Can’t wait to discover Paris in 1 week? Ready for an unforgettable adventure in the French capital? Follow our exciting guide! You’ll be able to enjoy the best activities, visit exceptional museums, admire iconic monuments and stroll through the most picturesque districts. Get ready for a magical experience in Paris!
If you have less time, don’t miss our Guide to visiting Paris in 3 days.
The best things to do in Paris in 1 week
Here’s a summary of the best things to do in Paris in one week :
- Visit the Eiffel Tower
- Discover the Louvre Museum
- Take a trip on a Bateau Mouche or a dinner cruise on the Seine
- Admire Impressionism, Fauvism and European paintings at the Musée d’Orsay
- stroll along the Champs-Élysées and climb the Arc de Triomphe
- Experience the bohemian atmosphere of the Montmartre district
- Party or go out in the Marais
- Get out of Paris to visit the Palace of Versailles
- Discover a more secret district such as La Villette or Menilmontant
- Be surprised by the unusual Paris with the catacombs and the Père Lachaise cemetery
CITY PASSES TO VISIT PARIS 🎫
City Passes to visit Paris are a practical and economical option for discovering the city’s main attractions in just a few days. In order to discover and compare them, I recommend that you first read my article on Paris Passes. The one I recommend is the Paris passlib’, which gives you access to the second floor of the Eiffel Tower, entry to the Louvre and a cruise on the Seine in Paris and many other activities. This pass costs €99.
What to see and do in Paris in 1 week ?
Day 1 in Paris : The Louvre, the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe
Start your stay in Paris with a visit to the Eiffel Tower, the steel beauty! Arrive at the Trocadero and enjoy a magnificent view of this iconic monument from the esplanade.
Reach the Tower via the Iéna bridge. If you want to go up there, be aware that the wait is very long so plan to book you ticket in advance..
Then head to the Louvre Museum, where you can admire many masterpieces of Romanticism and the Renaissance. In the departments dedicated to history, you can see objects from the Middle Ages, as well as Egyptian, Roman, Greek and Oriental antiquities… A minimum of two hours is required for this visit.
At lunchtime, you’ll find plenty of restaurants and sandwich shops in the neighbouring districts: Montorgueuil, Palais royal. The lively rue Montorgueil offers a wide variety of restaurants (Indian, Thai, brasseries, Paul’s bakery, etc.).
In the afternoon, take a stroll through the beautiful Jardin des Tuileries. It’s undoubtedly one of the most flower-filled in the capital. Continue on to the majestic Place de la Concorde.
If you’re into museums, you can visit the Musée de l’Orangerie or the Jeu de Paume, which has photo exhibitions. Once on the Place de la Concorde, you’ll see the Arc de Triomphe in the distance.
Before you get there, you’ll pass along “the most beautiful avenue in the world”, the Champs-Élysées. This could be the perfect opportunity for a shopping session on the Champs: you’re in the capital of fashion.
You could even make a little detour via rue Montaigne. Once you’ve reached the Arc de Triomphe, you absolutely must go up there. The view is magnificent, especially at sunset.
You can then head to the banks of the Seine for a cruise on a “bateau-mouche“. You can choose between a simple trip along the Seine – one-hour tours are available … with a superb view of the capital’s most beautiful monuments – or, for a bit of romance, a dinner cruise along the ‘main artery’ of the City of Light.
You can also combine business with pleasure on a Bateaux Parisiens lunch cruise. It’s a chance to take a break while enjoying a fine meal and a magnificent view.
🔗 Read Also: 11 Free things to do and see in Paris
Day 2 in Paris : Notre-Dame de Paris and Montmartre
Spend your 2nd morning on the Ile de la Cité, the heart of Paris. First, head to the square in front of Notre-Dame to visit the splendid cathedral. The cathedral is no longer open to the public, but you can still admire it from the outside. Follow this up with a visit to the Sainte-Chapelle: its stained glass windows are well worth the diversions.
The picturesque Square du Vert-Galant is not far away either. You can take advantage of your proximity to the Latin Quarter to wander its lively streets and visit the Musée Cluny, the Museum of the Middle Ages.
Finish your morning on the Ile Saint-Louis, where you can sample a Berthillon ice cream: one of the best in Paris.
On your 2nd afternoon, you’ll discover one of the capital’s best-known districts: Montmartre. You’ll pass through the Place du Tertre, of course, before reaching the top of the hill where the Sacré Coeur is located. The view of Paris from here is breathtaking. Take advantage of your afternoon to wander around the Abbesses district, wander through the narrow streets of the hilltop, or visit the Museums: Espace Dali, Halle Saint-Pierre, Musée de Montmartre.
The Moulin de Galette and the Lapin Agile, two former cabarets frequented by illustrious artists, and the Bateau Lavoir, Picasso’s studio, are among the legendary venues.
A GASTRONOMIC TOUR OF MONTMARTRE 🧀 🍷
Why not discover Montmartre with a gastronomic guided tour of Montmartre? You’ll be guided through the picturesque streets of the Montmartre district and sample a variety of local specialties, from artisanal cheeses and charcuterie to local French wines and chocolates. The guides will also share anecdotes and stories about the region’s culture and history! This tour costs €105 and should be booked in advance.
