Are you planning a week in Paris? Great news! That’s just about the right amount of time to spend there – though granted, I could spend months at end there without never getting bored. I am sure that in that week you will fall in love with it (as I did) and resolve to go again (as I will). 

With a week in Paris you will be able to visit all the top attractions and even wander around to discover the most charming neighborhoods. 

I know what you thinking: a week in Paris seems a lot, and you can just swing it. But really, please, don’t. Paris is a massive city, commuting from one place to the other takes time, and with the massive crowds of tourists it gets all the time you are better off planning your itinerary and scheduling all your visits to the tourist sites. 

I get it: you don’t like planning. That’s why I am here. I will be putting together a week in Paris itinerary for you, which will guide you through the city’s best sites and sights. The only thing you have to worry about is booking your flights, your accommodation and get skip the line tickets for the recommended attractions – don’t worry, I will tell you whenever this is necessary. 

Continue reading for a great itinerary for a week in Paris, and get tips on how to move around, how to skip the crowds and the lines, how to save money here and there and how to have a good time. 

Degas at the Opera

Degas is one of the artists you can admire at Musee d’Orsay

How To Use This Itinerary For A Week In Paris

Before I get into the details of this itinerary to see Paris in a week, I need to stress once again that even though you may think you have plenty of time to explore the city, you can’t do without skip the line or timed entrance tickets to the most popular attractions.

Paris is a crowded city, and you just can’t swing it. Places like the Louvre or the Eiffel Tower get sold out weeks in advance and if you don’t buy your tickets before you go, you may end up stuck in the line at the ticket counter only to find out that everything is sold out and you can’t visit.

For the purpose of this itinerary, I will assume you have a week in Paris – which in theory means you have 7 or, even better, 8 nights there. Keep in mind that, as a seasoned traveler, I hardly ever count the first day in the total amount of time I spend in a place. If you are coming from the other side of the world, you will be tired after a long flight and / or jet lagged and you should take it easy, doing a food tour at most. 

Besides, if you are flying into Charles De Gaulle, it will take you a good 2 hours to get through customs, collect your luggage and get to your hotel (and that’s in the best case scenario).

TIP: Take it easy on the day of your arrival. Get to your hotel, unpack, shower and explore the immediate surroundings. If you feel like you have a lot of energy, opt for a guided food tour. This private food tour is a good option as you can pick the time you want to do it. You can book it here. This other one is in Les Marais and starts at 2:00 pm.

TIP: Get out early! It’s the best way to avoid the massive crowds.

GOOD TO KNOW: This is a fairly packed itinerary but I have structured it in a way to minimize the commute between one attraction and the other. 

You can follow the itinerary in reverse on most days, and even mix the order of the days.

PRO TIP: Opt to visit the Louvre on a Wednesday or Friday, when it is open till late, so you can go in the evening, when it is not nearly as crowded as usual.

TIP: You are traveling, not on a catwalk! Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. If you want to create a perfect travel outfit that makes you look smart and at the same time comfortable, look at Kuhl for inspiration.

TIP: Have lunch on the go or opt for a quick bite! With all the nice bakeries you won’t have a hard time getting a good sandwich. These are the best bakeries in Paris.

Finally, continue reading for your well crafted itinerary for a week in Paris.

View of the Eiffel Tower

Perhaps the best view of the Eiffel Tower

A Week In Paris Itinerary

Day 1: Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Champs-Elysées and Tuileries Garden

I recommend starting your week in Paris with a bang. Go to the Eiffel Tower for fabulous views of Paris; then admire the tower in all its glory from all the viewpoints. Walk to the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs-Elysées and continue to Place de la Concorde and finish off at the lovely Tuileries Garden.

Map of day one Paris itinerary 

To download today’s map, click here. The itinerary is fairly easy to follow. You will start at the Eiffel Tower and then walk your way towards the Louvre.

GOOD TO KNOW: To get sunset or evening views of the Eiffel Tower and from the Eiffel Tower, follow this itinerary the other way around. The Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, near the Louvre, will be your starting point.

Eiffel Tower

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The Eiffel Tower is open every day from 9:00 or 9:30 am. Closing time is 6:30 pm for stair users and 00:45 am for elevator users. 

There is no other way to put it: if you have a week in Paris, the Eiffel Tower is a must see. In fact, it should be the first attraction you visit. Built in 1889 for the World Expo, it measures 324 meters and until 2004 it was the tallest building in France. It currently is the highest man made observation deck in Europe, at 276 meters.

