7 Things to see (& Skip) in Paris, France

If you search the web for things to see in Paris, France, there's no shortage of recommendations. So I've rounded up all of my favorites. Check out the best things to see (& skip) in Paris, France. 

 

See: The View from the Top of the Arc de Triomphe

Skip: Climbing the Eiffel Tower

  Under the Eiffel Tower

Under the Eiffel Tower

Most people don't visit Paris without seeing the Eiffel Tower. By all means, go see it up close. But skip the view from the top... because you're standing in the building that make's Paris' skyline Paris' skyline! If you don't care whether the Eiffel is within view, save your money and visit the Sacré-Cœur, or Sacred Heart Church, which has beautiful views for free.

  Sacred Heart Church

Sacred Heart Church

  Scared Heart View

Scared Heart View

According to locals, the best view of the city is from the Arc de Triomphe. You get a 360° view of the city with a beautiful view of the Eiffel Tower. Plus, you'll save a few Euros.

  Arc de Triomphe view

Arc de Triomphe view

The Arc de Triomphe is located in Paris' Champs-Élysées neighborhood, which has tons of other touristy and non-touristy things to check out - like Maison Guerlain, one of the world's oldest and most exclusive perfume boutiques, the Tuileries Gardens, and the Louvre

  Louvre

Louvre

 

see: Parisian street art 

skip: spending all day at museums 

  Street art by Gregos

Street art by Gregos

If you're looking to see a side of French art that most tourists usually glaze over, check out the street art in Paris' Montmartre district. This place has always been a well-known home to artists, going all the way back to Picasso and Van Gogh, so the street art in Montmartre takes the cake for some of the best in the city. 

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You'll find everything from ever-changing wall murals to more permanent, unique sculptures and statues that all add to the unique culture of this artsy district. 

  Le Passe-Muraille

Le Passe-Muraille

The Le Passe-Muraille was created for author Marcel Aymé based on his book in which the character Dutilleul could (you guessed it) walk through walls. If you're interested in learning more about the art in Montmartre, there are some pretty cool free walking tours worth checking out. 

 

See: A Local Favorite

Skip: The Overpriced Restaurants

  Urfa Durum Paris

Urfa Durum Paris

  Homemade Wraps from Urfa Durum

Homemade Wraps from Urfa Durum

We met a local couple during our weekend trip and put them in charge of dinner on Friday. They took us to their neighborhood kebob spot - Urfa Durum. Between the line out the door and the smell of smoked meats from down the block, we knew it was a good choice. 

  Chicken Kebob

Chicken Kebob

The small menu is in French, offering a variety of different meats grilled to perfection in their homemade wraps. While we waited for our food, we stopped and grabbed local French beers to wash down our meal. Plus, instead of spending 100 Euro on a delicious dinner, we only spent 10. Perfection? So much yes. 

 

See: A Cocktail Club

Skip: The Tourist Trap Bar

  Outside of Le Syndicat Cocktail Club

Outside of Le Syndicat Cocktail Club

On the topic of local favorites, do yourself a favor and skip the tourist trap bars. I actually saw someone wearing a Hard Rock Cafe Paris sweatshirt, and I'm sorry but no 🤦‍♀️ 

After our amazing kebob dinner, our new friends took us down the street to La Syndicat Cocktail Club. I am not exaggerating when I say that this place looked like an absolute dump from the outside 😂  but our friends assured us that this bar was legit, and was in fact named one of the best 50 bars in the world. 

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The inside of the bar had a much classier, chicer vibe than the outside. People sat around drinking, laughing, and enjoying each other's company inside the dimly-lit lounge. Their most popular drink is a three-part whiskey cocktail you mix on your own - but all of the options were crowd pleasers

 

See: Laduree Macaroons

Skip: Dessert

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Nothing says French dessert like a macaroon, and nothing says macaroons like Ladurée. I've been ogling over their Instagram for years now, so it was a must-stop on my list. The place itself is gorgeous, and it's worth it to stop by just for a pic. If dessert's not your thing, the location on Rue street also houses a restaurant and pretty swanky-looking bar. 

  Ladurée Paris le Bar

Ladurée Paris le Bar

But really, who can resist these babies? 

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They're almost to pretty to eat... Almost. 

 

See: Crazy Horse

Skip: Moulin Rouge

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Moulin Rouge is definitely one of the quintessential tourist spots you think of when you think of Paris. But if you're looking for a cabaret show, opt for Crazy Horse instead. Crazy Horse isn't unique to Paris (anymore), but it got its start in the city of lights, and is still filled with plenty of Parisian flair 💃

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Crazy Horse weaves their version of some modern pop songs into the show (like Beyonce and B. Spears), for a cool juxtaposition between classic and modern burlesque. 

 

See: Where You End Up

Skip: The Reservation

  La Maison Rose Cafe

La Maison Rose Cafe

One of my favorite things about Paris is the number of bars and restaurants on almost every corner. If you have your eye on a spot, make a reservation, but the best meals we had in Paris came from just walking around to see what we could find. Most restaurants have their menus posted outside, so it's easy to stop by and check it out before committing. 

  Le Bon Pecheur

Le Bon Pecheur

Blame the large patio and heat lamps, but we knew we had to try Le Bon Pecheur. The inside is equally as cute with nautical-themed decor - which makes sense, because the name translates to 'The Good Fisherman.' But it was the food that made this place memorable.

  Salad with fried goat cheese and poached egg

Salad with fried goat cheese and poached egg

  Dat Sea Bass tho

Dat Sea Bass tho

The menu was large with plenty of options, and everything we tried was delicious Taking a chance on this place was a definite win. 

  And of course, French onion soup

And of course, French onion soup

Another gem we found by chance was Ar Poul Gwen Creperie

  Ar Poul Gwen Creperie

Ar Poul Gwen Creperie

It was the cute, kitschy decor that lured us here, and the food did not disappoint. They had a variety of sweet and savory crepes on the menu, as well as lunch specials that combined the two for under 15 Euro. 

  Savory crepe at Au Poul Gwen

Savory crepe at Au Poul Gwen

 

Share your favorite must-see spots in Paris in the comments. Au revoir for now 🇫🇷