EPIC 5 Days in Paris Itinerary – Perfect Paris Travel Guide

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5 Days in Paris, France Itinerary -Ultimate Guide – Especially for First-Timers

It has been a long-lived dream of going to Paris, and I can say first hand Paris definitely lived up to the hype – so much so, I even brought my mom after. The lights, the art, all of the history, romance, and, of course, food make Paris one of my favorite cities! In this Paris travel itinerary, I will cover the best things to see and do with 5 Days in Paris!

Arc de Triomphe is a top attraction to visit with 5 days in Paris
Arc de Triomphe is a top attraction to visit with 5 days in Paris

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Is 5 Days Enough Time in Paris

You may be wondering if 5 days is too little or more time than needed in Paris. After visiting Paris multiple times, I believe 5 days is the perfect amount of time to see all the major attractions – especially for first-timers. Of course, like any major city, it is impossible to see it all, but 5 days is a great start in Paris.

On the other hand, if you travel at a faster pace, you could still use this Paris itinerary and squeeze most of it into 4 days. If you only have 36 hours in Paris, it will be tough to see all of Paris’s main attractions, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go.

Here are my top 10 must-see attractions in Paris if you only have a short amount of time to visit.

Paris Travel Tip: If you’re visiting Paris in 2023-2024, please note some attractions/monuments are under restoration in preparation for the Paris 2024 Olympics. You may see scaffolding on the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Fountains at Place de la Concorde, and Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel.

5 Days in Paris Itinerary - Eiffel Tower

How to Use This 5 Days in Paris Itinerary

This 5 days in Paris Itinerary has been specially designed for you to explore attractions that are close to one another and help reduce backtracking. Swapping the days around won’t affect the itinerary, but if you switch out any of the Paris attractions, make sure to check your map!

Additionally, you will be utilizing the Metro system, which is so easy to use. You can also use Uber or Bolt – I prefer Uber.

Read: Top Paris Travel Tips to Know Before You Go

Paris Metro

Day 1 of 5 Days in Paris: The Louvre, Tuileries Garden, Notre Dame, and More

To start day 1 of 5 days in Paris, we are going to explore some of the top attractions Paris has to offer. This will include:

  • The Louvre
  • Tuileries Garden
  • Place de la Concorde
  • Sainte-Chapelle
  • Notre Dame
  • Latin Quarter
  • Cruise the Seine at Night

Remember, you can always switch up the days, but if you change the attractions, make sure to double-check the distance.


The Louvre Museum

Even if museums are not your thing, The Louvre is probably one of the most iconic museums in the world. My first thought of the Louvre was those glass Pyramids I’ve seen splatted all over Instagram.

Let’s be honest, they are very photogenic, I get it. I could imagine many tourists just go to see the pyramids and don’t even step foot inside the actual museum.

Personally, I think it’s worth the admission ticket to go inside. There are so many famous pieces of original artwork that you will only see at this Museum, including the Mona Lisa, the Code of Hammurabi, and an extensive Egyptian wing.

On top of that, the Louvre is actually the largest museum in the world! They say it would take almost 3 months to look at each piece for 60 seconds.

I can’t recommend getting a priority ticket (especially during the summer months) enough! Even during my last visit in April, if you didn’t pre-purchase a ticket, the line was 3 hours long. AND, even with a pre-purchased ticket, there was still a little bit of a wait.

Therefore, I think you should do the Louvre first, to help beat the crowds. While inside, you can even stop by Angelina Paris for their famous hot chocolate.

Or, you can even make a reservation at Cafe Marly to enjoy a meal in front of the Louvre. It’s pricey, but nice!

Admission: 15 Euros if you wait online and purchase at the Museum.

Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday: 9 AM – 6 PM. Friday: 9 AM – 9:45 PM. Closed on Tuesday. Last entry is 1 hour before closing.

Address: Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France

Louvre Pyramid view in Paris
Breakfast at Cafe Marly in Paris
Breakfast at Cafe Marly in Paris

The Tuileries Garden (Jardin des Tuileries)

Upon exiting the Louvre, you can walk right into the Tuileries Garden. The gardens are one of the best free things to do in Paris and are the perfect spot to give your legs and feet a break by sitting at the fountain.

The Gardens are massive, with sculptures, fountains, and the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, not to be confused with the famous Arc de Triomphe at the center of Place Charles de Gaulle.

If you’re interested in history, these gardens hold heaps going back to King Henry III in the 1500’s! They are also the perfect spot to just relax or have lunch.

You can also find beautiful flower blooms in the Spring, making for the perfect Instagrammable Paris pictures!

