Tag: Paris

Europe Travel, Featured

Should I Visit Paris or Rome? | Paris vs Rome, Choosing the City That’s Right For You

Choosing between Paris and Rome for your European vacation? It’s quite the task trying to decide which of these two iconic videos you should visit! 

Paris and Rome are both beautiful cities with world-class sights, amazing wine, great food, tons of history, and plenty to do. 

While you can’t really go wrong between the two, there are a few things to consider when deciding if Paris or Rome is the right choice for you.

After visiting both, you’ve come to the right place for some guidance on making your selection. Read on to help you make your decision!

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Paris vs Rome: Which City Is Right For You?
What to Do in Paris
What to Do in Rome
Where to Stay in Rome
Where to Stay in Paris
Our Final Recommendation

Paris vs Rome: Which City Is Right For You?

Choosing between Paris and Rome is so difficult, and the answer is going to majorly depend on who you ask! Having visited both, we can absolutely see the appeal each city has and all it has to offer. 

With night time champagne and watching the Eiffel Tower sparkle,  Paris is without a doubt the more romantic destination and might be more attractive to couples. Here, you’ll also find some of the most incredible art in the world, housed in the Louvre and the Musee d’Orsay. Art galleries and street artists are sprinkled throughout the city, making it the ideal location for art lovers or those looking for a little romance!

Paris also features one of the densest metro systems in the world so you can easily get all over the city. And it does feel like just that, a city. Probably more so than Rome, Paris feels like a metropolitan beast full of dense neighborhoods, and yes, a lot of traffic! While you can walk most places (averaging 20,000 steps a day, we did), you’ll more than likely want to take advantage of the metro or bus system as the city is quite sprawling.

Rome on the other hand, is a bit smaller in size and infinitely more walkable. From the Vatican to the Colosseum, the two furthest points you’d likely be visiting, is just a 2.5 mile walk. All of the other landmarks are, for the most part, clustered together in the center of this route. Now while 2.5 miles may seem like a lot (and you can definitely take the bus, there’s a lot of them!), it pales in comparison to all the walking you’ll do in Paris with all of the landmarks more spread out through the city. 

While Rome doesn’t have the glittering Eiffel Tower, its landmarks are still lit up and quite magical at night! From the Colosseum to the Trevi Fountain, the sights of Rome are stunning any time of day and dripping in history.

Rome may not seem as romantic right off the bat as Paris, but it sure is an exciting city and a history-lover’s paradise. With world-class landmarks, stunning churches sprinkled throughout the city (that you can go in and explore!), and ancient, intricate fountains and monuments hidden throughout the city, there’s something gorgeous around every corner. It’s like the most amazing scavenger hunt you can imagine!

All in all, Paris may be what you’re looking for if you love art and romance. But Rome has more sights and rich history to offer its visitors.

What to Do in Paris

READ: 12 Things to Do in Paris for First-Time Visitors

When visiting Paris, immerse yourself in the City of Love by exploring its iconic landmarks, world-class museums, and charming neighborhoods. Begin your journey at the Eiffel Tower, an iconic symbol of Paris and a must-visit for breathtaking panoramic views of the city. Stroll along the Seine River and admire the architecture of Notre-Dame Cathedral and Musee d’Orsay, before making your way to the Arc de Triomphe, another legendary Parisian site. 

Wander through the historic streets of Le Marais or Montmartre, where you’ll find trendy boutiques, art galleries, and cozy cafes. Indulge in the culinary delights of French cuisine by sampling pastries at a local patisserie, enjoying a leisurely meal at a traditional bistro, or picnicking in the beautiful Luxembourg Gardens. 

And you won’t want to miss the Louvre Museum, home to thousands of works of art, including the world-famous Mona Lisa. Paris is such a charming city that is rich in history and vibrant culture. Take the time to savor its enchanting ambiance and create lasting memories while touring the City of Light!

You May Also Like: 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

What to Do in Rome

READ: An Epic 2 Days in Rome Itinerary

A visit to the Eternal City is one you won’t soon forget! Begin your journey at the Colosseum, Rome’s most famous landmarks nd one of the 7 Wonders of the World. Explore the Roman Forum nearby, a captivating archaeological site that offers a glimpse into the city’s old-world political and social life. 

Wander through the historic neighborhoods of Trastevere and the charming streets around the Pantheon, stopping at local cafes and trattorias to savor authentic Italian cuisine (or do a food tour!) Make a wish at the Trevi Fountain and experience the grandeur of St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican City, home to priceless art collections, including Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the Sistine Chapel ceiling. 

Rome’s streets are living museums, with something beautiful around every corner. Embrace the opportunity to discover ancient ruins, Renaissance architecture, and the warm hospitality of the Roman people.

You May Also Like: 11 Best Things to Do in Rome for First-Time Visitors

Where to Stay in Rome

When visiting Rome, you really can’t go wrong with where you stay! While price points vary greatly throughout the city, there are a lot of great areas that are safe, clean, and central to the sights.

While we stayed in Prati, we would definitely choose to stay near the Trevi Fountain or the Pantheon when we visit again. This area was much more central (since we liked to walk everywhere), had tons of great shopping and restaurants, and of course, made it easy to see all of the stunning architecture and landmarks in Rome.

You May Also Like: The Ultimate Guide to Rome

Where to Stay in Paris

Choosing where to stay in Paris depends on your preferences, budget, and the experience you’re looking for. The central districts, such as the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th arrondissements, offer proximity to major attractions like the Louvre, Notre-Dame, and the vibrant Marais district. 

