Paris is the City of Lights and the capital of France. Firmly situated in European history for literature, art, history, and music, Paris has so much to see and do. Here are the best places to visit in Paris for a world-class experience.
Some of the best views in the city may be found in a Parisian office building and it’s one of the best places to visit in Paris. Montparnasse Tower is a 212-meter skyscraper that can be seen throughout Paris. The building features 2 viewing levels and both offer amazing views. The 56th floor features a floor-to-ceiling window for rainy day viewing. If the weather is nice, venture up to the outdoor terrace. Sheltered and offering a modern design, the terrace is ideal for shooting the Eiffel Tower and the rest of the city, day or night.
It may be cliche, but you have to visit the Eiffel Tower at least once while in Paris. Nothing compares to the feeling of standing on the 1st floor. Once up there, you’ll feel like you’re floating as you look down at Paris through the glass floor. This floor also has interactive kiosks and an immersive projection show to bring the Eiffel Tower alive in rich multimedia. There are also restaurants and shops to enjoy. The 2nd floor gives a fabulous panoramic of the French monuments plus more shops and restaurants, including a macaroon bar. Last but certainly not least is the top 276 meters up. At the top are a restaurant, maps, a model of the 1889 summit, and a famous champagne bar.
Palace of Versailles
Opulent and gilded, this 18th-century Palace of Versailles was the home of Louis XIV until the French Revolution began. Touring this masterpiece of Baroque architecture is like walking back in time. The Mirrors Gallery, a dizzying room of mirrors and gold is a must on your tour, as are the apartments of the King. Marie Antoinette’s gardens are a lovely place to walk and there are often family programs offered on the grounds. Stroll in the Versailles Garden to view the elaborate displays of landscaping from the fountains to the canals. You can even enjoy a picnic on the lawn. The Galerie of de Carrosses is also a great visit — it’s free and features a collection of Versailles coaches.
Jardin du Luxembourg
Paris is lush and green throughout with an amazing collection of gardens. One visitors shouldn’t overlook is the Jardin Du Luxembourg. Designed in 1612 by Marie de’ Medici, the gardens cover 25 hectares of land and are divided into a French section and an English section. A forest and pond split the two sections. Children often sail model boats in the water and there’s a puppy theatre, merry-go-round, and playground to entertain them. Jardin du Luxembourg features the Musée du Luxembourg, an art museum that offers a series of temporary exhibits.
A beach in Paris? Yes, you don’t have to to go to the French Riviera to get a beach experience. Every summer in July the Paris Plages arrive along the River Seine at the Parc Rives de Seine and the La Villette Canal Basin. Each pop-up beach has deckchairs, umbrellas, and other beach accessories and even offers activities for adults and children with water sports, games and more. Sand and swimming pools are installed for the real beach experience.
Creepy, eerie, and one of the best places to visit in Paris for history lovers, Les Catacombes (The Catacombs) hold the remains of millions of people. As Paris grew in the 17th century, the city soon fell itself overwhelmed by too many bodies and overflowing cemeteries. Officials decided to use the centuries-old tunnels that ran underneath the city as the final resting place for Parisians as a solution. Now visitors can visit the tombs and see the bones grouped by the cemetery where they originated. It’s an eerie yet interesting place to visit, but bring a jacket as it’s always chilly underground.
Arc de Triomphe Paris
The Arc de Triomphe Paris was built in the 1800s to illustrate the power and grandeur of France. It’s one of the most impressive French monuments and one of the best places to visit in Paris for the view. The monument is located at the end of Champs Elysees and isn’t just viewable from the ground. You can also climb it, but be prepared to go up 40 stairs. You’ll have to take the underpass to get to the monument as it stands in the middle of a traffic circle. At night the Arc features the flame of the unknown soldier and this makes for an amazing view as Paris is alive with light.
Musée des Arts Forains
The obscure but fabulous Musée des Arts Forains is dedicated to the fairground arts. Inside is a collection of antiquities and curiosities from fairs and carnivals. The museum is accessible by reservation with slots open one month prior to the visit. Visits are mainly on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. This enchanting museum is unlike anywhere else in Paris as it features 14 amusement rides, 16 fair stalls, and over 1,000 independent works of fairground history. You can ride on a gondola merry-go-round, watch an Italian show, play at 19th-century race stands, and more. You’ll also see a thorough collection of attractions relating to the 1900 Paris Exposition.