WARNING: You need to get tickets in advance to visit the Eiffel Tower. 

TIP: I recommend getting the earliest access and to factor around 2 hours for your visit, from the moment you arrive to the time you leave the premises.

These are the best tickets and tours of the Eiffel Tower:

Make sure to read my post Seven Smart Ways To Get Eiffel Tower Tickets And Skip The Lines.”

Champ de Mars

FREE ATTRACTION

First opened in 1780, Champ de Mars park is located next to the École Militaire. It’s a favorite of tourists who love hanging out there at weekends or on special occasions, to have a picnic or to just spend time with the family. The views of the Eiffel Tower from there are incredible and – good news! – it’s free. 

Paris in 5 days

The incredible view of the Eiffel Tower from Trocadero

Trocadero

FREE ATTRACTION

Once you are done taking photos of the Eiffel Tower from Champ de Mars, cross the bridge to get to Trocadéro for more views. 

TIP: If you can are an early bird, go to the Trocadero for sunrise. You will have the place to yourself, for stunning photos. 

5 days in Paris

The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most iconic sights in Paris

Arc de Triomphe

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The Arc de Triomphe is open daily from 10:00 am to 10:30 or 11:00 pm, depending on the season. It is closed on 1 January, 1 May, 8 May (morning), 14 July, 11 November (morning) and 25 December.

If you have a week in Paris, you should definitely walk by the Arc de Triomphe but also go up to take in the views from it – you can see all the way to La Défense, the modern side of Paris. The arch was erected to celebrate war victories and as a homage to those who died during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. 

TIP: Make sure to get skip the line tickets in advance here or here.

Champs-Elysées

FREE ATTRACTION

After visiting the Arc de Triomphe, you can walk all the length of the Champs-Elysées to Place de la Concorde. This boulevard is lined with nice boutiques, luxury stores, restaurants, cafés, and more. It’s home to the Lido, one of the most popular cabaret shows in Paris.

Place de la Concorde

FREE ATTRACTION

Place de la Concorde is Paris’ largest square. Located between the Champs-Elysées and the Tuileries Garden, the square was built in 1772 – when it was named Place Louis XV. It was later renamed Place de la Révolution. It’s here that King Louis XVI and his wife Queen Marie Antoinette where executed during the French Revolution took place. Take care to notice the fountain that dates back to the reign of Louis-Philippe and the obelisk – it’s actually been taken from the entrance of Luxor Temple in Egypt.

Tuileries Garden

FREE ATTRACTION

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The park is open daily from 7:00 or 7:30 am to 7:30, 9:00 or 11:00 pm depending on the season.

The beautiful Tuileries Garden are located at the end of the Champs-Elysées and right after Place de la Concorde Landscaped by Vaux-le-Vicomte – the same person who designed the gardens of Versailles – it’s a gorgeous park. If you walk their length, you get to the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, right outside the Louvre.

GOOD TO KNOW: On the southwest corner of the garden there is the Musée de l’Orangerie. You may have time to visit since after all you have a week in Paris, but keep in mind that that the last admission is at 5:15 pm. If you walk this day’s itinerary in reverse, you will definitely manage to visit. In case, get your tickets in advance here.

5 days in Paris

You can’s skip the Louvre – especially when you have a week in Paris

Day 2: Louvre, Palais-Royal and Seine river cruise

Since you have a week in Paris, you can devote an entire day to the Louvre, the world’s largest museum. Once you are done with it, pop by the Palais-Royal, a fantastic photo-spot, and then walk towards the river for your Seine river cruise.

Map of day two Paris itinerary 

You can see the map of your day 2 itinerary here. You will need to make your way to the Eiffel Tower to embark your cruise, unless you opt for an hop-on hop-off one which also stops right by the Louvre.

Louvre

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The Louvre is open every day but Tuesday, from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. On Wednesdays and Fridays it closes at 9:45 pm. The Louvre is closed on Tuesdays, on 1 January, 1 May and 25 December. 

The Louvre is the biggest art gallery in the world. Once a fortress, in the 1700s it became an art gallery. It is home to some of the finest paintings and sculptures in the world. Among the most notable pieces you will find Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and the Winged Victory.

