Is Paris Worth Visiting? Top 23 Reasons to Visit Paris

Not many travellers are asking themselves is Paris worth visiting we all know the answer to that question…mais oui! But of course!

Most travellers want to know the reasons to visit Paris France before they go. If that’s you, then keep reading.

I should confess something to you, Paris is my favourite city. Yes, I am quite literally Paris obsessed! I’ve visited Paris 10 times and still can’t get enough!

Is Paris overrated? Not in my books! But I do understand why some travellers don’t share the same perspective as I do. Paris is a decisive city – either travellers love it or loathe it.

That’s why I will focus on reasons why Paris is worth visiting – for its history, architecture, landmarks and more. I will also share why the city of Paris is often dismissed as being overrated.

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Is Paris Worth Visiting?

is paris worth visiting? view of stone buildings with eiffel tower

Asking yourself, is paris worth it?

Paris is absolutely worth visiting!

This capital city lives up to its reputation as the “City of Love” and “City of Light” with its undeniable charm.

It’s quintessentially chic, utterly romantic and is a movie that unfolds right in front of you.

The only way to fall in love with Paris is to do as little as possible.

It’s a city that has many layers to it. Where its history has shaped the Paris we see today. The more you know about it, the more you can appreciate its beauty.

You have to peel back those layers. That means, seeing more than its top attractions like the Eiffel Tower.

This is a city for dreamers. For curious souls that love to get lost in its streets.

If that’s you, then you shouldn’t be asking yourself if it is worth visiting Paris; rather you should be asking yourself how soon can I plan my trip and go to Paris?

3 Myths Why Paris Is Considered Overrated

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Hotel de Ville: when visiting Paris in November

I know what you’re thinking…is Paris worth the hype? You’re not alone in thinking that way – just watch my Google Web Story.

Misperceptions can often cloud our judgement when it comes to exploring new destinations.

That’s why I want to challenge these notions and unravel the truth (from my perspective, of course). I want to address three common myths about Paris that I think overshadow why people don’t like visiting here.

Myth #1: Parisians are rude

The notion that all Parisians are rude is an unfair generalization.

The French culture is elegant, quiet, reserved, and sophisticated. They are loyal to those in their inner circle – right down to the boulangerie they buy their bread from. Once they find their favourite shop, they don’t consider going anywhere else.

They appreciate etiquette and privacy and are proud of their history and heritage, but are not boastful about it.

As a Canadian girl, I see a lot of similar cultural traits. Canadians are known to be polite, humble and reserved people as a nation. As a dual language country, most of us speak French un peu or at least understand it, heck it’s on every label of every product we ever buy.

So when travelling, we Canadians appreciate that we need to speak in French, and not just assume we can speak English.

This trying to speak French, goes a long way in Paris. Start with Bonjour! There is no expectation that you will be fluent, but speaking the basic pleasantries goes a long way.

Myth #2: Paris is so expensive

Yes, it’s true Paris can be pricey, but so can many other popular European capitals. Compared to cities like Rome, London, Madrid or Berlin the cost of dining, accommodation, and attractions in Paris is quite similar.

Like all cities in Europe, there are accommodations and dining for all budgets as well as activities allowing you to experience the city without breaking the bank.

I can spend a week in Paris and take away food and accommodations not spend a penny and enjoy the city. It costs nothing to stroll the Seine, visit a garden or park, browse the shops, get lost in the Parisian streets and explore the arrondissements. This is how I enjoy Paris.

However, where you are likely to notice a difference is when you travel outside of Paris, especially to places in France that are considered off the beaten path that’s where you’ll find more cost-effective accommodations and dining.

Myth #3: Paris is too touristy

Yes, it’s true, Paris, like many European cities attracts a great number of visitors.

And, yes, popular attractions like the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower are crowded. But, with careful planning, you can explore many lesser-known places in Paris like small museums and hidden gardens that offer a more authentic Parisian experience. This is the Paris that I know and love. To experience Paris like a local.

There’s a reason why travellers go to these monumental places – they are worth seeing. But I encourage you to divide your time seeing those iconic things to do in Paris with some places the locals like to go.

23 Reasons to Visit Paris France

1. The History

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View from Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor: when visiting Paris in October

Why you should go to Paris? Let’s start with the history.

Originally a muddy settlement called Lutetia, it’s evolved into the chic city we know today. Roman ruins hint at its past, while Notre Dame and the charming Île de la Cité showcase its medieval heart. Most recently, Baron Haussmann’s wide boulevards and architectural style left their mark on the city.

2. The Architecture

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Palais Royal: when visiting Paris in March

Is going to Paris worth it? If you love architecture, then that’s a big yes!

Paris’ architecture blows me away! The Haussmann style and creamy limestone give the whole city a cohesive, elegant look. Unlike other cities with mismatched buildings, Paris feels like a unified work of art. I love strolling these limestone streets!

3. The Parks and Gardens

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Parc Monceau: visiting Paris in April

Why visit Paris? For me, it’s the beautiful parks and gardens.

