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Things to Do in Paris in 4 Days

Four days in Paris lends itself to many fun and interesting activities. The key is organization! In this four-day itinerary I share with you some of the best of the city: museums, monuments, historical sites, palaces, gardens, bars and markets - it's all here!

Katherine Betances

Katherine Betances

11 min read

Things to Do in Paris in 4 Days

View of Paris from the window | ©Isaiah Bekkers

Paris is a city that excites. When we think of it we all have preconceived ideas that for some will take the form of delicious food and wine, for others of strolls along the Seine at sunset and for others of an immersive experience in the art and architecture of distant eras. Whatever your version of Paris, a 4-day travel itinerary is plenty of time to experience all that Paris has to offer and much more!

The itinerary I share with you is meant to start the morning after your arrival in Paris and covers from here 4 full days until your departure, the reason is simple: generally the arrival day to any destination is usually chaotic and very tiring; besides it varies a lot from one traveler to another. If you need shorter or longer travel itineraries see the following guides.

Day I: Explore the 7th and 8th arrondissement of Paris

Elysian Fields| ©PCA Stream
Elysian Fields| ©PCA Stream

On the first day of your travel itinerary I recommend you to focus your efforts on getting to know the most charming spots in the 7th and 8th arrondissement, most of the tour can be done on foot, one of the best ways to get to know Paris.

Coffee and morning walk on the Champs Elysees

Start your first day in Paris with a morning stroll along the most beautiful shopping avenue in the city. Les Champs Elysées, which starts at the foot of the Arc de Triomphe square in Paris and ends at the Place de la Concorde.

  • At the Arc de Triomphe: Although photos at this monument are a mandatory requirement of any trip to Paris, do not forget to admire the giant statues that make up the walls and structure of the arch.
  • The Champs Elysees: On your walk down the avenue you will find some of the best cafes, restaurants, fashion houses and most important stores in Paris. If you like shopping, take advantage of this moment!
  • Place de la Concorde: It is the largest square in Paris and the place where French nobles, including King Louis XVI, were executed during the Revolution. Take a moment to observe the Obelisk and the two wonderful fountains located at its ends.

Book a lunch at the Eiffel Tower

Visit the Eiffel Tower at lunchtime to enjoy an authentic Parisian meal while you observe the beauty of the city in all its splendor. One of the biggest advantages of making reservations for any of the Tower's restaurants is that you won't have to wait in line to get in. Another alternative is to have lunch in the surroundings of the Eiffel Tower and then make your way up the important monument.

From your location at Le Place de la Concorde it is easy to get to the Eiffel Tower, you just need to take the Pont de la Concorde, cross the Seine and go up to the right along the promenades that border the Seine area. It's a 30-minute walk, but you can enjoy the attractive scenery.

  • Hours: From 9:30 am to 11:45 pm.
  • Ticket price: From 10,7 € the price increases if you want to go up to the top and if you want to use the elevators.
  • Duration of the visit: Set aside approximately 1.5 hours to visit the second floor and 2.5 hours if you want to climb to the top.

Book tickets for the Eiffel Tower

Visit the Rue Cler market

Rue Cler, Rue du Marché| ©Michele Louise
Rue Cler, Rue du Marché| ©Michele Louise

Just a 10 minute walk from the gardens bordering the Eiffel Tower you will come across the market; an authentic Parisian market street where locals gather to buy their favorite foods and sit down with friends for coffee and company. The Rue Cler is an authentic Parisian-style market street where locals gather to buy their favorite foods and sit with friends for a coffee and enjoy the company.

Totally recommended to spend a few hours of a quiet first day in Paris and especially if you want to visit a destination somewhat unique and not crowded with tourists.

  • Hours: From 9 am to 7 pm from Tuesday to Sunday with a break on Mondays.
  • Admission fee: It is a free street market and open to the public.
  • Duration of the visit: It depends on what you want to do and if you stop for lunch or a coffee. Estimate about 30 minutes to see the stalls.

Visit the Jardin and Trocadero Square

After a coffee at the Rue Cler market, head to the Trocadero Square and Gardens to watch the sun go down over the Eiffel Tower... Do you have your camera with you? Now is the time to take it out!

Jardins du Trocadéro The most characteristic feature of the Garden is its giant mirror of water with numerous fountains around it that provide an amazing spectacle. At certain times of the day, such as sunset or sunrise, the effect of the water mirror fountain is really beautiful.

