Things to do in Paris December 2014. 'Tis the season d'être joyeux. If you're lucky enough to be in Paris during the biggest month of holidays, you will be rewarded with some of the most magical events of the year. The city sparkles with a million fairy lights, and hundreds of decorated trees line boulevards throughout the city.
You'll want to make sure to take in the Christmas decorations in front of the Grand Magasins, along Champs Élysées and on Place de la Bastille. Bundle up and visit the Christmas markets of Paris where you sample seasonal specialties, sip vin chaud (warm spiced wine) and be dazzled by the twinkling lights.
One of our favorite things to do in Paris in December is to plan a day trip to the Champagne region, where we taste stars!
This December is even more special than usual, for it's the world premier of a new musical, An American in Paris. This adaptation of the film classic will be staged at the beautiful Theatre de Châtelet, before it moves to Broadway in March. Not to be missed!
Christmas in Paris is a busy season. Concerts, dinners and special events sell out quickly at this time of year, so we recommend you book your Christmas in Paris events as early as possible.
Don't forget New Year's Eve. There's nothing more magical and memorable than spending the last evening of the year in an historic church or cathedral listening to classical music, or cruising down the river Seine admiring the city lights.
Before-You-Go December 2014 Checklist
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|Top Paris Events||Best of Classical Music||New Museum Exhibits|
Seine River Cruises: Read Our Complete Guide »
That's not a typo. These Insiders walking tours are named for one our fave Paris books, Paris, paris and are conducted by the author, David Downey, and his photographer wife, Allison Harris. If you read the book you'll know that David really knows Paris and talks about it in a thoroughly engaging way. And that's exactly what these private tours are like. Highly recommended.
• Paris, paris Tours – Learn More »
Dinners & Shows at Moulin Rouge: Our Complete Guide »
Experience the best of Paris by night. The evening starts at Restaurant 58 on the Eiffel Tower. Then take a tour to see the lights of Paris on the Seine River Cruise. The evening culminates at the number-one rated cabaret show in Europe, Moulin Rouge's show Feerie, complete with champagne. All the details have been arranged for you, just relax and enjoy yourself.
• Eiffel Tower, Moulin Rouge & Seine River Cruise – More Info »
The Eiffel Tower: The Complete Guide »
Private City Tours: Our Complete Guide »
In the city world famous for its nightlife here's how to get the full Paris nighttime experience. A fabulous dinner, with a wine tasting, followed by a jazz club and a night tour combined with a cabaret in Montmartre. These mix-and-match ideas come from our Paris Concierge, so you know it's going to be a great evening! Let me think...maybe dinner on the Eiffel Tower?
• A Night on the Town – Read Lots More »
Airport Transfers – Read Our Complete Guide »
Loire Valley Tours: Our Complete Reviews
Versailles Tours: Our Complete Guide »
VIPs: Read our guide to Private Day Trips to Champagne »
D-Day Beaches: Our Reviews of Four Tours »
For the Adventurous — Explore More Day Trips »
Start your evening at a private table on a glass-covered bateaux, enjoying a 3-course meal with wine as you take in the sights of Paris from its famous river. Your driver then whisks you over to the Avenue des Champs-Elysées to see the glittering cabaret show at the equally-glittering Lido. What we like about this is that everything is included, you are picked up at and returned your Paris address.
• Dinner on the Seine + Cabaret at the Lido – Complete Information »
The tour begins at the Saint-Sulpice Christmas Market to sample regional specialties, vin chaud, and Christmas delicacies. Visit Paris food shops to learn about the Thirteen Desserts of Christmas. Your tour ends in a stylish Parisian tearoom, where your culinary guide will tell you more about festive French traditions.
• Every day in December, except Sundays
• Gourmet Christmas Tour – More Information & Booking »
Cooking Classes in Paris: More Reviews »
This fun and informal wine tasting covers a lot of wine territory in an hour or two. The professional French sommeliers (who speak English) deliver an extensive tasting of wines – from Alsace, Champagne and Bordeaux, to Burgundy and the Rhone – in a charming wine cellar steps from the Louvre.
• Wine Tasting in the Heart of Paris – Learn More »
Pure Paris luxury! Hop on the only luxury yacht sailing the Seine, the Don Juan II, for a three-hour cruise. Along the way you'll be seated at a private table for a gourmet meal prepared by a Michelin chef. This relaxing evening cruise combines romance, traditional French fine dining, and a tour of the City of Lights along the banks of the River Seine.
