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HOW TO SPEND THREE DAYS IN PARIS: AN ITINERARY

29th September 2016
how to spend three days in paris
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I get it! How do you spend only three days in Paris and feel like you’ve seen enough of the city to go home and tell your friends ‘I’ve been to Paris‘? The trouble is, the city of lights is just so vast and there is so much to explore!

But if you plan it right, three days in Paris can be just the right amount of time. Besides, even a brief trip to the city is magical…

I’ve just stepped off the bus home from a couple of days in the city and while there, I packed in as much as I possibly could! From snapping the Eiffel Tower to visiting the Louvre, you can check out some of my favourite pictures from the trip on my Instagram.

Day One

Visit the Eiffel Tower

What is more Parisian than catching a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower?! Start your day off with an iconic photo walk along the Seine. Start at Trocadero (metro line 9) and you’ll be greeted with a stunning water mirror shot of the Eiffel Tower. From there, head east towards Notre-Dame and Île de la Cité.

One of my favourite places to take photos of the Eiffel Tower is Passerelle Debilly, a small passenger footbridge that was first opened for the World’s fair in 1900.

Ever since then, it’s accommodated millions of pedestrians, all eager to get a better view over the Eiffel Tower and Seine river. The light from this bridge is perfect around sunset. It’s worth noting that it’s pretty lovely during the day too…how to spend three days in paris

Check out the Louvre

After walking along the Seine for about 40 minutes, passing iconic sites such as the Alexandre iii bridge and the Tuileries garden, you’ll reach the world famous Louvre with that iconic glass pyramid.

When you think of the Louvre, your first thoughts are probably of elbowing your way through selfie sticks to catch a glimpse of the Mona Lisa. But the Louvre museum offers so much more than a maybe smiling muse. Home to medieval ruins and plenty of priceless artifacts from around the world, the Louvre also happens to be the largest museum in the world. how to spend three days in paris

Explore Île de la Cité

After visiting the Louvre, head on further down the river toward Île de la Cité and Île Saint Louis.  As one of the first places in Paris to be inhabited, Île de la Cité is as rich in history as the flavour of its famous Berthillon ice cream. Pick up a lemon sorbet, wander around Notre Dame and maybe even take a peek at the Gravestone Courtyard in Paris (26 Rue Chanoinesse).how to spend three days in paris

Day Two

Explore Saint-Germain-de-Près

Paris’ Chicest neighbourhood is the place to go if you fancy heading to the shops and splashing out on a wearable souvenir. It also happens to be one of the most picturesque neighbourhoods in the city for taking photos. If you’re looking to capture some photos with no people in them, the earlier you go out, the better! how to spend three days in paris

Go up the Panthéon

You can’t visit Paris and not check out the city from above at least once… The Paris Panthéon has everything you want from a Parisian attraction: culture, history and a whole lotta beautiful architecture. It’s the final resting place of great French patriots such as Marie Curie and Voltaire.

Most days, there are guided tours up the dome of the Panthéon where you can spy 360 degree views of the city from above.

Read more: Best Panoramic Views of Parishow to spend three days in paris

Day Three

Having explored the more ‘touritsty’ parts of the city, your third day in Paris is going to be more about getting to know the city at a local level.

Wander around Montmartre

Of all the things to fill your time during your three days in Paris, I highly recommend walking around Montmartre. I promise you, you won’t regret it! As the haunt of actors, writers and artists alike for decades, Montmartre has become a breeding ground of creativity. From the quirky vintage and antique shops that dot the area to the numerous cobblestoned roads, Montmartre has a completely unique vibe that’s not replicated anywhere else in the city.

Plus, of course, it’s also home to the famous Sacré-Coeurhow to spend three days in paris

Explore the Hidden Vineyards

The words ‘Wine’ and ‘France’ are a pretty good pairing. That’s why I was so excited when I discovered that there are hidden vineyards throughout the city. A complete guide to the hidden Paris vineyards can be found here.