Place du Trocadéro Located right in front of the gardens is the best place in Paris to take picturesof the Eiffel Tower. You don't have to be an expert cameraman, the view is so perfect that you just need to clean your camera lens and focus correctly.

  • Hours: Open 24 hours
  • Admission fee: Free of charge
  • Duration of visit: 20 to 30 minutes will be enough to walk around the garden and take pictures in the square.

Tango night on the Seine

Starting at 7 pm in the summer in Paris, groups of enthusiastic tango lovers gather at the amphitheater on the banks of the Seine and dance until nightfall. If your 4-day trip to Paris coincides with this time of year on a Friday, consider going there for a night of tango and spontaneous dancing. These professional dancers show off their talent to anyone who wants to watch, while promoting their classes.

Book a cruise on the Seine

Day 2: Explore the 1st, 4th and 5th arrondissement of Paris

Pantheon of Paris,| ©Moonik
Pantheon of Paris,| ©Moonik

Half day tour of the Latin Quarter.

The Latin Quarter of Paris is an area known for its student life, lively atmosphere and delicious food bistros. On your second day in Paris join guided tours to discover the attractions and curiosities of this corner of Paris.

Among the points of interest included in almost all excursions you will find:

  • Visit to the Pantheon in Paris, where the remains of Victor Hugo and Voltaire lie.
  • Visit to the Luxembourg Gardens.
  • Visit to the Sorbonne University.
  • Visit to Shakespeare & Co.

Book a tour of the Latin Quarter

Notre Dame and Sainte-Chapelle Cathedral

In a short walk of only 5 minutes you will go from the Latin Quarter (5th arrondissement) to the Île de la Cité (4th arrondissement) to visit Notre Dame and the Sainte-Chapelle. Both jewels of French Gothic architecture, admired all over the world.

Notre-Dame de Paris. This architectural jewel of the Middle Ages remains closed to the public since the devastating fire that in 2019 that derived the roof and the central spire. However, access to the front square is allowed.

Sainte-Chapelle. Considered one of the most grandiose works of Gothic as a result of its rich interior decoration and its dreamy stained glass windows.

  • Opening hours: From 9 am to 5 pm
  • Ticket price: The ticket price is from 11,50€.
  • Duration of the visit: The tour inside Sainte-Chapelle to appreciate the interiors will take about 30 minutes.

Guided tour of the Louvre

External view of the Museum| ©Pedro Szekely
External view of the Museum| ©Pedro Szekely

Leave the Île de la Cité behind by taking the Pont au Change to cross the Seine, on the left take the Boulevard Georges Pompidou on your way to the Louvre. This tour will take you about 13 minutes on foot while overlooking the banks of the Seine.

The Louvre is a museum of gigantic size and the pieces of art that compose it are almost infinite. For a well spent visit to the Louvre I recommend:

  • Buy tickets to the Louvre in advance
  • Book a guided tour of the Louvre that takes you through the points of greatest interest.
  • Hours: From 9 am to 6 pm.
  • Entrance fee: The entrance fee is around 15€ for adults.
  • Duration of the visit: To see the main works you must set aside at least two hours of itinerary.

Book a guided tour of the Louvre Museum

Have an aperitif in a Parisian wine bar

In French, an aperitif is an aperitif taken before dinner and is a traditional French ritual. In Paris you will find many bars that offer this type of gastronomic experience, along with a relaxed atmosphere that will help you close your second night on a high note.

Day 3: Excursions outside Paris and explore the 14th arrondissement

Palace of Versailles| ©Travis Wise
Palace of Versailles| ©Travis Wise

Half day tour of Versailles

Versailles is a French community located on the outskirts of Paris, known worldwide for being the site of the Palace and gardens of Versailles. Built in 1623, this jewel of French architecture is one of the greatest expressions of French baroque art. In addition to the impressive amount of details that you can find inside its extravagant halls, it is surprising how well preserved the entire structure is despite its age.

Versailles has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is open to the public every day. From Paris you can hire an excursion to Versailles, to visit the interior of the palace and the exterior gardens.

  • Hours: Open to the public from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm.
  • Admission fee: For adults the entrance ticket to the Palace of Versailles is around 27€.
  • Duration of the visit: From Paris the trip will take at least 6 hours including round trip to the city and tour of the Palace.

Book your excursion to the Palace of Versailles

Tour of the Musée d'Orsay

Upon your return from Versailles, I recommend you set aside about 2.5 hours of your afternoon to visit the Musée d'Orsay. Considered one of the most important museums in Paris and the world, it is a must-see for anyone who enjoys art and history.

