It's summer in Paris! Everything seems even more alive — with flowers in full bloom, street markets bustling, and so many absolutely fun things to do. A Parisian food walking tour will show off the best of the city — from boulangeries and chocolateries to secret epiceries where you find the best macarons. Musically, on June 21 Paris celebrates summer with the annual Fête de la Musique with free music throughout the city.
We like to enjoy the soft summer evenings by getting aboard a Seine River cruise (champagne-fueled, if possible!) Perhaps our best tip, though, is to book your activities well in advance, as tickets sell quickly. Speaking of tickets, a performance at Gothic jewel of a church, La Sainte Chapelle will add immensely to your Paris experience.
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The Eiffel Tower gets around eight million visitors a year, and that means long lines anytime, but especially in summer. The best advice for beating the lines is to book a skip-the-line tour that whisks you past the lineups and up the tower. But be sure to book early, these tours always sell out.
We know these popular Eiffel Tower tours sell out, especially in the summer months. After all, it's the best way to get to the top and avoid the long line. If you can't find your dates, here are two other skip-the-line tours that also take you right to the 3rd-floor summit.
Is there a better way to celebrate in summer in Paris than a relaxing cruise down its romantic river? It's a wonderful way to see the city's sights from a fresh perspective. And, if you know us, you'll know that our very favorite is this champagne-fuelled cruise along the Seine.
What's even better than a day spent cruising along the Seine? A nighttime dinner cruise, that's what! You'll find that everything looks better from a bateau sailing along the river at night. Famous landmarks will pass by as you enjoy a multi-course French meal with wine.
Travelers love this complete night on the town. Start the evening at the Eiffel Tower for dinner 200 feet above the City of Lights. Then it's time to see lights of the city riverside, on an evening cruise on the Seine. Finally, enjoy the show at Moulin Rouge while sipping champagne. All the details are taken care of for you.
We love to kickstart summer with this 2-in-1 tour. Cruise the country around Versailles — your guide takes you through the forests and pastures, to the local market and then on to the gardens of Versailles to visit the historic buildings, including Marie-Antoinette's farm. Use your passes to explore the Chateau de Versailles as long as you like.
The Paris Pass includes free entrance to museums and lets you skip the long ticket lines! PLUS, you get to ride the Metro & buses for free.
This is readers' favourite creepy nighttime tour. Paris has over 2,000 years of mysteries and legends, so it's an action-packed evening. Your informative guide leads you down winding streets and hidden alleys in the City of Romance and Intrigue. You'll learn about ghosts, wars, eerie events.
Nearly ten millions visitors a year means there are always long lines at the Louvre. But why stand in line when you can book a skip-the-line tour that not only gets you in a lot faster, but takes you directly to the best and most famous works of art. Another tip — these tours sell out, so be sure to book early.
Eat, drink & être joyeux! Get a taste of la vie bohème in vibrant Saint-Germain. Experience activities that the French adore — drinking wine, sampling charcuterie & playing a game of boules. Also visit Shakespeare & Co. (Paris' original English bookshop) and Notre Dame Cathedral.
When you're in France, the country that practically invented the art of scent, why not join an everything-perfume workshop led by an industry expert who also teaches at the Ecole Superieure Du Parfum (School of Perfumery) in Versailles. Learn the basics of perfume making, including the characteristics of distinct families of scents. Then dive in to make your own unique perfume to take home. How cool is that?
We want to share one of our best tips — before you leave home arrange your transportation from the airport into central Paris. It's comforting to be prepared and to know what's going to happen when you arrive. Easy and affordable is a shuttle van service right to your hotel. Choose from shared or a private vehicle, it's convenient and cheaper than a taxi.
But, wait a minute, here's our very best advice, and a real Paris Insiders Secret — being picked up at the airport by our Paris pal and professional driver, Manu. Traveling is tough, and after the flight we appreciate some comfort. We aways arrange for Manu meet us at the arrivals gate whisk us into the city in the comfort of his Mercedes S-Class. Honestly, it's the only way to do it! Highly recommended by us. Questions about Manu's service? Ask us…
Instead of worrying about trains, brochures and guide books, why not go the royal route? From your hotel, your driver/guide takes you to the royal estate. Use your priority tickets to skip the lines and head directly into this grand chateau. Then, stroll through the stunning gardens until lunch (included) on the Grand Canal. Later there's time to visit Marie Antoinette's fantasy village farm and the Grand Trianon.
Perhaps the most famous battle site of World War II, the landing beaches of Normandy still evoke powerful memories and emotions. Visit the most important sites on a day trip from Paris and remember those who fought there. Of course, there are the beaches themselves. Take a day to step back in time on a trip that returns you to Paris the same day.
Sure, it's the former playground of royalty and home to some of the most magnificent castles in the world, but the Loire Valley also produces some of the best wines in France. See the most spectacular chateaux — Chateau Chenonceau and the amazing Chateau Chambord — and taste refreshing Sauvignon blanc, crisp Pouilly-Fumé and delicate Cabernet Franc wines over a leisurely multi-course French lunch.
