Paris Travel Guide
You’re gonna love Paris. Paris is the capital of fashion, art and great moments. Seeing the city illuminated, at night, from the Eiffel Tower or visiting the Moulin Rouge is unforgettable. Known worldwide as the City of Light, it stands out for its architecture, its bridges, its cathedrals and its parks.
Paris is one of the most vibrant cities in the world. An ideal destination for newlyweds, who enjoy walking romantically along the Avenue des Champs-Elysées and Place de la Concorde.
Paris offers numerous shops, markets, restaurants and cafes. In addition, Parisians are friendly and proud of their city.
- Top 5 reasons to visit Paris
- What to do in Paris
- When to visit Paris
- How to get to Paris
- Where to stay in Paris
- How to get around Paris
- Cost of living in Paris
- Where to eat in Paris
Top 5 reasons to visit Paris
French gastronomy is extraordinary. Try the haute cuisine, the handmade baguettes, the croque-madame and the duck confit. Try its gourmet restaurants, such as Le Jules Verne or Le Chateaubriand.
The iconic historical churches of Paris convey incomparable sensations. Notre Dame and the Sacré-Coeur attract tourists from all over the world.
Major Parisian landmarks
Paris includes many impressive historical sites, from the Eiffel Tower to the Arc de Triomphe, Montmartre, the gardens of Versailles and Disneyland Paris.
Paris is famous for its museums. You will find everything from the majestic Louvre (around 11 EUR) to the small Musée Rodin (9 EUR), the Musée Carnavalet (between 4 and 8 EUR), the Centre Pompidou and the Musée de l’Orangerie (around 8 EUR).
Meetings with celebrities
When enjoying a croissant at the Café de Flore, we suggest that you stay alert to the presence of celebrities, many of whom live in or frequently visit the City of Love.
What to do in Paris
Letting yourself be seduced by the Eiffel Tower
The Eiffel Tower, France’s greatest icon, is an amazing feat of human engineering. After its construction in 1889, it remains one of the most visited monuments in the world. Climb up and enjoy the fascinating views or take a walk in its landscaped surroundings.
Tour the Palace of Versailles
The Palace of Versailles and its spectacular gardens are spectacular. The design of these grounds is the epitome of the pre-Revolutionary French monarchy. Visitors are transported into the nation’s royal past as they walk through its gardens.
Admire the Mona Lisa at the Louvre
The Louvre is the largest and most complete museum in the world. In addition to Leonardo da Vinci’s incomparable Mona Lisa, it offers tens of thousands of works of art in galleries that once housed French kings. The courtyard of this former palace is a regular meeting point for visitors, especially the iconic and enormous glass pyramid.
Discover the Island of the City
Ile de la Cité is the central point of Paris. In addition to offering relaxation by the water of the Seine, it has two of the most famous attractions in Paris: Notre Dame cathedral and Sainte-Chapelle church. The Pont-Neuf, the oldest bridge crossing the Seine, provides magnificent views.
Getting lost in the streets of Montmartre
Montmartre, the bohemian neighborhood of artists, has become a seductive terrain for tourists. It is located at the highest point of Paris, where the Basilica of the Sacred Heart stands. Nearby is the Place du Tertre, where masters such as Picasso and Van Gogh spent their days and which now hosts a delicious art market.
When to visit Paris
During the summer months, from May to September, accommodation in Paris is more expensive. The city is alive in summer thanks to its open-air music festivals, such as the Fête de la Musique and the Bastille Day celebrations on 14 July. Winter can be dark and cold, but it is still wonderful to visit Paris, especially during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. The average annual temperature is 11.3°C.
How to get to Paris
The vast majority of tourists travel to Paris by plane and arrive at Charles De Gaulle International Airport. Located in the south, it is about 13 kilometres from the centre. From there you can get to Paris by train, bus, rental car or taxi, which costs more than 50 EUR. The train is the cheapest way to get to the centre: available every 8 minutes, the price of each ticket is 10 EUR.
Renfe manages two rail routes to Paris from Spain. One leaves from Madrid and stops in Valladolid, Burgos and Vitoria. The other starts in Barcelona and stops in Girona and Figueras. Both the length of the journey from Madrid (about 12 hours) and the price (between 90 and 140 EUR) make it more advisable to travel by plane.
Paris is 1270 kilometres from Madrid and 1031 from Barcelona. This means of transport is only suitable if you are afraid of flying or want to make a route through France. Parking in Paris costs about 25 EUR a day.
To travel by bus from Spain, Alsa and Eurolines make frequent routes to Paris. The duration of the trip from Madrid is between 16 and 18 hours and, from Barcelona, about 14 or 15 hours. The price from the Spanish capital to Bercy station, with Alsa, is usually over 80 EUR.
Airports near Paris
(CDG) Paris Charles de Gaulle
(BVA) Paris Beauvais-Tillé
Where to stay in Paris
Paris has a wide range of accommodation on offer all year round. It is usually a good idea to book in advance, especially in high season.
The best options include Le Bristol Paris, the Mandarin Oriental, the Hôtel Crayon and the Hotel de Londres Eiffel. The usual price range in upscale hotels is 161 EUR per night for the Maison Albar Hotel, and 417 EUR for the Sofitel Paris le Faubourg.
Interesting neighborhoods in Paris
District 1, the geographic center of Paris, is the most popular place to stay. It is home to the Louvre Museum, the Tuileries Gardens, the Place Vendôme and many other attractions.
Montmartre, also called the 18th district, is one of the most charming neighbourhoods and the one with the highest number of hostels and guest houses, so it is a good alternative to sleep cheaply. However, it is not well communicated with tourist places and, at night, it is not too safe.
The 2nd arrondissement is the smallest in the city and possibly the one that offers the best value for money for accommodation. It is also a bustling business centre. Printemps and Galeries Lafayette are in this district, ideal for shopping.
How to get around Paris
It is possible to visit most of the attractions in Paris on foot. There is also public transport: metro and bus. Buy a day ticket for about 5 EUR and find out about the possibilities of weekly or monthly passes and buy the Passe Navigo.
Taxis are very expensive in Paris, but they are cheaper at night, when there is less traffic. You can find them near train stations, big hotels, attractions and major intersections. There is a common minimum fare of 6.50 EUR for short runs.
The traffic density in the centre of Paris is considerable and parking in the street is practically impossible. Driving can be erratic and traumatic. In any case, you can rent a car at Sixt or Europcar from 70 EUR per day.
Cost of living in Paris
Paris is famous for its fantastic variety of shopping options. On a par with New York, London and Milan, it is a shopper’s paradise offering tempting window displays of the latest fashion designs, jewelry, cosmetics, electronics, arts and crafts. Explore the boutiques on the St-Martin Canal and find interesting designer clothes in Le Marais.
Groceries and other necessities
Paris has many local shops and supermarkets. You can buy quality groceries at Franprix, a supermarket chain that is found in almost every neighborhood. Also Carrefour, Dia and Picard offer exclusive food and Parisian specialties. A beer will cost you between 1.60 and 5 EUR, depending on where you buy it.
Where to eat in Paris
Eating in Paris is a pleasure. There are culinary delights for all tastes, good food and French wine. An average meal costs about 30 EUR per person. The 5th arrondissement, around the Place Saint-Michel and the Louvre, offers excellent alternatives such as Richelieu Angelina and Les Cafes de la Pyramide.
In addition, Restaurant Abri, Fish La Boissonnerie and La Bourse et La Vie are excellent choices.