You can spend the evening in one of the district’s restaurants. Avoid Place du Tertre, which is too touristy, but opt for one of the neo-bistros in Lamarck-Caulaincourt, which are very popular with Parisians. You can also end the evening with a drink.
Finally, if you want an exceptional experience, you can attend the dinner show at the Moulin Rouge, the most famous cabaret in the world. As well as a breathtaking show, this institution offers a gastronomic meal of the highest quality.
Day 3 in Paris : Musée d’Orsay and Latin Quarter
This 3rd day will be very “rive-gauche”. Start the day with a visit to the Musée d’Orsay. This is one of the temples of Impressionism and a must for art lovers. Here you can admire masterpieces by Monet, Renoir and Van Gogh. The architecture of the building – a former Paris – Orléans train station – is worth the diversions in itself.
The museum is well worth a visit of at least two hours. Beware of the wait, which can be very long. You’ll probably need a queue-cutting ticket for the Musée d’Orsay to make the most of your stay. Once you’ve visited the museum, take a stroll through Saint-Germain dès Près. This district was the artistic soul of Paris in the mid-20th century. You can drop in at the Rodin Museum if you’re still in the mood for art. The garden is one of the most popular spots in romantic Paris.
If you’re more interested in shopping, you can choose between the various shopping streets, such as rue de Rennes, rue de Sèvre or boulevard Saint-Germain. Le Bon Marché and La Grande Epicerie are well worth a visit. If you’re more interested in home décor shops, the Conran Shop will fill you with wonder.
Fancy a break? The Jardin du Luxembourg is the ideal place for this. It’s a very flowery park with beautiful fountains. Ernest Hemingway loved to stroll here.
Spend your afternoon in the legendary Latin Quarter. There are many points of interest here. Start your visit to the district at Saint-Michel and its fountain. This is a meeting point for many Parisians. When the weather is fine, musicians liven up the area.
The nearby Sorbonne is one of the oldest universities in the world. The district owes its name to the Sorbonne, where students and teachers spoke Latin.
You can visit the Cluny thermal baths before going to the Panthéon. This is where the great men and women of French history are buried, at the top of the Sainte-Geneviève des Bois mountain.
You can then head back down to the Jardin des Plantes. The menagerie will delight your children if you’re with the family. The Institut du Monde Arabe (Arab World Institute) and its beautiful exhibitions will fill you with wonder. You can also take a stroll along the banks of the Seines.
In the late afternoon, head for Place Monge and rue Mouffetard. This is one of the liveliest places in the capital. Many students meet here for a drink.
You can also dine here, as the restaurants are also very good and reasonably priced.
Day 4 in Paris : Shopping at Galeries Lafayette and Le Marais District
Your 4th day will be a “sporty” one. You’ll start it in the temple of Parisian shopping: the Haussmann Opéra district. This is where you’ll find department stores like Galeries Lafayette and Printemps.
You’ll also find plenty of other shops, such as Citadium, dedicated to urban fashion, and the Apple Store. Saturdays are very busy, so you’ll have to be patient. During the festive season, the window displays – which are magnificent every year – also attract a lot of curious onlookers.
You won’t want to miss the Opéra Garnier, a masterpiece of Belle Époque architecture.
Travel back in time through the district’s covered passageways, such as the Passage des Panoramas, Galerie Vivienne and Passage Choiseul. Take the opportunity to visit the Place de la Madeleine and the Place Vendôme: the Mecca of luxury!
In the afternoon, move on to the trendy Marais district.
You can start by visiting a museum: the Centre Pompidou for Modern Art, the Musée Carnavalet for the History of Paris or the Musée Picasso. Then take a stroll through the old, narrow streets of the district. Some of them date back to the 13th century, and the town houses are also very old. Don’t miss the beautiful Place des Vosges and the Marché des Enfants Rouges, the oldest covered market in the capital. You can also do your shopping in the many trendy boutiques and designer workshops in the Marais.
Afterwards, stay in the district for dinner, a drink or a night out.
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Day 5 in Paris : The Palace of Versailles and canal Saint Martin
How about getting out of Paris for this day of sightseeing? It’s time for a trip to the Château de Versailles.
Allow half a day for the excursion. Of course, you’ll be able to admire the Château and the Hall of Mirrors, but that’s not all. A good part of the visit will also be devoted to the gardens, the royal stables, the Grand Trianon…
You can have lunch in the centre of Versailles, which is pretty and has some good restaurants. Return to Paris for the afternoon. An alternative might be to go to the Château de Fontainebleau. It’s further away but set in the middle of a magnificent estate. If you are spending one week in Paris, an excursion to the favourite residence of Napoleon and François 1st is well worth the diversions.
In the afternoon, head for the Place de République and then the quays of the Canal Saint-Martin.
You can walk up the Canal to the lively Bassin de la Villette.
You can do this on foot, by bike or by boat, thanks to Canauxrama, which offers one of the most beautiful boat rides in Paris, with an impressive passage through a tunnel several hundred metres long.
