50 Things To Do in Paris

Like Edinburgh and London, Paris is a city that you can never fully explore. Every time you turn a corner you are greeted with a different view of the Eiffel Tower. There is so much to do in Paris that not even the main sights can all be done in a week, especially if you do not want to rush around museums. On our recent holiday, Dan and I did manage to fit in quite a lot but were exhausted by the end of it. Rather than giving you all a full, in-depth rundown of everything we did, which would be far too long a read, I thought a quick list of 50 things could perhaps inspire you to visit some of the places yourselves. Please do not follow this as a schedule because I haven’t written the list in any particular order but you can check out my last blog post about Planning a Week in Paris.

1: Enjoy a carousel ride. For me, carousels are one of the things in life that bring me complete and utter joy. Classic style carousels can be found across Paris, including next to the Eiffel Tower but for a more unique experience, check out the Dodo Manège in the Jardin des Plantes.

Jardin des Tuileries Carousel

2: Explore the works of Salvador Dalí at the Dalí Paris Museum in Montmartre.

3: Shop at Les Galeries Lafayette, the largest shop in Paris. If you’re visiting Paris during the festive period be sure to check out the incredible Christmas tree.

4: Wander around the Marché aux Fleurs (flower market) at Place Louis Lépine. It’s open every day except Sunday when it transforms into a bird market instead.

5: Check out Shakespeare and Company, perhaps the most famous bookstore in Paris and the books are in English, not French!

6: Visit the Musée d’Orsay and admire the art, including Van Gogh’s self-portrait. The museum is a converted train station so be sure to take in the gorgeous architecture and iconic clocks whilst you’re there.

7:Take pictures in a street photobooth on the Rue des Trois Frères. Warning, it takes the first photo very quickly!

8: Enjoy lunch at the Arènes des Lutéce. The Roman Arena is the perfect place to take some food and people watch, especially when it’s a warm, sunny day.

9: Walk along Paris’ most famous avenue, the Champs-Élysées which frames the Arc de Triomphe at one end.

10: Help free the man stuck in the wall in Montmartre. Le Passe-Murialle is one of the more unusual statues in Paris, based on the fictional character of Dutilleul. His full story can be found here.

11: Watch a show at the iconic Moulin Rouge. Of course, if Cabaret is not your thing you can also just look at it from the outside and take a few pictures.

12: Make a wish on Point Zéro. It is known as the centre of Paris and those who step on it are destined to return one day.

13: Play classic video games at Reset. It’s a bar filled with classic consoles such as Sega Megadrive, SNES, N64s and has a full Rockband setup.

14: Visit le Mur des Je t’aime, which translates to The Wall of I Love You’s.” Hidden in Montmartre, the wall is a perfect place for photos and perhaps a cheeky kiss.

15: Admire Le Grand Palais and its neighbour Le Petit Palais, both gorgeous buildings on the banks of the Seine.

16: Make new friends at Le Zoo du Jardin des Plantes. The zoo is home to all kinds of animals including adorable red pandas which can sometimes be seen over the fence.

17: Leave a love lock on a bridge with your sweetheart. The original site for this was the Pont des Arts but they were taken down for fear of the bridge collapsing. You can now find plenty on Passerelle Léopold Sédar Senghor, near the Musée d’Orsay

18: Eat a rose shaped ice cream from Amorino with differently flavoured petals.

19: Climb up the Arc de Triomphe and admire the views from the top. There’s a shop inside as well as an animation that explains how it was built and why.

20: Do some luxury shopping at the Place Vendôme. Brands such as Chanel and Louis Vuitton have shops that look to the bronze war memorial in the centre of the square

21: Take a day trip to the Château du Versailles to explore the palace and gardens.

22: Admire modern art at The Centre Georges Pompidou. The museum itself is strikingly unique in the centre of Paris with its ‘inside out’ design as the pipes are clearly visible on the outside of the building.

23: Wander around the Jardin des Tuileries. Surrounded by the Louvre museum and the River Seine it has the most beautiful backdrop for a summer walk.

24: Have your portrait drawn at Place du Tertre. The square is filled with artists and caricaturists with oil paints and chalk everywhere you turn.

25: For some more of Dalí’s work find his sundial on the Rue Saint-Jacques

26: Explore the old artists’ squat at 59 Rivoli, now turned into studios. It’s free to look around but some prints are for sale if you wish to purchase any.

27: Paris is known for its cemeteries so take the time to explore some and pay tribute to the people that are buried there. I visited Passy Cemetry to visit the grave of my favourite composer, Gabriel Fauré. If you choose to visit the same one, note that there are maps next to the toilets at the entrance to help you find your way around.

