Top Paris Landmarks Not To Miss!

Paris, the City of Light, is full of iconic landmarks. Most major Paris landmarks are within a 20-minute walk of the city centre, but some are out of sight, hidden in the suburbs. It’s a beautiful city, so take your time, and when you need a break from sightseeing activities, stop at a pavement café and watch the world go by.

Psss, if after reading this list you still aren’t sure which to visit, check this Paris Landmarks Quiz.

 

The Eiffel Tower

Arguably the most famous of all Paris’s landmarks, the Eiffel Tower stands head and shoulders above all other monuments. Paris’s famous Eiffel Tower was built in 1889 and attracts more than seven million visitors each year. There are 1,665 steps if you are feeling energetic, but don’t worry – there is a lift.

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Photo by skeeze

The Louvre

The Palais du Louvre was transformed from a fortress into a Royal Palace in the 16th century. In 1793, it opened its doors to the public and today, the Musée du Louvre contains 35,000 works of art, including the Mona Lisa. It is impossible to see everything in the Louvre in a day, so plan your visit carefully using the museum’s website for inspiration.

The most popular works of art at the Louvre include the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, Delacroix’s Liberty Leading the People, and Michelangelo’s Dying Slave.

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Photo by Pexels

 

Opera Garnier

The magnificent Opera Garnier was built during the reign of Napoleon 111. The Grand Auditorium seats up to 2,000 people and if you look up, you can admire a wonderful painting by Marc Chagall. There are many secret places inside the Opera Garnier, so when you take a tour, imagine the Phantom of the Opera lurking backstage, stalking Christine and her lover, Raoul.

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Photo by MustangJoe

 

Montmartre

Montmartre and the Basilica of Sacre-Coere attract huge numbers of visitors. On a warm summer’s night, the steps leading up to the Basilica are thronged with tourists admiring the view. It’s easy to dismiss the area as a tourist trap, but if you turn a blind eye to the sex shops and peep shows at the bottom of the hill, this is one of the more interesting neighbourhoods in Paris.

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Photo by skeeze

Look out for the famous windmills of the Moulin Rouge. Nearby, you’ll spot the decaying Elysees Montmartre Theatre, allegedly the oldest dance theatre in Paris.

 

Notre-Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame was the historic setting for the famous Hunchback of Notre-Dame, a famous 19th century novel by Victor Hugo. Built in the 12th century, Notre-Dame Cathedral is a wonderful example of Gothic architecture and a famous Paris landmark. More than 14 million people visit the cathedral each year, but unless 100 million Euros are raised to pay for vital restoration works, some of its famous gargoyles and gothic arches could soon start crumbling into dust.

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Photo by ddouk

 

Musee d’Orsay

The Musee d’Orsay on the Left Bank was once a railway station: the Gare d’Orsay, built around 1900. Today, the Musee d’Orsay is a popular museum containing permanent collections from 1848 to 1904. As with all Paris’s most famous art galleries and museums, you simply can’t do the gallery justice in one day.

The most famous works of art in the Musee d’Orsay include Renoir’s Bal du Moulin de la Galette, Degas’ Dinner at the Ball, Manet’s Olympia, Cézanne’s The Card Players, and Monet’s London, Houses of Parliament, among others.

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Photo by gillesvt

 

The Pompidou Centre

The Pompidou Centre is located in the 4th Arrondissement. It is a high-tech, modern construction of steel and glass with fantastic views of the city from the top floor. The museum first opened its doors in 1977, when it was feted for its bold architectural statement.

Inside, you’ll find the wonderful Museum of Modern Art, which holds a collection of art containing more than 100,000 pieces. The emphasis is on art dating from 1905. Fauvist, Surrealist, Cubist, and other 20th century masterpieces are all on display.

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Photo by bogitw

 

Le Cimetiere des Chiens et Autres Animaux Domestiques

Once you have had your fill of art and culture, head out into the suburbs and stroll around the Cemetery of Dogs and Other Domestic Animals. Founded in 1899, this famous Pet Cemetery is the final resting ground for thousands of much-loved pets and famous animal stars.

