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45 Essential things to see and do in Paris

Paris is considered the most romantic city in the world. The French capital has many of the most famous attractions in the world such as the Louvre Museum or the Eiffel Tower, even so it is not the only thing you can do in this city, the possibilities are endless. So I recommend the best things to see and do in Paris, so you don't miss anything.

The ideal would be to invest 5 to 7 days in Paris, but it is usually a weekend destination, bridges or a stop on the way of a tour of Europe. So in other entries I will specify a little more for each case. In this post I tell you what to see and do in Paris, which are the places you can't miss, recommendations for free tours and accommodation.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia


1. Get to know Paris by doing a free tour

Before starting, I will tell you that in the city of Paris there are 4 FREE TOURS that you may be interested in to complement your trip, remember that although they are free, you must leave a tip!

2. Climb the Eiffel Tower, an essential thing to see and do in Paris

It is the symbol of Paris and offers views of the entire city and its surroundings. This building was built in 1889 for the Universal Exposition that was held in the city.

It was intended as a temporary monument, although its beauty ended up convincing Parisians and is still there. It is a 300-meter structure made of iron, with the additional antenna that raises the monument to a total of 324 meters.

There is the possibility of booking guided tours, without queues, I recommend that you choose the option to go to the top floor, although there is a significant price difference, the views do not disappoint.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

3. Explore Montmartre without haste, the most charming neighborhood to see in Paris

Situated on a 130 meter high hill, Montmartre is one of the most charming and peculiar neighborhoods in Paris. It is a unique neighborhood in the world, very bohemian and it is a mandatory stop in Paris. They call it the "painters'" neighborhood. It is full of narrow, cobbled ups and downs. In addition, you have to take advantage and buy a souvenir in one of the many shops in its surroundings.

Once you have reached the highest point of the neighborhood, you will discover a viewpoint where you will be able to appreciate spectacular views of the city of Paris. Here you can also visit the Sacré Coeur basilica.

4. Visit the Sacré Coeur

The Sacré Coeur Basilica, also known as the Sacred Heart, is the emblem of the neighborhood. Its white façade can be seen from many points in the city. From below the views are incredible but if you want you can go up to its viewpoint located in the dome of the basilica.

It is located on top of the Montmartre hill. It is a minor basilica dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

This basilica is in the Neo-Byzantine style and its construction began in 1875 and ended in 1923.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

5. See a show at Moulin Rouge, a fun thing to do in Paris

This famous cabaret is located in Pigalle, perfect to visit on the way up to Montmartre. Close to here there are a lot of sex shops, some of them fun to see, since they not only sell what we can all imagine, but also very characteristic souvenirs, such as Eiffel tower-shaped dildos or small vibrators with other forms of city ​​monuments.

Do you want to attend a show in this emblematic Cabaret?

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

6. Cross the Bir Hakeim Bridge

It is a Parisian bridge over the Seine River located between the 15th and 16th arrondissement of the city. It was declared a historical monument on July 10, 1986.

The bridge is made up of two floors: one for pedestrians and road traffic and another, located above it where line 6 of the metro runs. The railway viaduct is essentially supported by metal columns.

7. Visit the Notre Dame Cathedral, an essential thing to see and do in Paris

It is a Catholic cathedral and it is an emblem of the Gothic and it is close to turning the millennium. Its construction began in 1163 and ended in 1272. If you want to have one of the best views of Paris, if you want you can go up to its towers.

From there you can take a photo in which one of the gargoyles appears with the city of Paris in the background.

An excellent option to see Notre Dame is from the banks of the Seine or from a boat ride. But don't be the only one!! It is worth going to see the Basilica.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

8. Don't miss the Pantheon in Paris

The Pantheon in Paris is a neoclassical monument. It is located next to the Sorbonne and houses the coffins of 65 of the most illustrious people in France.

9. Enjoy the atmosphere in the Latin Quarter

At the beginning of the post I detailed that there is a Free Tour to tour the Latin Quarter. It is very worth it, I highly recommend it. Plus, it's Free. Of course, leave a tip to the guide!

It is a good area to go out for dinner or have a drink in one of its bars. Do not hesitate to go to the Latin Quarter, it is full of atmosphere and good vibes.

10. Visit the Louvre Museum, an essential thing to do in Paris

You cannot come to Paris and not enter the Louvre museum. The Louvre Museum is France's national museum dedicated to art prior to Impressionism, including fine art, archeology, and decorative arts. It's a real wonder, and you don't have to be an art connoisseur to enjoy this place. The Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci is in the Louvre among many other works renowned throughout the world.

