Paris Travel Guide

Our EPIC travel guides, written by locals & experts who have visited and lived in Paris, France.

Why We Love Paris. A city of history, fashion, gastronomy, architecture, and of course, lights, Paris is unbeatable. It’s the kind of city where anything can happen, and surprises wait for you around every corner.

The French capital is full of landmarks that people have waited all their lives to see, but while it’s brimming with famous sights, it’s rarely what anyone expects. We love this city, and if you follow our foolproof Paris tourist tips, you will too!

🌆 Paris Destinations

Family Hotels In Paris
  • Eiffel Tower – The tallest structure in Paris, famous for its stunning nighttime illumination.
  • Louvre Museum – The famous home of Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and the ancient Greek sculpture Venus de Milo.
  • Tuileries Garden – A free public garden near the Louvre where tourists can find refuge from the chaos of the city.
  • Musée d’Orsay – Nestled in an old railway station, this museum hosts iconic works of French art.
  • Jardin du Luxembourg – An enchanted park where you can score top views of the Eiffel Tower and the Panthéon.
  • Musée Rodin – The former home and studio of artist and French sculptor Auguste Rodin.
  • Père Lachaise Cemetery – Paris’s largest cemetery, where you’ll find the graves of Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison, and Frédéric Chopin.
  • Sacré Coeur de Montmartre – A striking Roman Catholic Church built in the ancient Roman style in the 19th century.
  • Panthéon – An iconic monument in the Latin Quarter holding the remains of Marie Curie, Victor Hugo, and Voltaire.
  • Notre-Dame de Paris – Arguably one of Paris’s most famous sights, and one of the most legendary churches in the world, characterized by its signature French Gothic architecture.
  • Palace of Versailles – An opulent former royal residence just outside of Paris that has played several key events in world history.
  • Musée Yves Saint Laurent Paris – The former haute couture house of the Parisian designer, which chronicles his life and body of work.
  • Musée Picasso Paris – An art gallery in Marais district devoted to Pablo Picasso.

⭐️ Things To Do In Paris

  • Sightseeing – With so many famous landmarks in a single city, you could easily spend a few days visiting and admiring them all, from the Eiffel Tower to Notre-Dame. A Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour is often your best bet to explore every landmark at your own pace.

  • Seine Cruise – One of the best ways to see Paris is with a boat tour down the romantic Seine River.

  • French Bistros – French cuisine is famous the world over, and there’s no better place to sample delicacies like crepes, steak tartare, and duck confit than in traditional Parisian bistros.

  • Arc de Triomphe – Visiting the Arc de Triomphe is an adventure in itself (hint: don’t try to cross the roundabout. Take the underpass!). Once there, you can climb to the top or simply view the impressive monument from its base.

  • La Samaritaine – Shop up a storm at this iconic Parisian department store, known for its luxury collections.

Paris Streets
  • Les Bouquinistes – Browse second-hand books by the idyllic banks of the Seine River in open-air bookshops.

  • Disneyland Paris – If you’re visiting Paris with kids, a trip to the only Disney resort in Europe may be in order. You can get single-day or multiple-day tickets to explore two theme parks and the entertainment complex just 40 minutes from the city.

  • Philharmonie de Paris – Attend a symphonic concert in style and admire the captivating architecture of the building.

  • Palais Garnier – Watch Italian-style opera in a 19th-century building constructed at the request of Napoleon himself.

  • Art Classes – Paris is the world’s unofficial home to art, and there’s no better way to pay homage to this tradition than by attending a watercolor art class.

  • Moulin Rouge – Catch dinner and a show at the most renowned cabaret on the planet (and don’t forget to snap a photo in front of the iconic windmill).

🗺️ Where To Stay

  • The Heart – The 1st and 2nd Arrondissements are known as “the Heart” of Paris and are home to major attractions like the Louvre, Musée de l’Orangeri, and the Garden and Courtyard of the Palais-Royal. Staying here is as central as you can get!
  • Le Marais – A leafy area home to traditional romantic Parisian scenes, this is Paris’s signature “cool” district. In the 3rd and 4th Arrondissements, you’ll find a thriving nightlife scene and cultural diversity.
  • Latin Quarter – The 5th Arrondissement offers accommodation that is slightly more affordable than what you’ll find closer to the heart of the city, but still features stunning and diverse architecture, making it a popular location.
  • Saint-Germain-des-Prés – Full of independent bookstores and fashion boutiques, the 6th Arrondissement is home to iconic Parisian restaurants. It generally feels quieter than other neighborhoods but is still within walking distance to major sights.
  • Eiffel Tower – Staying here in the 7th Arrondissement is convenient but it tends to be expensive. Landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and Musée Rodin are within walking distance, and many hotels also offer great views.
  • Champs Elysées – The 8th Arrondissement is the best place to stay in Paris for shopping and indulging in top-quality French fare. You’ll also find several famous points of interest, including the Champs-Elysées and Arc de Triomphe.

