It is quite intimidating to try and make a list of tourist attractions in Paris. The French capital is steeped with history, romance, and culture that has awed travelers from all across the globe. Paris is one of the most-visited cities in the world, clocking in at over 18 million tourists annually. While some come to see the Eiffel Tower, others head to the Louvre to see Mona Lisa smile. With French cuisine and art providing the perfect backdrop, there is never a dull moment in Paris. In this blog, we will present our pick of the top 10 attractions that you just cannot miss when visiting Paris.
- Disneyland Paris
Disneyland is located only 20 miles from downtown Paris. It is the most popular amusement park in Europe. All of your favorite Disney cartoon characters come to life at this park. The park is not just for Disney lovers. There are many options for shopping, dining and entertainment. Disneyland Paris is also home to many hotels and a golf course. Spread over 20 kilometers, the park was only the second Disneyland to be opened outside of USA.
- Sacré-Cœur Basilica
The Sacré-Cœur Basilica, or the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, is located on the hilltop of Monte Marte, the highest point in the city of Paris. It was built in 1874 and has since dominated the skyline of Paris. The walk up the hill is steep but quite enjoyable with several street performers and artists displaying their skills. You can have a stunning sweeping view of the whole city of Paris from the hilltop. The basilica itself is also a significant work of architecture, built in a unique fusion of Romanesque and Byzantine styles.
- Musee d’Orsay
Although overshadowed by the Louvre, the Musee d’Orsay is not only one of the largest museums in Europe, but also one of the most prominent art museum in the world. It is housed in the refurbished Gare d’Orsay train station, which is a work of art in itself. The museum was established in 1986 and is considered to have the largest collection of impressionist and post-impressionist paintings in the world. Major artists whose works are on display in this museum include Monet, Manet, Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Renoir.
- Grand Palais
The Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées, or simply Grand Palais, is a grand museum and exhibition hall on the banks of the River Seine. It was completed in 1900 in a typical Beaux-Arts style of architecture that is prevalent in many parts of France. A stunning glass vault and light iron framing are features of this style of architecture. While the ground level is home to several art exhibits, the basement is home to the police station that manages the security of these exhibitions.
- Center Pompidou
The Pompidou Center is located in the Marais neighborhood of Paris. The complex, designed in a unique style of architecture, is home to the Musee National d’Art Moderne, one of the largest modern art museums in Europe. Other attractions in the complex include the huge Public Information Library and the IRCAM music and acoustic research center. The complex was completed in 1977 and is named after Georges Pompidou, the French President from the early 1970s who had commissioned it. The Center Pompidou attracts over 5 million visitors annually with the bulk of them heading to the art museum.
The Avenue Champ-Elysees is one of the most prominent avenues of Paris. Its stretches from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde – almost 1.9 kilometers. The avenue is lined with theaters, luxury shops, boutique stores, cafes, and restaurants. It is the site for the annual Bastille Day military parade. The avenue is also the final stage of the Tour de France cycle race. Champ-Elysees is beautifully lit up during the Christmas celebrations. Even if you are not planning to buy anything, take a walk along Champ-Elysees and soak in the beauty of Paris.
- Notre-Dame Cathedral
The Notre-Dame Cathedral is a major architectural landmark and one of the most visited attractions in Paris. This Roman Catholic cathedral was completed in 1345 after over 150 years of construction. It is regarded as one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture. The heavily ornate façade with its sculptures and gargoyles make the church face one of the most recognized in the world. The coronation ceremony of Napoleon Bonaparte was held in this cathedral in 1804.
- Arc de Triomphe
The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most iconic monuments of Paris. It is located on the western flank of Champ-Elysees and marks the center of Place Charles de Gaulle which is an intersection of 12 avenues. The arch was built to commemorate those who died in the Napoleonic Wars and French Revolution. At its basement there is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I. The design of this arch was inspired from the ancient Roman Arch of Titus. It was completed in 1836 and rises to a height of 50 meters.
- Louvre Museum
The Louvre Museum is the home of the iconic Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci. Housed in the refurbished Louvre Palace, the museum is one of the most visited in the world – attracting over 7 million visitors every year. It was founded in 1793 with just 537 paintings. Today is has a grand display of almost 38,000 objects belonging to different periods in history. Works of many masters are on display at the Louvre including Michelangelo, Raphael, Rembrandt, and Bernini. The Louvre has a display area of over 72,000 square meters, making it very difficult to cover all the sections in one visit. Pick the guide map from the information center and mark your favorites before walking the corridors of this museum.
- Eiffel Tower
The Eiffel Tower is not only the symbol of Paris, but one of the most recognized monuments in the world. The tower was constructed in 1889 as a gate for the 1889 World’s Fair. It is named after renowned architect Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built it. At a height of 342 meters, it was the tallest man-made structure in the world when it was completed. Eiffel Tower is presently the ‘most visited paid-monument in the world.’ The observation deck of the tower is at 276 meters above ground level, making it the highest publicly accessible observation deck in the European Union. There are restaurants in the tower at 2 lower levels.
Originally posted 2017-06-07 06:32:01.