Paris travel guide something you’re looking for as inspiration for your next trip? It’s Paris. What is there not to do in a city that beautiful. There’s actually so much to see, eat and drink that we’ve put together this super easy-to-follow guide for visiting Paris. Did we mention it’s also a great travel destination for amazing Instagram content Want an amazingly fresh and creative meal or want to know where the best place to photograph the Eiffel Tower is? We’ve got you covered.
FOOD & DRINKS
Hands down, the best restaurant in all of Paris, and quite possibly, the best restaurant we’ve ever been to, period. That’s saying a lot coming from a girl who lived in Italy for half a year and has traveled most of Europe. Frenchie was our first meal in Paris and it couldn’t have set the bar any higher for my meals during the rest of the trip (spoiler alert: nothing else even came close to comparing to this meal). The menu is set daily and is entirely fresh. They were easily able to accommodate my dietary restrictions, which was much appreciated, though we can confidently say that we’ve never wanted to be a meat-eater more than in that restaurant.
The meal started with a serving of fresh potato gnocchi with homemade pesto sauce. It was a smaller serving, thank god, because this was just the start. We actually had to take a second after our first bite because we were so taken back by how amazing it was. Next, was a serving of mushrooms with spring peas and fresh asparagus. The meat version, by the way, came with the same vegetables, but topped with juicy pork belly. AMAZING. We truly have no other words.
The meal was finished with the most refreshing and creative version of cheesecake that we’ve ever seen. There was a delicious, loose crumble at the bottom of a dollop of cheesecake, topped with a mild cheese ice cream, fresh grapefruit, rosemary and honeycomb. We know, it sounds bizarre, but it tasted amazing and definitely heightened our appreciation for gourmet cooking. I promise you, this meal will be the closest you’ll ever get to eating the dishes that people make on those fancy Food Network TV shows.
Frenchie To Go
Frenchie To Go is the streetfood version of Frenchie. It’s right next to the original restaurant and is a much more casual dining experience. They have French takes on classic street food, like Pulled Pork Sandwiches and Burrata, but with the most delicious, gourmet twists. We, personally, went for the Burrata while we was there and it honestly blew our minds. It was topped with what we could only compare to really, really thin french fries, almost potato-chip-esque, with homemade basil pesto. YES PLEASE. We ate it in alarmingly quick, and even though it sounds like a bizarre combination of flavors, it worked in the most unexpected way. Definitely recommend stopping by there if you don’t have a lot of time to sit down for a full meal. Afterall, the French, or Europeans in general, view sit down meals as quality time to connect with others and never push you out of a restaurant, so full meals can take quite a while to finish.
We went to this place quite often, and it’s for a good reason. Sincerre not only has the best interior decor, ambiance, and people watching situation, but their cocktails were unreal. We’re champagne people, so we went with the peach infused champagne with fresh strawberry, but the cocktail menu was nothing short of impressive. My cousin got an Amsterdam Mule while at Sincerre and I stole the most amazing sip from her glass. If you don’t go there for the cocktails, then go there for the food (or the incredibly good looking waiters). We had a vegetarian risotto, which was absolutely amazing and rivaled the risottos we’ve had in Italy. The entire menu was filled with experimental dishes that you wouldn’t normally go for, mixed with some safer options that still offered your palette a chance to explore a little. Not to mention, this place had some of the best interior decor we’ve seen in a restaurant in a long time.
Literally Any Bakery in Paris
We’re not exaggerating here, and we would never steer you wrong when it comes to pastries and bread. You can go to, literally, any bakery in Paris and have the most fluffy, delicious, mouth watering pastries and breads. Our personal favorite was a little bakery in the Montmartre area of Paris, called Gontran Cherrier. We nearly died when we pulled apart their fresh croissant and saw how doughy and flaky it was. Needless to say, we had two or three.
We visited a healthy amount of bakeries when we were in Paris and honestly, they were truly all amazing. We even went into some shabbier looking bakeries just for the heck of it. Still amazing. If you go to Paris and don’t eat your way through the city’s bakeries, then you’re doing Paris the wrong way.
SIGHTSEEING & PHOTOS
The Eiffel Tower & The View
Photographing the Eiffel Tower. It seems like an easy enough task since the thing is so massive, but just like anyone or anything, there are good and angles and bad angles. We didn’t personally think it was worth it to go up into the Eiffel Tower, mainly because the tower itself is the attraction, so going up to see the view disables you from seeing the tower itself. There are some great angles right at the base of the Eiffel Tower, and off to the left hand side where the park is. It’s especially beautiful when the flowers on the trees are in bloom. The best view, though, is truly from the opposite side of the river. Our favorite photos from this trip, and in our personal opinion, the best view of the Eiffel Tower, is from the Trocadéro and Passy. The area is big enough where it’s not so crowded that you think you might die and offers the most stunning view of the tower over the garden area there. Definitely a must for the Eiffel Tower.
