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ParisFrance

The French capital has taken a long and tumultuous journey through history, gifting the world with its finest art, food, literature and music, along the way.

The Eiffel Tower is the place many start their Parisian sight-seeing, but it might be best to save this ultimate icon of Paris till last. The spectacular views from its 305-metre vantage point make most sense when you've already gathered in the details; when Paris is no longer a blank. Instead head for the historic centre of the city – the island in the Seine where Paris started, the Ile de la Cité. Here, the Notre-Dame Cathedral lights up its heart, and from its towers you can take in a viewpoint that has witnessed all of the city's tumultuous history.

And while that history is worn proudly on every street, its most vibrant remnants are gathered into Paris' many magnificent museums and art galleries (because art is history in Paris, after all). The Louvre is its most triumphant, home of the Mona Lisa and much else beside. The Champs-Élysées might be better-known for its uptown shopping, but it also has two fine art museums, the Grand and Petit Palais. And the Pompidou Centre loudly proclaims Paris' insistence on staying contemporary, with its hugely popular National Museum of Modern Art.

The north side of Paris takes the most dramatic architectural line – the Axe Historique. Starting in Place de la Concorde, this line tracks through three of the city's most famous monuments – the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, the Arc de Triomphe d'Etoile and the modernist Grande Arch, 13 kilometres west. Here it ends in the modern business district of La Defense, a forest of glass-fronted towers and towering sculptures.

Also on the north-side is a prime example of that old-town charm – the narrow alleys of Montmartre, clustered around the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. This is Paris' bohemian heart, home of the Moulin Rouge and a still-thriving artistic community. Step south of the river and you'll find a very different community – the intellectual musings of the Latin Quarter, home to many of the Sorbonne's colleges, the Senate, and the dreamy open spaces of the Luxembourg Gardens. Close by, you can descend into the bowels of Paris, and explore the macabre magnificence of the Paris Catacombs.

Light and dark; reason and passion; ancient and modern – every one of Paris' 20 districts picks at the threads of this cultural multiverse in its own particular way.

Paris Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Paris

Top hotels in Paris

citizenM Paris Charles de Gaulle
citizenM Paris Charles de Gaulle
4 out of 5
7 Rue de Rome, Roissypole, Terminal 3, Tremblay-en-France, Seine-Saint-Denis
The price is NZ$151 per night from 21 Jan. to 22 Jan.

Situated near the airport, this boutique hotel is 4.7 mi (7.6 km) from Paris Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre and 11.6 mi (18.7 km) from Parc Asterix. Stade ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (3,041 reviews)

"The staff was so friendly and helpful, the location is convenient if you have an early flight. The room itself was small but very chic and modern. Would stay here again."…"

Reviewed on 21 Dec. 2020

citizenM Paris Charles de Gaulle
Maison Albar Hotels Le Diamond
Maison Albar Hotels Le Diamond
5 out of 5
4 Rue de la Pepiniere, Paris, Paris
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is NZ$358 per night from 4 Feb. to 5 Feb.

Located in Paris City Center, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Boulevard Haussmann, Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore, and Grands Boulevards. Avenue ...

4.4/5Excellent! (649 reviews)

"Very friendly nice staff excellent room loved our time at this hotel"…"

Reviewed on 3 Nov. 2020

Maison Albar Hotels Le Diamond
Hilton Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
Hilton Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
4 out of 5
Roissypole, Rue de Rome, BP16461, Roissy CDG Cedex, Tremblay-en-France, Val-d'Oise
The price is NZ$162 per night from 23 Jan. to 24 Jan.

Situated near the airport, this hotel is within 9 mi (15 km) of Usines Centre Outlet Shopping Mall, Paris Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre and Paris-Le-Bourget. ...

3.9/5Good! (1,048 reviews)

"It was very clean and the staff was really friendly and kind, the breakfast was great and i even took your taxi to go to the airport he was very nice"…"

Reviewed on 9 Jan. 2021

Hilton Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Holiday Rentals in Paris

Citadines Tour Eiffel Paris
Citadines Tour Eiffel Paris
4 out of 5
132 Boulevard De Grenelle, Paris, Paris
The price is NZ$234 per night from 21 Jan. to 22 Jan.

Located in 15th Arrondissement, this residence is within a 15-minute walk of UNESCO Headquarters, Rue Cler and Champ de Mars. Les Invalides and Eiffel Tower ...

4.2/5Very Good! (918 reviews)

"I like that was very clean place and the staff was really friendly"…"

Reviewed on 24 Feb. 2020

Citadines Tour Eiffel Paris
Citadines Apart'hotel Saint-Germain-des-Prés Paris
Citadines Apart'hotel Saint-Germain-des-Prés Paris
4 out of 5
53 Ter Quai des Grands Augustins, Paris, Paris
The price is NZ$246 per night from 21 Jan. to 22 Jan.

This family-friendly Paris residence is located in the historical district, within a 10-minute walk of Pont Neuf, Les Halles and Notre-Dame. Rue de Rivoli and ...

4.4/5Excellent! (2,656 reviews)

"Room was spacious and had everything we needed. Location was amazing!"…"

Reviewed on 22 Sep. 2020

Citadines Apart'hotel Saint-Germain-des-Prés Paris
Citadines Les Halles Paris
Citadines Les Halles Paris
4 out of 5
4 Rue Des Innocents, Paris, Paris

Located in Paris City Center, this residence is steps away from Forum des Halles, Les Halles and Rue de Rivoli. Centre Pompidou and Hotel de Ville are also within ...

4.1/5Very Good! (2,175 reviews)

"This is an excellent value family hotel in an unbeatable location. Rooms are clean, spacious, came with a kitchen and bath. Reception speaks English and are so helpful."…"

Reviewed on 14 Mar. 2020

Citadines Les Halles Paris
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Paris

Top activities in Paris

Reviews of Paris

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
411
5 - Excellent 54.1501976284585%
4 - Good
293
4 - Good 38.6034255599473%
3 - Okay
43
3 - Okay 5.665349143610013%
2 - Disappointing
10
2 - Disappointing 1.3175230566534915%
1 - Terrible
2
1 - Terrible 0.2635046113306983%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

21 Mar. 2020

Always love the atmosphere of the city. Unfortunately, due to the Virus, everything changed.

4/5 - Good

David

9 Mar. 2020

General level of service and friendliness in restaurants and stores was poor compared to New Zealand. The Alsace Restaurant on the Champs Elysees was so bad it was laughable.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

16 Feb. 2020

Highly recommend and would stay here again.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

9 Feb. 2020

The attractions of Paris are great and as we were in the winter months we did not have to queue for anything. But it is a very busy, crowded and somewhat dirty city. Crowding on the metro like sardines was not fun.

3/5 - Okay

Shelly

8 Feb. 2020

We love all the museums, galleries, but not train, underground station is dirty and smelly. Bus is clean and handy however road traffic is terrible.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

31 Jan. 2020

Watch out for pick pockets and general low life in public places!!

Cities near Paris