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This article got updated on the 26th of September 2022 by Lena

Do you want to know what is Paris famous for before planning a trip to France’s capital? You’ve come to the right place! Read on to know more about the most famous things associated with Paris! 

Paris is a city that everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime. There are so many things to see and do in this cultural Mecca, from admiring the art and architecture of the Louvre Museum to strolling down the Champs-Élysées. And of course, there is also a famous tower in Paris! 

What is Paris famous for?
The Eiffel Tower is the most iconic landmark in Paris

 

But what is it, exactly, that makes Paris so special? Is it indeed the Eiffel Tower? The Louvre? The food? Or is there something more to it that we’re just not able to see? In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the things that make Paris one of the most famous cities on earth. So buckle up and get ready for an amazing journey!

 

Are you planning your trip to Paris? These articles will be interesting for you:

 

What is Paris famous for? 

Whether it’s its delicious food, stunning architecture, or rich history. There’s something for everyone in this great city. Many people all over the world are in awe when it comes to Paris. But what is Paris famous for actually? And what are the famous things that you can see in Paris? Read on and know what makes Paris so special!

So let’s take a closer look at some of the most wonderful things Paris has to offer and things that are associated with Paris. 

 

1. The Louvre

Reserve your timed entrance to the Louvre Museum here

While there are many outstanding Paris museums, one of the most exciting places to tour is the Louvre Museum. Since it’s a massive art museum, it helps to have a guide who can show you the highlights and explain what makes each one important. Of course, you’ll want to see the famous Mona Lisa, but there are plenty of other incredible works of art in the Louvre you won’t want to miss.

If you are tight on time, it’s still worth visiting the Louvre, even just to appreciate the architecture and see the iconic glass pyramid.

Thanks for the suggestion, Marcie from Marcie in Mommyland

Louvre in Paris - the Pyramid is the main entrance
The Pyramid of the Louvre is the main entrance of the famous Paris museum

 

2. Paris is famous for the Eiffel Tower

Reserve your Eiffel Tower Summit Tickets here

The Eiffel Tower is one of the most iconic structures in the world, and it is certainly one of the most famous and popular attractions in Paris.

The tower was completed in 1889 and features a unique lattice design made of iron. It stands at 300 m tall, that’s 1,083 feet.

The Eiffel Tower is impressive enough to view from the outside from the surrounding Champs de Mars. However, visitors can also purchase tickets for the Eiffel Tower to travel inside and up to the second floor and to the top of the tower for incredible city views.

Thanks for the suggestion, Merry Allison from Virginia Vacation Guide

 

3. Paris is also known as the City of Love

One of the things Paris is most famous for is its reputation for being incredibly romantic. Therefore, Paris is often called the City of Love and a very popular destination for honeymoons and Valentine’s Day

Some of the reasons why Paris is considered to be so romantic is due to its abundance of beautiful places to propose, romantic restaurants, and the way the city is portrayed in movies and literature. Moreover, Paris is also home to the I Love You Wall in the beautiful Montmartre Neighborhood and the former Love Lock Bridge or Pont des Arts. Just to name a few of the reasons why Paris is known as City of Love.

Thanks for the suggestion, Laura from Laure Wanders

 

4. Bateaux Mouches

Book your Seine Boat Cruise here and save time queuing once in Paris

Bateaux mouches are popular tourist Seine river cruise boats in Paris. They are large, elongated open deck boats that can take hundreds of people visiting the city. 

The name translated means “fly boats”. The boats were named after a zone called Mouche in Lyon, another French city. Yet, Paris made these boats their own, with countless bateaux mouches cruising down the Seine with visitors from all over the world.

A relaxing one-hour ride will reveal the best side of Paris and show you the city from one of the nicest perspectives.

Thanks for the suggestion Paul D’Souza from Paulmarina 

Paris is famous for the Bateaux Mouches
Paris is famous for the Bateaux Mouches

 

5. The Moulin Rouge

Reserve your seat for a show at the Moulin Rouge with a Bottle of Champagne here

The Red Windmill sitting above the famed Moulin Rouge is one of the most famous landmarks in Paris.

