Planning a trip to France in the near future? Almost every tourist’s bucket list includes a stop in Paris. Tourists recognize it as the world’s most romantic city.
But it’s also home to numerous world-famous landmarks that frequently make the list of top spots in travel publications, films, books, and magazines. From the city’s rich and sumptuous heritage to its changing seasons, it’s never been more convenient to go to Paris than now.
Not yet convinced? All the reasons to go and the best time to visit Paris are below for your convenience.
Why You Should Visit Paris
You can find so much to see and do in Paris that no tourist who visits the city will be disappointed. Paris is a must-see for any visitor interested in learning more about French history and food and taking advantage of the city’s many photo ops.
Being the country’s cultural center, there is no shortage of culinary options in Paris.
Frog legs or local delicacies? Casual or fine dining? No problem! Paris has enough to please even the pickiest eater. Compared to any other European city, Paris’ name brings up a slew of world-famous attributes.
Aside from the recognizable Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame de Paris, the Louvre Museum, Versailles, and several gardens, the city boasts more historical sites than any other.
Paris has one of the world’s best café scenes.
The pavement café is an iconic part of the city’s social and gastronomic scene and with good reason! An enjoyable way to start the day is at one of the city’s many sidewalk cafés, which has become the daily routine of many Parisians.
Overall Best Time to Visit Paris
Spring and summer offer the best time to go to Paris. While the weather is ideal for sightseeing, a slew of festivities take place across the city to raise the spirits even more.
If you want to experience Paris in the same way that the locals do, go during spring and summer. However, you’ll always find something exciting on the streets of Paris, regardless of the time of year.
Therefore, if you want to maximize your time in Paris, you should go when it suits you.
Because of the wide variety of things to discover and enjoy, including but not limited to culinary funfairs, fun events, tastings, outdoor entertainment, and more, each season will bring something unique for you to do.
The weather turns chilly and rainy from October through November, which means that you’ll be less likely to visit outdoor attractions.
The winters aren’t too cold in Paris. Temperatures seldom fall below freezing in the winter months of December, January, and February, but the lack of humidity causes the air to seem frigid.
Cheapest Time to Visit Paris
It’s cheaper to visit the city in the winter, especially in November, before most people are on vacation.
Traveling to Paris in February and March is less expensive than in the summer, but hotels fill up quickly due to conferences and business trips. During July and August, the weather is hot and congested.
And it’s the busiest time for tourists, which means prices are up. Summer travel to Paris is great if you want to see the city as the locals do, as they tend to leave the city before the tourist season arrives and leave it all to you.
Plan your vacation for spring or fall, and you’ll avoid the crowds and higher expenses that come with summer.
Avoid Paris in late June and August, around Christmas and New Year’s, and from mid-February to mid-March to avoid high prices and large crowds.
Least Busy Time to Visit Paris
It’s best to go to Paris in the spring and fall, especially in April and May, and in September and October when the crowds are smaller, and the weather is not overly warm.
In the spring, petals give way to leaves, floral window boxes provide color to Paris’ Haussmannian façade, and florist shops overflow with fragrant blooms.
This is the perfect time of year to stock up on picnic fixings at one of Paris’ many parks and gardens, such as its most well-known one, the Jardin du Luxembourg.
You can also take advantage of the city’s many UNESCO World Heritage-listed riverfront parks, such as the Parc Rives de Seine, which are former expressways turned into parks. It’s a beautiful time to visit in the fall since the weather is still beautiful.
The city’s already unique cultural offerings will receive a boost when the changing seasons bring out the hues of fall. Paris is the least crowded from November to February, which is its low season.
If you’re trying to avoid crowds, winter is an excellent season to visit Paris because the city is less crowded and less expensive. Snowfall is quite rare in this area, which is usually wet and cold.
Worst Time to Visit Paris
Paris is the world’s most famous city destination, with an estimated 30 million tourists every year.
Even though Paris is a lively city year-round, August is the worst time to visit because most vacationers descend upon the city during this month.
In August, if you want to avoid the crowd in Paris, visit the city’s lesser-known neighborhoods. As the weather remains almost unchanged from the previous month, travelers continue to flock to the city for the sun, festivals, and iconic sites.
It’s impossible to avoid the crowds on weekends and in the first half of the month.
Remember to double-check your bookings if you want to travel in August, as many establishments close for the summer. Many Parisians also leave the city during this month, escaping to beaches in southern France and Corsica.
Things to Consider
With the following Paris travel hacks, you’ll save money, get a better night’s sleep, discover hidden gems, make friends with the locals, and generally have a more enjoyable time in the City of Light:
- Plan your trip to Paris during the spring or fall when the weather is milder, and there are fewer tourists in the city.
- If you like shopping, you might think about going to Paris in January or July, when sales are taking place because it is possible to discover fantastic deals at those times.
- Book in advance and avoid waiting in line to make the most of your time.
- Only hire regular taxis at the airport. If hiring private transfers, make sure they are verified.
- Take the bus and save money. The best way to get around Paris is using the Parisian Metro.
- Discover the Parisian way of life in addition to the city’s famous landmarks. Visit the markets in your area. Take a stroll through the area surrounding a university. Visit a local grocery store. Find out where individuals are employed. Take a walk through some of the local neighborhoods.