Once at La Villette, you can visit the Cité des Sciences, which will delight young and old alike. In summer, you can also spend the evening on the banks of the Bassin de la Villette and even attend open-air cinema sessions.
About 1 kilometre away is the intriguing Parc des Buttes Chaumont, where the afternoons are usually filled with families and sports enthusiasts, while in the evening a few bars light up in the park for the party-goers.
Day 6 in Paris: The catacombs and Père-Lachaise Cemetery
You can’t spend a week in Paris without visiting the catacombs and Père-Lachaise cemetery, the most unusual places in Paris.
- The catacombs are 300 km long labyrinths, 2 km of which form a cemetery.
- The cemetery is a place of worship that invites meditation and contemplation, and is the resting place of celebrities such as Jean de La Fontaine, Honoré de Balzac, Edith Piaf…
Start by choosing which site to visit first, depending on the weather, and allow 2 hours for each. Near Père Lachaise you’ll find a number of bistros where you can have lunch.
In the late afternoon, head for the Odéon district, where you’ll find plenty of bars and restaurants to enjoy your last evening in Paris.
Day 7 in Paris : Time to go home
This is your last day in Paris, so make the most of it to do your last shopping or stroll around your favourite district before heading home. If you have time for lunch, now that you’re almost a Parisian, you can trust your instincts to find the best brasserie for a good lunch before your departure.
You can also combine shopping with a good meal in one of the quality restaurants at Galerie Lafayettes or Printemps, which also offer great views over Paris.
Where to stay for 1 week in Paris?
If you’re still not sure where to sleep in Paris during your trip, here’s a small selection of very good establishments for different budgets.
- Hôtel Montparnasse Saint Germain is, as its name suggests, a stone’s throw from the Montparnasse Tower. The rooms are well decorated, comfortable and quiet. The location is therefore particularly ideal, and the breakfast is very good! Rates start at €163 per night.
- The Hôtel de Sévigné is also ideally located, close to the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs-Elysées. Rooms are spacious, comfortable and renovated. The attentive staff will make sure you have a good time. Rates start at €240 per night.
- Drawing House is a 4-star hotel located 200 meters from Montparnasse. The hotel is superb and has a swimming pool with jacuzzi and sauna. There’s also a gym, and the breakfast is very good and varied. Rates start at €290 per night!
Looking for alternative accommodation in Paris? Read these articles :
- Where to Stay in Paris : Discover the Best Neighborhoods
- Top 10 Aparthotels in Paris for a Unique Stay
- Best Luxury Hotels in Paris – Unforgettable Elegance & Comfort
Getting around Paris during your week’s stay
To get around Paris during your week’s stay, I would of course advise against taking the car, which, in my opinion, will waste more time and money than anything else!
- The Paris metro network is very extensive and allows you to get around the city quickly. You can buy single tickets, booklets of 10 tickets, or unlimited passes for a day, a week or more.
- Paris also has an extensive bus network, which can be useful for getting around in neighborhoods less well served by the metro. The same ticket types apply to buses as to the metro.
- Vélib’: the city’s self-service bicycle rental service is a practical, environmentally-friendly option for getting around over short distances. Simply subscribe online or on site, then rent a bike at one of the city’s many stations.
- Cabs: Taxis are available throughout the city, but can be expensive. It’s advisable to book in advance or use a cab booking app to avoid scams. VTC like Uber are also available.
- Finally, many of the city’s sights are within walking distance. It’s also a great way to discover lesser-known neighborhoods and explore the city at your own pace.
🔗 Read Also: Paris transport: how to get around Paris?
How To get to Paris for your 1 week trip?
Coming to Paris from abroad can be done in several ways, depending on your starting point and travel preferences. Here are the main options:
Airports in Paris: Paris is served by two main international airports: Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and Orly (ORY) but also by the Paris-Beauvais airport. Charles de Gaulle is the larger and busier, handling most international flights. Orly is a bit closer to the city center and handles a mix of domestic and international flights.
Airport Transfers: From these airports, you can reach the city center of Paris by taxi, bus (such as Le Bus Direct or Roissybus for CDG, Orlybus for Orly), or train (RER B for CDG, RER C for Orly).
If you are in Europe, the train is an excellent option. The European rail network is well developed and offers direct connections to Paris from many major cities.
The main station for international trains in Paris is Gare du Nord, which welcomes the Eurostar from London, Thalys from Brussels and Amsterdam, and TGV from several cities in France and Europe.
Long-distance bus services like FlixBus or Eurolines offer trips from many European cities to Paris. This is often the cheapest option, but also the longest.
Driving to Paris is also possible, especially if you are coming from neighboring countries. However, keep in mind that traffic can be dense and parking in Paris is often difficult and expensive.
If you are traveling from the United Kingdom, another option is to take a ferry to Calais or another French port, then drive or take a train to Paris.
Plan Ahead: Especially during the tourist high season, it is advisable to book your plane, train, or bus tickets well in advance it doesn’t matter whether you come to Paris for 3 days or a week.
🔗 Read Also: What’s the budget for a stay in Paris?