The Moulin Rouge is home to the most famous Cabaret show in the world. Located in Montmartre, you are entering a world of over-the-top costumes, glitz, glamour, and the one and only French Champagne. By the way, did you actually know that only Champagne made from grapes in the Champagne region can legally be called Champagne?

Anyway, tickets book out months in advance, so if you have added the Moulin Rouge to your French bucket list, avoid disappointment by booking in advance. For example, right here. 

If you choose to spend a night at the Moulin Rouge, make sure you book a ticket including a bottle of champagne!

Thanks for the suggestion, Fiona from Travelling Thirties

 

6. The Wallace Fountains

Since plastic bottles take hundreds of years to degrade, Paris encourages people to drink water from public fountains. The Wallace Fountains are an iconic symbol of Paris, where you can refill your eco-friendly water bottle in almost every corner of the city. In total there are more than 1000 Fountains all over town, and it should not be too difficult to find one to refill your bottle. 

Those giant cast-iron sculptures have been providing free drinking water to everyone for 150 years. They were added by Sir Richard Wallace, who found it shocking that many Parisians had no access to clean drinking water at the time. 

Famous Paris Achitecture: The Wallace Fountain
One of the famous Paris Fountain, here at Park Georges Brassens

Most of them are painted in a dark shade of green, which makes them sit perfectly in the Parisian cityscapes. However, in Paris, you can also find a few fountains that are pink, blue, yellow, or red. A few locations even dispense sparkling water! For example, on the Coulée Verte near Bastille.

Thanks for the suggestion, Paulina from UK Everday

 

7. Bouillon Restaurants

More than a century ago, workers seeking a good cheap meal in Paris would head to a “bouillon”, where stew could always be found boiling away in broth, or bouillon. Given the time period, the Art Nouveau surroundings of the Bouillons were spectacular, but as brasseries and fast food became popular, the bouillon went into decline.

By the new millennium, a single one remained in Paris. Taken over by new owners, it was revived, others emerged, and the bouillon restaurants of Paris are now among the hottest eateries in the capital.

Thanks for the suggestion, Leyla from Offbeat France

 

8. Baguette

Tip: take a “tradition” instead of a baguette, it has the same form but is crunchier and less dry

It may seem cliché, but the simple baguette is one item you’re likely to find under the arm or in the bicycle basket of Parisians and visitors alike. No matter what time of day, the ubiquitous Parisian food is truly an iconic staple.

You’ll find them in every small town throughout France, but the baguette in Paris is like the bagel in New York. Indeed, the Baguette in Paris is said to factor greatly in its taste and texture — crusty on the outside and light and moist inside. It’s the cheapest and most delicious meal in Paris!

Thanks for the suggestion, Lori from Travlinmad

The Parisian Baguette
Tip: take a “tradition” instead of a baguette, it’s more crunchy and tasty

 

9. Disneyland Paris

You can book 1 or 2-day tickets for Disneyland Paris, with our without a Shuttle. Compare here!

Paris is famous for Disneyland Paris, the only Disney resort in Europe. Opened as Euro Disney in 1992, it is a haven for families and Disney fans alike. Situated on the outskirts of Paris, Disneyland Paris is easily reached by train, it is a magical place to visit.

Visit Mickey and Minnie Mouse, enjoy two parks with plenty of rides, and now with an Avengers Campus, Disneyland Paris has everything fans could want and more. There are Disney hotels to stay in and options for non-Disney accommodation too, and plenty of places to eat. Also read our article about insider tips on how to visit Disneyland Paris!

Thanks for the suggestion, Cath from Passports and Adventures

 

10. Macarons

Learn how to bake Macarons in one of the famous baking classes! Secure your spot here

When you are asking what Paris is famous for, Macarons can’t be missing from that list! Those delicate little cookies come in eye-catching colors and flavors. Whether you pick them up at Ladurée, Pierre Hermé, or any number of other bakeries around the city, they make for a delicious (and Instagram-worthy) snack.

