Best 20 things to do in Paris, France

Welcome to the enchanting city of Paris, where croissants and berets abound! In this delightful article, we've carefully curated the crème de la crème of Parisian experiences. Whether you want to admire the Mona Lisa's supermodel pout at the Louvre, channel your inner Amélie Poulain at Montmartre's charming cafés, or indulge in a culinary symphony of escargots and macarons, this guide has got you covered. So grab your map, practice your best "Ooh la la," and get ready to fall head over heels for the City of Love!

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1. Notre-Dame Cathedral

4.7 (47060)

6 Parvis Notre-Dame - Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France

Welcome to beautiful Paris, where you'll find Notre-Dame Cathedral, the timeless masterpiece of architectural glory. With its flamboyant gothic facades and towering spires, this iconic landmark is sure to make you wonder if it doubles as a royal castle for fairy tale creatures. Step inside and prepare to be awestruck by the stained glass windows that are practically begging for you to take a socially awkward selfie with them – just remember to do it quietly, as this place is all about sacred hush, with a twist of tongue-in-cheek elegance.

www.notredamedeparis.fr

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2. Seine River Cruise

4.4 (4286)

1 Square du Vert Galant, 75001 Paris, France

Ah, the Seine River Cruise in Paris, where floating along the mythical waters is like being in a scene straight out of a romantic French movie, but with less dramatic dialogue and more croissant-eating tourists. Embark on a leisurely voyage as you take in the iconic sights, from the Eiffel Tower posing for selfies to the Notre-Dame Cathedral, patiently waiting for the day it can finally say "I'm fully restored!" And fear not, dear traveler, for the charming boats glide so smoothly that even those with the balance of a newborn giraffe can sip their Champagne without fear of falling overboard.

www.vedettesdupontneuf.com

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3. Opéra Garnier

4.7 (36626)

Pl. de l'Opéra, 75009 Paris, France

Welcome to the dazzling and theatrical world of Opéra Garnier, a stunning architectural masterpiece located in the heart of Paris. Prepare to be smitten by its opulent façade, which boasts statues, columns, intricate carvings, and a true sense of "go big or go home" embodied in stone. Inside, you'll find yourself whisked away to a wonderland of grand chandeliers, swoon-worthy velvet seats, and a ceiling that nearly steals the show—yes, it's the notorious home of the infamous chandelier-loving Phantom. Wink, wink!

www.operadeparis.fr

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4. Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Sacré-Cœur Basilica, 35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 Paris, France

Welcome to the glorious Sacre-Coeur Basilica in Paris, a mesmerizing masterpiece that proudly sits atop Montmartre Hill, like a fabulous crown on the head of the city! Marvel at this whimsical white wonder, boasting breathtaking views of the captivating Parisian skyline and the perfect spot for a selfie with the Eiffel Tower in the background. Built as if a giant marshmallow melted over a beautiful church, Sacre-Coeur will leave you awestruck with its splendidly intricate façade, reminding you that Paris is just as stylish in its architecture as it is in fashion.

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5. Saint-Germain-des-Prés

Saint-Germain-des-Prés, 75006 Paris, France

Nestled in the artistic heart of Paris, Saint-Germain-des-Prés effortlessly blends old-world charm with hipster-cool edginess. Picture yourself strolling down cobblestone streets, pretending to be a literary genius, while sipping on a ridiculously expensive cup of coffee. With an abundance of trendy cafes, quaint boutiques, and the faint aroma of freshly baked croissants lingering in the air, this neighborhood is the perfect backdrop for your Bohemian dreams to bloom – just remember to pack your beret and nonchalant attitude!

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6. Moulin Rouge

4.3 (9468)

82 Bd de Clichy, 75018 Paris, France

Welcome to the enchanting world of Moulin Rouge in Paris! Nestled in the heart of the city, this iconic cabaret is a haven of can-can dancers, extravagant costumes, and high-kicking joy. Prepare to be dazzled by a sea of rhinestones, feathers, and enough sequins to bedazzle even the most skeptical visitor. Whether you're a lover of music, a fan of fabulousness, or simply in dire need of some genuine gaiety, Moulin Rouge is an absolute must-see when visiting Paris.

www.moulinrouge.fr

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7. Centre Pompidou

4.4 (55736)

Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris, France

Ah, the Centre Pompidou, the whimsical architectural brainchild of the 70s! This avant-garde masterpiece resembles a mad lovechild between a spaceship and a kaleidoscope, leaving tourists scratching their heads in sheer delight. Once inside, prepare to have your art perception shattered like a rebellious polka-dotted teacup - with its eclectic collections, offbeat exhibitions, and more modern art than you can shake a beret at, it's no wonder the Pompidou attracts culture vultures like flies to fromage.

www.centrepompidou.fr

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8. Musée d'Orsay

4.7 (76068)

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

Nestled on the banks of the Seine, Musée d'Orsay in Paris, is the art aficionado's answer to a caffeine boost. With its whimsical charm and stunning collection of artwork, this former railway station turned museum whisks visitors away on a journey through artistic roller coasters. From Van Gogh's swirling dreams to Monet's serene water lilies, Musée d'Orsay guarantees to leave you both inspired and contemplating whether abstract art was invented by a mischievous squirrel with a paintbrush.

www.musee-orsay.fr

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9. Les Invalides

4.6 (33507)

75007 Paris, France

Welcome to Les Invalides in the magnificent city of Paris, where history meets architectural charm! Packed with regal charm, this jaw-dropping complex is like the Beyoncé of military museums, presenting a royal blend of Napoleonic glory and centuries-old weapons. Prepare to be astounded by the golden dome, shining brighter than the dreams of a magpie in a jewelry store, standing tall amidst a sea of cannons, armor, and more history than you can shake a stinky cheese at.

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10. Île de la Cité

4.7 (648)

Île de la Cité, Paris, France

Welcome to Île de la Cité, a tiny island in the heart of Paris that is as charming as it is compact. Here, you'll find Notre-Dame Cathedral, a masterpiece that will make your jaw drop, although be prepared for the gargoyles to have a laugh at your expense. Take a leisurely stroll along the Seine River, but don't be surprised if you encounter a French mime trying to convince you that walking on air is a highly underrated activity.

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11. Louvre Museum

4.7 (272098)

75001 Paris, France

Welcome to the Louvre Museum in the delightful city of Paris, where art lovers and lost tourists collide in a spectacle of confusion and admiration! Prepare to embark on a cultural adventure among timeless masterpieces and hordes of fellow visitors, all competing for the perfect selfie with the unrivaled Mona Lisa. Be prepared to navigate the labyrinthine corridors and dodge "art enthusiasts" armed with selfie sticks, for nothing screams excitement like discovering that the exit sign is an artwork itself.

www.louvre.fr

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12. Musée de l'Orangerie

4.6 (14897)

Jardin des Tuileries, 75001 Paris, France

Nestled in the heart of Paris, the Musée de l'Orangerie is not your average fruit-scented amusement park, but rather a charming art sanctuary. As you enter the museum, prepare to be captivated by its elegant architecture that, thankfully, requires no secret handshake to get in. Once inside, brace yourself for an enchanting journey through the masterpieces of renowned artists, which will undoubtedly have you whispering, "Monets, Monets everywhere!"

www.musee-orangerie.fr

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13. Palace of Versailles

4.6 (125215)

Place d'Armes, 78000 Versailles, France

Welcome to the Palace of Versailles, where history, opulence, and a whole lot of "je ne sais quoi" collide! Prepare to be whisked away to a world of glamorous excess and Marie Antoinette-worthy extravagance. Explore the awe-inspiring Hall of Mirrors, a place so shiny you'll catch your own reflection acting way more regal than you ever thought possible. And don't forget to take a stroll through the meticulously manicured gardens, because who wouldn't want to feel like a prince(ss) while dodging tourists and contemplating life on the perfectly pruned hedges?

www.chateauversailles.fr

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14. Montmartre

Montmartre, 75018 Paris, France

Nestled atop Paris and serving as a delightful sanctuary for bohemian spirits and artistic free-spirits, Montmartre offers visitors an eclectic blend of charm and quirkiness. Beyond the usual suspects of the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, this whimsical neighborhood will tickle your fancy with its cobbled streets that seem to have a love affair with quirky cafés and vintage shops. Climb up to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica and soak in the panoramic views while savoring the sublime blend of serenity and street performers trying to sell you a portrait that makes you look like a cross between Picasso and a penguin.