Pick up a pastry (or two!)

What activity is possibly more Parisian than sitting in a café and munching on a pastry? If you’re spending three days in Paris then this is an activity that you have to try! Before you leave the city of love, make sure that you’ve at least tried one of the many tempting pastries that the city has to offer…

Visit Printemps

From Montmartre, head down towards Opera. At the department store Printemps (which literally means ‘Spring’ in French), there’s the chance to get on a real Parisian rooftop to do some sight seeing from above. Here, you can also pick up an expresso for €2. It’s the perfect place to sight see, catch up with friends or even write a blog post!

how to spend three days in paris

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25 Comments

  • Reply Robin 27th July 2017 at 5:56 am

    I will be in Paris for the first time in September by myself as I head to Spain’s Camino de Santiago.
    I will spend two nights in Paris but do not know which area to stay in. Any recommendations are needed. I am willing to walk all over but want a centrally located place. And what airport is best to fly into?

  • Reply The World's 6 Most Romantic Destinations 28th June 2017 at 5:00 pm

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  • Reply Maree Pierrehumbert 24th May 2017 at 7:50 am

    Three Days, Three Months even Three years is not enough to see everything in Paris. Every
    season Paris is different. Every wrong turn you take you discover something new. That is why
    I love Paris.

  • Reply Maree Pierrehumbert 24th May 2017 at 7:47 am

    Three days, Three months, Three years is never enough to see everything Paris has to offer.
    Every season Paris is different. Every wrong turn you take and become lost you discover something new. That is why I love Paris!

  • Reply Anna 14th May 2017 at 7:13 pm

    MHMMM French pastry, so yummy..! It’s funny, everytime I go to Paris, I don’t manage to visite the Tour Eiffel… xD I love spending time around Montmartre!

  • Reply Deni 14th May 2017 at 1:30 am

    I definitely didn’t see enough of Paris when I was there 7 years ago! I mean, I didn’t even see Sacre-Coeur up close!! Clearly, I need to make my way back to Europe 🙂 Definitely keeping your itinerary in mind for when I do venture back to France! Thanks Sophie 🙂

  • Reply Maya (and Alix) 1st April 2017 at 11:28 am

    Merci Sophie !
    My last visit to Paris was in 2000 and have never been back after, regardless living just 4 hours traintrip away.

    In May, I will go there again, with my 11 y.o daughter for a 3 days mom-daughter trip. It will be her first Paris trip, so I am so happy to find your itinerary and it looks perfect for a guide to show this City of Light to my sporty girly girl

    PS: I hope 7de Arr where we’ll stay during this trip is still as nice and safe as I remember it ?

    Again,
    merci, thankyou, bedankt, terimakasih !!

  • Reply Kayla 14th October 2016 at 10:07 am

    Ohhh I love Paris! This was basically my itinerary except I only had two days! Though I never ran into the hidden vineyards! What a great find!! I will remember that for next time ! xx

    • Reply Serisha 25th November 2016 at 9:18 pm

      Thanks Sophie. Really enjoyed reading this. Some great ideas for my first trip to Paris.

  • Reply Menorca@Europe Diaries 13th October 2016 at 6:12 pm

    Missed out on the Pantheon.There’s so much to do in Paris! Love the city. But I ma pretty sure I will go back next year 🙂

  • Reply Johna 13th October 2016 at 12:29 pm

    So much in 3 days! My family and I also had three days, we didn’t get to go around too much cause it was freezing cold and rainy

  • Reply Joanna 13th October 2016 at 11:48 am

    I have never been to Paris but I plan to go sometimes soon. I love that you are an early traveler and managed to snap these photos in the gorgeous morning light. You made Paris look truly romantic! It’s great that besides the main attractions you discovered little hidden places too.
    Joanna recently posted…Remembering the taste of Vietnam at The Little SaigonMy Profile

  • Reply Anisa 12th October 2016 at 11:54 pm

    I have been to Paris several times but had no idea about the hidden vineyards or Printemps. Will have to check it out on my next trip. Thanks for the tips.

