Get a Glimpse of Mona Lisa at the Louvre
Credit: Musée du Louvre by
Musée du Louvre
What Is It? Arguably one of the most impressive museums in the world, the Louvre is always one of the top things to do in Paris.
Why Do It? Plan accordingly, as the sheer magnitude of this gem can take up to a half-day to explore.
While the Mona Lisa is certainly one of the biggest highlights, make sure to soak in the works of other notable artists along the way. Good to Know:
Explore Lush Landscapes at Tuileries Garden
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What Is It? Tuileries Garden was once the royal gardens of the Tuileries Palace.
Why Do It? Now a stretch of lush landscape, you can rest your feet on one of the many benches and soak in the tranquil ambiance.
Good to Know: It’s located near all the popular attractions such as the Louvre, Champs Elysees, and Arc de Triomphe.
Cross the Pont Alexandre III Bridge
Credit: Pont Alexandre III by
Joe deSousa via Flickr
What Is It? If there’s one bridge to cross in Paris, this is it.
Why Do It? Running from the left to right bank of the Seine, Pont Alexandre III is one of the prettiest bridges in the city.
is also a gorgeous focal point where visitors can view the Eiffel Tower from afar. Good to Know: It
Get Your Art on at Musee d’Orsay
Credit: Musee d’Orsay by
Joe deSousa via Flickr
What Is It? Housed in a former railway station, the lesser-known Musee d’Orsay museum is a must-see.
Why Do It? Highlighting the post-Classic era of the second half of the 19th century, here visitors can explore artwork treasures.
Good to Know: You can explore artwork treasures from Van Gogh, Renoir, Money, Picasso, and more.
Catch a Ballet Performance or Opera Show at Palais Garnier
Credit: Palais Garnier by
What Is It? A pure delight to visit and an architectural treasure, the Palais Garnier seats over 2,000 people and is just as impressive inside as it is on the outside.
Why Do It? Considered a stunning masterpiece, visitors are encouraged to explore Paris’s ballet and classical music scene here.
The best way to explore the intricacies of this monument is to attend a performance, however, there are also tours available. Good to Know:
Dive into French History at Les Invalides
Credit: Les Invalides by
Dennis Jarvis via Flickr
What Is It? Les Invalides is perfect for visitors who are interested in Paris’s past.
Why Do It? These museums and monuments contain the military history of France, including a former hospital for wounded soldiers and the burial site of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Good to Know: The complex of buildings is located in the 7th arrondissements.
Tower Over the Champs Elysees at Arc de Triomphe
Credit: Arc de Triomphe by
heipei via Flickr
What Is It? Climb the 234 steps to the viewing platform of the Arc de Triomphe.
Why Do It? Standing at the center of the busy Place Charles de Gaulle and offering a birds-eye view over the city, the Arc de Triomphe is one of Paris’s most distinctive historical landmarks.
Good to Know: Afterward, you can go window shopping along the prestigious Champs Elysees.
Look Up in Saint-Chapelle
What Is It? Saint-Chapelle is an architectural marvel created as a royal chapel to house the Holy Relics of the Passion of the Christ.
Why Do It? The most impressive feature of this jewel is its intricately designed interior with impressive stained-glass displays that mesmerize visitors with its glittering combination of light and color.
Good to Know: The chapel was built during the second half of the 13th century by Louise IX.
Climb the Famous Sacre Coeur Stairs
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Juanedc.com via Flickr
What Is It? Climb the stairs of the Sacre Coeur.
Why Do It? Standing tall above the city, it provides visitors a superlative panoramic view from the top of its 271-foot dome.
Translating to “mount of martyrs,” it is said that Sacre Coeur was the place of the martyrdom of the first bishop of Paris in the 3rd century. Good to Know:
Discover Cheap Eats in the Latin Quarter
What Is It? After a day of exploring attractions, visitors can wander through the streets of the Latin Quarter.
Why Do It? The Latin Quarter offers an abundance of cheap and charming cafes, bars, and shops.
Good to Know: France’s oldest university, La Sorbonne, was founded in the area in 1257 and has evolved into a popular area with budget travelers.
Explore the Underground Catacombs
Credit: Catacombs of Paris by
Tobias F. Wolf via Flickr
What Is It? A different kind of attraction, the underground catacombs provide visitors with a unique Parisian experience.
Why Do It? A series of long, winding tunnels, visitors can descend down a set of gloomy stairs and traverse a mile through underground subterranean passageways.
lined with skulls and bones excavated from various Paris cemeteries during the 18th century. Good to Know: Not for the faint of heart, the tunnels are
Wander the Streets of Montmartre
Credit: Montmartre in Paris by
© Adisa | Dreamstime.com
What Is It? Montmartre is one of Paris’s most charming places to take a stroll and wander around.
Why Do It? The area is lined with cobblestone paths, ivy-laden windows, and eclectic shops selling anything from delicious pastries to handmade jewelry.
Located in the 18th arrondissement, it offers an authentic ‘Old Paris’ vibe. Good to Know:
Take a Day Trip to Versailles Palace and Gardens
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What Is It? While Paris has plenty to offer within the city, visitors will be amiss if they don’t take a day trip to the opulent Versailles Palace and Gardens, the former residence of French monarchs.
Why Do It? Visitors can soak in the stunning views of the manicured Versailles Garden, Chapel of Versailles, Grand Apartment, and Hall of Mirrors.
Good to Know: It is an example of 18th-century French architecture and art and a current UNESCO World Heritage site.
Go to the Top of the Eiffel Tower
Credit: Eiffel Tower at Sunset, Paris by
What Is It? Coming as a surprise to no one, the Eiffel Tower is the world’s most-visited paid monument in the world.
Why Do It? Climb to the top of this iconic landmark for a stunning view of the city and return at night to watch the mesmerizing light show.
Rich in history and considered by many to be a symbol of love, the tower is always worth a visit. Good to Know:
Soak in the Best Views of Paris at the Notre Dame Cathedral
Credit: Notre Dame Cathedral by
Julian Fong via Flickr
What Is It? The Notre Dame of Paris is a towering Gothic, Roman Catholic cathedral.
Why Do It? Visitors can see statues of Joan of Arc, Saint-Denis, and Charlemagne in addition to a series of wood carvings depicting the story of Jesus Christ.
Good to Know: Climb up the bell towers, peek out past the famous gargoyles and you’ll find a breathtaking and unique view of the city.
Update: In April 2019 The Notre Dame Cathedral tragically caught fire. Efforts are underway to restore this iconic landmark to its former glory. Check in here for the most current information.