The 7 Best Paris Cooking Classes – [2022 Reviews]

Learn to cook all the delicious French foods, we examine the top cooking classes in Paris

Everyone always raves over the French way of baking and cooking, and honestly, we do too. From deliciously warm baguettes to flaky croissants that just seem to melt in your mouth, it’s no wonder why!

But have you ever thought that you may be able to take that experience and bring it home? By taking a cooking class in Paris, you may just be able to!

We’ve taken it upon ourselves to bring you the top Paris cooking classes available. These are all consistently high-rated classes which are taught by well-trained locals who know exactly how to get it deliciously right every time.

Be sure to see our list of the top 10 things to do in Paris for some more ideas!

Best Cooking Classes in Paris

 Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course DinnerParis Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch & WineSmall-Group French Cooking Class in Paris
editors choice
Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course Dinner and Optional Market VisitParis Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch, Wine & Optional Market VisitSmall-Group French Cooking Class in Paris
Location:Mabillon, 75006 Paris59 Rue du Cardinal Lemoine, 75005 ParisParis, Ile-de-France
Start Time:TBDTBDVaries
Duration:6 hours6 hours4.5 hours
Includes:Professional instructor, market visit (if option selected), use of required equipment and attire, dinner, white and red wine (half a bottle per person), electronic copy of recipesProfessional instructor, market visit (if option selected), use of required equipment and attire, dinner, white and red wine (half a bottle per person)Cooking lesson with local chef in Parisian apartment, tour of local market (if option selected), small group cooking class, copy of recipes to take home

Tour Information & Booking

Tour Information & Booking

Tour Information & Booking

Quick Answer: The 7 Best Rated Paris Cooking Classes For 2022

  1. Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course Dinner and Optional Market Visit
  2. Paris Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch, Wine & Optional Market Visit
  3. Small-Group French Cooking Class in Paris
  4. Learn to bake French Croissant with a Pastry Chef
  5. French Baking Class: Baguettes and Croissants in a Parisian Bakery
  6. Paris Cooking Class: Desserts and Pastries
  7. Paris Cooking Class: Learn How to Make Macarons

Paris Cooking Class Reviews

1. Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course Dinner and Optional Market Visit

Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course Dinner and Optional Market Visit

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Location: Mabillon, 75006 Paris
  • Start Time: TBD
  • Includes: Professional instructor, market visit (if option selected), use of required equipment and attire, dinner, white and red wine (half a bottle per person), electronic copy of recipes, complimentary Drop-Stop for the perfect pour every time

Just about any way you spend evenings in Paris tends to be magical. From the sparkling Eiffel Tower to a sunset cruise on the Seine, you just can’t go wrong. But with the Paris Evening Cooking Class Including 3-Course Dinner and Optional Market Visit, you are really going to ramp things up!

Now make sure you have your evening completely free, because this tour clocks in at 6 hours long. If you select not to go to the market visit, then you can bring it down to 4.5 hours but we really do recommend visiting the market!

Here, you’ll get to visit a charming local market located in the Latin Quarter and pick up ingredients for the tastiness that’s to come! Thanks to the small group tour that maxes out at 11 people, you’ll have plenty of time to ask questions and really learn from your cooking instructor.

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You’ll all work together to plan a 4-course menu while preparing dinner as your instructor supervises and make sure everything goes well.

Of course, not all of us are naturally skilled at cooking. However, your instructor will teach you various French cooking techniques, or at least make sure you have a grasp on the basics. You’ll spend 2 hours cooking and following your meal plan. While you work, you’ll be tasting some fantastic wine as well.

Once your meal is ready, you’ll all head into the dining area where you’ll all get to partake in the mouthwatering results. Everyone gets half a bottle of white and half a bottle of red wine to sample French cheese with and learn how to properly pair wine with cheese.

All the while, your host will teach you about various traditions within French culture and cuisine.

