Paris is internationally known as the European city of Love! As a European metropolitan city, Paris is full of must-visit sites that attracts tourists and travelers from around the world. As this was my first time ever in Paris, I was focused on visiting the most touristic attractions. However, 48 hours to spend in a city as big and diverse as Paris can be very challenging. Join me for this short city break and find some tips that will help you organizing your trip.
Paris in 48 hours // Travel Tips
- Do a little research of the attractions that Paris has to offer and select the ones that you are interested.
- Start exploring the city early in the morning before the crowds. The tourist sites are quieter, less stressful and you’ll get a better sense of the city without the tourists around.
- Explore the city using the public transport. Get the 24-hour pass, which allow you to use all the transports.
The Louvre Museum was constructed strategically as a defensive bastion for Paris, but nowadays hosts the worldwide famous museum of Art. The Mona Lisa may be its most famous and popular exhibit, but there are thousands of other discoveries to be made. Depending on what you want to do inside the Louvre, this attraction can take a significant amount of time. If you are planning to actually visit the museum, prepare yourself to spend some time in the queue and inside the museum.
Eiffel Tower and Champ de Mars
From the Louvre, take the bus towards the Eiffel Tower, which is the Paris worldwide-known monuments. Built by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 Exposition Universelle, it has become the symbol of the city being the tallest structure in Paris. It is also possible to ascend to the top of the Tower to enjoy an unique panoramic view of the city.
If you are travelling in a budget, buy some baguettes and wine and stop at the Champ de Mars. The Champ de Mars is a perfect spot to admire the Eiffel Tower and the company of the Parisian or other travelers.
Located on a hill in the Montmartre neighborhood, there is the Sacred-Heart Church ‘Sacre Coeur‘. To get to the top of the hill you can climb the stairs or take the funicular. The funicular ticket is included on the 24-hour pass that I mentioned above. From infinite spots around the city, the church is possible to be seen as it is located right in the top of the hill. You can visit the church and the artist’s square – which is free. These spots are very touristy, so I advise you to walk around the small streets of Montmartre to get the real feeling of the town and get inspired by many impressionist painters.
Moulin Rouge – in English ‘Red Mill‘ – is a living legend built over decades. Although it’s extremely well-known throughout the world, certain parts of its history remain less known to the public. The original building burned down in 1915, being reconstructed 10 years. Nowadays, the Moulin Rouge hosts a theatre that provides typical French performances. Another thing that makes this attraction internationally famous was the timeless movie – the ‘Moulin Rouge’. If you want to book a dinner at the Moulin Rouge, you need to book in advance.
Arc de Triomphe
The Arc de Triomphe was ordered by Napoleon which had the ambition of making Paris the capital of his empire and the most beautiful city in the world.The Arch is 50 meters high and 45 meters wide, being the second largest arch in the world.
Champ de Elysée
From the Arc de Triomphe, walk up the Champs-Élysées. Champs-Élysées is 1.9km long and is the avenue located in the 8th arrondissement of Paris. This avenue is one of the most famous Parisian avenue in the world, due to their monuments and symmetrical landscaping.
The Lafayette Galleries
Located on the Boulevard Haussmann in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, the Galleries Lafayette is an upmarket French department store chain. The building from inside it is just stunning, the stained glass are just breathtaking. Also, the view from the top of the building over the city is amazing.
Watch a French Performance
Held in an intimate underground avenue, the Crazy Horse cabaret’s provocative yet sophisticated burlesque-style show celebrates femininity and specializes in the art of seduction, with a series of elaborately choreographed routines performed by highly trained dancers. During the cabaret’s 90-minute crazy show, audience members witness some of the troupe’s most classic routines, including the well-known choreographed Crazy Horse Guards.
Notre Dame Cathedral
Known as ‘The lady of Paris‘, the Notre Dame Cathedral is one of the most beautiful and memorable monuments in Paris. This amazing cathedral is over 800 years old and has its own share of both glorious and tragic historical moments of French history.
If you have enough time and you want to see other perspective of the city of Paris, try to visit the Towers of the Cathedral. To climb the towers, get ready to climb 140 steps staircase between small and historical halls. Inside you can also the gargoyles and the bell on the top of one of the towers – which inspired the Disney movie ‘Hunchback of Notre Dame‘. Walking between those walls it’s like walking inside of the movie – definitely an unique experience.
Tip: Download the app ‘JeFile‘ for buying the tickets online and select a time slot. Perfect if you have less time and need to organize your day. The app is available for free on Google Store and Apple Store.
Have a picnic at the banks of the River Siene
On the beautiful days, you’ll always find a handful of Parisian on the banks of the River Siene, admiring the sunset. Take with you a baguette and a bottle of wine and head yourself to join them and watch the world set on the horizon.
Paris has so much to see and do that it would be impossible to enjoy everything in a lifetime. As I mentioned before, I’ve only spent 48 hours in the city of Paris, which is a very restricted time to experience the full Parisian life. But definitely the little desire to come back is already in! If you have any suggestion or recommendation for my next trip and to inspire fellow travelers, leave a comment below.