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European Travel

Off The Beaten Track: Paris Travel Tips


Eiffel tower and a fairground carousel in-front of a blue sky
What is in this blog? Table of contents:

Our latest instalment of Off The Beaten Track, The Alternative Travel Guide sees us head to the city of light, Paris (voted the most iconic city to visit, read more here)

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on Paris travel tips and hidden gems. A city world renowned for a certain iconic landmark (yes, the Eiffel Tower), also plays host to countless other, less well known gems, that promise to deliver a truly unforgettable experience.

In this guide, we are taking you on a journey through the real Paris, and aiming to provide you with our unique perspective on this truly mesmerising city.

So, join us, as we run you through our top Paris travel tips.

Is Paris cheap?

As a city synonymous with class, you could be forgiven for asking the question, ‘is Paris cheap?” and wondering whether or not you can afford to visit it…

Well, we have good news for you! While Paris may be an expensive city to visit, it is possible to enjoy a trip to Paris on a budget!

There are countless free and cheap activities to enjoy, and as ever, a little prior planning enables you to stretch your budget that bit further to really make the most of your time there!

But how much is a plane ticket to Paris? Well, why don’t you use our flight comparison tool and find out for yourself!

Cheap things to do in Paris on a budget

Cheap things to do in Paris - Visit the Louvre, see the Mona Lisa

Cobbled streets, unmistakable architecture, incredibly music and sharp dressed locals, throw in some fantastic food and wine, and its easy to see why Paris can significantly lighten your wallet!

But fear not, there are plenty of cheap things to do in this wonderful city if you are visiting on a budget.

  • Visit the Louvre – undoubtably one of the most famous museums in Paris, tickets for the Louvre will usually set you back around €17 if you are an adult… But, if you visit on the first Sunday of the month between October and March, it is completely free! In addition to this, if you are lucky enough to still be under 26 years of age, you can get in for FREE on Friday evenings as well!
  • Take a walking tour – whenever we travel, we always look out for walking tours of new cities, after all, is there any better way to truly immerse yourself in the city? In Paris, there are several companies who offer free tours, our favourite is Paris Greeters, where locals themselves guide you around their city!
  • Visit the Eiffel Tower – unfortunately a trip the top will set you back a pretty penny, but you can still enjoy the light show on a budget! At the Parc du Champ de Mars, you will find immaculate lawns and flowerbeds where you can lay down a blanket, open a bottle of wine, and enjoy the show!
  • Window shopping – while the temptation to open your wallet will be almost unbearable, partaking in a spot of window shopping is a great way to spend the afternoon. The locals are often at it too, but they call it lécher les vitrines. If this sounds like your idea of fun, head down to the St-Quen flea market and antiques fair!
  • More museums – it’s not just the Louvre either, between October and March, most of the main museums in Paris offer free entry on the first Sunday of the month! See the full list of participating museums below:
  • Musée National d’Art Moderne – Centre Pompidou
  • Musée des Arts et Métiers
  • Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature
  • Musée National Eugène Delacroix
  • Musée National Gustave Moreau
  • Musée National Jean-Jacques Henner
  • Musée National du Moyen Âge – Thermes de Cluny
  • Musée National de l’Orangerie
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Musée National Picasso
  • Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine
  • Cité Nationale de l’Histoire de l’Immigration
  • Musée du Quai Branly – Jacques Chirac
  • Musée National des Arts Asiatiques Guimet

These are just a few of the many cheap things to do in Paris on a budget, hopefully you’ll find these interesting and enjoyable activities!

Romantic things to do in Paris

Romantic things to do in Paris - visit the Wall of Love

Unsurprisingly, the city of Love is jam-packed with romantic things to do, making it an ideal city break for couples!

From quaint cafes to the vibrant alleyways and hidden gardens, Paris is full of hidden gems that ooze romance for those looking for it…

  • The Wall of Love – with “I love you” written on it in over 250 languages, no matter where you are from the Wall of Love, or Mur des Je t’aime in the Montmartre neighbourhood is a must visit!
  • The Seine River Cruise – maybe not the cheapest option, but in our view, one of the most romantic evening activities in Paris has to be the Siene River Cruise. You will pass by a host of iconic landmarks, but the pièce de resistance has to be the Eiffel Tower lit up in the evening!

There are plenty more romantic things to do in Paris, either on a budget or otherwise, it is the City of Love after all!

Unique and quirky things to do in Paris

Quirky things to do in Paris - visit the catacombes

While there are catacombs in many cities around the world, the Catacombes de Paris boasts one of the largest underground networks in the world. So, if you are looking for a unique and quirky activity to pass the time during your trip to Paris, this HAS to be on the list!

Renowned as the world's largest underground ossuary, they stand out as a key attraction among the monuments of Paris. This remarkable site features a pathway extending 1,500 meters in length and situated 20 meters below the surface, offering a unique and extraordinary touring experience.

Did you know…

In 1780, heavy rains in Paris caused Les Innocents cemetery's burial mound to collapse, spilling decaying bodies into the buildings next door. The solution? The King ordered all Parisian cemeteries to close and transferred all corpses to old limestone mining tunnels, a 12-year task. There are roughly 200 miles of these tunnels, with only 1 mile open to the public!

Undoubtedly a quirky Parisian activity!

What to eat in Paris

Holding a cinnamon roll in Paris

Despite the popular Hollywood depiction that a Parisian breakfast consists of a coffee and cigarette at a quaint café (typically with at least one person wearing a beret and a striped top!), the reality is that food culture in Paris is second to none (in the locals opinions anyway!).

So, if you are wondering what to eat in Paris, use our checklist below to make sure you don’t miss out!

  • Baguettes – nicknamed ‘French Bread’ in most other countries, a freshly baked baguette is second to none when it comes to bread
  • Cheese – as a snack, an ingredient, or the showpiece, cheese is everywhere in France, and Paris is no different
  • Wine – French wine, need we say anymore?
  • Croissants – we’ve all had a croissant at some point… surely? But croissants in Paris really do hit different!
  • Crepes – served as breakfast, pudding, or as the savoury course, a French Crepe really can do it all!
  • Escargots (the humble snail) – while they might seem like an odd choice, escargots are a firm French favourite! Served with lashings or herby garlic butter, they are delicious!

Top tips –

  1. Combine bread, wine, and cheese for the perfect meal, at any time of the day!
  2. Chase your croissant down with an artisanal, Parisian coffee!

How to get around in Paris

Teal blue Parisian metro carriage

Like any capital city, one of the last ways you want to be getting from A to B is driving! The traffic can be horrendous and while the aircon in the car might be a welcome relief form the summer heat, do you really want to be spending your time in Paris in the back of a taxi or driving? We didn’t think so.

If you want to experience Paris like a local, utilise the highly efficient public transport system, which is as affordable as it is efficient! Find out more about the public transport available here.

Aside from this, you can walk short distances and immerse yourself in the vibrant street scene, or rent bikes to cover greater distances in a little less time!

Our Paris Travel Tips

We hope you’ve found our Paris travel tips and the information on cheap things to do in Paris, as well as things what to eat, romantic activities, how to get around and must-see museums interesting, informative, and helpful.

With a little luck, you may even end up using some of this information on your next trip to the City of Love and Light, Paris!

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Additional instalments of The Alternate Travel Guide:

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