The Louvre tends to get quite crowded, not to mention sold out. Make sure to purchase your tickets in advance. In fact, I advise to take a guided tour so that your knowledgeable guide will be able to take you around the museum avoiding the crowds and providing insightful information about the pieces you will be admiring. 

The following are the best skip the line tickets and guided tours for the Louvre:

Check out my post Nine Smart Ways To Get Tickets To The Louvre And Skip The Line.”

Palais Royal

Palais Royal is a fun place for photos

Palais-Royal

FREE ATTRACTION

This is one of my favorite places in Paris and I am sure you will love it to. The palace used to be the home of Cardinal Richelieu, who lived there until his death in 1642. It then became property of Philippe II Duke of Orléans, who held the throne as Louis XV became king aged 5 in 1715. It currently is the seat of the Constitutional Council and the Ministry of Culture. The striped columns exhibit makes it a fun place for photos.

River Seine Cruise

There is no better way to end a day of exploration than relaxing on a Seine river cruise, during which you will get stunning views of the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame and other places. 

It certainly is a touristy thing to do, but it’s romantic and fun, so why not? Opt for a sunset or evening cruise for even better views. There are many to pick from – some include champagne and others even offer dinner, Whichever one you pick, read the description and the reviews.

This is a selection of a few good cruises:

a week in Paris

The Pantheon is one of the nicest sites in the Latin Quarter

Day 3: Musee d’Orsay, the Latin Quarter and Ile de la Cité

Day 3 of your week in Paris itinerary will be about art and sights. After visiting Musee d’Orsay, you will wander around the Latin Quarter and make your way to the Ile de la Cité.

Map of day three Paris itinerary 

You can download a map of your itinerary here. Use public transportation to get to get to Musee d’Orsay then just enjoy walking. 

GOOD TO KNOW: On Thursdays, I actually recommend following this itinerary in reverse as the museum closes at 9:45 pm. 

Musee d’Orsay

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: Musee d’Orsay opens every day from 9:30 am to 6:00 pm. On Thurdsays it closes at 9:45 pm. It is closed on Mondays.

If you have a week in Paris, you have enough time to visit two museums. Musee d’Orsay is a rather obvious choice other than the Louvre, especially if you love art. Its collection of impressionist art includes the works of Monet, Manet, Renoir, Van Gogh and many more. If the collection is not enough to make you want to visit, you may want to know that the building is stunning too. This once was a train station (Gare D’Orsay, built for the universal expo).

The museum regularly houses special exhibits – there was one about Degas when I visited. Check the website to see if anything is on during the day you intend to visit, and if so factor in some extra time.

You can explore the museum on your own, but I recommend renting an audioguide (and obviously a skip the line ticket) to guide you through the most relevant pieces on display.

These are the best guided tours and skip the line tickets for Musée d’Orsay:

Read my guide on Eight Incredibly Smart Ways To Get Musee D’Orsay Tickets And Skip The Lines.”

Jardin du Luxembourg

Enjoying a sunny afternoon at Jardin du Luxembourg

Luxembourg Gardens

FREE ATTRACTION

With a week in Paris, you really have to go to Luxembourg Gardens. This lovely park was built upon orders of Maria de’ Medici at the beginning of the 17th century. There is a palace, which currently houses the French Senate. If you go during the summer it is a great place to get some shade as there are many trees. Don’t miss the statues of the 20 French queens and Medici’s fountain.

The Pantheon

Located on Montagne Sainte-Geneviève, the Pantheon is the burial ground of French personalities such as as Rousseau, Voltaire, Marie Curie, Alexandre Dumas, Victor Hugo and Émile Zola. It was built between 1758 and 1790 to be a church, but was turned into a mausoleum during the Revolution.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The Pantheon is open daily from 10:000 am to 6:00 or 6:30 pm depending on the season. You can get tickets here.

Shakespeare and Company

One of the quaintest corners of Paris

Shakespeare and Company

FREE ATTRACTION

Shakespeare and Company is one of the most beautiful corners in Paris. This independent bookstore sells books in English and regularly holds events, workshops and seminars. The building where it is located, in the heart of the Latin Quarter, used to be a monastery dating back to the 17th century. The shop opened in 1951. Make sure to look for the cat – but only pet if her if she’s ready for it. You know how cats can be sometimes!

Sainte Chapelle

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: Sainte Chapelle is open every day from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. From 1 April to 30 September it closes at 7:00 pm. It is closed on 1 January, 1 May and 25 December. Entry is €11.50 for adults. 