• Dinner Cruise on a Private Yacht – Information & Inquiry Form »
Learn all about street markets with our Paris pal and French food expert, Rebekah. Three or four days each week Rebekah leads gourmands (like you!) on an informative tour of one of the best farmers markets in Paris. Choose from a hands-on farmers market tour or the Decadent Gourmet Tour. This is a real Paris Insiders secret, and one we highly recommend.
• Rebekah's Tours – Ask Rebekah About Them »
Every month we tell readers not to wait until the last minute and every month there are some travellers who end up disappointed. Paris is a busy place, with lots of visitors interested in experiences. This is especially true in late December. So, it's important to plan in advance, and to book in advance.
Also, of course, it's way more fun and more relaxing to have some of your itinerary pre-planned. It just makes it easier to relax and enjoy the whole Paris experience.
And, if you're going to be in Paris for more than just a couple of days, opt for a comprehensive city pass. Our article comparing the Paris city passes can help.
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A million lights will twinkle on Main Street USA. Disneyland Paris is transformed into a winter wonderland with garlands, decorations and wandering carollers bringing the spirit of Christmas to the Magical Kingdom. Every evening, just as the sun is setting, expect to see a glimpse of Père Noël at Sleeping Beauty's Castle. New Year's Eve will be an all-out celebration with a fireworks extravaganza.November to January
• Noël at Disneyland – Get Your Tickets »
Although the weather can be chilly, if you bundle up just a little you'll be able to walk all over Paris and take in the seasonal lights, decorations, markets and food shops brimming with holiday delights. If you only make it to one Noël market, make it the Champs-Elysées Christmas Market. It's the largest, stretching from from Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe. Or, shop these Christmas markets in the City of Noël —
Paris is pretty darned special with its Christmas lights. Parisians generally prefer an elegant, understated light display to tiers upon tiers of twinkles. The Paris Noël light shows includes the clever and beautiful window dressings at the Grand Magasins, the big department stores. Most years our favorites are the displays at the Bon Marché, the luxe department store on the Left Bank.
Be dazzled with Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, Albinoni's Adagio, Corelli's La Folia in the contemplative setting of La Sainte Chapelle. The Les Solistes Français will perform along with other top classical musicians.
• December 19 to 29
• Book Tickets In Advance To Ensure Your VIP Seats »
The acoustically-perfect Saint Chapelle is our favourite venue in Paris for classical music. Don't miss it!
• Concerts at La Sainte Chapelle in December – A Complete List »
This new stage adaptation from the 1951 film classic starring Gene Kelly will premiere in Paris at the charming Theatre du Châtelet before heading to Broadway in March. Here's your chance to see this classic story of a young American man trying to make a name for himself in Paris at the end of World War II.
• Many dates in December and January
• An American in Paris – Act Now to Secure Your Seats »
Imagine seeing this holiday classic ballet performed in Paris at the Opera Bastille! Tickets are they are limited, so you must book now if you don't to miss the dreamlike whirling of dancing sugar plums, snowflakes and fairies. Music by Peter Tchaikovsky and original choreography by Rudolf Nureyev.
• Opéra Bastille
• December 8, 10, 12, 16, 17, 19, 20, 22
• The Nutcracker – Low Availability. Act Now! »
Mozart's Requiem, Verdi's Requiem, The Four Seasons, and works by Vivaldi, Schubert and Albinoni are featured at various concerts in December at the Greek temple cum church in the center of Paris, Eglise de la Madeleine.
• December 6, 28, 29, 31; January 01, 02, 03, 04
• Christmas Music at La Madeleine – Book Now »
Enjoy the last few evenings of the year…in Paris…in a classical church…listening to music by Johann Strauss and Mozart. Les Solistes Francais orchestra and solist Paul Rouger will make it a memorable night in the City of Music. If we haven't mentioned it already, La Sainte Chapelle is our readers's favourite music venue in Paris.
• December 27, 28, 29, 30, 31
• New Years at Sainte Chapelle – Get Tickets Online »
Guided by the stars, the mysterious civilizations of the Incas, Aztecs and Mayans flourished for more than 3,000 years. These ancient cultures advanced the knowledge of art, mathematics, astronomy and even architecture. Quai Branly has put together the biggest exhibition ever dedicated to this Mayans.
• Quai Branly. Ends February 8.
• Website »
• Entrance to the museum is free with The Paris Museum Pass »
Discover the exceptional riches of Rhodian archeology from the Bronze Age to the Archaid period including clues to the Colossus — one of the Seven Wonders of the World. See unique gold and silver works, collected during extensive periods of excavations by French, Danish, British and Greek archaeologists.
• The Louvre. Ends February 10.
• Website »
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