In its facilities it is possible to find one of the largest collections of the masters of modern and impressionist artof recent times. Among the public's favorites are the original frescoes by Monet, Degas, Van Gogh and Rodin.

Two tips that will allow you to get the most out of your excursion to the Musée d'Orsay: consider hiring a private tour that will take you quickly through the works of greatest interest and buy your tickets to the museum in advance to avoid long lines at the entrance.

  • Hours: From 9:30 am to 6:00 pm
  • Admission fee: Approximately 16€ for an adult ticket.
  • Duration of the visit: You should reserve a minimum of 2 hours to visit this museum.

Book a guided tour of the Musée d'Orsay

Day 4: Explore the 3rd and 18th arrondissement of Paris

Place de la Concorde| ©Rutger van der Maar
Place de la Concorde| ©Rutger van der Maar

On your last day in Paris, wake up early to see three important historical monuments located close to each other in the third arrondissement and then several alternative museums in Paris.

Place de la Bastille

During the French Revolution, the Bastille, then a symbol of the frivolity and despotic power of the king of France, was seized by an armed mob of Parisians in the early days of the revolt, heating up the atmosphere of the political movement that would culminate in the abolition of the monarchy and the execution of the kings.

Place des Vosges

Being one of the oldest squares in Paris is also one of the most beautiful. Take a moment to stroll under its arches, walk along the garden paths and admire the beautiful red brick facades of its stores. You are allowed to stop for a coffee!

Victor Hugo Maison. The house of the famous French writer, poet and politician, became a museum some time after his death. It is located near the Place des Vosges.

  • Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm.
  • Admission fee: The museum's permanent collection is free to the public. There is a charge for access to the temporary collections.
  • Duration of the visit: One hour or less will be enough to visit the different areas of the house.

Tour the Picasso Museum

In the you can find a large collection of sculptures by the artist, as well as thousands of documents and photographs that belonged to this important figure in the history of art. The museum itself is a research center on the life and work of Picasso, so if you feel admiration or curiosity for his work, you can not miss it.

From the Place des Vosges to the Picasso Museum in Paris you will have a short walk through the streets of Le Marais neighborhood of only 8 minutes.

  • Hours: From Tuesday to Sunday the entrance hours are from 10 am to 6 pm.
  • Admission fee: From 40€ the entrance ticket for adults.
  • Duration of the visit: Approximately one hour inside.

Sacre Coeur

Paris is a city full of beautiful chapels and basilicas; is another of the jewels of Parisian architecture that I recommend you include in your 4-day trip to Paris. Located imposingly on the hill of Montmartre in the 18th arrondissement.

Starting from the Picasso Museum you can reach Sacre Coeur by metro, you will have to take line 8 at the Saint-Sébastien - Froissart station and then change to line 4 to get off at the Barbès - Rochechouart station; finally you will have to walk up the hill in a 15 minutes ride. For this reason, my favorite option is to invest a few euros and take a 25 or 30 minute cab ride through the important Parisian neighborhoods located in the north of the city.

  • Hours: The basilica is available for visits from 6 am. Access to the dome is from 9:00 am to 8:30 pm, with variations in certain months.
  • Admission fee: Free of charge.
  • Duration of the visit: Allow about 45 minutes to visit both the dome and the crypt of Sacré Coeur.

Dali Museum Paris

Entrance to the Dali| ©Florian75018
Entrance to the Dali| ©Florian75018

Down the hills of Sacre-Coeur, just 5 minutes from the basilica, you will come across the or Espace Dalí. In this space you will find a permanent exhibition of the master of surrealism, with a collection of 300 works available. Touring the entire museum usually takes no more than 1 hour.

  • Hours: From 10 am to 6 pm.
  • Admission fee: The entrance ticket costs from 13€ for adults.
  • Duration of the visit: It is a small museum, in about an hour or less you can make the full tour.

Tour of Montmartre Square

Just minutes away from the Dali Museum you will find one of the favorite entertainment options for the inhabitants of Montmartre. This square, located at the top of the hill, is famous throughout Paris for the painters who have always exhibited their best works there. In other times important historical figures such as Monet or Picasso were part of the vibrant locality of Montmartre as their careers took off and their work acquired fame and recognition.

  • Hours: From 10 am to 8 pm.
  • Admission fee: Free, the square is open to the public.
  • Duration of the visit: You can spend as much time as you want, you will find many activities to do and cafes to have a snack.

Book a tour of Montmartre