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


2. Paris Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch, Wine & Optional Market Visit

Paris Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch, Wine & Optional Market Visit

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Location: 59 Rue du Cardinal Lemoine, 75005 Paris
  • Start Time: TBD
  • Includes: Professional instructor, market visit (if option selected), use of required equipment and attire, dinner, white and red wine (half a bottle per person), electronic copy of recipes, complimentary Drop-Stop for the perfect pour every time, croissant and coffee or tea if 6-hour selected

If you like the idea of a longer class, like the one we just covered, then you have to check out this one as well! The Paris Cooking Class including 3-Course Lunch, Wine & Optional Market Visit features a lot of similarities with some notable differences.

If you’re looking for an ultra-French experience that will teach you a lot and let you enjoy incredible food and wine, this is it!

Start things off by meeting your instructor at a cooking school located in the center of the city. This makes it easy to get to for most people, and the building is quite easy to find as well.

Cooking Class and 3-Course Lunch, in Paris France

 

Just like with the other class, this one will be 6 hours if you elect to go to the market. If you have, you’ll begin by enjoying a delicious croissant and a cup of either coffee or tea before heading there.

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The open-air food market is so stereotypically “French” in that it’s just how you’d imagine it to be. Located in the Latin Quarter, it’s frequented by locals and gives a kind of old-school feel to it. You’ll pick up all necessary ingredients here for the comprehensive meal that you and your classmates are about to create!

Once you’re back, you’ll begin planning your 3-course lunch menu: an appetizer, main, and dessert course. Of course, it wouldn’t be complete without you getting to enjoy some wine while you cook!

Your instructor will lend some guidance on how to complete French cooking techniques, and assist you in any other way they can be of help.

Once everyone has completed cooking, you’ll all head into the dining area to sit back and enjoy. They also provide you with half a white and half a red bottle of wine for learning how to pair with different foods.

We appreciated that they send you electronic copies of your recipes as well, so you can recreate the delicious eats at home!

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience



#3 Small-Group French Cooking Class in Paris

Small-Group French Cooking Class in Paris

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 4.5 hours
  • Location: Paris, Ile-de-France
  • Start Time: Varies
  • Includes: Cooking lesson with local chef in Parisian apartment, tour of local market (if option selected), small group cooking class, copy of recipes to take home

This next tour is one that really stood out to us, not because the techniques were better or anything like that. It just felt so cozy and personal, because it takes place at the local chef instructor’s actual Parisian apartment! If that sounds like fun to you, you need to sign up for the Small-Group French Cooking Class in Paris!

If you opt to go on a market tour to collect the ingredients necessary for your upcoming meal, then the tour will be around 4.5 hours. If you’d just like to do the cooking lesson, then it’ll be 3 hours. Oh, and if you’re a fan of souffles, this should be a must for you!

Paris - Small-Group French Cooking Class

At the open-air market, your instructor will teach you about how important it is to utilize simple, yet fresh ingredients. This is what French cooking focuses heavily on, and is one of the major keys of delivering delicious meals.

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Once you arrive back at the apartment, you’ll begin by preparing your ingredients while they teach you about traditional French cooking techniques.

As you prepare the appetizer, main dish, and dessert, they’ll keep an eye over what you’re doing to make sure everything is going smoothly. If you have any questions, they’ll be right there to help as well.

Once everyone is finished with the cooking process, it’s now time to eat! Dishes often include things like souffle, cod mouclade, and chocolate fondant!

We found the instructor to be so hospitable and friendly, it was like having a friend invite you over to their home and teach you how to cook better!

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


#4 Learn to bake French Croissant with a Pastry Chef

Learn to bake French Croissant with a Pastry Chef

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 2.5 hours
  • Location: 30 Rue des Saints-Pères , 30 Rue des Saints-Pères, 75007 Paris
  • Start Time: Varies
  • Includes: Hot and cold beverages throughout the workshop, tasting of the baked good and taking away all produces, illustrated booklet of the recipe

Perhaps you already have a pretty full schedule and are looking for a cooking class that is going to be easier to fit into your day.