For a more artistic atmosphere (and often, better prices), Montmartre in the 18th arrondissement, with its charming streets and the iconic Sacré-Cœur Basilica, is a great choice. 

The Saint-Germain-des-Prés area in the 6th arrondissement is known for its intellectual and literary history, offering quaint cafes and a more local-feeling scene. This is where stayed and in November, it was very quiet while still feeling relatively central to the sights. 

If luxury and high-end shopping are priorities, the 8th arrondissement, around the Champs-Élysées, may be ideal. 

Alternatively, the Latin Quarter (5th and 6th arrondissements) is known for its academic feel, historical landmarks, and diverse dining options. Regardless of your choice, Paris has a wide range of hotels, boutique accommodations, and charming apartments to suit different tastes and budgets, ensuring a delightful stay in the City of Lights.

Our Final Recommendation

Our final recommendation in the great debate between visiting Paris or Rome is….

Rome. 

With so many landmarks and beauty around every corner, there’s so much to do in the Eternal City. When we think back to the one we most enjoyed on our trip, and which we would more readily go back to, Rome wins every time. It was absolutely one of the most amazing places we’ve ever been!

Read our Ultimate Guide to Rome to plan the best trip ever – and prepare for your adventure with these mistakes tourists always make in Rome

Europe Travel, Featured

2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Ready to explore Paris in 2 days? If you’re planning a quick trip, two days is absolutely enough time to see all of the top sights in Paris! When we visited at the beginning of November, we stayed for two full days (with the other two being travel days) and felt like this was the perfect amount of time.

Any longer than two days and you’re going to want to start planning a day trip or two to experience the countryside and vineyards or a nearby country. Check out our post on the 15 best day trips from Paris, including some hidden gems you may not have heard of!

So if you’re planning your two days in Paris and aren’t sure where to start, read on to see our jam-packed itinerary for your Paris visit!

2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Day 1:

For the first day of your two day Paris visit, you’ll want a taste of quintessential Paris. That means seeing the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, before exploring hip Montmartre.

Eiffel Tower

Start your day at the Eiffel Tower. It’s only going to get busier, so getting there first thing will make for the most pleasant experience and best pictures. Admire this iconic landmark from the grassy area below, then take the elevator to the top for an incredible view of Paris!

Les Invalides

Another wonderful stop on this side of Paris is Les Invalides, situated on the left bank of the Seine. First built by King Louis XIV as a hospital for wounded war veterans, it eventually became the Army Museum it is today. It’s also, famously, home to the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte, who was the leader of the French Republic and French Empire before being exiled. 

Get tickets or join a guided tour for entry into Napoleon’s Tomb and the Army Museum here.

Arc de Triomphe

Built by Napoleon (yes, the one from our last stop) as a symbol of French power, the Arc was once the largest building of its kind in the entire world. It’s still one of the most iconic sights in Paris to this day and honestly, the most entertaining roundabout you’ve ever seen. There seem to be no rules whatsoever and we stood there for 20 minutes just watching all of the insane driving!

Grab a ticket and climb your way to the top for a fantastic view of Paris, or walk beneath it to find the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

Walk Down the Champs Elysees

If you’re in Paris to shop, then the Champs Elysees is going to be your favorite spot in the city! This is arguably the most famous shopping street in Europe and it’s filled with everything from designer brands to chic boutiques selling Parisian clothes and accessories you won’t find anywhere else. Bonus: if you’re visiting on a Sunday, the busy Champs Elysees is closed to motorized traffic, so you can wander down the middle of the road and capture the perfect shot of the Arc de Triomphe without being run over on this typically chaotic street.

Sacre Coeur (Basilica of the Sacred Heart)

This Parisian landmark is the perfect place to watch the sun set and end your sightseeing for the day. Both locals and tourists gather on the church’s steps to watch the sun set over Paris before continuing on with their evening.

Dinner in Montmartre

Montmartre has become extremely popular in Paris, and it’s no wonder why: it’s just so charming. Home to Sacre Coeur, this neighborhood (or arrondissement as they call it there), has fabulous restaurants and transforms from day to night. In the daylight, it’s a little more peaceful than the hustle and bustle of central Paris, but at night time, it’s eccentric and buzzing and the perfect place to grab dinner and drinks at one of the local cocktail bars.

Day 2: 

Explore trendy neighborhoods and see iconic places in Paris, with an ending to your day that really makes for an unforgettable visit!

Pont Neuf

Crossing the Seine river, this is the oldest and most iconic bridge in Paris. This intricate bridge is super cool to look at, and take fabulous photos from!

Notre Dame

While you can’t tour the Notre Dame because of the fire and subsequent reconstruction that is still going on, you can still admire this 12th century Gothic Cathedral from outside! 

Saint Germain Neighborhood

This trendy neighborhood near the Notre Dame has become increasingly popular with tourists and chic Parisians alike. Dotted with cute cafes and eateries, this is the perfect place to grab lunch before you continue your journey through the French capital.

Jardin du Luxembourg

This beautiful garden is a must-see when in this neck of the woods in Paris. Commissioned by royal widow Marie de Medici, who dreamed of bringing a little bit of her hometown of Florence to her new home in Paris, this garden is stunningly beautiful and a great spot to see some greenery in an otherwise concrete-filled city.

Panthéon

Located in the Latin Quarter, this unmissable building looks like it should be in Rome rather than Paris. Modeled after its Roman counterpart, this facade features a gigantic spired dome, thanks to its French architects. It was initially a church before becoming a place to honor those that passed away fighting in the French Revolution. Take tour of this fascinating building to view its amazing gothic architecture and impressive paintings and mosaics throughout.