Don't miss the summer chance to visit the fabulous gardens and house of Impressionist Master Claude Monet. In June the gardens are in magnificent bloom and you're going to love the lily pond with its Japanese bridge. Your driver/guide picks you up at you Paris hotel and whisks through the lovely French countryside to Giverny. You'll have plenty of time to wander among the gardens, flowers, Monet's house and the pond to reflect on the artist's sublime creations. You won't be disappointed.
Only an hour from Paris is world-famous Champagne country. On this wonderful day trip you focus on the bubbly with guided tours and tastings at some of the most famous champagne houses. In between, enjoy lunch at a boutique winery. Sample as much as you want, your expert guide is doing the driving — door-to-door from your Paris hotel. Daily except Sunday.
We've just scratched the surface of what you can see from Paris in one day. Read our complete guide to learn about visits to historic Mont-Saint-Michel, to the best of Normandy, to Disneyland Paris, and even to London!
→ Essential Day Trips – Our Reviews…
There are some stunning Gothic churches in Paris where classical music can be heard performed. But, hands down, the acoustically-perfect Saint Chapelle is our favourite venue in Paris for classical music. Imagine being swept away by the music of Vivaldi, Bach, Purcell and Monteverdi while surrounded by the spectacular vaulted arches filled with colourful and recently restored stained glass.
This is the place to be in Paris if you want to truly experience the magnificence of grand opera. If you only attend one opera in your life, it should be here, at Opera Bastille. This month Opera Bastille is performing two of the most popular (and best) classic operas. You don't want to miss Carmen!
When in Paris, you must see a performance at the gilded Palais Garnier in the Opera district. The building is so magnificent it will take your breath away. Paris has been mad about opera since the 1600s, when Louis XIV, the Sun King, founded the first opera house. During the Belle-Epoque, Palais Garnier became the center of Paris cultural life and continues to be France's most prestigious theatre for opera & ballet.
Don't just visit the world's most famous cathedral, be a part of it. There are four special performances in June when you can enjoy the soaring stained glass and unbelievable acoustics as you listen to concerts performed by some of the best contemporary musicians in France.
More like a Greek temple than a typical church, La Madeleine The classically-inspired Eglise de la Madeleine owes its existence to France's last kings and to its first emperor. It sits proudly in the center of Paris as a monument to the history of the city. Today, it's also a popular venue for classical music concerts.
Another nice venue for classical music is the historic Eglise Saint Ephrem set in the Latin Quarter. You're likely to hear piano works by Chopin, Mozart, or Beethoven, maybe even Bach's Goldberg Variations. Take in a concert, then wander through the most iconic of Paris neighborhoods, the Left Bank.
Paris is renowned for its collection of magnificent Gothic churches. But what you may not know is that many of these historic buildings are also venues for classical music played be some of the top performers in the city. If you consider that Paris is also home to Palais Garnier and Opera Bastille, you can be assured that you can hear a great performance on almost any night in Paris.
Let's set the scene — you're in the Latin Quarter where you've visited an historic outdoor market and selected the freshest ingredients. Now you're heading to the kitchen to prepare classic French dishes with a professional chef at your side. Afterwards you'll enjoy the bounty of your labor during a relaxing long lunch, with wine, bien sur.
Night in the City of Lights, and what better time to combine romance, fine dining, and a river tour of Paris? Watch the the city lit up at night as you cruise past on a luxury yacht while being served a 3-course gourmet meal prepared by a French chef. It's all arranged for you, so all you have to do is relax, eat, drink, and take in the sights.
In a charming wine cellar smack in the center of Paris you spend an hour or two you covering a lot of French wine territory. This fun and informal wine tasting is led by professional sommeliers (in English) who deliver an extensive tasting of wines from the most important regions in France in a charming, centrally-located wine cellar.
The good thing about this tour is that any calories you consume from the delicious taste samplings are likely to be burned off by the walk! It all takes place on the gourmet haven of the Left Bank. Begin at a traditional fromagerie. Sample and move on to freshly baked baguettes, fine French wine, foie gras and famous French cheeses.
Combine your passion for Paris, chocolate and fabulous French pastries. Spend the afternoon tasting your way through the best chocolate shops, patisseries and boulangeries in Paris. A gourmet food expert will lead you through the neighborhood on this small group (8 people) walking tour.
Paris and all of France will be filled with music on the longest day of the year as live bands play in parks and streets. Check the schedule to see where to catch live music. June 21.
But, don't worry. We've put together the best of popular exhibits during the month of June. You'll want to go to Musee d'Orsay to catch the exhibition based on mythical landscapes that features, among others, Claude Monet and Canadian Emily Carr. We're also going to be viewing the Petit Palais' showing of the Horovitz collection.
An exhibition organized by choreographer Benjamin Millepied, formerly of the Paris Ballet.
A selection of landscapes by Gauguin, Monet, Klimt, Carr and van Gogh.
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