Paris doesn't slow down after the holidays, in fact, it starts gearing up for even more events. Known as the City of Celebration — to us, at least — Paris kicks off 2020 with Paris Fashion Week, the Leonardo da Vinci exhibition at the Louvre, wine tastings, and Chinese New Year on the 25th.
The weather may be chilly but you can still enjoy a day trip to the Champagne region, Versailles, or the Loire Valley.
|The Top Day Trips from Paris||The Most Popular Activities||The Best Ways To Visit Versailles|
|The Best Food & Wine Activities||The Hottest Events In Paris||New Exhibits At The Museums|
It's easy to understand why travelers rave about this nighttime activity — it combines the best things to do in Paris all in one stellar evening. The night begins on a boat, with a glass of champagne; in front of you all the fabulous architecture of Paris drifts past your window table. After dinner, take in a bird's eye view of the city from the Eiffel Tower. Et finalement, a trip to Moulin Rouge to see firsthand why this legendary cabaret is still as popular as it was when it opened in 1889. Includes transportation to and from your hotel.
Save Time. Stay Warm. Be Happy.
Baby, it's cold out there! This tour gets you ahead of the loooong lines and into the world's largest & most popular museum in no time flat. With close to 10 million visitors each year, it's essential to find a way to skip the line. Group size is limited, so personal attention is a high priority.
This is what we want! If you know us you won't be surprised to learn that this is our favorite way to visit the Louvre. Following an evening guided tour of the museum, head over to a nearby wine bar for an after-hours guided tasting. Great wine + great art — does Paris get any better than that? Friday evenings in January.
Our secret way to avoid the long lines at the Eiffel Tower is to sign up for a skip-the-line-tour. Meet your guide at the base of the tower and follow her past the long lineups. You get priority access, plus your guide fills you in on the history and fun facts. Since availability at the Tower changes, the best way to approach a no-wait ET visit is to check with the Skip the Eiffel Tower Lines link below. Also see, Big List of Eiffel Tower Tours…
Everything looks better from a boat cruising down the Seine! On this relaxing ride you see Paris from a different perspective. All the famous landmarks will pass by as you enjoy a multi-course French meal with wine. If you want to splurge, book the Service Premier option, which gets you a private table at the front of the boat. Every evening in January. Also see, The Six Top Dinner Cruises in Paris…
We're adamant — there's no better way to celebrate your stay Paris than a champagne-fueled cruise down the Seine, the most romantic river in the world. You'll also discover it's the very best way to see the sights of the city as you glide past the monuments on a bateau sipping bubbly! Thursday, Friday, Saturday in January.
The fun starts with a leisurely multi-course meal featuring classic French food and wine. Then, settle back and enjoy the timeless cabaret show. The best part? All the details have been arranged for you — tickets to the show, dinner, and even transportation to and from your hotel. This sells out weeks in advance, so be sure to book early! Also see, The 6 Best Evenings In Paris…
A fun art-centered tour of the fascinating hilltop village of Montmartre, where you focus on the history of the artists who once lived here as you visit places like Van Gogh's house, the windmill-cabaret painted by Renoir, the site of Picasso's early studio, and more. Also included is a skip-the-line ticket for the famous Impressionist museum, Musée d'Orsay. This activity has hundreds of 5-star reviews, so be sure to book early,
Here's how to feel like you're starring in your own movie set in Paris. Climb into the back seat of a sleek, black Citroën Traction Avant from the 1940s, driven by a "gentleman driver". It's so much fun seeing the sights like this, and made even better with the sun roof opened all the way. As we say in our review, this is "retro luxury from another era."
Attending a classical music concert at one of the iconic churches of Paris will create a powerful memory of your trip to the City of Music. Listen to favorites by Mozart, Pachelbel, Schubert, Vivaldi, Bach, and Beethoven in some of the city's oldest buildings. Similarly, experiencing a performance at Palais Garnier, the Belle Epoque masterpiece, will be a night to remember. Tickets are limited; don't miss out, book today.
If there's any place that out-spectacles Moulin Rouge it's Lido de Paris, located on legendary Champs-Elysées. We found the show to be absolutely thrilling. This activity also packs in a dinner cruise on the Seine and an evening visit to the Eiffel Tower, making for a never-to-forget night out in Paris. Fridays and Saturdays in January. Includes transportation between venues.
We loved this evening out in Paris — a classic 3-course dinner at the Lido followed by the entertaining show. All in all, it's a class act. Includes transportation from and to your hotel. Highly recommended by us.