If that sounds like you, then take a good look at the Learn to Bake French Croissant with a Pastry Chef tour! With a small group size and expert chefs to instruct you, you’ll have delicious skills that you’ll get to take with you anywhere after this class!

Who doesn’t like a good French croissant or Pain au Chocolat? These are timeless treats that just never get old, and are perfect for a snack or for starting off the day.

However, they’re easy to get wrong, too. In this class, you’ll learn how to do it right so you’ll be able to confidently prepare them in the future!

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When arrive at your cooking class, the instructor will provide you with your apron and all necessary tools needed.

They’ll catch you up to speed on French cooking techniques to successfully bake your croissants and watch over everyone as they do. However, you will be the one in control. If you do have any questions, they are there to provide guidance and assistance.

Due to the obvious knowledge and friendliness of the instructor, we found this to be an excellent class for the entire family. Even if you have younger children, you can feel confident that this will be a positive experience for everyone.

There are plenty of hot and cold beverages provided throughout the class, which makes it that much more pleasant. Located very close to the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay, you can then take your delicious creations with you while you walk around the area and enjoy the sights.

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


#5 French Baking Class: Baguettes and Croissants in a Parisian Bakery

French Baking Class: Baguettes and Croissants in a Parisian Bakery

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Location: Le Petit Mitron , 22 Rue Mouton-Duvernet, 75014 Paris
  • Start Time: 10:30 am
  • Includes: Cooking class, tasting of baguettes and pastries, recipes

If you like the idea of the shorter classes, like the one we just covered, it’s worth taking a look at this tour as well. The French Baking Class: Baguettes and Croissants in a Parisian Bakery is a blast!

The title pretty much says it all, but in this class you’re going to learn from professionals how to make the best baguettes and croissants of your life!

Lasting 2 hours, this baking workshop is super easy to fit in to an already-full schedule. Taking place in a Parisian bakery, the instructors know how to do things quickly and efficiently.

However, we found them to be very patient and great at offering guidance with their French baking secrets! Your instructor is a very experienced Parisian baker who knows all about how to make the best local bread.

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They’ll provide you with all necessary equipment and begin teaching you the proper techniques for preparing and handling dough (a bit more complex than we expected!).

They’ll first offer some demonstrations so you have a good idea of what you should achieve. Then they stand by to watch as you try to recreate their techniques as well.

Once the dough is ready, they’ll show you how to properly place it in the oven, oven settings for best results, how to correctly take it out of the oven, and so on. Make sure to taste it while it’s still warm so you know how to gauge it for correct flavor and consistency!

You’ll even get to take your own baguette that you made with you. As you’re in Paris, we highly recommend taking it for a picnic in one of the countless gorgeous parks in the area!

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


#6 Paris Cooking Class: Desserts and Pastries

Paris Cooking Class: Desserts and Pastries

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Location: Paris , Paris, France
  • Start Time: 3 pm
  • Includes: 2-3 desserts, professional chef, copies of the recipes, apron, utensils and ingredients

Do you have a sweet tooth and aren’t afraid to put in a little bit of work to get delicious results? If so, then check out the Paris Cooking Class: Desserts and Pastries.

Lasting 3 hours, they cover a lot in a short amount of time while ensuring you have a lot of fun and learn a ton!

On this tour, you’ll not only learn to make one dessert or bread. No, you’ll learn how to make up to 3 to 5 classic desserts in the home kitchen of a local chef!

You’ll start out by meting them and the rest of your group at a central location, then all stroll together to their nearby apartment. Once you get inside, you’ll all be provided with an apron and any other necessary tools.

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Now we can’t say for sure that you’re going to make a specific dish, as these vary from day-to-day. It could be a tarte Tatin, little lemon madeleines, molten fondant au chocolate, or something else typical to French cuisine!