Sainte Chapelle is one of the most beautiful churches in Paris. This 13th century Gothic church is famous for its floor to ceiling stained glass windows. Factor in around one hour for your visit.

Get a skip the line ticket to make sure a swift entry. This option costs €11.50 – which is the official price.

Paris Itinerary

Notre Dame can’t be missing from your Paris itinerary – even if you can only visit it from the outside now

Notre-Dame

Partially destroyed by a fire in April 2019, Notre-Dame remains an incredible sight and you should make it a point to at least pass by to admire it from the outside. 

places to visit in France

A day trip to Versailles is a must when you have a week in Paris

Day 4: Versailles

With a week in Paris, you can’t skip Versailles. If you only spend a day away from the city, it should be here. I will leave you the chance to go to Disneyland on another day. 

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The easiest and cheapest way to get from Paris to Versailles is by RER C. Make sure to get a return ticket from the train station in Paris to avoid the line at the train station on the way back.

Versailles is the symbol of all the excesses of the French Monarchy. It used to be a hunting lodge which was turned into a massive castle upon orders of Louis XIV, who decided to move his court there to keep it under his eye and control it more easily.

You have a full day to explore the palace, the gardens, and the nearby Trianon estates. A guided tour is a good idea to get you started. Most last around 2 hours, after which you are free to explore on your own. 

These are some good guided tours of Versailles:

Make sure to read my post Seven Smart Ways To Get Versailles Tickets And Skip The Line.”

Place du Tertre

Artists at work in Place du Tertre

Day 5: Montmartre 

If you have a week in Paris you can spend an entire day wandering around Montmartre, one of Paris most charming neighborhoods. You can visit the Moulin Rouge, Paris’s most famous cabaret show (get your tickets for a show here); the Sacre-Coeur, a Romano-Byzantine basilica, that started being built in 1875; and then go in search of the hidden corners of Montmartre.

TIP: Try not to go to Montmartre at weekends as crowded beyond belief. 

Map of day five Paris itinerary 

You can see the map of your day 5 itinerary here. I have included the main highlights of Montmartre but there are plenty more to discover. 

Check out my post27 Cool Things To Do In Montmartre, Paris” for a more comprehensive list of what to see and do.

Guided tours of Montmartre

I recommend starting your exploration of Montmartre with a guided tour. This is a truly charming part of town, with lots to see and many hidden gems that may be hard to discover if you are on your own. Below is a selection of a few good guided tours.

Pompidou

The lovely square right by the Pompidou

Day 6

I am leaving you two options on this day, one to remain in Paris and visit one of its most beautiful neighborhood, and one to head out once again to Disneyland. The second option is probably more suitable to families with children. 

OPTION 1: Père Lachaise, Les Marais and Centre Pompidou

There are many cemeteries in Paris. If you decide to visit just one, it has to be Père Lachaise. After that, you can move on to Les Marais to wander around and end your day at Centre Pompidou, for some lovely street art and local scenes.

Map of day five Paris itinerary 

You can see the map of your day 6 Paris itinerary here

Père Lachaise

FREE ATTRACTION

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The cemetery opens every day from 8:00 or 8:30 am to 5:30 or 6:00 pm depending on the season. 

This famous cemetery opened in the early 1800s. Famous people such as Edith Piaf or Doors lead singer Jim Morrison are buried here, along the likes of Balzac and Oscar Wilde.

It’s a vast park where you can wander around for free, but you can also consider a guided tour as it is huge and you can easily get lost. You can book it here.

Les Marais 

FREE ATTRACTION

This is easily my favorite neighborhood in Paris. It’s where I stay whenever I visit. It’s an area packed with lovely cafés, bars and brasseries, quaint streets, artists’ ateliers, boutiques interesting museums such as the Museum of French History. It just is such a pleasant place that you should not skip it, especially if you have a week in Paris.

Centre Pompidou

This is one of the most intriguing buildings in town. With a week in Paris, you even have time to go inside – it houses the National Museum of Modern Art – Europe’s largest modern art museum. You can admire the work of artists such as Picasso, Matisse, Kandinsky. Make sure to hang around after your visit. The square behind it is lovely and a spot for local families. To go inside, get your tickets here.

OPTION 2 Disneyland Paris

If you are traveling with children and have a week in Paris, there is no way you can avoid Disneyland. In fact, many would tell you that it is a great escape even for adults. 