One of our most appreciated pieces of advice is to arrange your transportation from the airport into Paris before you leave home. It's comforting to be prepared when you arrive. One easy and affordable way is to book a shuttle van service right to your hotel. But our absolute top recommendation is to arrange a — a VIP private transfer in a luxurious Mercedes S-Class with a professional driver. It's the only way to do it!
The historic and charming Latin Quarter is one of the best places to stay in Paris. Luckily, it's also home to some of our favourite hotels in the city. Here, you are in the center of things, with easy access to Saint-Germain, the Marais, the Seine, the Paris Islands and Notre Dame Cathedral. Let's take a look at the new 2020 list of the best hotels in the Latin Quarter, with current prices.
The Paris City Pass saves money & time — you get into the museums for free and ride the Metro for free. But the big advantage is bypassing the long Paris lines. If you've ever stood in line for hours at the Louvre, you'll appreciate how important that is. Even better, we've arranged special savings for our readers. Use the discount code INSIDERS5 for extra savings. Also see, Complete Guide to the Paris City Pass…
You'll feel like a royalty on this magical day in Versailles. You're driven directly from your Paris hotel to the royal estate where priority access gets you ahead of the lines and directly into the grand chateau for a guided tour. Afterwards, stroll through the winter garden until lunch on the Grand Canal. There's plenty of time to visit the Grand Trianon and Marie Antoinette's fantasy village farm. Also see, The 5 Best Ways to Visit Versailles…
If you want to send only half a day at Versailles, this tour is a great way to visit royal estate and skip the lines here. Led by an expert guide this activity includes transportation right from your hotel. It's available in the morning and in the afternoon.
It's known as the Land of 1000 Castles and it's easy to get from Paris to the splendid chateaux of the Loire on a day trip. Take a leisurely tour of the magnificent castles on the banks of the river. Step back in time as you wander the gardens, mazes and traverse the moats of the Renaissance castles. Includes hotel pick-up and return.
On this day trip you concentrate on the castles and spend more time visiting Chenonceau, Cheverny & Chambord, the three most spectacular castles in the valley. We like this activity because lunch is included as well as pick-up from your Paris address. Also available as a private tour.
Your car winds way through the celebrated vineyards and villages where champagne has been made for centuries. On this small-group tour, your driver will take you along the picturesque Route de Champagne with plenty of tours and tasting at top producers. Pick up is at your Paris address, so sample all you want while someone else does the driving. Wednesdays & Fridays in January. Also see, The 3 Top Day Trips to Champagne…
This small-group tour takes you directly to the Land of Bubbly for a full-day exploration that includes 8 champagne tastings. Available Mondays & Thursdays in November.
Seven decades have passed since the Allied forces came ashore at Normandy. See for yourself the beautiful Normandy countryside and the most important sites of the invasion. You spend the day exploring the beaches, monuments, and museums that mark the start of liberation for France. This small group tour picks you up at your hotel and delivers you back at the end of the day.
Why not spend a day out of Paris exploring the coast of Normandy and the fairytale island of Mont Saint-Michel? Visit the Benedictine abbey that becomes separated from the mainland during high tide. Wander along the narrow streets, the shops, and the abbey's ramparts. On your way you drive through the picturesque Normandy countryside. Lunch is included, as is pick-up at your hotel.
It seems incredible that high-speed trains & the channel tunnel now make possible to visit London on a day trip from Paris. Your journey starts at Gare du Nord in Paris, where you meet your guide and hop on the famous Eurostar train to London. In store for you is an extensive, open-top bus tour around London and guided tours, including The Beatles London Walking Tour. It's a wonderful day that gets you back to Paris the same evening.
These travel ideas are only a few of the wonders of France within easy reach of Paris. You might also think of visiting wine regions, Euro Disneyland, even Bruges or London! It's always worth it to plan for a day or two to explore beyond the city gates to visit France Profonde or even elsewhere in Europe.
Go behind the scenes on this small-group tasting tour to some of the best patisseries and chocolatiers in this iconic neighborhood. Don't miss the chance to taste regional specialties and find out how all those delectable delights are made. Choose from one of two gourmet havens — the morning and afternoon tours in Saint-Germain, of an afternoon tour in the Marais.
This very popular food tour takes you back to the Marais to visit the top food & wine shops in the historic quartier. You learn about and taste the best of French foods like baguettes, chocolate, cheese, charcuterie, and wine. Start off at the oldest food market in the city. This one is garnering high praise from hungry travelers.
Take a break from sightseeing for a fun, casual, and affordable lunch cruise along the Seine. Getting out on the river is something you must do in Paris, so why not have lunch at the same time? Look out the window at the monuments of Paris passing by. Combine great dining with a tour of Paris… riverside. Available everyday. This lunch cruise is very popular, so book early.