You’ll find traditional flavors like chocolate, raspberry, or vanilla, as well as more unique combinations like the Marie Antoinette at Ladurée which is blue and filled with Marie-Antoinette tea-infused cream.

 

When looking for best paris patisseries, you need to make a stop at Pierre Hermé
Pierre Hermé creates some of the best pastries in Paris

You can take some packages to go or take a class to learn how to make the small pastries Paris is famous for at home. The most popular and even affordable Macaron Baking Class takes place in the Galeries Lafayette, click here for schedules and rates.

Thanks for the suggestion, Dan Bagby from HoneymoonAlways.com

 

Do you want to know more things Paris is famous for? 

 

11. Haussmann Architecture, Paris famous buildings

Paris’ very significant Haussmann Architecture shapes the cityscape like nothing else. Back in the day, the center of Paris was crowded, unhealthy, and full of crime. Emperor Napoleon III asked Georges Eugene Haussmann to modernize the medieval city by building new elegant houses, and large boulevards. In short:  creating a modern urban Paris.

The works started in the middle of the 19th century and today, Haussmann architecture is one of the most recognizable features of the city. Thanks to Haussmann’s work, Paris is now a much more pleasant and livable city.

Famous Paris Buildings: Every Building with Haussmann Architecture
The Haussmann Architecture is what’s famous about Paris

 

However, some critics argue that the large boulevards and rows of identical buildings give the city a cold and impersonal feel. Whatever one’s opinion may be, there is no denying that Haussmann architecture is an integral part of the history and identity of Paris.

 

12. What is famous in Paris? Fashion!

It is no secret that Paris has been the fashion capital of the world for centuries. After all, the city has been home to some of the most iconic fashion designers in history, including Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, and Yves Saint Laurent.

Moreover, read our seasonal guides to know when exactly it’s Fashion Week in Paris! 

But what is it about Paris that has made it such a hotspot for fashion? For starters, the city has always been at the forefront of fashion trends. In the 17th century, French king Louis XIV was known for his lavish wardrobe and elaborate style, setting a new standard for fashion in Europe. In more recent years, Paris has continued to lead the way when it comes to style, with many of the world’s top fashion designers choosing to base their operations in the city.

Additionally, Paris is home to a number of highly respected fashion schools, which help to nurture the talent of tomorrow. The Paris Fashion weeks are the world’s most important fashion event.

 

13. Love Locks

The love locks in Paris have become a popular symbol of romance for couples from all over the world. The locks are typically engraved with the couple’s initials and are attached to one of the many bridges in Paris, most notably the Pont des Arts.

While the love locks seem to be a beautiful gesture to seal one’s love, they have caused serious environmental issues. The bridges were not constructed to hold additional tons of metal, and the weight caused damage to the structures.

Paris famous Bridge with Love Locks
Paris on a cold winter day with floods and love locks

Additionally, many keys have been thrown into the Seine River below, where they stayed rotting, damaging the ecosystem of the famous river in Paris. In an effort to protect the bridges and the environment, Paris has removed the locks and the tradition is over.

You still see some couples adding their locks, but if you are a responsible human being, you’re not leaving it there. Instead, add a lock, take a picture with your partner and take the lock home with you as a souvenir.

 

14. Famous in Paris: Paris Saint-Germain

Paris Saint-Germain Football Club, commonly referred to as PSG, is a French professional football club based in Paris. The club was founded in 1970 and competes in Ligue 1, the top division of French football, and won more trophies than any other French football club.

The club’s home ground is the Parc des Princes stadium, which has a capacity of over 45,000 spectators and that you can even visit during your stay in Paris.  PSG is one of the richest clubs in football and is known for its ability to attract world-class players, such as Neymar and Lionel Messi.

