The City of Light, the City of Love, the most romantic city in the world. These are just a few ways you might hear people describe Paris France. And they wouldn’t be lying. Paris is a beautiful city and a visit here will not disappoint you. From the spectacularly beautiful Eiffel Tower to the historical Notre Dame. Paris definitely lives up to the hype. Here are 5 places in Paris you must see.
Places in Paris you must see: The Eiffel Tower
A Paris List would not be complete without mentioning the Eiffel Tower somewhere on it. It’s name is synonymous with Paris and it definitely falls as the first place on our 5 places in Paris you must see. The Eiffel Tower is in the 7th arrondissement of Paris. Architect Gustave Eiffel designed it for the 1889 World’s Fair.
Construction on the Eiffel Tower took place from 1887-1889. It only took 2 years, 2 months, and 5 days. Ironically, the construction of the Eiffel Tower was very controversial. At the time, more than 40 artists protested the building of it deeming it would take away from the beauty of Paris. Obviously, they were wrong. It’s an iconic symbol of Paris and can be seen throughout the whole city. Every year more than 6 million people climb to the top.
What you need to know about the Eiffel Tower
- The Eiffel Tower is 300 meters tall, or 984 feet.
- There are 3 floors to the Eiffel Tower with the 2nd and 3rd floor having 2 levels each.
- The first two floors of the Eiffel Tower can be reached by stairs or elevator. The 3rd floor can only be reached by elevator.
- Despite what you may have heard, photos of the Eiffel Tower can be taken at night, but only for private use. The nightly illumination of the Eiffel Tower is protected by copyright.
- Hours of operation: Times vary throughout the year but the first admission to the site is generally at either 9 or 9:15am and the last is either 10:45 or 11:45pm. Admission to the top is 9:30am.
- Price: Adult tickets to the 2nd floor via lift is €18,10 and to the top is €28,30. If you want to take the stairs it will cost €11,30 to the 2nd level and €21,50 to go to the top via stairs and lift. For €47,30 you can add a glass of champagne.
Places in Paris you must see: Arc de Triomphe
Another famous monument, the Arc de Triomphe, stands at the end of the famous street of Champs-Elysees in the 8th arrondissement. The monument honors those who fought and died in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Jean Chalgrin designed the Arc de Triomphe drawing inspiration from the Arch of Titus in Rome, Italy. Completion of the Arc de Triomphe was in 1836. You’ll enjoy panoramic views of Paris from the top including a view of the Eiffel Tower.
What you need to know about the Arc de Triomphe
- The Arc de Triomphe is 50 meters tall, or 164 feet.
- Hours of operation: The Arc de Triomphe is open from 10am – 10:30/11pm depending on the time of year.
- Price: Adult tickets are €13. Admission is free on the first Sunday of the month from November to March.
Places in Paris you must see: Notre Dame Cathedral
The Notre Dame Cathedral is as iconic as the Eiffel Tower. It is one of the first Gothic cathedrals with construction beginning in the 12th century and taking about 300 years to complete. It sits along the Seine River in the fourth arrondissement and inside are numerous sculptures, artwork, and furniture. On April 15th 2019 fire destroyed a large part of the roof and the spire of Notre Dame. The inside is currently closed for restoration but set to reopen in 2024. The outside is still spectacular and well worth a visit.
What you need to know about the Notre Dame Cathedral
- Notre Dame means “our lady” and is dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
- One of France’s most well known authors, Victor Hugo, wrote a novel called The Hunchback of Notre-Dame which led to increased interest in the cathedral.
- Joan of Arc, who famously assisted the French in conflicts with England after experiencing visions from God, was beatified in the Notre Dame.
- Hours of Operation: Currently closed until 2024
Places in Paris you must see: The Basilica of Sacre Coeur
The Sacre Coeur is located in the Montmartre area of Paris in the eighteenth arrondissement. It is realitively new with construction begining in 1875 and completion in 1914. In 1870 France was defeated in the Franco-Prussian War and the loss was partially blamed on the moral decline of the country. The solution was to build the church and dedicate it to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Located at the highest hill in Paris, the Sacre Coeur Basilica can be seen throughout the city.
What you need to know about the Sacre Coeur
- The architectural style of the Sacre Coeur is Romano-Byzantine but later additions were Neo-classical.
- The church, known for it’s extremely white color, was built with a type of limestone quarried in the north-central region of France. When the limestone comes in contact with rainwater the stone becomes more white.
- There are seven chapels as well as a crypt in the church.
- There has been continuous uninterrupted prayer in the church since 1885.
- There are 300 stairs that lead to the top of the dome.
- Hours of Operation: 6:30am to 10:30pm. The dome is open from 10:30am to 5:00pm.
- Price: It’s free to go inside the church however there is an admission fee to access the dome.
Places in Paris you must see: The Louvre
Number five on our list of 5 places in Paris you must see is the Louvre. It’s the world’s most visited museum and is home to one of the world’s most famous pieces of art, the Mona Lisa. The Louvre’s buildings and grounds are so beautiful that they could even be considered works of art. Located in the 1st arrondissement of Paris, the Louvre’s central location makes it easy to reach. Originally a French Palace, the Louvre is 782,910 sq ft and contains more than 35,000 items. Everything from prehistoric to Egyptian to 21st century art, to visit every room in the Louvre would take three days.
What you need to know about the Louvre
- There’s an app for the museum to help visitors navigate this gigantic place called Louvre Museum Buddy.
- Tickets can be purchased online at the official website but a time slot must be reserved.
- Hours of Operation: Open every day but Tuesday from 9:00am to 6:00pm. On Fridays, the museum is open until 9:45pm.
- Price: Adult tickets are €17. There are other categories of entry that qualify for discounted or free entry.
- The main entrance to the museum is at the Pyramid.
A visit to Paris without seeing this list of 5 places in Paris you must see would almost be sacrilegious. These 5 historical places are the epitome of Paris France and will easily fit into even the shortest of visits. While this list is small, these Paris sites are an important part of it’s landscape. It’s very possible to see all five of these sites in just one day so there’s no excuse to not have these on your itinerary.