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15. Père Lachaise Cemetery

4.6 (3252)

16 Rue du Repos, 75020 Paris, France

Welcome to Père Lachaise Cemetery, the final resting place that combines history, art, and a not-so-subtle reminder of the universality of death. This enchanting cemetery, dotted with headstones of the famous and the not-so-famous, is the perfect spot for a leisurely stroll that will simultaneously make you ponder the meaning of life and question your own fashion choices. Prepare to get lost amongst the tombstones in a maze that even a seasoned funeral director would find challenging, but worry not, for that adds an extra touch of adventure to your cemetery excursion.

www.paris.fr

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16. Luxembourg Gardens

4.7 (96847)

75006 Paris, France

Welcome to Luxembourg Gardens, where French elegance meets relaxed enchantment! Discover this haven of tranquility in the heart of Paris, where strolling through the meticulously manicured lawns feels like walking on a perfectly-coiffed carpet. With its stunning flowerbeds, regal fountains, and charming tree-lined promenades, this park will have you feeling like you’ve stepped into a secret oasis—although, with all the locals sipping lattes and stylishly strutting about, it’s not quite a secret anymore.

www.senat.fr

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17. Sainte-Chapelle

4.7 (34484)

10 Bd du Palais, 75001 Paris, France

Welcome to Sainte-Chapelle, the medieval gem hidden within the bustling heart of Paris! Brace yourself for architectural awesomeness as you step into this radiant masterpiece commissioned by King Louis IX. With its stained glass windows that rival a kaleidoscope on steroids, this place will make you forget your favorite TV show and become a devout lover of all things Gothic. Just don't forget your sunglasses - you'll need them to shield your eyes from the dazzling glory of this heavenly treasure!

www.sainte-chapelle.fr

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18. Arc de Triomphe

4.7 (205976)

Pl. Charles de Gaulle, 75008 Paris, France

Behold the magnificent Arc de Triomphe, rising like a determined morning yawn in the heart of Paris! A colossal tribute to the French military, this architectural wonder stands tall, challenging every commuter to a traffic battle royale in its daunting roundabout. Take a chance on navigating the countless lanes of chaos encircling it, and marvel at the chance of being serenaded by the symphony of car honks that would put a squadron of geese to shame.

www.paris-arc-de-triomphe.fr

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19. Eiffel Tower

4.6 (341701)

Champ de Mars, 5 Av. Anatole France, 75007 Paris, France

Ah, the magnificent Eiffel Tower in Paris! Prepare to have your socks blown off (not literally, keep them on). This iconic grand dame of iron stands tall like a diva in the heart of the city, flaunting her iconic lattice work like the world's fanciest knitting project. Climb to the top and you'll be rewarded with breathtaking views, making you feel closer to the clouds and potentially realizing that you should have skipped that extra baguette before your ascent.

www.toureiffel.paris

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20. Champs-Élysées

Av. des Champs-Élysées, 75008 Paris, France

Welcome to the magnificent Champs-Élysées, the swanky boulevard that oozes elegance and charm like a French poodle in a beret. Here, you'll find a paradise for shopaholics, with high-end boutiques lining up like overly enthusiastic salesmen trying to sell you the latest fashion trends. Stroll down this fashionable catwalk, but beware of getting swept away by the river of tourists, selfie sticks held high, attempting to capture the perfect shot with the Arc de Triomphe photobombing in the background.

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How to get there

Plane

The best way to get to Paris by plane is to fly into Charles de Gaulle Airport, which is serviced by most major airlines. There are also direct flights to Orly Airport, which is closer to the city center.

Car

Driving to Paris from London is possible via the Channel Tunnel, but be aware of toll charges along the way. The journey takes around 6 hours depending on traffic.

Train

There are multiple train stations in Paris, but the best way to reach Paris by train would be to take the Eurostar from London St. Pancras International Station to Gare du Nord in Paris.

Boat

While it is technically possible to sail from London to Paris via the River Seine, it is not a practical means of transportation. Instead, consider taking a river cruise from another European city, such as Amsterdam or Budapest, that includes a stop in Paris.

Bus

Taking a bus from London to Paris is a popular option, with the best bus service being Flixbus. The journey takes around 7 hours and the bus will drop you off at Bercy Seine Bus Station in Paris.

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