You start your culinary afternoon on the historic Left Bank, a gourmet haven. At a traditional fromagerie you learn about French cheeses while you sample them. Next up are freshly baked baguettes followed by French wine. Don't forget the foie gras! Also see, Guide to Food & Wine Walking Tours…
The weather outside may be chilly but you'll be warm inside a charming wine cellar smack in the center of Paris. The professional sommeliers on these fun tastings cover a lot of French wine territory and deliver an extensive tasting of wines — from Champagne to Sancerre, from Bordeaux to Burgundy, from Alsace to the Rhône. It all takes place in a wine bar steps away from the Louvre. Also see, The Ten Best Food & Wine Experiences In Paris…
In this small-group food activity you learn all about the proper way to age the cheeses of France. In a fromagerie in the Marais you meet the affineur (expert in aging cheeses) and descend into the private cheese cellar where you taste seven classic French cheeses, along with wines. Discover how cheese became one of the most important food groups of France, along with baguettes and chocolate! The group size is limited to 10 to ensure there's more cheese for you. Also see, Five Top Cheese Tastings In Paris…
When in Paris why not take the opportunity to dine on top of the most popular monument in the world? Book a table under the new glass dome on Level One of the Eiffel Tower. For this lunch you will have a priority access pass to the Tower that gets you on the express elevator to the restaurant on Level One. After lunch you are free to take the stairs to Level Two for an even better view.
Imagine taking a leisurely cruise down the Seine in a bateau… while being served a 3-course gourmet meal prepared by a team of French chefs. Well, imagine no longer — all the details of this fabulous food activity have been arranged including round-trip transportation to and from your hotel.
The Left Bank is the perfect place to stay in Paris. Since Hemingway and the Jazz Age, the area has defined the essence of the city. The Saint-Germain neighborhood is charming, and so are the best of the hotels in the quartier. In fact, here is our selection of the top Left Bank hotels — with a couple of bonuses as well!
New Year's Day is Wednesday, January 1, 2020. As this is a French National Holiday most shops, services, museums & restaurants will be closed.
On your mark, get ready, shop! In January 2020 one thousand Paris boutiques and grands magasins commence the annual January sales. France being France, even store sales must be authorized by the préfectures of each département (local government). It's hard to describe the shopping frenzy that the January sales inspire. Here are a few of our favorite department stores:
• Le Bon Marché…
• Galeries Lafayette…
Although you can't buy tickets to the fashion shows, if you hang out in the trendy bars around the Carrousel du Louvre you might have a celebrity sighting. Be on the lookout for Jean-Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood, Karl Lagerfeld, and a collection of tall, thin models. (Or is that a mirror you're looking in?!)
• January 15 to 24, 2020
Discover the latest trends in decoration, design, furniture, accessories and textiles under one roof.
• Paris Nord Villepinte
• January 17 to 21, 2020
The hottest trot race in France, and one of the richest events in the world in this sport.
A fairytale, holiday setting and a wonderful show for the whole family.
It's Year of the Rat so, if you're in Paris this month make your way to the 13th Arrondissement for the annual Chinese New Year's Parade and Lantern Festival. Get ready for a day of parades, paper lanterns, and other festivities.
The twice-in-a millennium da Vinci show continues in January at the Louvre bringing together a unique collection of works only the top museum in France could assemble. Timed, pre-purchase tickets are mandatory for this exhibit. You can buy them online using the link below, then clicking in the red box on the right of that page. (Like most things about Paris museum websites, the ticket-purchasing procedure barely functions, so be patient.)
• Hall Napoleon, Louvre
• Ends February 24, 2020
It's the final days for this first-ever show examining Degas' passionate work with the Paris Opera of the 19th century.
This exhibition brings together many of the odd, unique works from Pablo Picasso's "magic paintings" period between 1926 and 1930
• Ends February 2, 2020
This exhibition focuses on his collection from his travels in Africa and Oceania.
Examines the impact on the art world of this critic and writer from the late 19th century.
British sculptor Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975) forged her own feminine approach to sculpture. This is her first exhibition in France.
This large-scale exhibition is dedicated to the French architect and designer Charlotte Perriand (1903-1999), a leading figure of 20th century design.
The Dreamer of the Forest brings together a hundred works by forty artists on loan from museums and private collections. The dynamic collection sheds light on Ossip Zadkine's work, and his organic connection to the forest.
Known has the most prolific 17th-century Neapolitan painter, Luca Giordano (1634-1705) worked at such a fast pace that he was nicknamed "The Thunderbolt". Five hundred years later, Giordano has his first retrospective, with ninety works on display.
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