Explore the areas & places to stay in Paris

🗓️ Best Time To Visit

  • Spring (March – May): Spring is widely thought of as the most ideal time to visit Paris, as it offers a combination of mild weather and fewer crowds than you’ll find in the peak season. You can also enjoy the blooming of local cherry blossoms, magnolia, and wisteria.
  • Summer (June – August): This is the best time to visit Paris if you want pleasant weather, however, summer is also the most busy time to visit. The days are the longest with the most sunshine, so it’s a great time to visit if you want to get the most out of your trip, but it may not be the best season if you can’t stand crowds.
  • Autumn (September – November): Autumn is another great time to visit Paris because there will be fewer crowds than in summer, but the weather still isn’t freezing cold. Particularly if you visit closer to September than November, you’ll find mild weather, smaller crowds, and cheaper prices.
  • Winter (December – February): December in Paris can be magical, as the city of lights tends to be even more mesmerizing at Christmastime. However, January and February bring average daytime highs of 48 degrees Fahrenheit (9 degrees Celsius). If you do want to take advantage of the smaller crowds, come prepared for the cold.

🚌 Getting Here & Around

  • Airports – There are two major airports in Paris, both around 10 kilometers from the heart of the city. They are Charles de Gaulle and Orly, and you can reach the city center from both via the cost-effective RER trains. If you are traveling from elsewhere in Europe on a budget airline, you may arrive at Beauvais airport, which is 60 kilometers away from the center. If you’ve never driven in Paris, I highly suggest you take advantage of the Airport taxis. I’ve been to Pairs many times and hired a car just once…and that was enough to encourage me to never do it again!
  • Train stations – There are seven train stations in Paris, the busiest being Gare du Nord, which connects Paris to London via the EuroStar. You can reach Paris by train using these convenient stations from anywhere in Europe.
  • Métro – The easiest way to get around Paris is with the Métro, which connects all areas of the city. There are 300 stations and 16 lines, with trains running every two minutes during peak hour.

ℹ️ Paris Travel Tips

  1. Watch out for pickpockets – Paris is a major city, and the seas of tourists attract pickpockets. Keep all your personal belongings secure at all times.
  2. Wear comfortable shoes – You’ll probably be doing a lot of walking in Paris. Add that to the cobblestone streets, and you’ll want to wear comfortable shoes!
  3. Pack light – The cobblestone streets make carrying heavy suitcases around a bit of a nightmare in Paris, so you should try to pack light. Only bring the essentials. If you are traveling by train, it can also be difficult to load heavy suitcases on board, as attendants aren’t always available to help.
  4. There are better views than the Eiffel Tower – The view of the Eiffel Tower is spectacular, but the view from the Eiffel Tower? The Tour Montparnasse and Arc de Triomphe offer even better vistas.
  5. Learn basic French – French locals do seem to appreciate it when travelers make the effort to learn at least a little of their language. You’ll get better hospitality and service if you memorize some basic French phrases.
  6. Don’t try to see it all – There is a lot to see in Paris, so unless you’re staying for a year, don’t fret about trying to see everything. Make a list of your top priorities and plan to come back to see the rest on future trips!
  7. Eat late – South-western Europeans tend to eat later than Americans. Expect to have dinner between 7:30 p.m. and 11 p.m. Lunch can also be taken as late at 2:30 p.m.
  8. Skip eateries close to main attractions – The eateries and bistros closest to the main attractions usually don’t have to provide quality food, service, or prices, because they’ll attract customers regardless. You’re better off opting for places a few streets away from the top landmarks at least.

🧳 What To Pack

  • Neutral clothes – Paris is a fashion capital, but if you wear extravagant clothes that look like they’ve come off a runway, you’ll stick out like a sore thumb. Instead, go for the Parisian street style, characterized by neutral tones and layered basics.
  • Scarf – A scarf is a must for traveling to Paris. It can add an element of interest to your outfits without taking up valuable real estate in your suitcase, and it will also allow you to cover up when visiting churches.
  • Umbrella and rain jacket – Sometimes the rain pours unpredictably in Paris. It’s better to be prepared!
  • Adaptor – Expect to find European sockets in Paris, which won’t work with American electronics unless you have an adaptor.
  • Backpack – A suitcase can be really difficult to roll on cobblestones, load onto trains, and carry upstairs in old Parisian hotels that don’t have elevators. If you can fit everything in a backpack, it can save you a lot of stress!

Paris Travel Guides

Meet Our Paris Travel Expert

Picture Of Lewis Ogden

Lewis Ogden

Lewis Ogden is a UK-based entrepreneur, travel enthusiast, dad, husband, and the founder and owner of WayToStay. He started his blog to share his own travel experiences and provide free EPIC travel guides. He caught the travel bug back in 2009 on a trip to Italy with his wife and has visited many different countries each year since. In 2018 he took an island-hopping trip to Greece (who doesn’t love Greek food!) and loved the experience which made him eager to explore the rest of Europe!

Read Lewis' Articles

ℹ️ Facts & Info

  • Population – 2.16 Million
  • Largest Areas – 
  • Time Zone – Central European Summer Time (UTC +1 hours)
  • Airports – Charles de Gaulle, Orly, Beauvais-Tillé, Paris–Le Bourget, Châlons Vatry
  • Nickname – La Ville Lumière – the ‘City of Light’
  • Demonym – Parisian(s)
  • Country – France

🗺️ Paris Map

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WayToStay was founded in 2021 by Lewis Ogden. After being frustrated by the lack of a dedicated resource for epic travel guides and finding unique hotels with a difference, he decided to create one!

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