There are dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, fish, and even a lion. Look out for the grave of Rin Tin Tin, Hollywood’s most beloved canine.

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Photo by acelada336

If you’re short on money while visiting Paris, you can stroll around the Jardin du Luxembourg or take a walk along the La Promenade Plantee for free. If you are looking to visit a quirky side of Paris, go to the Pavillons des Bercy and the Musée des Arts Forains, where you will find an entire collection of funfair objects.

 

Disclaimer: This post has been written in collaboration with the London Pass.

Traveler. Dreamer. Cat lover.
Wondering around the world with my backpack and my camera.
Contributing to make the world a better place.

80 Comments

  1. I love the Opera Garnier and who doesn’t love Eiffel tower? Paris is one of my to-visit place. I would love to see Louvre as well. Does French people like if tourist speaks Basic French?

  2. We went to Paris in March and we loved it. We also visited most of these places except the Opera Garnier. Looks like I need to go back.

  3. Paris is one of my favorite cities in the world. I have been to almost all of these places in Paris except the last one. I guess I’ll visit it the next time I’m in Paris.

  4. I’ve been to Paris a few years ago and loved Montmarte. I saw Johnny Depp stroll by as I sipped coffee at a nearby cafe. I also did some amazing vintage shopping at Clignancourt Flea Market. Loved it there.

  5. I love travelling and i always wanted to explore Paris someday, you made a great list of all famous landmarks. I’ll surely visit these places when I go to Paris, thanks for sharing this informative post.

  6. That’s the great thing about Paris, every corner is just absolutely amazin and usually has a great landmark to see. I definitely agree that the Eiffel, Notre Dam and Louvre are a must see.

  7. Even though I studied French in high school for seven years, I still haven’t made it to Paris! Can you believe it? This post certainly documents Paris’ iconic spots. On a side note, that cat looks EXACTLY like one my family used to have. We called her Miss Kitty.

  8. When my boyfriend and I were in Paris, we stayed in Montmartre! Such a cute, quaint little neighborhood. We loved visiting the local markets for meat and cheese!! Although it was a decent stay, I am just not partial to Paris. The museums just do nothing for me…I am more of a adventure traveler. I will say though that seeing the Eiffel Tower for the first time was spectacular!

  9. While on my last trip to Paris, I think I missed out a few of the landmarks you mentioned here. But isn’t that sort of good, I will go back for all of these 😉 Loved your detailed post and the pictures are wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

  10. We were in Paris in May and got to some of these spots. I regret not making it to the Musee d’Orsay, I can see that should have been on my list. Looks like another trip is in order and I will take this with me to make sure I don’t miss anything else.

  11. I visited all the places mentioned above except for the Le Cimetiere des Chiens et Autres Animaux Domestiques. I would love to go back to visit it along with other gems. I really loved The Opera Garnier.

  12. I have a cousin who lives in Paris who keeps telling me to come and visit her so I’m definitely open to that. I love the sound of the louvre especially as I am a big fan of art and how amazing that you can see the Mona Lisa in person.

  13. There are 35000 artworks inside Louvre? It would take months to check all of them out. So my plan of reserving one day for Louvre is definitely not sufficient! Also I felt so happy to know there is a cemetary for pets. I wish there was something similar in India. The picture of the cat that you have attached is so cute!

  14. Always lovely to look at anything from Paris. Although I have seen them before, good selection of pictures here. Montmartre is the place of my dreams, so is Notre Dame . They can’t just fail a photographer.

  15. Whether you’ve been there once or tenfold times, the city of love has its own “je ne sais quoi.” Lots of couples make a pilgrimage to this French capital because Paris and romance go together like cafe and croissants or champagne and oysters.

  16. I have been to Paris only once and I loved it. My favourite landmark, or neighborhood was the Montmartre. I think that is where the real Paris is, at least for me.