Liberty leading the People - One of the famous louvre paintings that you have to see
One of the most famous paintings in the Louvre and a symbol of the French Revolution

 

15. Paris is famous for what? The French Revolution!

The French Revolution was a major event that took place (mainly) in Paris between 1789 and 1799. The people of France overthrew the monarchy and took control of the government, resulting in a fundamental change to the country’s social and political structure.

The revolution also had a strong influence on other European countries, providing the fundament of today’s democracy and liberty. Major events during the revolution include the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, and the execution of King Louis XVI on January 21, 1793, on the Place de la Concorde. Although short-lived, the French Revolution had a significant impact on world history.

 

 

16. Michelin Star Restaurants

No Star, but a stunning view: Reserve a table at the Brasserie Madame to dine on the Eiffel Tower!

If you’re looking for a gourmet dining experience, Paris is the place to be. The city is home to 119 Michelin-starred restaurants, and Paris has long been known as a mecca for excellent cuisine.

The Michelin Guide, which was first published in 1900, was created by the Michelin tire company as a way to encourage people to travel more and use their vehicles. While the guide originally focused solely on French restaurants, it has since expanded to include restaurants from all over the world.

paris famous restaurants: reserve a table well in advance
If you want to eat somewhere, reserve a table!

But Paris remains one of the most popular destinations for Michelin-starred dining, with some of the most celebrated chefs in the world calling the city home. If you’re looking for an unforgettable culinary experience, Paris is the perfect place to start your search.

 

17. One of the most famous Paris landmarks: The Arc de Triomphe

Get your skip-the-line-Ticket for the Arc de Triomphe right here.

The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most famous monuments in Paris. It was commissioned by Emperor Napoleon to celebrate his victory at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805. The Arc de Triomphe sits atop the Champs-Élysées, and in the middle of the crazy roundabout at the Place de l’Etoile. 

The Arc de Triomphe provides a wonderful view of the Eiffel Tower. and is a place with a very interesting history. Read here more about the surprising Arc de Triomphe facts.

Paris Famous Monuments: The Arc de Triomphe
One of the most famous Paris Monuments: The Arc de Triomphe

 

18. The Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame is an iconic symbol of the heart of Paris. Constructed in the 12th century, this Catholic cathedral can be seen towering above the city in the 4th arrondissement of Paris. It’s one of the world’s most famous examples of French Gothic architecture, and the gargoyles and chimera located atop the cathedral dominate most postcards from the city.

Notre Dame is currently undergoing restoration after the fire of 2019, but it’s set to reopen again to the public in 2024. There are many famous Paris churches, but Notre Dame is simply one of a kind. 

Thanks for the suggestion, Jillian Michelle from Adventure Dragon

 

19. What’s Paris famous for? Parisian Cafés!

Don’t miss our article about the best pastry shops and bakeries in Paris – recommended by a Parisian Chef!

Paris is known for many things, but the most beautiful, exciting and even cliché experience in Paris is to sit and sip coffee in a Parisian café. Cafés might be among the most famous things in Paris. 

A typical Parisian breakfast consists of croissants and coffee or hot chocolate. Some popular cafés in Paris have set breakfast menus that consist of items such as eggs, juice, fruit, bread, and a hot drink. But the French breakfast is mostly sweet. Some of the best cafés in Paris include Carette, Les Deux Magots, Café de Flore, and Angelina. But for a simple Café & Croissant, any Brasserie or corner café is good

Thanks for the suggestion, Soujanya from The Spicy Journey

Paris famous things: Cafés
Paris in September, the cafés are all set up for you to enjoy the sun

 

20. Champs-Élysées, Paris famous shopping street!

Paris is one of the best places to visit in Europe for several reasons, but undoubtedly, one of them is to walk and explore the Champs-Élysées, Paris’ most famous street.

The Champs-Élysées is an expansive, long, and beautiful avenue. It is 1.2 miles (ca. 2 km)  in length and is located between Place de la Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe. 

It is well known for its people-watching, restaurants, and fantastic shopping. Stores range from luxury brands to budget-friendly choices. In addition, the Louis Vuitton flagship store includes a contemporary art museum. 