Wander Around Le Merais

Another trendy neighborhood in Paris, this is the perfect place to take a stroll and admire the architecture and charm of this area. Or the perfect place to grab an afternoon glass of wine and bite to eat before dinner. You’ll also want to visit the Place des Vosges in this area, it’s the oldest planned square in Paris and lined with stunning aristocratic residences that date back to the 17th century.

Visit the Louvre

Whether you’re looking to admire the Louvre from outside, or take a tour of the amazing art collection within, the Louvre is a must-see spot on your Paris list. Beginning as a fortress back in 1190, the Louvre later became a royal residence and was modified over the centuries according to changing styles and preferences of the royals who lived there. It is now a public museum that houses one of the richest artwork and artifact collections in the entire world, including the famed Mona Lisa. 

Delicious Dinner

When it’s time for dinner, you can’t go wrong with most restaurants in Paris! We enjoyed Poni in the 9th Arrondissement and La Maison de l’Aubrac in the Champs-Élysées area.

See the Eiffel Tower Sparkle

For the last night of your 2-day visit in Paris, you have to see the Eiffel Tower lit up and glittering! While you already saw this beautiful landmark during the day, seeing it at night is a completely different experience.

Take a moonlit dinner cruise to sip champagne and admire the view, or walk to the Eiffel Tower like we did and see it from across the river! It sparkles on the hour for about 5 minutes, every hour after dusk until 11:45 PM. After two busy days in Paris, we did not feel like going all the way back to the Eiffel Tower from where we were staying, but I am SO glad that we did. It was my absolute favorite moment of our Paris trip.

Europe Travel, Featured

10 Things to Know Before Visiting Paris in the Fall

Paris is a hot destination year round, but Paris in the fall is particularly stunning! With all of the colors of the changing leaves, more temperate weather, and slightly smaller crowds, it’s easy to fall head over heels for the City of Love!

So whether you’re visiting Paris for the first time, or just visiting for the first time in the autumn season, there are 10 things you’re going to want to know before you go. 

You May Also Like: 12 Best Things to Do in Paris For First-Time Visitors

Bring an Umbrella (Or a Raincoat)

No matter which month you’re going in the fall, be prepared with an umbrella! It’s not uncommon to see everyone walking around with an umbrella in hand in October and November, as rain showers tend to rush in without much warning and then quickly move back out. 

When we visited Paris at the very beginning of November, we weren’t shocked at the chilly weather but rather the speed and intensity of the rain showers! It would be completely temperate one minute, then the next a complete down pour, just to be gone again 10 minutes later. 

Be prepared and have an umbrella or a trusty raincoat with a hood, as I tend to opt for – though it’s a little less chic than the rest of the women wearing cute coats in Paris! They dress so gosh darn classy!

Bring a Warm Jacket

News flash: Paris is chilly in the fall. Bring a warm jacket, and even better, layers to wear with your jacket. Between the wind that whips through this city’s winding roads, or the cold rain showers you’ll find frequently happening in the fall, it’s best to err on the side of warmth. Paris was beautiful in the fall, but I have to say that if I didn’t have my down jacket and was nice and toasty warm, I would’ve been an unhappy camper!

Bring a Scarf

Just like with a warm jacket, you can’t go wrong packing a scarf. Not only does it add a little visual intrigue to your outfit, it can also help keep you warm. There was one day in Paris on our November trip that was so windy and chilly that my warm coat was barely cutting it. I threw on my flannel scarf, felt very trendy for fall, and actually managed to feel warm that day. Thank you scarf!

I wore this one from Amazon. Nothing fancy but it was super cute and the perfect warm, cozy outfit addition I needed.

Guided Tours Are Your Friend

While there may be a few less tourists in the fall, there’s still going to be quite a lot of people visiting and exploring the city. You should still expect lines (albeit probably not as long as you’d find in the summer).

That’s where guided tours come in! Most guided tours have skip-the-line access or enter through another door entirely, saving you tons of time and giving you a great experience. We made the mistake of not doing guided tours on some of our stops in Europe and while it was cool to go at our own pace, it was hard to really understand what we were seeing and I don’t feel like we got the most of our sightseeing activities.

Tour iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the Palace of Versailles, or do a full guided tour of the city via boat and bus to soak up all of your time in Paris!

Be Prepared to Walk A Lot

Paris is a big city with a lot of walking in between each landmark. If you’re not doing a guided bus tour, and don’t want to shell out for expensive Ubers, be prepared to walk quite a bit here. It wasn’t a big deal, and it was much easier walking than places like Rome where there are a lot of cobblestones, but definitely wear a good pair of shoes! There’s a reason why you’ll see everyone here dressed nicely but wearing sneakers.

To give you a frame of reference, we walked everywhere from where we stayed near the Opera and we were consistently doing 20,000-25,000 steps per day. Though it probably wasn’t the most efficient routes we were taking as ew got off track here and there!

Enjoy All the Food (Including Dessert!)

Of all the places we visited in Europe, I’d have to say Paris had the best food by far. I’m not a foodie by any means, but I know good food when I taste it! And while I think most meals we’ve had and Europe are a little bland compared to what I’m used to at home in the US (Ok, maybe I just over-season everything), Paris had some excellent dishes. 

After spending 8 days in Italy, we were so sick of carbs and anything pasta or pizza related – we pretty much had steak and burgers for every meal! And it. Was. Amazing. 

So enjoy the culinary experience, and definitely get the creme brûlée after dinner, at least one of the nights. You won’t regret it!