Ferris Wheel at Tuileries Gardens
The Ferris Wheel seems like a super cliché thing to do, which is why we almost didn’t do it, but it’s well worth the 12 euro price tag. You get two turns on the ferris wheel for that price, which, yes, is a total ripoff, but the view is so breathtakingly gorgeous that you won’t mind.
Montmartre & Sacre Coeur
Prettiest. Area. Ever. We stayed in the Montmartre area, maybe an 8 minute walk from the Sacre Coeur and the entire area looks unreal. It’s a little farther away from the super touristy areas surrounding the Eiffel Tower and Louvre, but still close enough to the Sacre Coeur, so the area is still relevant and bustling. This area is where you’ve undoubtedly seen photos of that adorable little pink cafe on Instagram called La Maison Rose.
The Galleries Lafayette is Paris’ verison of London’s Harrod’s and America’s version of Bloomingdales. The point is, there’s so many clothes, and shoes, and bags. It’s basically heaven. Fair warning, though, you’ll need to dedicate at least 2-3 hours if you want to seriously shop around in this place. On top of the selection being ridiculously large, the building, itself, is the size of a shopping mall.
Are you boujee? Then Champs Elysee is for you. It’s the most gorgeous, tree-lined street leading right towards the Arch de Triumph that is packed with every designer you could possibly dream of. This ridiculously high end area is a one-stop-shop for those of you who can afford the luxury price tags.
On my walk over to the Notre Dame, we stumbled upon the most amazing Flea Market that we’ve ever seen. Tables upon tables lined a street called Rue des Martyrs packed with the coolest vintage items. Truly, this flea market had everything from really old, really cool home decor pieces to pristine vintage Yves Saint Laurent original runway pieces.
We happened to stumble upon this flea market, so we didn’t catch the name, but a really kind French woman told me it’s only open on Sundays until 5:00 PM. There’s a number of different flea markets around the city, so if it’s something you’re into and you don’t find anything along Rue des Martyrs, be sure to check out some of the others.
Vintage shopping in Paris is like stepping into Coco Chanel’s closet in its prime. Similar to some of the flea markets in Paris, you can find anything from original runway pieces to the Chanel bag you fell in love with five seasons back that’s no longer available for sale. Vintage shopping in Paris is way more prestigious and designer-focused than vintage shopping in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, for example, but you can still find cool vintage band tees and things in a lower price bracket. So worth it. If you’re into the designer stuff, be sure to check out Thank God I’m VIP. If that’s not for you, head to Kilo Shop.
There’s no short of activities in Paris. There are so many amazing landmarks and museums to see, and so much food to eat, that finding something to occupy your time isn’t hard. We’ve outlined some of the fan favorites below, along with some quick tips and tricks to planning this into your trip.
Be sure to wake up early if you want to walk around the Louvre. The lines can get incredibly long and the actual museum gets so packed that your chances of seeing the Mona Lisa decrease as the day goes on.
This is another place you’ll want to wake up early for. The line typically wraps around the corner and down the street for the Catacombs by mid day, so if you don’t particularly feel like waiting for hours on the sidewalk, it’s well worth the early alarm. The Catacombs are also on the outskirts of the city (not walking distance from anywhere relevant) so factor that in if you’re planning on doing the Catacombs in the middle of your other plans for the day.
The Gardens at the Grand Palais Royale
This place gets packed full with children on nice days, so if you’re looking for that perfect Instagram shot or to grab a park bench in the garden, be sure to go before schools let out.
The Ferris Wheel at the Tuileries Garden
We’ll just be totally honest here, the workers at the Ferris Wheel are either not great at math, or are running an elaborate scam on tourists. After taking our €25 for two €12 tickets, the cashier insisted that we hadn’t given her enough money and proceeded to ask for more, while also refusing to give back the money we had already paid her. Be sure to pay attention when purchasing tickets at the ticket booth.
One Hour River Boat on the Seine
There are these really awesome 1 hour boat tours up and down the Seine River for the incredibly affordable price of €15. It’s well worth the price and offers a relaxing hour of sightseeing without walking the million miles around Paris.
The Sacre Coeur
The entire area surrounding the Sacre Coeur are enough reason to go there. It’s so cute that it almost looks fake. The view from the church is the best view in all of Paris and offers panoramic views of the entire city. Lots of people gather here for sunset. Just be aware that it’s a super touristy, busy area and lots of pickpocketing goes on around here.
Has our guide to Paris travel guide gotten you inspired for your next trip? With so many things to do, see, experience and of course eat Paris is a great spot to choose as your first European destination, or for the common traveler, a great next go-to! We hope our honest feedback will help make your trip to Paris amazing! Stay tuned to our blog for more travel tips & city reviews to help you find the most Instagrammable cities!