Its glass dome is beautiful and makes a nice contrast with the museum building. Even if you come to visit the museum during the day, come at night to take a photo of it illuminated. Is incredible.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

11. Cross the Bridge of the Arts

This bridge is the famous padlock bridge. And although to this day it is still full of many of them, it is prohibited. These measures were already taken with the padlocks damaging the bridge. It is a beautiful bridge and you have to come here, the bridge of love, at least to take a selfie.

12. Disconnect in the Jardin des Tuileries

It is a public park that is located near the Louvre and the Place de la Concorde. Ideal to rest a bit between so much walking and take a breath. It is a very large area of ​​gardens and expanses of grass, from where some of the most incredible buildings in Paris surround you.

13. Take a guided tour of the Opera Garnier

The Garnier Opera, also known as the Garnier Palace, is one of the most characteristic buildings of the IX arrondissement of Paris and it is not for less. Napoleon III ordered its construction from the architect Charles Garnier, hence its name.

This neo-baroque building is another of the city's illustrious buildings. As a curiosity, it is there that the famous work "The Phantom of the Opera" was inspired.

As soon as you arrive you find a spectacular building that is worth just coming to admire this place. However, do not come just to see it from the outside, because if it is incredible on the outside, the interior will not leave you indifferent.

You can visit it for free or with a guided tour.

14. Do you like to visit cemeteries? Then you can't miss the Pêre Lachaise

This cemetery is the largest in Paris. If you like cemeteries, apart from doing its job, this is a place full of trees, greenery and a lot of art.

And if you don't usually visit cemeteries and it may seem strange during your vacations, it's something original to do in Paris. Stand in front of one of the walls where many people were executed during the Paris Commune in 1871.

15. The Madeleine Church

This church is a perfect example of the neoclassical style with its octostyle portico. And it reminds me and transports me to Rome and the Roman Empire.

Its construction took a long time, eighty-five years, due to the political instability in France at the end of the 18th century and at the beginning of the 19th century. The political changes of the time caused the use of the building and the project to be modified several times.

Construction began in the 18th century, although its construction was interrupted during the French Revolution.

With the coming to power of Napoleon Bonaparte, the project changed from top to bottom. The emperor decided that it was not a Catholic church, but a Temple to the Glory of the Grande Armée. La Madeleine had that function until the construction of the Arc de Triomphe.

After the fall of Napoleon, it returned to its origins and the temple was designated as a church in honor of Santa María Magdalena. One of the most curious things to appreciate is the incredible pediment that represents The Last Judgment.

16. Stroll along the Champs-Élysées, a great thing to do in Paris at night

Walking down the most glamorous avenue in the city is free. However, if you want to buy something, it won't be cheap, since there are the windows of the best-known brands.

If you are going to travel at Christmas time you will have the opportunity to see everything lit up with little lights and it is beautiful.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

17. Get to the triumphal arch

This monument was built by Napoleon Bonaparte in honor of the victory at the battle of Austerlitz in 1805. The emperor kept his word.

If you want to see spectacular views of the city of Paris, this is a good opportunity. You can go up to the viewpoint (paying entrance).

18. Visit the Pompidou Center

If you like modern art, you cannot miss the Pompidou Museum. There you can find some of the most important works of contemporary art by artists such as Picasso, Dalí or Warhol. Just for its architecture and for the views you will have from the top it is worth a visit.

19. Stroll through the Plaza and Obelisco de la Concordia

The Place de la Concorde is one of the best known in Paris. In part, because of its importance during the French Revolution. Many heads were cut off there, including that of King Louis XIV.

Later, with the arrival of the enormous obelisk, its appearance changed. It is 3,000 years old and comes from a temple in Luxor. It was a gift from the viceroy of Egypt that acquired its current appearance between 1836 and 1840.

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20. Visit the Musée d'Orsay

This museum is an art gallery located in Paris, which is dedicated to the plastic arts of the 19th century from the period between 1848 and 1914.

21. Photograph the Luxor Obelisk

The Luxor obelisk is located in the center of the Plaza de la concordia. And it is an obelisk from the temple of Luxor in Egypt.

In gratitude, France offered a clock that today adorns the courtyard of the Muhammad Ali Mosque, in the city of Cairo, Egypt.

22. Stroll through the Luxembourg Gardens

These gardens, also called Luco gardens, are the garden of the French Senate, whose headquarters are located in the Luxembourg Palace.

23. Visit the Luxembourg Palace

This palace is located in the 6th arrondissement of Paris and is the seat of the French Senate.

It was built by the architect Salomón de Brosse for María de Médici between 1615 and 1627. It is in the Baroque style and is located within the Luxembourg Gardens.