Don’t Skip On Enjoying the Fall Colors!

While you’ll see beautiful leaves throughout the city, it’s particularly fun to take a walk through Jardin du Luxembourg and Jardin des Tuileries to really enjoy all of the fall colors. 

Do a Day Trip

While we enjoyed Paris, after we saw the big sights, we were ready to experience something different. Not to hate on Paris, but it felt like it was getting a little monotonous! If you’re staying for more than a couple of days, definitely plan on doing a day trip that helps you to experience something totally different close by. Check out our post on the 15 most amazing day trips from Paris to find the perfect destination for you!

Give Yourself Extra Time At the Airport

I wouldn’t say we’re the best at getting to the airport with loads of time to spare… I loathe having to hang around airports when I could’ve been sleeping longer or seeing more of the city! And while flying in November, we got to the Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport 2 hours before our flight back to the states, right when their baggage check opened.

We walked all over the terminal trying to find the right place to drop our luggage. The “helpful” workers told us this desk, then that one way over there, and then finally, the right one… right in the middle. And while I’m not complaining, it didn’t take a ton of time. It’s important that you plan for little things like this that can eat up your time.

Once we got the bags dropped, we headed towards the security checkpoint. The line to security looked short enough… until we realized that wasn’t actually the line to security. We waited in line for almost half an hour to have our passports checked by machines, that then didn’t work. And we had to wait in another line to have them checked by people. Before getting on a train to go through actual security.

I’ll just say, we were thankful for the extra time! So plan ahead for instances like this, especially during busier travel months as it would’ve taken much longer to get through all of that had it not been November!

Double Check Your Baggage Weight & Dimensions

If you’re hopping around, country to country in Europe, make sure you’re careful about your baggage weight and dimensions! Different carriers have different requirements. When we went from Manchester to Venice, we flew Ryan Air which differed in their baggage rules from EasyJet which we took from Rome to Paris. 

It’s a lot to keep track of, write it down if you need to. But if you’re going to be doing any shopping (or just cutting it close on that baggage weight), it’s important you bring a baggage scale to check the weight so you’re not frantically moving stuff from bag to bag or into your carry-on at the airport!

Europe Travel, Featured

9 Reasons to Visit Paris in November

Paris in November has it all! Smaller crowds, cooler temperatures, and beautiful fall foliage colors across the city, you really can’t beat Fall in Paris.

November also marks the kickoff of festive preparations, with enchanting Christmas lights beginning to twinkle across the city. It’s also the perfect time to indulge in Parisian culinary delights without the long restaurant queues or having to make reservations if you want to get in anywhere.  

You May Also Like: 12 Things to Do in Paris For First-Time Visitors

Savor croissants and hot chocolate in cozy cafés (likely, without having to wait for a table) in between exploring the city’s most iconic sights and charming neighborhoods. Enjoy quieter museums and art galleries, and actually be able to get some good pictures of the many Paris landmarks without having 10000000000 people in the background. 

Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply seeking a romantic escape, Paris in November promises an unforgettable adventure! Here are the 9 reasons why visiting Paris in November is the best time to go.

1. Shorter Lines

Who wants to stand in a queue for half a day to just get into the Louvre or the Eiffel Tower, never mind having to wait around for people to clear so you can see the views or the art work inside. In November, there are still quite a few people in Paris but nowhere near the crowds you’ll find in the summer months. If you want to see the sights and probably be able to enjoy them a little bit more, November is ideal for your visit!

2. Fall Foliage

Everywhere looks better in a blanketing of fall colors, and Paris is no different! The otherwise picturesque city gets even more charming with orange and red hues that line roads, fill gardens, and further enhance sights like the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe.

3. No Waits or Reservations at Restaurants

We didn’t have to wait a minute at a single restaurant in Paris, whether it was for lunch or dinner, near the most popular sights or out in the local areas. It was fabulous! We got right to a table, ordered, and had our food within 15 minutes at most establishments – which was perfect because by the time we actually went anywhere to eat, we’d be ravenous! I couldn’t imagine standing around and waiting for an hour just to get a table.

We even went to the TikTok-famous Poni restaurant for dinner one night (no wait) and drinks the next day (no wait) and it was definitely worth the hype (the steak is fantastic)!

4. Fewer Crowds

Similarly to point number one on the list (shorter lines), you’ll find that there are almost no crowds in Paris this time of year. Whether you’re trying to get the perfect picture in front of the Louvre or at the top of the Eiffel Tower, you’ll be able to snap a few perfect pictures without feeling rushed and may even have a moment to soak it all in without being engulfed in a sea of people. It made for a much more pleasant experience!

5. Cozy Weather

If you love cozy weather and dressing in layers, then Paris in the fall is perfect for you. Sport your chicest coat, throw on a warm scarf, and take on the city, or warm up with a cup of hot cocoa or coffee in a neighborhood cafe. The cozy fall vibes in Paris are immaculate!

6. Holiday Lights

The Eiffel Tower isn’t the only thing that sparkles in Paris this time of year! The city transforms with shimmering lights mid-November and through the holiday season. See the Champs Elysées in all its glittering glory, and enjoy the lights at the Tuileries Gardens and Place Vendôme.

7. Off-Peak Pricing

With fewer tourists, you’re likely to find more reasonable prices for accommodations and activities. Take advantage of off-peak deals and discounts, allowing you to experience Paris without breaking the bank.