For those who like to combine two fantastic passions – eating and shopping – there are also lots of choices. Consider stopping for delicious French macarons (an exquisite combination of a cookie and pastry) at Ladurée for a treat.

However, if you wish to sample a macaron with a delicious hot or cold gourmet coffee without breaking the bank, stop at Macdonald’s. Believe it or not, MacDonald’s in Paris on the Champs-Élysées (and elsewhere) offers macarons! 

Thanks for the suggestion, Nicole from Go Far Grow Close 

 

21. The Château de Versailles

The Palace of Versailles is one of Paris’ most iconic attractions and is also one of the most famous châteaux in France.  Versailles is one of the first UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Step back in time as you tour the opulent palace, complete with spectacular period décor.  Imagine yourself surrounded by members of the royal court as you walk through the incredible hall of mirrors.

Paris famous things: the castle of versailles
Paris is famous for what things? The Castle of Versailles is one of the most popular sights around Paris

The gardens of Versailles are a jewel box fit for a king, complete with ornately sculpted hedges, amazing fountains, and classical statuary.  They’re worth a visit all by themselves!

Versailles is not in Paris, but a town a few kilometers away. It’s a wonderful day trip destination from Paris, especially if you are looking for an easy getaway from Paris by train for a day

Contributed by Lisa Garrett of Waves and Cobblestones

 

22. Croissants, Paris’ famous pastry 

French pastries are arguably the best in the world, and croissants are a category for themselves! Nothing says I woke up in Paris like strolling to a boulangerie down the street and getting a freshly baked croissant for breakfast. 

It is not a cliché. Crunchy, flaky croissants are a staple in the French diet. You can enjoy croissants even if you have dietary restrictions, as there are many gluten-free and vegan bakeries around Paris! For example, Land & Monkeys with 5 bakeries in Paris. Also, see our post about the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Paris.

Tip, don’t dip your croissant into a cappuccino unless you are filming an aesthetic video for Instagram. It makes it soggy and drips everywhere!

Thanks for the suggestion, Natali from She’s abroad again 

The Seine in Paris in June
The Seine is THE most popular hang out spot during summer in Paris

 

23. The Seine River

Book your Seine River Cruise here because it is one of the nicest things to do in Paris

One of the things Paris is famous for is the Seine River. This is the main river that goes through the city center and it played an important part in the city’s history. Along the river, you can find some famous sights of the city, such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, and Notre-Dame.

It is possible to do a boat tour on the Seine, and see the city from the water. Furthermore, you can see the beautiful bridges that cross the river that way, such as Pont Alexandre III. Besides that, it is great to go for a walk along the river. 

For a few years, big stretches of the Seine river are pedestrian areas and are great for enjoying an outdoor apéro with friends. During the summer months, July and August, the Seine River banks are transformed into a beachside promenade, called Paris Plage with many pop-up bars and restaurants, activities, and zones with armchairs to relax. It’s a very popular place to hang out and a great alternative if you can’t make it to one of the beaches near Paris.  

Thanks for the suggestion, Dymphe from Dymabroad

 

24. The famous Paris Gardens & Parks

There’s nothing more Parisian than Paris parks. It’s here, under the tall old trees, bright flower gardens, fountains, and ponds, that you’ll find the quintessential Paris scene.

Paris famous things: Parks and Gardens
Parks and Gardens belong certainly to the things Paris is famous for

Sitting on the benches or metal chairs, people are reading, enjoying the sun, and quietly catching up with a friend. Lovers stroll, children play and birds chirp. From the largest parks in Paris – Parc des Buttes-Chaumont to the most beautiful – Jardin du Luxembourg, to the most popular – Jardin des Tuileries, to one of the smallest – Jardin Atlantique, they all make Paris one of the most loved cities in the world.

