Visiting Paris the 1st time is a unic and special stay. It has to be a succès. Its duration should be at least 2 days, even if you follow our recommendations below to approach your stay “efficiently” from your first day.
We suggest you to choose among 4 options and 6 solutions to apply from your arrival and avoid the rush of the end of your stay which will always be too short.

Coming to Paris for the first time: how to find your way around and how to start your stay?

Paris is vast, with many inhabitants. Visiting Paris the 1st time could be puzzling. Parisians in the streets seem to come from everywhere, moving in all directions, in a hurry, without asking too many questions about the people they meet. It is logical to feel lost, especially if the language spoken is not your own.

We always recommend that for a first visit to Paris, you need a global view that will allow you to situate yourself in this foreign capital, to observe it “from a distance” without being directly immersed in the city streets – the time to put yourself in the local atmosphere and to recover from the jet-lag. And it’s easier than it seems, because we have several ways to help you as soon as you start your stay :

Visiting Paris the 1st time: see Paris from above

You will then have a panoramic view of the whole city and you will recognize most of the monuments and museums at your feet, at a distance.
You will be able to roughly locate them geographically and evaluate the distances to travel in the city of Paris. It’s smaller than it looks!

Climb one of the 4 highest monuments/buildings in the Capital:

Take a cruise on the Seine with the Bateaux-Mouches when visiting Paris the 1st time.

On the 2 banks of the Seine you will pass in front of almost all the famous buildings, monuments and museums of Paris, under the famous bridges and the surrounding squares.
It is also a relaxing tour with commentary that will put you directly in a pleasant and calm atmosphere, far from the “rumors” of the main streets. You will know almost everything about Paris in 1h1/2 or 2 hours.

Take a city tour with a Bus Tour.

Here you are “in the city” in a double-decker bus with a panoramic view. However, you are still “at a distance” from the crowds that you can simply observe in the streets to “acclimatize” yourself. And you will still see most of the “things” that must be seen in Paris and that you will visit in the following days.

What to visit the rest of the stay, during the first visit to Paris ?

Visiting Paris the 1st time offers a multitude of opportunities. It only depends of your taste and what you like. Our site includes a “database” of over 200 “points of interest” to see or visit. It is divided into 22 categories, in priority:

But you can learn more by clicking on “All you can see“.

A good start for your 1st visit in Paris : the list of “Must-sees” or “Must-visit”

This list is of course not exhaustive, nor “mandatory”. These sites are not classified by interest, the priority to see them will be yours. The list should be considered as a reminder of known sites among which you can easily choose what attracts you the most.

  • Pont Neuf
  • Notre Dame
  • Square du Vert-Galant
  • Sainte Chapelle
  • Conciergerie
  • Quartier Saint-Germain-des-Prés
  • Panthéon
  • Quartier latin
  • Jardin des Plantes
  • Le Jardin du Luxembourg
  • Grande Mosquée de Paris
  • Quartier Mouffetard
  • Pont des Arts
  • Musée du Louvre
  • Tour Saint-Jacques
  • Eglise Saint Eustache
  • Rue Montorgueil
  • Le Centre Pompidou
  • Fontaine des Innocents
  • Fontaine Stravinsky
  • Le Marais
  • Place de la Bastille
  • Port de l’Arsenal
  • Place de la République
  • Canal Saint-Martin
  • Cimetière Père-Lachaise
  • Hôtel de Ville
  • Jardin des Tuileries
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Basilique du Sacré-Cœur
  • Place du Tertre
  • Place des Abbesses
  • Pigalle
  • Boulevard Haussmann
  • Palais Garnier
  • Place de la Madeleine
  • Place de la Concorde
  • Avenue des Champs-Élysées
  • Arc de Triomphe
  • Grand Palais
  • Petit Palais
  • Palais de la Découverte
  • Pont Alexandre III
  • Invalides
  • Musée du quai Branly
  • Champ de Mars
  • Jardins du Trocadéro
  • Tour Eiffel

What if you visit Paris the 1st time and on a special occasion?

If it is a special occasion that is the reason for your stay, make a specific detailed list : honeymoon, family visit with young children or teenager, spring, summer, etc…

Among the themes often discussed:

  • Paris in springtime (link to come)
  • Paris in Summer (link to come)
  • Paris in Autumn (link to come)
  • Paris in Winter (Christmas time, popular time, etc.) ( link to come)

or a more personal reason:

  • a romantic trip (link to come)
  • a family trip – which could lead to an Apartment rentals (link to come)
  • a honeymoon trip (link to come)
  • a group trip (link to come)
  • a solo trip (link to come)
  • a combined business/leisure trip (link to come)

We can also organize for you, your entire stay in Paris !

It can be difficult for you to make a choice among all that is to be seen. That’s why we can organize for you a visit plan (and even a stay schedule), depending on the length of time you will stay in Paris, and of course on your personal interests.

And why not extend your stay beyond 1 or 2 days?

One or two days in Paris is short, much too short. What there is to see can last for several months or even a year. But without going to that extreme, why not increase the length of your stay: 3, 4 or 5 days?

What to take home: gifts for you, gifts for your loved ones

En construction : nous allons éditer un post spécial des cadeaux que vous pourrez trouver à Paris, d’un prix abordable, avec l’adresse où se le procurer. Malheureusement il n’est pas encore terminé, mais nous pouvons vous prévenir de sa mise en ligne, si vous nous laissez un moyen de vous contacter via notre lettre de contact.

Under construction: we are going to edit a special post of the gifts you can find in Paris, at an affordable price, with the addresses where to get them. Unfortunately it’s not finished yet, but we can let you know when it’s online, if you leave us a way to contact you via our contact letter.

In the meantime, here are some gift ideas that you can use during your stay in Paris (Named by their french name).

  • Antiquités
  • Articles pour la maison de chez Merci ou Le Bon Marché
  • Bel objet chiné
  • Biscuit LU
  • Boîte de bonbons aux fruits multicolores
  • Bougie parfumée
  • Bougies parfumées
  • Carré en soie de Hermès
  • Carte de la RATP, un ticket de métro
  • Catalogue d’une exposition visitée lors de votre séjour
  • Champagne
  • Chocolat
  • Chocolat chaud (Poudre)
  • Confiture Bonne Maman
  • Couteau français Opinel ou Laguiole
  • Douceurs
  • Escargots (en boîte)
  • Fleur de sel de Guérande
  • Foie gras
  • Foulard
  • French Béret
  • Fromage
  • Herbes et Épices
  • Livre déniché dans l’une des innombrables librairies
  • Macarons
  • Madeleines
  • Marinière
  • Miel de Paris
  • Moutarde Sel
  • Nœud papillon made in Paris  
  • Parfum d’intérieur L’Air de colette
  • Parfum ou eau de parfum, eau de toilette
  • Portrait de vous réalisé par un artiste de la place du Tertre
  • Posters et Cartes postales anciens
  • Produits de Beauté
  • Produits de beauté de luxe
  • Provision de viennoiseries et autres pâtisseries
  • Sac à pain Poilane
  • Sac-à-Main Louis Vuitton  Livres de librairies locales
  • Saucisson
  • Savons
  • Thé
  • Thé noir glacé Earl Grey French Blue aux notes de bergamote & bleuet royal de chez Mariage Frères
  • Vêtements d’une petite boutique de créateur
  • Vin