Palace!
This royal medieval gothic chapel located on the Île de la Cité has one of the most impressive interiors in the entire city. The chapel is open 7 days of the week, from 9.30-6pm.
10. Palais Garnier
As the most romantic city in Europe, it should hardly come as a surprise that the Paris Opera House is a delight to visit. The Opera House seats 1979 comfortably and is open both to shows and tours.
11. Les Invalides
Located in the 7th arrondisements, Les Invalides is a collection of buildings – museums and monuments – all containing the military history of France. This is also the burial site for Napoleon Bonaparte.
12. Tuileries Garden
A popular choice, the tuileries gardens are located right by the louvre, en route to the Champs Elysees and Arc de Triomphe if you’re travelling on foot. The gardens even have a few ice cream parlours to keep you satisfied during those long hot summers!
13. Pont Alexandre III
Surely this would have to be the prettiest bridge in the entire city! As far as bridges go, this is my favourite of the must see Paris attractions. Running from the left to right bank of the seine, Pont Alexandre III also offers a great view of the Eiffel Tower from afar.
14. Hotel de Ville
Located a short stroll from Notre Dame Cathedral in the 4th arrondissement, Hotel de Ville is an impressive building and the location of the municipality of Paris. If you’re in Paris during winter, Hotel de Ville has one of the cities’ biggest skating rinks located out the front during the cooler months.
15. Disneyland Paris
Located 32km East of Paris, Disneyland Paris is a great day trip for the kids or kids at heart!
16. Place de la Concorde
Place de la Concorde is the largest public square in Paris, located between the Champs Elysees and Tuileries Garden. This is one of my favourite must see Paris attractions, for it is often missed on guides to Paris.
17. Catacombs of Paris
If you’re up for something different, why not consider a catacombs tour underneath Paris!? If you dare, there are a range of different tours on offer. While I can’t say it is a must see Paris attraction (having been too many times to count, I still haven’t visited), it is certainly something different!
18. The Latin Quarter for Cheap Eats
If you’re tired of attractions and just want to meander through backstreets and find some great cheap eats, head straight for the Latin Quarter – located right next door to more well-known St Germain des Pres.
19. Saint Germain des Pres for Boutiques
Just next door is one of my favourite neighbourhoods in Paris – Saint Germain. Here you’ll find some great boutiques, especially those selling second-hand luxury goods.
20. Montmartre for Artists, Art, and the old Paris
Last but not least, you can’t come to Paris and not spend a few hours wandering the streets of Montmartre. As far as must see Paris attractions go, this neighbourhood deserves its own mention. It is here where you will find ‘the old Paris’ that time refuses to forget. There are also some great cheap apartments for rent if you plan to stay for a week or more in Paris.
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