Thanks for the suggestion, Renee from Dream Plan Experience

 

25. What’s Paris famous for? The Metro!

The Paris Metro opened in 1900 for the Paris Exposition, with Hector Guimard designing the metro station entrances in the Art Nouveau style.  Many of them still exist today at 86 stations, including the Metro stations Cité on the Île-de-la-Cité and Abbesses in Montmartre.

Many metro station interiors also have unique designs.  One example is Concorde, with letters on every tile spelling out the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen from the French Revolution.

Today, there are 16 lines that can virtually take you anywhere in Paris. More lines are currently being built. At the time of writing, paper tickets can be bought for 1.90, with a “carnet” of 10 tickets costing €16.90.

Thanks for the suggestion, Theresa from Fueled By Wanderlust

 

26. Montmartre, Paris famous neighborhood

If you ask what is Paris known for, you will surely get the answer: Montmartre! The neighborhood is one of the most popular areas in Paris and home to many artists and of course the famous church Sacre Coeur. 

Located at the top of the Montmartre hill with gorgeous panoramic views of the entire city below, Sacre Coeur is beautiful and an important landmark to the city. But the iconic Montmartre Neighborhood is also known for its many galleries, cobbled stones winding alleys, boutiques, restaurants, bars, and of course, the Moulin Rouge. 

Maison Rose Restaurant on one of the most famous Paris street
La Maison Rose in Montmartre, on one of Paris cutest Streets: Rue l’Abreuvoir

It’s a fun district to explore, during the day but also during nighttime in Paris, and great to experience a different and colorful part of Paris.

Thanks for the suggestion, Noel from Oahu Travel Now

 

27. The Covered Passages

Don’t miss my guide about the 14 most charming covered passages in Paris that includes also a map, so you know where to find them exactly.

The covered passages are a unique architectural and functional feature, famous in Paris. Built in the late 1700s to early 1800s, the passages were created so the wealthy could avoid the crowded, muddy streets – but still see and be seen when out to shop and dine.  These glass-covered passages were tucked between, and even through other buildings, taking advantage of otherwise unused space. The galleries were basically the first shopping malls in Paris.

At their height, there were more than 150 of these passages throughout the city.  Today, only around twenty remain, still lined with shops, galleries, and restaurants.

indoor activity for Paris during winter time - visit the Galerie Vivienne
The Galerie Vivienne is a covered passage in the center of Paris and a good activity for rainy days in Paris

The most known Covered Passage is the beautiful Galerie Vivienne. Even though the Galerie it is not a hidden gem in Paris anymore, the Passage does hold a secret: Danico. One of the many secret bars in Paris, hidden behind a restaurant, and one of the best Cocktail Bars in Paris

Thanks for the suggestion, Megan from WANDERTOES

 

28. Père Lachaise: the famous Paris cemetery

Paris is famous for many things, but also for the city’s cemeteries. What sounds a bit morbid, is actually a really impressive landmark in Paris. Many famous people found their last resting places in the Père Lachaise cemetery, for example, Jim Morrison and Edith Piaf.

But the cemeteries are also a nice destination for walks, especially if you visit Paris in Autumn. It’s a good spot to see the fall foliage, which gives the place a truly unique atmosphere. 

cemetery paris famous: Père Lachaise Cemetery
The Père Lachaise Cemetery is the most famous cemetery in Paris

 

Et Voilà, that’s our list of things Paris is famous for. I hope it helped you to get a better idea of Paris and to see that it’s a city absolutely worth traveling to. 

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Famous things in Paris Pin

 

FAQ – What is Paris Famous for?

What is Paris best known for?

Paris is known for famous monuments like the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe. Paris is also famous for its many art museums like the Louvre, and shopping and fashion streets like the Champs-Élysées. Food and fine dining are as well things Paris is associated with. 

What is Paris also known as?

Paris is also known as the City of Love due to its romantic flair, but Paris is also known as the City of Lights. The latter is due to the many streetlamps and the beautiful Parisian illuminated cityscape.

What is the most visited place in Paris?

In 2020, the most visited landmark in Paris was the Louvre, followed by the Eiffel Tower. 

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