  • Reply Sarah 12th October 2016 at 7:57 pm

    Oh, grabbing more than one pastry is a must in France! If only I can eat pastry for meals – but then there are lots of yummy food around the city, too! Too bad I was unable to explore Louvre that much when we were there. So this definitely makes me want to go back – if only I can!

  • Reply Alisha 12th October 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Paris is so iconic and amazing . I love this post because it reminds me of my time there !!!

  • Reply Erica 12th October 2016 at 2:18 pm

    This is exactly what I need! I’ve never been to France, let alone Paris and I’ll finally be in a perfect position to do so after my move to London next month. It’s easy enough to know what the main attractions are, but it’s kind of overwhelming for a first time Paris visitor to organize them all into a coherent itinerary. So thanks for this! The hidden vineyard map is a really cool tip, but I wonder if they’ll be worth checking out in the winter… Then again, I’m sure I’ll visit more than once 🙂
    Erica recently posted…Hiking Through History At Ben BhraggieMy Profile

  • Reply Kristina 12th October 2016 at 1:33 pm

    As someone who has spent some time in Paris, this is a very good itinerary! I always end up at the Sacré-Coeur no matter what… every time I go. There’s something about that view that just slays me every time. Paris can be hard to photograph, but your pictures are so beautiful! Wonderful use of light. Hehe.

  • Reply Noemi of Pinay Flying High 12th October 2016 at 1:05 pm

    While your itinerary covered the important areas, I don’t think 3 days is enough for me to cover it. I spent a week in Paris and it’s still not enough for me. But that’s because I walk really slow and I always stop to take a photo of something. Lol. I spent one whole day just by walking around Seine River. I think I’m obsessed with Paris. :p
    Noemi of Pinay Flying High recently posted…Unique London Tours | Hidden London Tour With Fun London ToursMy Profile

  • Reply Samantha 12th October 2016 at 1:00 pm

    You captured some amazing photos of Paris! I have yet to go there… but it’s on my travel dream list! It’s always great to start off your trip with a bang (see the best sight first) when you have lots of energy! Love your blog, by the way!

  • Reply Lys 4th October 2016 at 8:45 pm

    Beautiful pictures! The Île de la Cité/Quartier Latin neighbourhood is definitely one of my favourites to wander around. I also had no idea the Panthéon rooftop was open to visitors, I’ll have to remember for next time when I go to Paris!
    Lys recently posted…What’s in my shower #2My Profile

  • Reply Sarah (JetSetting Fools) 2nd October 2016 at 7:27 am

    Paris is wonderful…even with only a few hours! 😉 Great guide for three days – busy days, but still enough time to sit down in a cafe for a coffee or wine.

  • Reply Gareth 2nd October 2016 at 4:50 am

    Being European is kind of awesome. The ability to jump on a plane and be somewhere as culturally rich as Paris in a couple of hours is a real privilege and this cool itinerary shows you how to do it in a weekend. Might be a little ambitious to take in all of the Parisian attractions but you’ve certainly hit some of the highlights. Great post

  • Reply Mackenzie 1st October 2016 at 5:37 pm

    I spent a couple of days in Paris on a school trip and still am not comfortable telling people I’ve been to Paris, I simply didn’t see enough! This is a wonderful itenary for such a short period of time, hopefully one day I’ll be able to make it back and see more of these things!
    https://walkingwithdaisies.wordpress.com

  • Reply Lauren 1st October 2016 at 3:46 pm

    I’d love to go to Paris it looks beautiful, nice post!

    Lauren x | http://www.huggled.co.uk/

  • Reply the adventurer 29th September 2016 at 1:40 am

    I love this itinerary! This is such a great list of places to see, you really hit all the main spots in Paris! =o)

    http://dreamofadventures.blogspot.com/
    the adventurer recently posted…Five Days in St. LuciaMy Profile

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