This massive park, divided in two parts – Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park – can’t possibly be seen all in one go. If you are in search of a proper adrenaline kick definitely ride the Rock’n’Roller Coaster Aerosmith – it’s the fastest ride in the park. 

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: Disneyland is located in Marne-la-Vallée, 30 km from downtown Paris. Get there by RER, getting off at Marne-la-Vallée. From there you just have to follow directions-

Make sure to get Disneyland Paris tickets before you actually get there, as the lines may be long. The following are some good options:

View from Montparnasse, Paris

The view of the Eiffel Tower from Montparnasse Tower are splendid. The skyscrapers in the background are La Defense

Day 7: Montparnasse Tower and Catacombs

The best way to end your week in Paris is by admiring it from above once again. That’s why you should climb Montparnasse tower.

Map of day five Paris itinerary 

Download today’s map here. Today is a fairly easy day for you.

The Catacombs

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The Catacombs are open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10:00 am to 8:30 pm. They are closed on Mondays and on January 1, May 1 and December 25.

If you are have a week in Paris, make sure to go to the Catacombs. Once a limestone mine, and located at 20 meters below street leve, at some point towards the end of the 18th century the mine started being filled with bodies, because local cemeteries couldn’t accommodate more bodies. 

A guided tour of the Catacombs is a must. These are some of the best ones that can be booked online:

Montparnasse Tower

PRACTICAL INFORMATION: The tower is open daily from 9:30 am to either 10:30 or 11:30 depending on the season.

Easily the ugliest building in Paris, the added value of climbing Montparnasse Tower is that you don’t see it once you are actually in. And the views from it are stunning. You can see the Eiffel Tower and more. The building dates back to the 1970s and it’s Paris’ second tallest building with its 210 meters.

Get your tickets in advance here.

BONUS: Galerie Lafayette

Once you are done exploring Montparnasse area, head to Galerie Lafayette Hausmann. This massive department store was opened in 1912 and even if you do not intend to do any shopping (it’s actually fairly expensive) you may still want to admire the impressive building from the inside and the outside.

Latin Quarter Paris

The Latin Quarter is full of cute finds!

Practical Tips For Your Week In Paris

Where to stay in Paris

Even if you have a week in Paris and more time to wander around, make sure to pick a place in a good location, from where you can minimize the use of public transportation. I recommend staying in Les Marais as it is very central and a safe, nice area with much of a local feel. 

I will be writing a post on where to stay in Paris, but until then you may want a bit of guidance:

If you fancy staying in Montmartre, you may want to try one of these:

When to visit Paris

Any time is a good time to visit Paris. If you have a week in Paris I recommend going when the weather is milder and the days nice and long, so either in late spring (May) or in the fall (October).

4 days in Paris

Another quaint corner of Paris

How to get to Paris

Paris can be easily reached from the rest of Europe and the world, by either train or plane.

Charles de Gaulle Airport is the main one in Paris, the best connected to the city and an hub for Air France.

To get to the center of Paris from Charles de Gaulle opt for the train. It’s the easiest quickest solution. 

How to move around Paris

Public transportation in Paris works really well. I am a fan of the metro. A one way ticket costs €1.90. Get a few ones so that you don’t have to fiddle with change every time.

Luggage storage in Paris

Luggage storage facilities are scattered around Paris, usually close to train stations such as Gare du Nord. Storage starts at €5 per day but you have to book in advance. BagBnB is a good place to look.

Other useful tips

Get a data plan for your smartphone

Make sure you are able to use your smartphone when in Paris, at least for data to access apps such as Google Maps.

Get a guide book

Take a good guide book which includes maps, restaurant recommendations and other useful information. These are some good ones:

Mind the scams

Paris is not immune from scams. The most typical ones include the friendship bracelet – stay away from anyone who is keen to tie a bracelet on your wrist; the lost / found ring; the ball and cup scam. Don’t listen to anyone who claims to be raising funds for disadvantaged categories either. Mind pickpockets on the subway.

Get a good travel insurance

With a week in Paris, you need to get a good travel insurance. Make sure to read my post Why You Need A Good Travel Insurance.” Get a good travel insurance here.

Further readings about Paris

Make sure to read my other posts that will help you plan your trip to Paris:

Pin It For Later!

Discover how to have an amazing week in Paris - via @clautavani

 

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