I am enchanted by this magical city! I have been there for a total of 5 weeks over the past few years and cannot wait to go back! I was asked by a few people recently what my favorite things to do in Paris are and my must see’s for their upcoming travels to the city of love and lights. I figured I might as well share my Paris favorites with all of you as well! This is by no means everything there is to see… Even during my 5 weeks there I feel like I haven’t seen enough! This is just a list of my favorite things that I would recommend seeing if you’re planning a week long trip (or more hopefully!)
My favorite neighborhood in Paris!! It’s the 18th arrondissement of Paris. I would spend a few hours just wandering around the streets of this charming neighborhood! While here you can visit Sacré-Cœur (The church on the hill). This area is lovely and surrounded by stairs (if you’re looking for a workout). Eat dinner at Mastino (46 rue caulaincourt) – The margarita pizza and lasagna are to die for and it’s an awesome cozy little place! Be sure to stop in next door at the Boris la patisserie (48 rue caulaincourt)… The most delectable sweet treat boulangerie/patisserie! If you’re in the area for breakfast/brunch they have yummy quiche as well!
You can go inside the church (its stunning) and then you can also climb to the top of the tower for an incredible view of the city! It’s a lot of stairs, but totally worth it!! If you get there first thing in the morning you can avoid the long line. I love wandering around this area. The Latin Quarter is close by and has quaint little areas.. Shakespear and Co. Bookstore is right by it too.
This is the area across the Seine River from the Eiffel Tower.. It has a lovely view of the tower. I would then wander across the street to the Eiffel Tower… The garden/tree areas around the tower is lovely. If it’s not too chilly I would get a baguette and a bottle of wine (and anything else that sounds good to you) and have a little picnic in the grassy area below the Eiffel Tower. It’s a lovely place to relax during sunset.
Arch de Triomph
Is at the end of the Champs-Élysées (a very ritzy street that I don’t really care for) in the middle of a huge roundabout (that is pretty intense)! The Arch is lovely… Such a gorgeous structure! You can also climb to the top of it for a lovely view!
I spent half a day here (twice) and it wasn’t nearly enough time to see even a fraction of it. The art that is housed in this beautiful of structure is incredible.The area around the Louvre is also beautiful… Spend some time wandering around the gardens.
Stroll along the river… It’s lovely.
I would have as much coffee as you can stand at as many little cafes as you stumble upon!
Père Lachaise Cemetery
If very old cemeteries interest you… This one is gorgeous! The old crypts and headstones are stunning and the grounds itself are lovely. Huge trees and cobblestone roads guide you throughout.
Obviously! The view of it from The Alexandre III Bridge is breathtaking during dusk / once the sun goes down.
Above is a list of some pretty touristy places (which you have to see), but my very favorite thing about Paris are the charming streets – I would highly recommend just wandering around and ‘getting lost’ – it’s the best way to see Paris and to enjoy quaint cafes, delectable treats, and breathtaking architecture! All of these things are ALL over Paris… So simply wandering around proves to be amazing!
I LOVE all of the unique storefronts!
For lunches/snacks, I would find boulangeries/patisseries – They are bakeries that are literally everywhere and you can get what tastes like a gourmet sandwich and pastry for around 5 Euros! It’s a cheaper way to get by and is delicious.
I would avoid any restaurants/cafes by the big Touristy places – They are much more expensive and less authentic.
Always use the restroom when one is near by… They are hard to come by and typically you have to pay for them (which at times feels totally worth it when you’ve been searching for one)! There are usually restrooms near the tourist attractions… Or find a café, grab a coffee, and pee! This proved to be a big priority on my last trip to Paris while I was 25 weeks pregnant!!
If you order water anywhere they will typically give it to you sparkling… If you’re cool with that, great. I’m not so I either order ‘still’ or ‘natural’ when we are out. OR I will just get a few big bottles from a market (they are everywhere) and put them in the room. This is the cheapest way to do it!
The Metro system is super easy to use and takes you ALL over the city! This helps save time since much of these things are spaced out. However, if you’re up for the walk and have the time I would recommend walking all around the city to see everything. Perhaps walk to you destination and take the metro back. We did this often!
When entering/leaving the city I would take the RER train to/from the airport… It’s much cheaper than a taxi!
If you don’t speak any French I would learn some basic phrases (Hello, How are you, May I have…. Do you speak English, Thank you, Please…. and so on). This will help a ton! Even after my 3 years of French class I could not hold a conversation, but these basics proved to be a life saver! I never encountered any rude people when I stumbled on my words. Usually if you at least try to speak in French people are genuinely nice and willing to help! I remember on my first trip to Paris I asked an older gentleman if he spoke in English (in French)… He smiled at me and said “I can try”. I will always remember that!
If you are intrigued by Paris and want to see more of this magical city I am going to be starting a new photo series called Paris in Photographs. I will be posting these on Tuesdays for Travel Tuesdays! Please do follow along as I share this beautiful city with you! I am really excited for this!
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