You’re back! Now you’ve already seen all the tourist classics like the Louvre from your first visit and the Sainte Chapelle from your second visit. You’ve claimed your favourite district, found your go-to cafe terrace and now you’re ready to venture further into your Paris exploration and discover some things a little more off the beaten track.
This list will take you all over the city (and even a step or two beyond) to incredible museums, lively markets, the best picnic spot and a beautiful cemetery.
P.S Need help planning your trip? Click the contact button at the top of the page to send us an email to learn how we can help you with your itinerary or take you on a walking tour.
The podcast episode
After we tackled the FIRST and SECOND trips in recent weeks, it’s time to get a little more off the beaten path – and in this episode Earful teammate and tour guide Charlotte Pleasants is on the show too. Subscribe to The Earful Tower for more every week.
The interactive map
Here’s an interactive map of everything we are about to recommend, to help you find it all easily.
The Checklist: Your second trip to Paris
OK, let’s tick off some checklist items. How many have you done? (Remember, the fourth trip to Paris will be on the blog next week).
1. Wander through the Palais-Royal
Spend some time in the Palais-Royal, a former palace that’s steeped in history, but perfectly enjoyable as a courtyard, garden, and series of stunning arcades. You may recognise this area from Emily in Paris or Mission Impossible. Address: 8 Rue de Montpensier, 75001
2. Admire the Musée Rodin
This is quite simply one of the loveliest museums in the whole of France. It’s the former workshop of sculptor Auguste Rodin and the stunning building houses an enormous collection of his work. The gardens are sheer perfection too, a mix of famous statues (like The Thinker) and beautiful plants, trees, and flowers. Do not miss this museum. @museerodinparis Address: 77 Rue de Varenne, 75007
3. Visit the Musee Carnavalet
This museum of Paris history has been closed for years for a mega facelift, but it reopened in June 2022 and looks spectacular. Do not miss this place. And it’s free to enter. @museecarnvalet Address: 23 Rue de Sévigné, 75003
4. Picnic at Canal Saint Martin
This is one of the coolest and prettiest parts of Paris, especially when the weather is great. Crazy to think that it was once considered to be the dodgy part of town. Not anymore! Take a long walk along the water and really get to know the neighbourhood. When you’re ready for a break, grab some cheese and bread and haul it over to the canal. Claim your space, dangle your legs over the side, and enjoy life as a local. Read our full guide to picnicking by the canal here.
5. Venture into the Panthéon
This has to be one of the most stunning buildings in Europe. If there’s a queue, buy an online ticket for the exact same price and waltz past everyone. Don’t forget to see the crypt downstairs where Josephine Baker now rests among many French greats like Victor Hugo and Marie Curie. Address: Pl. du Panthéon, 75005
6. Glide through the Palais Garnier
The opulent and incredible Palais Garnier is surprisingly easy to visit. You don’t need to watch a show to get inside, you don’t even need to do a guided tour. For 12 euros you can pop in and explore it yourself. That’s what we did and I’d highly recommend it. Tip: go early, it gets busy in there, and don’t miss the gilded Grand Foyer. Address: Pl. de l’Opéra, 75009
7. Explore the Père Lachaise Cemetery
The most beautiful cemetery in the world and the final resting place of Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf, Oscar Wilde, and more. Perfect to explore for a couple of hours and forget the bustle of the city around you. Address: 16 Rue du Repos, 75020
8. Seek treasures at a flea market
Ahhh, the flea markets of Paris! Well-loved by the locals and sought after by the tourists. It’s here that you can find anything from a wooden painting palette to an Édith Piaf vinyl, a vintage collection of scissors to 60-year-old Paris Metro tickets. Now, you may well be familiar with the Paris Saint-Ouen flea market to the north of Paris which is well worth a visit, but if you’d like to skip the snooty vendeurs and overpriced rugs, we recommend the Vanves flea market (if you’re a member, watch my exploration of these markets here).
Saint-Ouen flea market address: 99 All. des Rosiers, 93400 Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine
Vanves flea market address: 5 Av. de la Prte de Vanves, 75014
9. Stroll the covered passages
Much of Paris looks the same and as many of us history fanatics know, we have the Haussmann renovation of Paris to thank for that. During the late 19th century, Napoleon III ordered an upgrade for the city and this meant that a large part of old Paris was demolished – but not everything. One artefact that remains is the covered passages, scattered mostly around the 2nd arrondissement. These passages were a way for people to avoid the often filthy streets and bad weather while shopping and socializing.
10. Relax at Parc Monceau
Perhaps the most lovely park in Paris. No trip to the French capital is complete without half an hour in here. Don’t leave without finding the picturesque pond and classic colonnade alongside it. Address: 35 Bd de Courcelles, 75008
If you liked this blog post you should check out our 2023 PDF guide to the city, which features hundreds of tips just like these ones. You can buy it via the icon below, or you get it free on signup to The Earful Tower’s Patreon member page.
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Photo credit: Augusta Sagnelli