In Paris, parks not only offer a beautiful backdrop to the city but for locals, these parks and gardens are an extension of their homes. Strolling, catching up with a friend, playing games, having a picnic, reading, sketching and on and on it goes.

The beautiful Luxembourg Gardens, with its pretty flowerbeds, statues and fountains, is one of my favourites.

4. The Landmarks

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Sacré-Cœur Basilica: when visiting Paris in September

Why go to Paris? It’s getting the chance to see the Eiffel Tower and other iconic landmarks in person. Paris is synonymous with iconic landmarks that are recognized worldwide.

The Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Sacré-Cœur Basilica, Notre Dame – these landmarks, and many more, make Paris a living museum of amazing sights.

You can’t help but want to explore these iconic landmarks, especially for Paris first-timers. But, even as a repeat traveller to Paris, I still find myself drawn to seeing them each trip, as they are just that incredible.

5. The Museums

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Louvre Museum: visiting in August

Is it worth going to Paris just for the museums? I think so!

Everyone knows that Paris is a city for art and culture enthusiasts thanks to its collection of world-class museums.

With over 140 museums in the city, there’s a wide range of art, history, science and cultural heritage, from the well-known Louvre Museum and Musée d’Orsay to the smaller ones like Musée Carnavalet.

6. The Streets

Why is Paris the best place to visit? The streets of Paris of course and my favourite reason to go to Paris.

Wandering Paris is like being in a movie! Grand boulevards or tiny cobbled streets, every corner holds a surprise – a hidden garden, a cozy bakery with fresh croissants. The streets here aren’t just passageways, they’re an invitation to slow down, explore, and be a Parisian flâneur, soaking up the beauty of everyday life.

Find out which are the best streets in Paris to be a Flâneur.

7. The Seine River

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View of Square du Vert-Galant on Île de la Cité: when visiting Paris in September

The Seine is my Parisian happy place! Whether strolling along the Left Bank or crossing the Pont Neuf to the Right Bank, the river offers stunning views and a quintessential Parisian vibe. I love browsing the bouquinistes, little green bookstalls overflowing with books and artwork. And who can resist a picnic by the Seine, soaking up the sun alongside Parisians and fellow travellers?

A fun way to see the city is by taking a boat cruise along the Seine.

8. The Hidden Gardens

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Square George Cain: when visiting Paris in March

Is Paris beautiful you ask? Visit any park, garden or square and you’ll find your answer.

One such gem is the Square du Vert-Galant, located on the western tip of Île de la Cité. Talk about views! You are right at the riverbank and the view doesn’t get any better.

Not only are these charming places to see, but they are also serene places to rest your weary sightseeing feet.

Find out which hidden gardens are my favourites, and where to find them.

tablet, phone and computer showing an ebook on Experience Paris: Finding the Joy of Slow Travel

9. The Covered Passages

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Galerie Véro-Dodat: home to designer Christian Louboutin’s workshop

Why you should visit Paris in two words – covered passages! The 19th-century Parisian arcades are a true gem! These elegant passages, with their glass ceilings and mosaic floors, offer a charming escape from the rain and a delightful way to discover unique boutiques.

Each one has its own personality, making it a treasure hunt to explore them all. It’s a shame there used to be hundreds, but at least 20 survive for us to wander through!

Find which hidden covered passages are worth visiting, where to find them and which ones are not worth your time.

10. The Neighbourhoods

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Île Saint Louis: when visiting Paris in November

Why should you visit Paris? The neighbourhoods of course!

Paris has 20 administrative districts or arrondissements, each with its distinct character. Within those arrondissements, there are the neighbourhoods, with some popular ones like the Latin Quarter and Montmartre.

Find out how to visit the ever-so-chic Saint Germain in the 6th arr.

Add the historic Le Marais in the 3rd & 4th arr to your itinerary.

And, another one of my favourites is the elegant Île Saint Louis the smaller of two islands in the Seine River

11. The Food

Why people visit Paris? That’s easy an easy answer especially if you’re a foodie.

Every morning I always indulge in a freshly baked croissant or a flaky pain au chocolat from a local boulangerie. Leisurely lunches and dinners are not rushed. Parisian cafes and bistros invite you to enjoy your meal never rushed and always savoured.

Don’t forget to explore the vibrant food markets found on market streets like Rue Mouffetard or Rue Cler.

12. The Cafe Culture

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Cafe de Flore in Saint Germain: when visiting Paris in April

Is it worth visiting Paris – it is for the cafe culture alone!

Parisian cafes are the best way to relax and enjoy that inviting atmosphere to soak up the city’s culture, from enjoying tea or coffee and pastries to people-watching and conversation. They’re a great way to feel the essence of Parisian life, even as a solo traveller.

13. The Boulangerie

Is Paris good to visit – it is if you love buttery, golden, flaky croissants and crusty baguettes!

One of the aspects I miss about Paris the most when I’m not there is the Parisian boulangerie. They are an essential part of Parisian daily life, filling the air with the irresistible aroma of freshly baked bread and pastries.