24. Don't miss the Holy Chapel

This chapel is a Gothic temple located on the Ile de la Cité, in the center of the city of Paris. It is considered one of the masterpieces of the radiant period of Gothic architecture.

It is a beautiful church with some very tall colored stained glass windows inside. It is a mandatory stop if you visit the city.

You can buy tickets in advance and avoid queues.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

25. Enter the Paris Catacombs

The Paris Catacombs are a series of tunnels that have served as a cemetery for thousands of people from different eras. It is estimated that more than 6 million people may be buried in the more than 300 kilometers of tunnels.

Initially these tunnels served as limestone quarries to build a large part of the monuments and buildings that can be visited today. At this time the tunnels were called Les Carrières de Paris.

In 1786, to combat the epidemics and diseases that were spreading in the population, it was decided to move the corpses and bones from different cemeteries in the city to the catacombs.

Of the 300 kilometers of catacombs that have been excavated, only a small part can be visited.

It is something very peculiar to visit in Paris. Personally, for me, the experience was not entirely pleasant and I did not see interest in going through some tunnels full of skulls and human bones, but there are tastes for everything and if you want to see more information and book the guided tour, you can do it from the following link .

26. Visit the National Palace of the Invalides, an essential thing to see and do in Paris

The National Palace of the Invalides is an architectural complex where the mortal remains of Napoleon are currently located.

The imposing architectural complex formed by the National Palace of the Invalides (Hôtel National des Invalides) was built in the 17th century as a residence for retired French soldiers. To access the Palace you have to pay an entrance fee, but you do not need to hire a guide. Save it!

27. Stroll through the Champ de Mars

The Champ de Mars is a public garden between the Eiffel Tower and the Military School. It is one of the largest spaces in the city center. Without a doubt, you will pass by it when you visit the Eiffel Tower and its surroundings.

28. Cross the spectacular Alexander III Bridge

The Alexandre III Bridge is a Beaux Arts style bridge from the French Third Republic.

Construction began in 1896 and it took 4 years to finish. It was included within the perimeter of the Riberas del Seine in Paris, as well declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

29. Visit the Rodin Museum

The Rodin Museum is a museum that opened in 1919 in the former Hôtel Biron and displays the work of sculptor Auguste Rodin.

The building was built in 1727 by the architect Jean Aubert, the building was commissioned by a hairdresser who had made his fortune by issuing paper money. It is the typical French hôtel particulier, it is a small mansion with 3 hectares of garden and a structure with 10 rooms on the ground floor and 8 on the top. It is neoclassical in style. It combines facades from the classical and renaissance tradition and finishing touches of popular architectural inspiration, especially the chimneys or the attics.

30. The Thinker

The Thinker is one of Auguste Rodin's most famous sculptures. The sculptor created this sculpture between 1881 and 1882 to decorate the tympanum of the sculptural ensemble The Gate of Hell, commissioned in 1880 by the French Ministry of Public Instruction and Fine Arts.

31. Find the Church of Saint-Sulpice

It is a baroque-style Catholic church with a neoclassical façade. It was built between 1646 and 1870. It is a very large church with a large central nave 120m long. From the viewpoints of Paris, it is not difficult to find it since it is quite remarkable from the heights.

32. Visit La Conciergerie

It is a historic building in Paris that occupies the quay du Reloj, on the Ile de la Cité. The palace was the residence of the kings of France from the 10th to the 14th centuries. Later it also ended up becoming a state prison in 1392, after the abandonment of the palace by Carlos V and his successors. The prison occupied the ground floor of the building that borders the Clock dock and the two towers. The upper floors were reserved for Parliament. The Conciergerie designated, in principle, the concierge's home; then, by extension, the prison in which he watched over the prisoners. The concierge was in charge of the keys to the Royal Palace and the lighting with candles and tapers.

The Conciergerie prison was considered the antechamber before arriving at death, since few left this prison free.

In 1914, after losing its prison function, it was classified as a historical monument and is currently open to the public.

Skip-the-line entrance to La Conciergerie

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

33. Come to see the Grand Palace of Paris

It is a unique building in the city of Paris, located on the Champs Elysées. Construction began on the Grand Palais in 1897 to house the Universal Exposition of 1900. It is in the Beaux-Arts style characteristic of the School of Fine Arts in Paris.

34. Go to the Place de la Bastille

The Place de Bastille is a symbolic square of the French Revolution, located on the site of the old Bastille fortress. In the center of the square is the column of Julio.

35. Royal Palace

It is a group of monuments where the gardens, the palace, several galleries and a theater are located.