They may even throw in some recipes from elsewhere, such as rum-roasted pineapples! No matter what you make, your expert instructor will ensure that you’re doing it correctly and using correct techniques.

As you work, your instructor will talk to you about the traditions within cooking and what it’s like to work as a professional chef in Paris.

Once the treats are ready, you’ll all get to enjoy them together with some coffee, tea, or hot chocolate. This is the perfect activity to learn more about French baking with family or friends, or simply to meet people while in the city!

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


#7 Paris Cooking Class: Learn How to Make Macarons

Paris Cooking Class: Learn How to Make Macarons

Tour Highlights:

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Location: Le Foodist Paris Cooking Classes Wine Tasting Food Tour, 59 Rue du Cardinal Lemoine, 75005 Paris
  • Start Time: 3 pm
  • Includes: Welcome drink, use of required equipment and attire, coffee or tea, box of 20 to 30 Macarons to take home, Advanced Macarons class (if option selected)

Ah, macarons – the perfectly French treat that everyone has to try when in the city. Even if you’ve had them before, you probably know how hard it is to find a place that offers good macarons!

Now you don’t have to worry about that, because you can make them yourself with the Paris Cooking Class: Learn How to Make Macarons!

This 3-hour class will show you exactly how to make these French delicacies at any time from the comfort of your own home!

This is definitely one of our favorite classes, and is a blast from start to finish. You’re going to have quite a few left over when you’re done, so be ready to bring a couple of boxes with you!

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Oh, and if you’re bringing along children, we found that the instructors make this a lot of fun for them as well! Head to the cooking school located in central Paris, where you’ll meet your instructor and the rest of your group while enjoying a refreshing beverage before you get started.

This is a very hands-on activity, so your instructor will offer guidance, ensuring you’re preparing everything correctly. If you need any help, they’re there to answer any questions or jump in, if you prefer. You’ll get to pick out the colors for your meringue macaron shells, then make them!

After, you’ll make some light buttercream filling and learn how to properly pipe it. This is much harder than it looks the first time around, but you’ll soon become a pro!

Once your macarons are ready, everyone will get to try their creations along with either a cup of tea or coffee. Your host will speak about how macarons became so prevalent in French culture, as well as many other interesting subjects.

 

Tour Information & Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


Paris Travel Guide

best cooking classes in paris

In TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards 2019, Paris was ranked as the #2 Top Destination in the World. This is no surprise for a city famous for its food, art, and architecture.

Whether you’re looking for gourmet meals, a romantic getaway, a place to immerse yourself in fine art, or a family vacation, France’s capital city is a great destination for you.

Airports & Entry

The two best ways to travel to Paris are by air and by train.

Air

Paris boasts 3 busy international airports which together form the world’s 5th busiest airport combination and a major transport hub for Europe. Paris’ three international airports are Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris-Orly, and Beauvais-Tillé.

Paris is well served by a selection of budget airlines including Easyjet, Ryanair, French Bee, Transavia, and Norwegian. You can secure better deals by booking at least a month in advance and using a ticket price comparison website, like Omio. You can literally save hundreds of dollars by choosing the right flight. Because Paris is such a major transport hub, flights are very competitive.

Usually, you will find flying both the most affordable and easiest way to reach Paris. However, if you are traveling from a neighboring country, it is worthwhile checking into high-speed trains.

Train

Paris is linked to neighboring countries by a network of high-speed rail links operated by SNCF. Although these trains take longer than flights, they transport their passengers from city center to city center. Flying, of course, usually requires a transfer to an airport some distance away from the city.

For example, if you’re traveling from London to Paris, a Eurostar train that passes through the famous Channel Tunnel will provide a relatively hassle-free journey when compared to flying. Also, in most cases, that journey will be quicker than flying because of the extra time taken up waiting for connections at the airports. And it also gives you bragging rights for using one of the world’s most famous undersea tunnels.

