About Paris

by SmarterTravel Staff

With a secure place among the world's most visited cities, Paris attracts travelers with an intoxicating blend of beauty, romance, and warm baguettes.

Many of the most memorable things to do in Paris are free. Exploring neighborhoods on foot, window shopping, enjoying views of the city, and relaxing at parks such as the Jardin du Luxembourg doesn't cost a dime. And, some Paris attractions, such as the Musee d'Orsay, offer free admission on select days.


Dining in Paris is an attraction all its own, but all food is not created equal. Plenty of restaurants on the tourist track dole out mediocre meals, so to get a true taste of the renowned food of Paris it's best to choose your restaurants as deliberately as you choose sights.

Before you arrive, familiarize yourself with a map of Paris, noting the divisions by arrondissement, or neighborhood. The numbered districts spiral out clockwise from the center of Paris. Each has its own personality and appeal, from the student-friendly 5th to the hotbed of iconic sights of the 7th.

Paris rewards the curious. Stick to the main sights—the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Champs-Elysees—and you'll probably enjoy the city; but find something all your own in Paris—a cafe on a quiet place, a neighborhood patisserie, or a tiny boutique selling vintage posters—and you're likely to love it.

Finding competitively priced airfare to Paris should be straightforward, though you might also compare airfares to other European cities, especially if Paris will be part of your wider European itinerary.

Read comments or add your own insight!