The Royal Palace of Paris is located north of the Louvre Museum and contrary to what we may think, this Royal Palace was not built as a residence for kings, but for Cardinal Richelieu.

The building was donated to the French crown after the cardinal's death, and the Dukes of Orleans made it their residence. Years later Luis Felipe José de Orleans decided to remodel the gardens and open them to the public.

36. Take in the views from the Montparnasse Tower

With a height of 210 meters, the Montparnasse Tower is one of the best viewpoints to contemplate the city from above. From the terrace you can have spectacular views of the most important monuments of the city.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

37. Visit the Basilica of Saint-Denis

The Basilica of Saint-Denis is known for being the burial place of the French monarchy, as well as being the first temple to be built in the Gothic style.

This basilica is located on the outskirts of Paris and if you don't have a lot of time, you can delete this visit from your list.

38. Fall in love with the Château de Vincennes

The Built at the end of the 12th century, the Château de Vincennes is the only French royal residence built during the Middle Ages that has preserved its original form.

The Château de Vincennes, with an imposing 50-meter tower, is one of the highest in Europe. The castle is surrounded by a 1,100 meter long wall crowned with nine towers, and in turn protected by a 27 meter wide moat.

The castle is located far from the center and unless you have many days, I do not recommend that you waste time getting here. Although the castle can be visited, it is empty inside and does not have the charm or magic that you would expect from a castle. Of course, they have it very well maintained and if you have spare time you can come here to spend the morning.

In the castle grounds there is also a chapel and its gardens.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

39. Stroll along the Île de la Cité

The Île de la Cité is one of the natural islands found in the Seine. "The Island of the City" is the heart of the capital.

It is one of the most beautiful and quiet areas of Paris, and there you can find Notre Dame Cathedral, the Sainte Chapelle or the Conciergerie.

In addition to the historic buildings, you will find pleasant streets and squares to stroll where you can find beautiful places like the flower market of Place Louis Lépine.

40. And don't miss the Île Saint-Louis either

The small Île Saint-Louis is one of the quietest and most charming neighborhoods in Paris. In the past, the Island of San Luis was dedicated to grazing cattle and functioned as a lumber warehouse until the 17th century, when an urban planning was carried out that is still preserved.

The island was populated by the wealthiest citizens of the city, who took advantage of the oasis of tranquility to set up their sumptuous residences and palaces.

41. Museums to see in Paris

If at the beginning of the post I told you that you needed at least a week to visit Paris, I was not deceiving you. There is so much to see that by now you will be tired of reading the long list. And although I have previously detailed the most important museums and obligatory stops, below I will detail those museums that remain in the background but still remain a good option to visit and if you have time, do not hesitate to add one to your list.

  • Quai Branly Museum

  • Guinet Museum

  • cluny museum

  • Nissin Museum of Camondo

  • army museum

  • orangery museum

  • Picasso museum

  • Petit Palais

  • Grevin Museum

  • cliff museum

  • Cohnacq Jay Museum

  • Carnavalet Museum

  • Dali space

  • cinema museum

  • marmottan museum

42. Visit the Palace of Versailles

Versailles is an impressive Palace that you must visit on your trip to Paris. You can not miss.

With impressive architecture and more than 800 hectares of gardens, the Palace of Versailles brings together history and culture. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO for more than thirty years, the Palace of Versailles is one of the best-known palaces in the world, not only for its imposing architecture and its endless and well-kept gardens, but also because it constitutes an important part of the history of France.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia

43. Take a hike to Mont Saint Michel

Mont Saint - Michel is considered one of the most beautiful places in France, and no wonder, because it is spectacular.

Since 1979 Mont Saint Michel has been a World Heritage Site.

It is a rocky islet on which stands a spectacular abbey and which is located in the sea, in the estuary of the Couesnon river. Its beauty contrasts with the surroundings and especially with the sea and its great tides that occur in this area.

 Mont Saint Michel

44. Disneyland Paris and Walt Disney Studios

There are several packages that include several days in the park, including accommodation within it. However, if your intention is to visit Paris and only take a day trip, you have several options.

You can rent a car to get to Disney and buy your ticket previously online for a day in one or both parks. Or you can also book a tour that includes entrance and transportation.

45. Visit the Loire Castles

Ideally, the route of the Loire castles is an independent trip that you do on your own. There are several interesting castles to visit, in addition to the fact that the entire area, the towns and the landscapes are beautiful. But if you only have one day and want to do the tour from Paris, you have the option of booking a guided tour.

que ver y hacer en París, Francia


I hope you enjoy your trip to Paris and that this article has been useful to you. You can continue reading many more related articles on the blog.

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A hug and see you soon!


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