When planning your journey, compare the costs of flights and high-speed trains and decide which is the best option for you. Often flying will be cheapest, but if the cost isn’t too much more, the train will be relatively more comfortable and involve fewer complications.

Restaurants & Eating Out

Paris is recognized by many as the heart of the culinary world. Many internationally-acclaimed chefs trained there, and the terms used in gourmet kitchens worldwide originate in Paris. You won’t have any problem finding good food in the capital of France.

Breakfast

Traditional croissants are a great breakfast treat in any Parisian café. The best area for traditional cafés is the Boulevard Saint-Germain, a tree-lined avenue in the 6th Arrondissement. The Neo Café is highly rated. But if you’re in a hurry and want your breakfast on the go, grab a fresh pain-au-chocolat from one of the family bakeries (patisseries).

Bo&mie in the 2nd Arrondissement is the top-rated patisserie in Paris and close to attractions such as the Louvre and the Pompidou Center. In the early morning, you’ll often see Parisians walking out from patisseries with freshly baked baguettes. They do love freshly baked bread rather than long-life bread found on supermarket shelves.

Main meals

If you want to find the most exclusive, Michelin-stared restaurants, explore the area around the Champs-Elysées. That’s where you’ll find many of the oldest restaurants in Paris. But, if you have a less discerning palate, the same area is where you’ll find McDonald’s, Burger King, and Starbucks. The top-rated French gourmet restaurant here is Pierre Gagnaire on Rue Balzac. Be prepared to spend at least €200 per person and you will require a reservation.

While in Paris, you should try at least one distinctively French dish, like coq au vin or ratatouille. If you’re feeling courageous, you could opt for snails or frogs’ legs…just so you can say that you did.

Snacks & sweets

For traditional street food, try the amazing crepes that you can buy from many street corners. You can eat these tasty pancake treats while you walk with savory or sweet fillings.

Before you leave Paris, ensure you sample some of its amazing desserts. The Crème Brulée is a delicious traditional sweet, and meringues are sweet and satisfying but also very messy.

Nightlife & Entertainment

Paris is famous as a getaway for romantic weekends, so of course you’ll find a rich variety of nightlife.

Pigalle

The most famous nightspot in Paris is undoubtedly The Moulin Rouge in the area of the 18th arrondissement known as Pigalle. This historic cabaret club is where the Can-can dance was created and a favorite haunt for many famous celebrities over the past century, from Toulouse-Lautrec to Frank Sinatra. You can enjoy a cabaret here for around €145 ($160).

However, be aware that Pigalle is regarded as the red-light district. Watch out for overly friendly ladies and gentlemen inviting you into dance clubs in this district.

Champs-Elysées

The most exclusive nightclubs, restaurants, and live music venues are found in the 8th arrondissement, around the Champs-Elysées. Many of the clubs here are impossible to enter unless you are a recognizable celebrity, royal, or billionaire.

You’ll need to dress up smart to get into any of the decent clubs here. And if you do enter, be careful whose drink you nudge and spill! But a word of caution — the exclusive clubs in this area also include a few strip clubs! They’re very different from the strip clubs in Pigalle, but still strip clubs. One to watch out for is the famous Whisper Club.

An example of a bar in palatial settings where you might be concerned about scuffing the silverware and smearing the crystal is simply called Le Bar in the George V Four Seasons Hotel.

This same area is also home to more touristy haunts which you won’t find so difficult to enter. However, these often contain more tourists than locals, so don’t expect a uniquely French experience. The club with the most laid-back reputation is the Dogstar Club. You might get past the bouncers without a $10,000 watch on your wrist and a designer cocktail dress.

Place Vendome

The 1st arrondissement is literally the center of the city around the Louvre and where you’ll find boutique hotels with historic bars frequented by celebrities and the beautiful rich. Most of these hotels have strict dress rules to enter the bar, and you’ll need a healthy income to survive the night.

