I’m so incredibly in love with Paris. I mean, how can you not be? The cobblestone streets. The sound of the Parisian accent wherever you go. The croissants and espressos. The Eiffel Tower as your background. I could never get sick of the City of Lights. I’ve already visited it twice in the last 5 years, however, I still have this urge to keep going back.
There’s so much to do in Paris, no matter what kind of “taste” for activities you have. The first time I was in Paris, it was strictly for sightseeing. 1:00 pm: Visit Eiffel Tower. 4:00 pm: Visit Arc de Triomphe. It was running from tourist attraction to tourist attraction, baguette in hand, while on the road. The second time in Paris was incredibly different. It was all about lounging in a chair, sipping on some coffee and watching the hustle and bustle of Parisian life. Instead of the typical “Let’s go to the Eiffel Tower” type of day, we tried to find new places; places that we didn’t discover the last time we were in the city. It was extremely casual, and so much fun.
Nonetheless, there’s so much to do, so much to see and way more to eat. This post will be a list of 10 things I recommend doing when you’re in Paris and it will cater to all the different types of travellers! For those that don’t have their summer plans in check yet, Paris would definitely be an amazing place to go. I hope you enjoy this post!
- Cruise down the Seine River
Tired of figuring out the complicated Metro system to get from Point A to Point B? Boots not made for walking? Take a cruise down the famous river that goes through Paris! What is so great about these mini river cruises is that while you’re on it, you can see so much of Paris, whether it’s the Eiffel Tower, the Notre Dame, or the little stores on the side. While you’re on the boat, there will also be an automated voice pointing out all the sights for you! “On the left, you have…” “Now on your right, you can see the ….” It’s such a great opportunity to relax and take some great pictures. If I’m not mistaken, some even offer a meal for a fee.
2. Climb to the top of the Notre Dame
Oh, the famous Notre Dame- a building we imagined when we read the famous childhood story. You get the best photos from the top of this famous landmark. The line is a little long, but it’s so, so worth it. This is perfect for the photographer of the group (or even just for the Instagram lover!) It’s definitely seeing Paris from a different angle, and the exercise wouldn’t hurt too (especially after all those croissants!)
3. Visit Laduree Royale for some sweet treats!
Absolute heaven in a box, and in your mouth. A trip to Paris sans Laduree sweets is not a real trip to Paris. Go in, breathe in the sweet fumes, take a seat at a table, and enjoy some tea paired with a macaron. You’ll fit right in.
4. Go for a stroll in Le Marais
Le Marais is considered to be a historic district in Paris. It has many sights to see and many museums to visit. You can easily take a taxi there, or, if you’re up for a little extra walking, it’s a great way to get some exercise! Le Marais has the Picasso Museum, the Place des Vosges, one of Victor Hugo’s past houses, etc. What I loved most about it is how quaint it was. It was a refreshing breath of air from the busy lifestyle in Paris. Le Marais is definitely the road less travelled for tourists, which is exactly the reason we should all embark on that road!
5. Lounge at a cafe for a few hours with some good food.
A must do. Eclairs, a croissant, a glass of champagne, some pizza or pasta. I love the cafe right beside the Notre Dame, to its left, if you’re facing the church. Such a great view. All you’re missing is some good company! (And that shouldn’t be too hard to find in Paris)
6. Montparnasse Tower
I raved about this in my detailed Paris post back in September of 2015. This really is the absolute best place for pictures, if you’re looking for a “bird’s eye view of Paris” What I love about this is that you can go for as long as you want. You don’t have to worry about getting hungry either because there’s a small eatery up at the top of the tower. I recommend going 30-45 minutes before sunset and then staying until the city is completely dark. Bring a tripod to take pictures of the city landscape for when the lights start to shine. Occasionally, the Eiffel Tower starts flashing lights, and that is absolutely breathtaking.
7. Louvre Museum
A cliche tourist thing to do, but it is a must. Go in and take in all the art. You’ll walk out completely spell-bound. The Mona Lisa can do that to people.
8. Go visit Versailles!
Take a train out to visit Versailles! It’s a little far off if you’re just looking to stay within the city boundaries, but it is so incredibly worth it. There’s so much history, art, and culture all in one place. Go on a day that’s sunny so all the golden parts of the building will be even more glorious.
9. Spend an afternoon at the Jardin du Luxembourg
This is such a beautiful garden. If you’re up for it, bring a picnic basket and lounge on one of the grass, taking in the sight of the flowers, the people and the buildings.
10. Shop ’til you drop at Champs-Elysees!
1.9 km long and 70 metres wide. The best road in the world for shopaholics. Have your credit card on hand, because some stores are very high end (The Louis Vuitton store is so unbelievable) This is a refreshing break from sight-seeing and a little retail therapy is good for everybody!
I hope everyone got a few ideas about what they would want to do if they were to ever go to Paris! It truly is a magical city; so enchanting and so mesmerizing. You never forget your first visit; your first view of the Eiffel Tower; your first bite of a local delicacy. No matter what you do, you are guaranteed to love it. I truly hope everybody gets to enjoy the full experience of Paris.
Happy travels! Stay tuned for my next post on lifewithjulia!