8. Romantic Atmosphere

Paris is known for its romance, and November adds a cozy touch to the city. Enjoy romantic walks along the Seine, take in the view from Montmartre, and revel in the quiet charm of the city with your special someone. With so few tourists, we were able to sit at one of the benches right in front of the Eiffel Tower at night with virtually no one around, seeing it sparkle and feeling like we had it all to ourselves was such an amazing memory that I’ll always cherish!

9. Wine Tasting

Fall is harvest season for French vineyards. Take advantage of the opportunity to savor exquisite wines and perhaps attend a wine tasting event, or tour one of the close-ish vineyards on a day-trip out of the city. For more day trip ideas (including the best areas for wine tasting), see our recent post on 15 Amazing Day Trips Out of Paris.

Europe Travel, Featured, Home Page, Uncategorized

12 Things to Do in Paris For First-Time Visitors

If you’re visiting Paris for the first time, there are a few sights you absolutely must see. From the Eiffel Tower to the trendiest Parisian neighborhoods, we’ve compiled the 12 things to do in Paris for first time visitors to help you plan the best trip possible to the City of Light!

Paris is such a dreamy city. The Eiffel Tower in the distance, charming cobblestone streets and picturesque shops and eateries lining the streets, Paris has so much to offer.

With iconic landmarks sprinkled throughout this bustling city, to fabulous day-trip options that allow you to explore so much of this region in so little time, to some of the best cuisine in Europe, there’s something for everyone in Paris.

While many say you’ll have to go back and visit the city again, these are the top 12 things to do in Paris the first go around!

You May Also Like: Travel Guide to Paris in November

1. Eiffel Tower

As the most popular tourist attraction in Paris, it’s no wonder the Eiffel Tower is number one on our list of the top things to do you first time in Paris! The Eiffel Tower is Paris. Admire the enormous tower from the Champs de Mars, then get a ticket to go up to the very top of the tower. Up here, you’ll see panoramic views of the city!

2. Visit the Arc de Triomphe

Another iconic sight in Paris, the Arc de Triomphe is a must-see monument on your list. Built in 1806, the Arc was built by Napoleon as a symbol of French strength. View it from Champs Elysees (the famous street leading up to it), or you climb up to the very top (all 284 steps of it) to see spectacular views of Paris with the Eiffel Tower in the distance. 

3. Louvre Museum

Boasting a rich history that dates back to the 12th century, the Louvre’s majestic palace itself is a masterpiece, and within its walls lies an extensive collection that spans millennia. Home to iconic works such as the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, and the Winged Victory of Samothrace, the Louvre houses an extraordinary array of art. It also serves as a living testament to the architectural and cultural tapestry of France.

4. Tuileries Garden

Tucked in between the Louvre Museum and the Place de la Concorde, these meticulously manicured gardens offer an oasis of tranquility in the middle of a bustling city. Originally designed in the 17th century, the Tuileries Garden boasts a timeless elegance with its perfectly aligned pathways, symmetrical flowerbeds, and iconic statues. 

5. Musée d’Orsay

Located in a former railway station, the Musée d’Orsay features an impressive collection of art and cultural artifacts from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Here, you’ll find works by renowned artists such as Monet, Van Gogh, Degas, and Renoir, as well as sculptures, decorative arts, and photography. The museum’s atmosphere is enriched by the natural light streaming through its iconic clock windows, creating the perfect ambience for viewing all of the art and history housed here.

6. Palais Garnier

Visit this 19th century opera house, known for its gilded interiors and magnificent Baroque architecture. Legend has it, the Phantom of the Opera novel (and later, Broadway musical) was inspired by events that took place at this opera house. The novel tells the story of a physically deformed genius who terrorizes the Opera Garnier in Paris and finds the love of his life, while living beneath the Opera. 

Take a tour of this beautiful opera house, we recommend this one!

7. Cathédrale Notre-Dame

When you think of Paris, you probably think of the Eiffel Tower and the Notre-Dame. This iconic cathedral is a French Gothic architectural masterpiece, built all the way back in the 12th century. It’s served as the backdrop for many events in Paris and has been seen by millions of its visitors before suffering damage from a catastrophic fire back in 2019. It is not being rebuilt and revived, and you will not be able to tour the inside of it any time soon. However, you can still admire this landmark from outside.

8. Palace of Versailles

A visit to the Palace of Versailles is like a step back in time. This estate is the epitome of opulence and grandeur, and touring it is truly a one of a kind experience. Located just outside Paris, this historic palace served as the principal residence of Louis XIV. Its Hall of Mirrors witnessed the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, marking the end of World War I. 

The sheer scale and magnificence of the palace, adorned with intricate details, gilded ceilings, and stunning Baroque architecture, makes it a must-see when visiting Paris! Explore the palace and its perfectly landscaped gardens on your own, or even better, on a guided tour.

9. Montmartre

Nestled on the city’s highest hill, Montmartre is full of charming, winding streets and artistic ambiance. This bohemian neighborhood in Paris carries a rich history as a hub for artists, writers, and intellectuals, and that legacy is palpable in every cobblestone and every corner cafe. Visit Montmartre’s Place du Tertre, a lively square filled with artists and performers, then indulge in French cuisine at local bistros.

You May Also Like: 15 Amazing Day Trips From Paris

10. Basilique du Sacre Coeur

This 19th-century basilica in the Montmartre area of Paris was built by the French government and features a large medieval dome that provides beautiful views of the city. This popular landmark is also a great place to watch the sunset, and you’ll find many tourists and locals doing just that on any given evening.