Bastille

The area around the Metro Bastille, on the borders of the 4th, 11th, and 12th arrondissement, is where the younger and more relaxed crowd hang out. You’ll find decent nightclubs, cafés, live music venues, and dive bars frequented by local 20-somethings.

Check out the Niki Club on the Rue de Lappe for a casual night, or maybe the Black Star Club in Passage Thiere if you enjoy live rock music or jazz.

Marais

If you enjoy the LGBT scene, the Marais district in the southern part of the 3rd arrondissement and northern part of the 4th is where you’ll find welcoming cafés, bars, and live music venues where all genders and sexualities are made welcome. Café Cox is one bar legendary for its welcomes.

Getting Around

When you’re trying to find your way around, you might get confused by the way addresses sometimes emphasize the arrondissement, sometimes the name of the area, and sometimes the zip code. To simplify this a little, the last two digits of the zip code are the arrondissement number. So, the Eiffel tower is at 75007, meaning it’s in the 7th arrondissement.

You might be surprised to discover it’s not in the 1st arrondissement since it’s so central to the city. However, the way the arrondissements work is beginning in the Louvre — the 1st arrondissement and true center of Paris (where the king’s palace is) — and then radiates out from there. The first layers are numbered from the north clockwise and wrap around the central arrondissements. The arrondissements get larger as you get further from the center.

Most of the main attractions are found in arrondissements 1 through 8, which form the core of the city. This means that it’s possible to walk from attraction to attraction. But if you want to go a little quicker, Paris boasts an affordable and efficient public transport system. And the best way to get around is on the Metro.

Metro

With 300 Metro stations, everywhere in Paris is within a 10-minute walk of a station. A Paris Visite Travel Pass provides unlimited Metro travel within a specified zone for a set period of time. The Travel Pass may also be used on trams, buses, and the RER underground train system. A 1-day ticket for Zones 1 to 3 costs €12 ($13).

Buses

There are even more bus stops than Metro stations and bus services run every 5 to 7 minutes. This means that buses are often more convenient for shorter journeys than the Metro. Since a Travel Pass allows you to swap between the Metro and buses, you can simply take the bus when it’s most convenient but use the Metro for longer destinations. To learn which would be most convenient for your planned journey, you can check the route maps on the RATP (Regie Autonome des Transports) website.

Hire bicycles

Like many capital cities in Europe, Paris has a public bicycle hire scheme. Around the city, you’ll find 1,800 Velib bike stations with 24,000 bicycles. You simply require a credit card with a chip to rent a Velib bike.

Taxis

There are over 16,000 taxis in Paris. Taxis are an expensive but convenient mode of transport. You can take a taxi from a taxi rank or hail one down in the street.

Car hire

While you can opt to hire a car in Paris, be aware that Parisian drivers have a bad reputation for safety. Also, the congested roads are difficult to navigate and parking places rare. If you really want to enjoy your time in Paris, walk or use public transport.

Accommodations

When choosing where to stay in Paris, you should consider why you’re there. If your main interest is in taking your family to Disneyland, Paris, then you’ll find accommodation near there more spacious and much more affordable than most places in the city.

However, if you want to visit the historical and cultural attractions, then you should confine yourself to the central areas between the 1st and the 8th arrondissements, where hotels are within walking distance of the main sites.

Below, I’ve divided the kind of accommodation by area. However, this is only a rough guide. You’ll find 5-star luxury hotels in the budget and family areas, and I’ve previously stayed in a very cheap family guesthouse about 2-minutes-walk from the Arc de Triomphe.

Budget

You’ll find a lot of budget accommodation around the 5th and part of the 6th arrondissements simply because these areas are a little further from the most popular tourist attractions and famous streets.

But if you don’t mind a little more walking, the area of Montmartre is still pretty central and boasts character-filled, winding streets. And with Metro stations dotted all around the area, it’s as convenient as any other central location if you plan to get around on public transport.

An example budget hotel in this area is the Hotel Marignan  on a quiet street in the Latin Quarter. This historic hotel has hosted many famous guests, such as EE Cummings, and is within walking distance of Notre Dame.

