So you’ve got 48 hours to take in and experience all that the French capital has to offer?
Well, you’re spoilt for choice in the city of light but this quick guide to Paris will tell you which sights you can’t afford to miss. Read on for a checklist of must-sees:
- Eiffel Tower. It may be a cliché but no trip to the French capital is truly complete without a trip to the Eiffel Tower. Save time by buying your ticket online and if you get hungry, you can always make a stop at the recently opened restaurant on the first floor, before heading to the 324m summit, for great views across the Parisian landscape.
- The Mona Lisa. Housed in the Louvre, this masterpiece by Leonardo da Vinci, which he also named “La Gioconda,” was painted in the 16th century and is one of the most well known paintings in the world, with an average of 6 million visitors annually.
- Centre Pompidou. Named after President Georges Pompidou who gave the go ahead for building the centre, this is one of the premium cultural spaces in Paris. It houses the Museum of Modern Art (the largest in Europe) but is also admired for its architecture. Designed by Renzo Piano, Richard Rodgers and Su Rodgers amongst others, the building won a Pritzker Prize in 2007 and was said to have “turned the architecture world upside down”.
- Palace of Versaille – situated on the outskirts of Paris, the Palace of Versaille is a visual and historical treat. The site of many historical events – home to many French kings including Louis XIV and XV, the place where the seminal treaty was signed after WW1, the palace is now open to visitors and many temporary art exhibitions take place within its gardens.
- Ladurée – a first time visitor would do well to head here and sample the delights of Ladurée, the French patisserie which is most well-known for its macaroons. The pastel colours, beautiful packaging and exquisite pastries mean that Ladurée remains equally popular with tourists and Parisians alike.
- Shoppers should not miss the Avenue des Champs-Élysées. One of the world’s most famous streets, it is home to many upscale boutiques, cinemas, cafes and restaurants, whilst the lower end is bordered by lots of greenery.