11. Luxembourg Gardens

An oasis of greenery in the heart of busy Paris, the Luxembourg Gardens feature 55 acres of beautiful, manicured gardens. Take a break from your site seeing and unwind in the peaceful atmosphere of this park.

12. Seine River

Stroll alongside this famous river (it has amazing Eiffel Tower views from across the way) or hop on a river cruise to explore Paris from a whole new vantage point. Flowing right through Paris, separating its left and right banks, it’s a beautiful spot to relax and admire the views in an otherwise bustling city.

Europe Travel, Featured

Travel Guide to Paris in November | What to Do in Paris in November

Thinking about visiting Paris in November? You’re in for a treat! Get ready for a trip that’s equal parts cozy and chic, with a sprinkle of that unmistakable Parisian je ne sais quoi that makes a visit to this beautiful city so unique. 

Forget what you’ve heard about gloomy weather because November in the City of Love is a whole vibe. There might be a little rain, but it will be more than made up for with fewer tourists crowding all of the iconic sights!

You May Also Like: Epic 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

In this blog post, we’re sharing why fall is the unsung hero of Parisian travel. From strolls along the Seine to finding cute cafés tucked away in Montmartre, get ready to fall head over heels for Paris in November – where the only thing colder than the weather is your glass of champagne. 

Jump To:
What to Know About Visiting Paris in November
Is November a Good Time to Visit Paris?
What to Pack for a Paris Trip in November
Paris Weather in November
What to Do in Paris in November
Why You Should Visit Paris in November


What to Know About Visiting Paris in November

READ: 10 Things to Know Before Visiting Paris in the Fall

Ready to embrace off-peak season in Paris? While we think it’s an amazing time of year to visit the City of Light, there are a few things you should know before booking your trip and packing your bags! Read the 10 things to know before Visiting Paris in the Fall so you can be prepared and enjoy all the beautiful city has to offer.

Is November a Good Time to Visit Paris?

November is an amazing time to visit Paris! With way fewer crowds and shorter lines, decent weather, and less expensive hotel nightly rates, late Fall in Paris is excellent. Not only can you get into practically any restaurant in the city without reservations, but queues are shorter at the sights and you’ll actually be able to take a few good pictures without being crushed by the crowds or feeling rushed in prime photo spots. 

Visiting in early November, we had to wear warm coats and duck under awnings a few times for the sporadic rain showers, but otherwise had a fabulous time in the city! While there were still quite a few people, it was nowhere near the hordes of tourists you’ll find in the summer months. We were able to get great pictures at every tourist attraction and were able to watch the Eiffel Tower sparkle from a bench right next to it without many people around at all – we loved our front row seats! At times, it felt like we had the city to ourselves.

Les Halles, Paris

What to Pack for a Paris Trip in November

When it comes to what to wear in Paris in November, late fall is all about striking a balance between style and warmth. The chilly air calls for layers, so don’t forget to pack your favorite cozy sweater, medium-weight coat, gloves, and a scarf to combat the occasional nip in the breeze. 

Comfortable yet fashionable footwear is a must for those long walks along the Seine or through the historic neighborhoods. It’s super common to see women dressed nicely and wearing a stylish coat, and pairing it with athletic shoes for easy walking in the city. When we visited, we walked everywhere and hit between 20,000 – 25,000 steps a day. Even if you plan on taking public transportation or Ubers, comfortable shoes are a must!

Parisians adore neutrals, and I rarely saw anyone wearing much color. So if visiting the City of Light means dressing like a local to you, consider bringing along a versatile wardrobe in shades of black, gray, and beige/camel, allowing you to effortlessly blend in with the chic locals. And of course, a stylish pair of sunglasses is a year-round necessity for that added touch of Parisian flair. 

I’ll admit I didn’t pack the best for Paris, I should have done a little shopping! Not wanting to stuff one of my stylish, thick wool coats into my suitcase (it would’ve taken up half the bag!) and unable to find a lighter one I liked, I ended up bringing my packable down coat that while totally normal in the states, looked so casual in Paris. I’m pretty sure I was the only one wearing one! While I usually tend to value comfort especially with all of that walking, I will admit Paris is the one place I wished I would’ve had a nicer-looking coat and was able to blend in a little bit more. I’m not exaggerating when I say I got a lot of disapproving looks from the locals – ha!

You’ll also want to pack an umbrella (or a raincoat with a hood, if that’s more your speed) because Paris has quite a bit of rain in November and the showers can move in really quickly. When we visited, it would be perfectly nice out and then a rain shower would come out of nowhere, last for 10 minutes, and be gone again. This happened several times each day we were there and we were glad to have rain coats.

Paris Weather in November

While Paris can be a little chilly (ok, a lot chilly) in November and have rain showers that seem to come out of nowhere, it’s nothing a warm coat and umbrella can’t fix! Visiting at the beginning of November, we were met with chilly windy and sporadic rain, but it was still decently pleasant and we were able to enjoy most of our meals outside at cafes, and sit and watch the Eiffel Tower sparkle at night without freezing.

Paris in November ranges from a low of 45 degrees Fahrenheit (5 degrees Celsius) to a high of 52 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) and offers the perfect opportunity to avoid most of the crowds and wear cute layered outfits!

Palais Garnier (Opera House)

What to Do in Paris in November

READ: 12 Things to Do in Paris For First-Time Visitors

Even with the cooler temperatures, it’s still pretty pleasant to be outside in Paris and you can do everything you would have normally – you just might want to bring an umbrella some days, depending on the forecast! From climbing to the very top of the Eiffel Tower to exploring the artwork of the Louvre Museum, check out these 12 Things to Do in Paris For First-Time Visitors to maximize your time in the City of Light.