Family

The Rive Gauche area of the rest of the 6th and the 7th arrondissements is an easy walk from places like the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. This makes the affordable hotels there perfect for families with young and impatient kids who just want to get there quick. Many of the hotels in this area vary between small boutique hotels and cozy, family-run hotels.

The aptly named Eiffel Rive Gauche Hotel is super close to the Eiffel Tower and would provide a great base for your family to explore the French capital.

Luxury

While a few of the most exclusive hotels are in the 1st arrondissement, the main selection of high-class hotels is found along the Champs-Elysees in the 8th arrondissement. You’ll notice this coincides with where the most Michelin-starred restaurants and high-class bars and clubs are, many of which are attached to or inside the luxury hotels.

In terms of distance, the 1st and 8th arrondissements are neighbors, with the Champ-Elysees running between the Louvre area in the 1st and the Arc de Triomphe in the 8th. Government officials and important people have long made their home in the 8th arrondissement, and it is considered the cultural heart of the capital.

A great example of a luxury hotel in this area is the Hotel de Crillon, which looks more like a palace or museum than a working hotel.

Weather

Although it’s fairly inland, Paris still benefits from an oceanic climate with cool but mild winters and pleasantly warm summers. Generally, the city sees light rainfall distributed evenly through the year, though sudden heavy showers can occur.

Paris gets coldest in January, with an average daily high of 450F and a low of 370F. During spring, the temperatures warm so that by April it reaches an average high of 600F and low of 450F. Spring is a great time to visit Paris because the flowers are blooming all around the city and the summer crowds have yet to descend upon the city.

The hottest month of the summer is July, with an average high of 770F and low of 600F. That’s when the city becomes crowded with visitors from all around the world. By October, the average high drops to 610F and the low to 490F. The fall is another great time to visit because the weather isn’t too cold but the crowds have diminished and the trees have donned their beautiful autumnal cloaks.

Attractions

The main attractions radiate out from the center of the city, which is the 1st arrondissement.

Louvre

The Louvre Palace in the 1st arrondissement was the main residence of the Kings of France from the 14th century onward. Today it is much better known as the home of the world’s greatest art museum, the Musée du Louvre. If you want to see such world-famous masterpieces as the Venus de Milo sculpture and the Mona Lisa painting, then you should head straight for the glass pyramid in front of the grand palatial building.

Notre-Dame

The great cathedral of Notre-Dame in the 4th arrondissement is so spectacular and famous that I cannot justify leaving it out of this list. However, please note that the Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Paris is closed for at least the next four years and maybe more.

After the devastating fire of April 2019, the cathedral and nearby surrounding area were closed to public access until sufficient repairs can be made to make the area safe once again. You can still admire its amazing Gothic architecture from a distance and maybe catch a glimpse of some of the restoration work in progress.

Eiffel Tower

The most visited attraction in the center of Paris is the Eiffel Tower in the 7th arrondissement. Although this renowned iron tower was erected as a temporary structure in 1889, it is still standing strong and looks good for another few centuries of service. The fact that it was the world’s tallest building when built is eye-opening when it is compared to the Empire State Building in NYC or the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, but it is still the best place for a panoramic view in Paris.

Arc de Triomphe

This triumphal arch in the 8th arrondissement was commissioned by Napoleon but wasn’t built until 1836, long after his death. It stands on a huge roundabout at the northern end of the Champ-Elysees and is one of the most recognizable and photographed monuments in the capital. The Arc de Triomphe is also home to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Flame of Remembrance that is kept alive in daily ceremonies.

Versailles

You have to leave the city and travel 12 miles southwest to reach the Palace of Versailles, where Louis XIV moved his court in the 17th century. Now this famous palace is a grand museum full of amazing reminders of the power of the great Sun King. Look around the interior and exterior of the palace for the many sun-emblems reminding visitors who lived here. But the true highlight for many visitors is the beautiful formal gardens that surround the palace.

