The vast history and beauty of Paris only becomes apparent when you first visit the city, which is filled with breath-taking sights, intriguing historical secrets and indescribable ambience. If you’re going for a weekend, you won’t be able to fit everything in, but you can certainly visit Paris’s most essential attractions over a two night trip.
What are the benefits of a city break in Paris?
The Eurostar makes Paris only hours away for those from the UK and it’s quick, cheap and easy to travel there by aeroplane – making it as easy to travel to the French capital as it is to travel across the UK.
Paris is a legendary tourist destination because it offers something for everyone, from the romance of the cobbled side streets and pavement cafés to the fantastic museums, elegant shops, bohemian bookshops and refined nightlife.
For the art and history enthusiasts
The ancient Gallic tribe, the Parisii, gave their name to the city over 2000 years ago. Over the centuries, Paris has had its fair share of bloody battles and gruesome history. From the French Revolution in 1792 to the invasion of the Nazis in 1940, you will not be short of historical excitement when visiting Paris.
Paris will never disappoint art lovers. The city’s museums range from the large, famous Louvre and d’Orsay to smaller galleries hidden down side streets showing up-and-coming artists. The beautiful Louvre building, with its famous glass pyramids and fountains outside, is certainly worth a visit. Inside, crowds head to the Mona Lisa – one of the world’s most famous paintings – but the museum has an extensive, breath-taking collection of art from the great antique civilisations up to the mid-twentieth century.
On the agenda
The Eiffel Tower
This iconic symbol encapsulates the elegance of the city. Although the “iron tower” was extremely unpopular with the locals back in 1889, it has attracted over 220 million visitors since then. You may consider taking a trip up the tower – a cliché, but essential nonetheless.
Arc de Triomphe
Second to the Eiffel Tower, the 164-foot Arc de Triomphe is one of the most famous sights in Paris. Commissioned by Napoléon in 1806, the neoclassic monument is a popular tourist attraction. The unknown solider from World War I is buried beneath the Arc.
Adjacent to the Louvre, the royal roots of the elaborate Tuileries garden date back to the 16th century. Today, the garden is perfect for a relaxing walk after visiting the palace or a peaceful place to sit in the Paris sunshine. The garden is filled with spectacular artful symmetry and eye catching greenery.
A little bit of love
Paris is so famed for its romantic atmosphere that it’s been dubbed the “city of love”. Starry-eyed evening walks along the Seine or a kiss under the Pont-Marie are perfect for that romantic weekend away with your loved one. You can’t go wrong with a candlelight dinner in one of Paris’s finest restaurants. Le Meurice offer gastronomic experience, combined with mosaic floors, crystal chandeliers and a friendly service.
Where to stay
Paris has a fabulous range of accommodation to suit any type of traveller. For the adventurous backpacker, hostels are a great way to save money and get a decent night’s sleep. Many business travellers would recommend one of the serviced apartments Paris has to offer. A Paris serviced apartment allows room for privacy and gets you away from the tourist crowds.
Where to eat
Parisian cuisine is famous throughout the world. Who would want to pass on the chance to indulge in local delicacies whilst visiting the city? But if frog’s legs are not your style, France’s bakeries are inimitable. Enjoy the lifestyle of a true Parisian and people watch from a street-side café whilst tucking into a croissant and a strong coffee. Alternatively, buy a freshly baked baguette with some authentic French brie, grab a blanket and relax in one of Paris’s famous parks.