Why You Should Visit Paris in November

READ: 9 Reasons to Visit Paris in November

November in Paris is an absolute gem, and if you’re contemplating a trip to this beautiful city, there are plenty of compelling reasons to pack your bags. Between smaller crowds and stunning fall foliage throughout the city, Paris in November is downright dreamy! Read our 10 reasons to visit Paris this time of year to see all the reasons why you should be booking your fall trip.

Adventures, Europe Travel, Featured

15 Amazing Day Trips from Paris

Whether you’re looking to escape the crowds and hustle and bustle of the city, or you’re on the hunt for another unforgettable experience nearby, take one of these 15 unique day trips from Paris!

If you’re just in the planning stages of your trip, or you’re sitting in a hotel room in Paris feeling a bit bored after knocking out the sights in one day like me and my husband were on our recent trip to the City of Light, a day trip may be just the ticket to make your visit even better.

It’s no secret that Paris can be intense – there’s a lot (a lot) of people that visit the city at all times of the year. And it can be good to get away from the chaos, or exciting just to see somewhere else that’s an easy day trip away! From medieval villages to romantic wine country to foodie paradise, there’s a day trip for every kind of traveler on this list!

We’ll start our list with the usual suspects Versailles and Mont Saint-Michel. After all, they’re classic day trip options for a reason! But if you’re looking for a more unique option, read more for one of our super memorable ideas or off-the-beaten path destinations!

Palace of Versailles, France

As the most famous royal chateau in France, this incredible estate sits just 45 minutes from central Paris. Built in 1631, the palace was originally a hunting lodge that was reconstructed by King Louis XIV.  It was later transformed into a museum devoted to “All the Glories of France” in the 1800s.

This massive ornately-decorated palace is blanketed in opulence. From golden ceilings and chandeliers dripping in crystals to its manicured 2,000 acre grounds, it’s no wonder the estate is one of France’s crown jewels.

While a spectacular place to tour, the Palace of Versailles is notoriously packed with people year-round. Over 15 million people visit the palace each year, so if you’re looking to avoid the crowds, this probably isn’t going to be #1 on your list.

What to Do Here: Take a tour of the massive palace and its gardens, either guided by an expert or on your own with these entrance tickets.

Mont Saint-Michel, France

As one of France’s most recognizable silhouettes, this Normandy castle feels almost surreal at first glance. As one of the most visited day trip sites from Paris, this medieval marvel is one tour you won’t soon forget.

Mont Saint-Michel was originally known as Mont Tombe, and (as the legend goes) was built as a sanctuary in the name of archangel Michael that appeared in a dream to Saint Aubert, a bishop in a nearby town at the time. At the same time, a village began to develop on the island below the Mount. 

Due to its strong fortifications and frequent changing tides, this island eventually became an undefeated fortress and it remained uncultured during the 100 Years War. As such, it became a symbol of French resilience and an iconic French landmark.

What to Do Here: Discover Mont Saint-Michel with a guided tour that includes transportation from Paris – we recommend this tour!

Brussels, Belgium

Looking to explore another vibrant European city, without having to move all of your luggage? Brussels might be the perfect day trip for you!

Just 1.5 hours away by train, Brussels is a convenient and exciting day trip option for those looking to get a taste of Belgian culture. Brussels boasts stunning architecture, famous museums, and culinary indulgences that will excite any foodies (hello, Belgian waffles and beer, don’t mind if we do!). 

What to Do Here: Explore the city with a hop-on hop-off bus tour, visit one of Brussels’ most iconic landmarks: the Atomium, and immerse yourself in the world of Banksy art at the Banksy Museum.

Auvers-Sur-Oise, France

Enjoy this lovely underrated town along the banks of Oise River, known as one of the most beautiful towns in northern France. In addition to its beauty and quaint charm, Auvers was once the home of famed artist Vincent Van Gogh. The village inspired the artist, with him spending the last 70 days of his life creating 70 paintings of Auvers-Sur-Oise, before he was buried in the village.

Walk in Van Gogh’s footsteps as you explore the town, and enjoy the view of the Roman-Gothic Church of Auvers. Built in 1137-1227, this ancient church is instantly recognizable from some of Van Gogh’s most famous paintings. You’ll find various art exhibits throughout the town, making this day trip an art-lover’s paradise!

What to Do Here: Explore the many places that inspired Van Gogh’s paintings (they’re well marked throughout the village), and visit Chateau d’Auvers to enjoy a multimedia exhibition about Van Gogh and French art at a beautiful 17th-century estate.

Bruges, Belgium

Another Belgian option on the list. While a little bit longer of a train ride than Brussels (2.5 hours), this medieval town is still well worth a day trip from Paris!

Known for its picturesque canals and relaxing atmosphere, visiting Bruges feels like stepping back in time. Take a canal tour to see all of the historic waterways and buildings throughout the town, or a Brewery tour at Huisbrouwerij De Halve Maan, the oldest brewery in Bruges – they’ve been brewing beer for almost 500 years!

What to Do Here: Marvel at medieval architecture and explore this incredibly charming town on foot, by open-air bus, or by water with a canal tour. After you work up an appetite climbing the Belfry Tower for incredible views of the city, get some world-famous Belgian Waffles at a local cafe or restaurant. If you’re a beer lover, visit the Bruges Beer Museum complete with a tasting!

Lille, France

Even though Lille is France’s fourth largest metropolis, it’s still one of the country’s best kept secrets. Situated close to the Belgian border, this historic town has clear architectural and cultural influences from Belgium and France.