Disneyland Paris

Also outside the city, despite its name, is Disneyland Paris, 20 miles to the east. This famous theme park is the most visited attraction in France. If you’re visiting Paris with children, you’ll probably want to devote two days to Disney because there are two separate parks here: Disneyland Park opened in 1992 and Walt Disney Studios Park opened in 2002. Inside both, you’ll find thrill rides for all ages as well as classic attractions, like actors dressed up as your favorite Disney characters and Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. The easiest way to get to Disney Paris is with a shuttle and entrance ticket deal.

Planning Tips

Paris is an amazing destination that should be on everyone’s bucket list. Here are 5 tips to help you on your way.

Tip #1: Watch out for Mondays and Tuesdays

When planning your itinerary for your stay in Paris, note that many major attractions, such as the Palace of Versailles and the catacombs, are closed on Mondays. A few attractions are closed on Tuesdays instead, including the Natural History Museum and the Pompidou Center. There are various major attractions open every day, like the Eiffel Tower and Disneyland Paris, so go there on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Tip #2: Buy unique souvenirs and gifts

Paris is, of course, the center of fashion. However, there is one relatively unfashionable item of dress that you might want to pick up during your stay in France’s capital city. The béret is the cliché headwear of France, and you’ll see cheap versions “made in China” in every souvenir shop you pass. But, if you want to buy the real thing, look out for clothing stores that sell bérets made in France. La Cerise Sur Le Chapeau is a well-known chain store around Paris that stocks French bérets.

However, if you’re looking for something distinctly Parisian that few people will own, how about a piece of the Eiffel Tower? Victor Lustig once sold the Eiffel Tower twice in an elaborate con, but this opportunity isn’t a scam like that. During repairs to the tower, inevitably some parts need to be replaced. The removed rivets are turned into unique souvenirs only available in the Eiffel Tower’s official gift shop.

Tip #3: Stay safe while visiting Paris

Although Paris is considered a relatively safe city, don’t forget that Kim Kardashian had all her bling stolen while she was staying in a vacation apartment there. Just like any other busy city, you will find purse-snatchers and pickpockets in crowded locations, especially around tourist hotspots.

Just use common sense. Keep your passport and other valuable documents in a hotel safe. Keep your money in a money belt. Don’t wear ostentatious jewelry in public places.

If you see abandoned packages or luggage in a crowded public place, especially a Metro station, distance yourself from the package and call 112. Paris is not a stranger to terrorist attacks.

Tip #4: Book in advance, especially during the summer

Paris is a popular destination in summer and during Christmas and Easter. Ensure you book your hotel rooms and any tours you wish to join well in advance of your vacation. You often get better air flight deals when you book in advance, and that is especially true during the summer.

The best time to visit Paris for bargain prices and fewer crowds is during the shoulder season—just before or just after summer. The weather is still fine, but there are simply fewer tourists.

Tip #5: Learn a few French phrases before traveling to Paris

The French are a proud people, not least of all Parisians. They are rightly concerned about the dilution of their native tongue by English words and phrases from Hollywood movies and internationally popular songs. So, if you’ve ever heard someone say that French people are rude, it’s probably because the person telling you expected them to speak English.

Almost all French people you’ll meet speak English. But if you greet them in French and use a few words and phrases like “merci” and “s’il vous plaît”, they will be more likely to treat you with respect in return. You don’t need to speak more than a handful of phrases, and you don’t even need a good accent. Parisians will appreciate your effort.

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Robert Baker

Robert is a content writer and editor at World Guides to Travel where he shares his love for the great outdoors. He also writes in-depth travel blogs for other websites around the world. Robert is passionate about the environment and uses his writing to educate people about the advantages and importance of sustainable living. Robert enjoys creative writing. In 2009, his children’s novel Sally Hemings & the Good Associates won the Children’s Fiction section of the You Write On Book of the Year Award.
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