- When visiting Paris, make sure to steer clear of the tourist traps.
- Don’t try street gambling.
- Learn a few useful French words and phrases.
- Always use the French greeting “bonjour,” which means “hello,” while at a shop or restaurant.
- Don’t flaunt your expensive possessions.
- Don’t rush things. Take your time, and don’t try to see everything in just a few days.
- Enroll in a culinary lesson taught by the natives.
- Tip for service, but don’t give high tips.
- Don’t forget to pick up some locally-made mementos.
Here are additional tips we’ve compiled to help you plan a vacation to Paris without breaking the bank.
- You may get unlimited rides on the metro for 1-5 days with a card that costs as little as €14.
- Eat your meals in the outside seating areas of restaurants or cafes, which is a more cost-effective option than eating indoors.
- Pack a lunch and go grocery shopping at one of the numerous supermarkets located across the city.
- If you want to save money on wine, bring a bottle with you instead of ordering at a restaurant, and always remember to bring along a corkscrew to enjoy your bottle.
- Paris Gardens are gorgeous to see and they’re entirely free.
- Staying at a hostel located in an area that’s not too expensive is highly recommended. Montmartre, Montparnasse, Le Marais, and the Latin Quarter are among Paris’ most reasonably priced neighborhoods.
- Check to see whether the place you’re staying has complimentary breakfast.
- Schedule your visit to museums after hours. You only need to know where to go to find out which of Paris’s many museums offer free admission or discounted rates.
- If you’re under 25 and a citizen of the EU, you’re eligible for free admission to many museums. On the first Sunday of each month, several museums and other attractions provide free access to visitors.
- Sacre Coeur in Montmartre is an excellent option for those who don’t want to pay to go up the Arc de Triomphe, the Montparnasse Tower, or the Eiffel Tower since it provides great views of Paris from above for free.
- Because of the magnificent tombs and the fact that admission is free, strolling around the Paris cemeteries is an excellent way to spend a day.
- If you want a nice cappuccino at a lower price, go to a McCafé.
- When you go out to eat, instead of getting a bottle of water, which may cost more than five euros, ask your server for a “carafe d’eau.” Tap water is safe in Paris.
Frequently Asked Questions
We want your trip to Paris to be as exciting and hassle-free as possible. Find answers to all of your Paris travel inquiries below.
Is Paris safe to visit?
The people of France are kind and helpful. However, huge cities and the most popular tourist destinations may have as much crime and mischief as any other place.
Avoid becoming a victim of pickpockets by keeping your luggage or backpack in sight while on the bus or train. Don’t carry your camera or wallet in your back pocket when you’re out and about.
Keep them in your bag, preferably in a closed pocket that is out of sight. Be wary if someone approaches you at a railway station or tourist attraction. Individuals who approach you may be trying to scam you.
Do French people speak English?
According to the statistics, just twenty percent of French people can speak English at a native level, and only forty percent are proficient enough for conversation. Therefore, it’s not entirely false to say that most French individuals have a limited command of the English language.
What type of plugs does Paris use?
Paris operates on 220 V/50 Hz with typical European round, two-pin connectors. Adapters may be purchased on Amazon, at retail outlets, and in any tourist shop in Paris.
Is Paris expensive?
Paris has one of the highest living costs in the world. However, a local who understands the city’s secrets may live relatively well without paying the same rates that visitors do. Earnings tend to reflect the high cost of living, and expats who find work in Paris will earn the highest salaries in France.
Can I use US dollars in Paris?
The currency used in Paris is the euro. Most institutions do not take United States dollars as a form of payment; however, certain hotels, stores, and restaurants may accept United States dollars at a predetermined exchange rate.
How much to tip in Paris?
In restaurants, tipping is not compulsory, but if you had a good experience, you can leave 5 to 10 percent of the bill. Fifteen percent is a substantial tip if you had a great dinner or want to return to the restaurant and want the wait staff to remember you.
Where to stay in Paris for a first-time visitor?
The Louvre and Bourse neighborhoods are the ideal places to stay in Paris for first-time tourists. One may find just about everything within walking distance of one of these neighborhoods. Several historic sites, boat trips, and restaurants are within a few blocks of your hotel.
What is the most famous district in Paris?
Many of Paris’ most well-known sites, parks, and museums may be found in the city’s 1st Arrondissement, the most famous district in Paris.
What is Paris most known for?
France’s capital, Paris, is one of the world’s most beautiful cities. The Louvre Museum, the iconic Eiffel Tower, and the Notre Dame de Paris have made it famous across the globe. It has a reputation for being a cultured and romantic city. High-quality food and café terraces are other well-known features of the city.
Do I need travel insurance?
It all depends. Some insurance plans in the U.S. may not cover you outside of the nation, while others do. It’s best to speak with your insurance provider. As usual, if you have any problems while in France, you may always contact your insurance by phone.
So, What’s the Best Time to Visit Paris?
Paris is home to a plethora of architectural wonders that have gained worldwide acclaim for their awe-inspiring beauty. Regardless of the time of year, there will always be many visitors and crowds. If you’re just looking for a cheap vacation, winter is the best time to visit.
Although Paris is a popular tourist destination, keep in mind that it receives upwards of 30 million visitors each year. However, with such amazing sights and rich history, you’ll fall in love with the city, no matter when you go.