The old city, Vieux Lille, has two gorgeous town squares for you to explore: Le Grand Place and Le Place du Theatre. With charming cobblestone roads and lovely shops and restaurants sprinkled throughout, this is one underrated city that will surprise you with how much you enjoy it!

What to Do Here: Explore the winding cobblestone roads and beautiful buildings throughout this lovely city, then head to the Palis des Beaux-Arts de Lille for some amazing artwork – it has the largest collection in France, after the Louvre in Paris.

Reims, France

If drinking champagne right at its source is a dream for you, look no further than Reims, France. This countryside town is a dream, filled with rolling hills, a stunning cathedral, and a plethora of wineries where you can tour the cellars and enjoy a tasting.

Reims is also full of Michel-starred restaurants for anyone looking for incredible cuisine to end their day trip to this French countryside gem.

What to Do Here: Wander through the town of Reims, making stops at the Reims Cathedral and the Palace of Tau, before venturing to the wineries. Join this tour for a day to enjoy all of the highlights of Reims with transportation to and from Paris, as well as a champagne tasting – it makes it so easy to explore and enjoy without worrying you’ll miss your train back!

Lyon, France

Just two hours away by train, Lyon offers a totally different big-city experience than the City of Light. As the unofficial food capital of France, you’ll find some of the best restaurants and cuisine here, with many serving traditional Lyonnaise cuisine like coq au vin and paté. 

Explore the city’s hidden passageways throughout Vieux Lyon (the old quarter), and visit the Basilique de Fourvière at the top of a hill, that’s accessible via a funicular.

What to Do Here: Get your key to the city with a Lyon City Card to access 23 museums, free public transport, a guided walking tour and a river cruise.

London, England

Looking for a major adventure in your day trip from Paris? Explore another iconic European city after being on a high-speed train for just 2.5 hours. While London is a huge city that probably warrants more than a day trip, this is a great way to get a little taste of this legendary English city!

Jump on a tour bus to easily see all of the sights: the Tower of London, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and of course, the London Eye.

What to Do Here: With so much to see and so little time, we recommend jumping on a hop-on hop-off tour bus to see all of London’s more iconic sights. Then, if you have time before your train back to Paris, grab a bite of English favorites like fish & chips or a steak & ale pie.

Strasbourg, France

Nestled right on the border of France and Germany, you’ll find the beautiful and very German-esque city of Strasbourg. Explore the fairy-tale neighborhood of Petite France along the Rhine, and take a boat tour to really have a unique view of this beautiful city.

If you’re visiting France in the winter, be sure to put Strasbourg on your list as its Christkindelsmärikis one of the country’s best holiday markets!

What to Do Here: Visit the Cathedral Notre Dame de Strasbourg, then take a boat tour of this beautiful town, or experience all of its culture via cuisine with a food tour! 

Fontainebleau, France

Similar to the Palace of Versailles, but with less of the crowds, you’ll find the stunning, old-world Château de Fontainebleau with tours and exploration that will take up most of your day! Only 50 minutes from Paris, you can admire the golden interior of this estate, walk along its canal, and enjoy the gardens throughout the property. You can even take a rowboat out onto Carps Pond when the weather is nice!

What to Do Here: Tour Château de Fontainebleau. We recommend this tour that includes transportation from Paris!

Chantilly, France

Known for its Chantilly lace exports and whipped cream, Chantilly is a gem located just 30 minutes from Paris. Here you’ll also find the Chateau of Chantilly, a 1500s-era castle with all the beauty of Versailles, and way fewer tourists. 

This relaxing town is the perfect escape from the busy hustle and bustle of Paris, without having to venture away too far from the city.

What to Do Here: Explore Chateau de Chantilly and its gardens, and even take a whipped cream workshop while you’re on the grounds!

Bordeaux, France

Wine lovers, this is your ideal day trip destination! Take a two hour train ride to Bordeaux, a city with the same name as its famous red wine. With over 350 historical buildings and monuments to explore, as well as a wine museum, you’ll have a day full of adventuring ahead of you (and likely some spectacular wine, if you choose).

What to Do Here: Visit the world’s largest reflecting pool, the Mirror d’Eau on a hot day or just for a moment of tranquility, then join a bike tour to explore all of the city’s sights (and food!) For our wine lovers, this full-day wine tour is perfection.

Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Another quick jaunt out of the country, Luxembourg is a fabulous day trip from Paris. Just over 2 hours by train, you’ll find this charming city full of cobblestone streets and fascinating underground tunnels. 

Visit the Grund area of the city to see the base of the former fortress that once surrounded the city, then go to Casemates du Bock (one of the city’s most famous tourist sites) to tour the city’s underground defense system made up of miles of tunnels that also served as bomb shelter during World War II. 

What to Do Here: Explore all of the top sights in Luxembourg with a bus tour that makes your adventure a breeze, we recommend checking out this one. If you prefer to explore with your stomach, you’ll love this Luxembourg food and wine tasting tour!

Meaux, France

Less than a half hour from Paris, this is every Brie-lovers ideal destination. Famous for its Brie and mustard, you have to try the charcuterie offerings in Meaux, France. 

After you devour all of the Brie you can handle, take a walk through the Parc du Pâtis or the Jardin Bossuet for beautiful scenery and a brief escape from city life. Visit the Cathédrale Saint-Étienne de Meaux for a taste of history before heading back to Paris.

What to Do Here: Visit the Musee de la Grande Guerre du Pays de Meaux war museum, then have your fill of charcuterie before heading back to Paris.