Passy Cemetry, across the river from the Eiffel Tower

28: Visit the buildings that make up The Natural History Museum. With galleries dedicated to minerals, anatomy and evolution and others, you can spend a whole day learning about our planet and those on it (if you speak French, unlike me).

29: Discover what is the largest and arguably most famous museum in the world. Home to Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo, the Louvre holds thousands of priceless pieces of art within its walls.

30: For those who are interested in war history, Les Invalides is for you. It is a collection of buildings and monuments that relate to French military history. Napoleon is also buried here in a tomb.

31: The ultimate shopping centre experience can be found at Forum Les Halles. The place is huge with five floors of shops and cafes as well as a cinema.

32: Admire the views from the top of Montmartre at Sacré-Cœur. As well as having a stunning look over Paris’ skyline, the inside of the Basilica is just as gorgeous with ornate carvings and paintings, however, no pictures are allowed.

33: Eat a classic French crêpe from a street vendor. There’s probably a place to buy a crêpe on nearly every street with sweet and savoury options.

Sugar and Cinnamon Crêpe from Le Wepler at Place de Clichy

34: See some of Monet’s famous waterlilies at the Musée de l’Orangerie. His larger works are kept here in crisp white, oval rooms to enhance the colour of the paintings.

35: Palais de Chaillot at Trocadèro frames the Eiffel Tower beautifully from across the river. You can’t miss the incredible fountains too!

36: Taste luxury ice cream at Berthillon on the Île Saint-Louis. It’s a favourite amongst Paris and will have especially long queues on hot days.

37: Eat at Le Consulat in Montmartre, close to Sacré-Cœur. It’s been around for so long that even Picasso has visited!

38: One of my favourite buildings in Paris is the Palais Garnier, home to the Paris Opera. It has lavish decor that oozes luxury and opulence, a reflection of the stunning architecture.

39: Have a picnic on the Champ des Mars. Set against the Eiffel Tower, there isn’t a better place to enjoy some french pastries

40: Have a peek at Ancient Egyptian history at Place de la Concorde. In the middle is Cleopatra’s needle, one of three obelisks erected around the world as gifts from Egypt.

41: Visit Brother’s Crêpes and Café for a twist on the French classic. Dig into their pizza Crêpes which are truly delicious and treat yourself to a milkshake too because every day should be a treat day.

42: Place Dalida is dedicated to the French-Italian-Egyptian singer and actress. It is very popular with fans and tourists and features a life-sized bust sculpted from bronze.

43: Go to Le Palais Royal for a visit to the installation called Les Deux Plateaux or more commonly known as Colonnes de Buren, made up of striped pillars in the inner courtyard of the palace.

44: Relive your childhood dreams at Disneyland Paris, which is only a short train from the city centre. Meet your favourite characters including Mickey himself, go on rides and watch the parade in the Happiest Place on Earth.

45: Wander around Paris’ two natural islands Île de la Cité and Île Saint-Louis for an afternoon. With many cafés between the two, it’s a lovely place to have a coffee and people watch as time passes.

46: Pont Alexandre III connects the left and right banks of Paris, near Les Invalides. It is said to be the most extravagant bridge in the city with four distinct pillars, topped with bronze sculptures and well worth a visit.

47: The Panthéon is a mausoleum that is instantly recognisable in Paris because of its large dome. Victor Hugo and Marie Curie are among those that are buried there.

48: Watch the rekindling of the flame underneath the Arc de Triomphe. Everday at 6:30pm war veterans lay flowers and pay tribute to the unknown soldier who is buried at the bottom of the arch.

49: Explore the most well-known cathedral in the world, Notre Dame de Paris. Located on Île de la Cité, it can be clearly seen from both sides of the river. As well as going inside you can also climb the church to see the chimera.

50: Take in the view from the Eiffel Tower, the most iconic structure in Paris which presents beautiful views of the entire city. If you are feeling particularly energetic you can climb up the legs to the second floor but you’ll need the lift to go higher. If you go to the very top, look out for the secret apartment with Gustave Eiffel inside.

A telescope on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower

I hope this list has given you some inspiration for your next trip to Paris. I love to look at posts like these when planning my holidays which is why I wanted to write my own. If you’d like to see more of my content, much of it to be Paris related in the upcoming months make sure to follow me on my blog and social media so you don’t miss any posts, links are all below.

 

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50 Things To Do in Paris

2 Comments Add yours

  1. David says:

    Done about 12 of them over the years. I’ve got a copy of the caricature of your Grandra that was done in Place du Tertre! I’d also add to the list Musee Rodin and ask your Mum about a taxi ride around l’etoile!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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