  17. I swear, one of these days my husband and I are going to make it to Paris! It’s a place you just have to visit at least once in a lifetime. If we are ever lucky enough to go, I know we’ll have lunch (or a romantic dinner) at the Eiffel Tower. Also, it would be a dream come true to visit the Opera. Who knew the Opera Garnier was such a cool place filled with secrets? Can you imagine all of the stories its walls would tell if they could only talk? x

  18. Paris is one of my dream cities to visit! I want to see all the spots mentioned here and mostly just wander throughout the streets of the city. I’m hoping to be there next summer.

  19. I went to Paris 12 years ago. I remember climbing one of the legs of the eiffel tower. I think the line to take the elevator up was too long. I also remember touring the Louvre.

  20. I think the last time I was in Paris was when I was 14! How nuts. Time completely flies. My husband has told me he has actually NEVER been to France before so… YES – that is DEFINITELY ON THE AGENDA IN THE VERY near future. Maybe next year – 🙂

  21. Paris is at the top of my travel bucket list. I would love to go spend a month there. The Notre-Dame Cathedral would be amazing to see in person.

  22. Couldn’t agree more on you list. I just recently went back to Paris and had an awesome time inside The Louvre Museum. I never get that chance to visit the Opera Garnier and I would definitely include this on my next visit.

  23. I remember my one and only trip to Paris to attend a wedding. I left little time for sight-seeing and was on a mad hunt for the Eiffel Tower. Kept watching the top of it scrape the sky to see if I was getting close. 🙂
    💛💛
    Me. Finks

  24. Paris is such a great place to visit. I really love Paris and its Eiffel tower. I hope that can visit Paris again this coming year.

  25. It seems like you had a great time in Paris – and I definitely agree that these famous landmarks a re a must when you visit Paris. But for me, unfortunately I really don’t like the city 🙁 The 3 times I have visited I found it very dirty and overcrowded, which didn’t make for a nice experience and I was bitterly disappointed by my trips there. I think there are other European cities that are more beautiful, but less visited, such as Riga and Budapest. Have you been to either of those? x

  26. Montmartre is definitely one of my favourite spots in Paris although I do love it all! I always find myself going back, even for the massive amount of steps at the effiel tower

  27. I’ve been to Paris a few times and I completely agree on these suggestions. Although, I’ve never been up in the Eiffel Tower, I have terrible fear of heights so I prefer to admire it from a distance. Also, Versailles well worth a visit, although about 40 minutes on a train.

  28. Wow, when I think of Paris I just thought it was the Eiffel Tower and fancy cafes. You’ve shown me a whole new side of it. I feel I have been educated hehe! Gosh, pet cemetery who knew there was such a thing!

  29. I’ve never actually been to Paris but I’ve always wanted to visit. The Louvre and Notre Dame are definitely on my list of places I’d like to see. Some lovely places on your list.

  30. I’ve been to Paris when I was 14 years old. We went for school. I remember having lots of fun. We visited the Eiffel towers and took the stairs as far as we could. We also went to the Louvre. And the Pompidou centre. In your list I see some great things I haven’t seen yet. I hope to visit Paris soon again. And then musee d’Orsay will be on my list!

  31. Paris is one of my dream destinations. I’d love to see all of these. I think the best part of any destination is to visit the unpopular or unknown places. This is where you can really experience the local culture, people and flavor.

  32. I live in NYC and I think outside of NYC Paris is my favorite city! I love all the places you listed! I have never been to the pet cemetery though! Chez Julien is my favorite place in Paris 🙂

  33. I’ve been to Paris once before but I didn’t do half of these places. I would love to visit the Louvre and the Pompidou centre. Paris is such a beautiful place

    Tasha x

  34. The photos you used were all stunning! I can wait to set foot in this country very soon. It’s one of my travel bucket-list. Definitely bookmarking this post for future use 🙂

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