14. The Fashion

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Musee d’Orsay Christan Dior exhibit when visiting in October

Paris is a fashion lover’s paradise. From iconic brands and trendy boutiques to stylish locals, the city oozes fashion inspiration. We, non-Parisians copy their effortlessly chic style. On one visit during Paris Fashion Week I saw even more high street style while strolling the streets.

Beyond the designer fashion houses, chic boutiques and vintage shops, you’ll also want to visit the iconic department stores like Galeries Lafayette and Le Bon Marché, where you can shop for the latest trends or the classic Paris essentials.

15. Romantic Atmosphere

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Place du Vosges: when visiting Paris in March

Why Paris is the best place to visit? Paris is magic. Everywhere you turn, there’s romance in the air. From the Eiffel Tower views to cozy cafes and sunset Seine cruises, the city feels like a living love song or romcom.

So much so, it’s my husband and I’s tradition to celebrate our anniversary every 5 years in Paris, but, it’s also my favourite city to travel to solo.

Find out where to find some of the most romantic spots to visit.

16. The Culture

Is Paris worth going to – it is for culture lovers like me!

From the arts to the cool jazz clubs, and those charming bookstores like Shakespeare and Company, Paris has been inspiring artists for centuries. A visit to the Opéra Garnier inspired the Phantom of the Opera is the showstopper venue to watch opera or ballet performances.

I recommend an evening classical music concert at the beautiful Saint Chapelle.

17. The Language

Ah, the music of French! Just hearing those rolling Rs and soft vowels makes me smile. Even with a few stumbles, trying to speak French in Paris will be appreciated by the locals, but also adds to your experience. It’s a language that whispers romance and oozes joie de vivre, and who knows, maybe I’ll even impress a local with my “bonjour”!

18. It’s Walkable

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Pont d’Iéna: when visiting Paris in April

What is good about Paris? It’s got to be one of the most walkable cities in Europe.

Getting around the city of Paris is a true plaisir or pleasure. The city is smaller than it looks, but if you want to give your feet a break, or if pressed for time take advantage of the Paris metro (€1.90 one-way) where you can reach the opposite end of the city in minutes. Or, rent a bike using one of the Velib stations. Every year streets around Paris are adding dedicated bike lanes making it safer to visit.

19. The Seasons

Is Paris still worth visiting in….well, who’s kidding, Paris is worth going to any month of the year!

Having been in Paris in all four seasons, my favourites are spring, fall and Christmas time. The summer months of late June to early September are the busiest for tourists. In August most Parisians leave the city for the month for their holiday leaving only tourists roaming around in the city.

Visit during spring to see the blossoming cherry trees.

Visiting France in autumn is stunning with its golden hues.

I love visiting the Christmas markets in Paris and seeing the pretty light displays.

20. The Hotels

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View from Pavillon du Reine Hotel when staying in Paris in March

Paris has me spoiled for choice! The city offers a perfect place to stay for any style. I especially love boutique hotels. Tucked in historic buildings, they’re full of unique character and personalized service. Imagine – cozy lounges with antique furniture and beautifully designed rooms.

About my stay at the boutique hotel of Pavillon de la Reine.

A curated list of boutique hotels in Paris.

21. The Pied a Terre

It’s all part of the charm – Parisian pied-à-terres! These tiny, charming apartments tucked in historic buildings let me live like a local. They’re cleverly designed to maximize space and ooze Parisian character. It’s the perfect cozy retreat for my Parisian adventures.

My stay in a chic pied-à-terre in the Marais.

My stay in a charming pied-à-terre in the Saint Germain.

A curated list of the best vacation apartments for rent in every arrondissement.

22. The Day Trips

Paris is a great home base for exploring nearby gems! Just a short train ride away, I can be sipping champagne in Reims. Or, I can wander the stunning gardens of Versailles and for a dose of garden inspiration, Giverny awaits, with Monet’s home and gardens. So many great French day trips, all within reach!

My guide to the city of Reims is known for its UNESCO-listed Gothic cathedral, where French kings were once crowned.

23. A Gateway to the Rest of France

Why is Paris a good place to visit? Paris is my launchpad to all of France!

After spending days in Paris, I love to hop on the RailEurope train, and I can be in the lavender fields of Provence or sun-soaked Nice in just a couple of hours. Each region has its own charm – Provence’s quaint villages and delicious food, the French Riviera’s beaches and colourful towns.

Beyond that, Normandy’s D-Day beaches and historic Mont Saint-Michel beckon, or maybe I’m craving the vineyards of Bordeaux or Burgundy.

My guide to the Luberon region is a must-visit destination!

Check out this inspiring list of lesser-known places in France.

As a Holidaymaker

Hopefully, I’ve answered your question of why do people visit Paris.

I’ve given you 23 reasons to go to Paris! Which one convinced you the most I wonder?

Next, I recommend you read about my Paris planning tips to get you on your way to a fantastic trip!