Additionally, while in the area, if you happen to be an art museum buff, you can also visit Musée de l’Orangerie. Here you will find eight Monet water lilies along with other 20th-century European art.

Paris Travel Tip: If you do want to visit at least 4 Paris attractions included, I would suggest getting the Paris Museum Pass – as it should certainly save you money. (The Louvre ticket needs to be booked in advance. Make sure there is a time slot available first.)

Address: Place de la Concorde, 75001 Paris, France

Tuileries Garden in Paris
Tuileries Gardens in Paris. Large Marble statue.

Place de la Concorde

Continue your way through the gardens out into the Place de la Concorde. Did you know Place de la Concorde is the largest square (21.3 acres) in Paris and famous for many public executions?

The square includes some really cool features as well, including the Egyptian Obelisk from the Luxor Temple, the Fontaines de la Concorde, and Roue de Paris.

The Luxor Obelisk stands 75 ft high, weighs 230 tons, and is over 3,000 years old. It was originally housed outside the Luxor Temple in Egypt and was gifted to France by Muhammad Ali Pasha, Ruler of Ottoman Egypt!

Right next to Luxor Obelisk are two fountains on either side that boast intricate details and beauty (Fontaine des Mers and Fontaine des Fleuves).

Originally 4 fountains were planned for this space, but it was then decided the water supply would not be sufficient.

Finished in 1840, the North Fountain commemorates navigation and commerce on the rivers of France, and the South Fountain commemorates maritime commerce and industry.

Paris Travel Tip: Since this square is located at the end of Champs-Élysées, you can move this to day 2 in Paris.

Place de la Concorde Obelisk Paris itinerary
Fontaines Concorde Paris France travel tips itinerary

Sainte-Chapelle – Holy Chapel

If you want to see some extraordinary stained glass windows, Sainte Chapelle needs to be at the top of your Paris itinerary. This chapel was built in the 13th Century by Louis IX and has 1,113 scenes throughout the stained glass.

I would recommend getting your ticket in advance since this chapel is very popular. Once you’re inside, make sure to get a board that explains the scenes on each panel of stained glass.

Paris Travel Tip: You must go through security to enter, including a medal detector and an x-ray machine. They do not allow large luggage items.

Admission: 11.50 Euros

Hours: April – September 9 AM – 7 PM. Last entry at 6:30 PM. October – March 9 AM – 5 PM. Last entry is at 4:30 PM. Closed January 1, May 1 and December 25.

Address: 10, boulevard du Palais 75001 Paris

Sainte-Chapelle Stained Glass
Sainte-Chapelle Stained Glass

Optional: Conciergerie

Right next to the Sainte-Chapelle is the Conciergerie, a palace, turned prison, and now a museum and World Heritage by UNESCO. Marie Antonette was famously a prisoner here.

Now you can explore the royal kitchens as well as the cells of the prison, and if you visit both Sainte-Chappelle and the Conciergerie, there is a bundled price of 18.50 euros.

Conciergerie

Notre Dame Cathedral 

Notre Dame is known to be one of the finest examples of Gothic French architecture. It was completed in 1345, has 10 bells, and the tower height stands 226 feet tall.

We were lucky to see Notre Dame before the fire. The sun shined through the delicate stained glass, with art and sculptures lining each side of the cathedral.

Due to the fire, they are not letting anyone inside as they work on the reconstruction, however, you can still walk around the building, which I believe is still a must with 5 days in Paris. They hope to have it reopened in 2024 for the Olympic Games.

In my opinion, it is the back of the cathedral which was really damaged during my recent visit.

Address: 6 Parvis Notre-Dame – Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France

Notre Dame is a must with 5 days in Paris. Front of Notre Dame during sunset
Stained Glass at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris
Stained Glass at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris
Notre Dame from across the river
Notre Dame in 2023

Latin Quarter

While in the area, I suggest taking a stroll through the Latin Quarter and grabbing a bite to eat. This is a very lively area with dozens of restaurants to choose from!

Latin Quarter in Paris itinerary

Paris Seine River Cruise

In my humble opinion, a ride down the Seine is a must-do on any Paris itinerary! I recommend doing this at night so you can see the Eiffel Tower sparkle – it’s magical and one of the best things to do in Paris at night!

Make sure to check when the sun is going down before booking your ticket. They are currently sparkling for 5 minutes at the beginning of each hour. The last sparkle will be at 11 PM.

Insider Paris Tip: I have been told the dinner cruise is not worth it.

Some takeaways were that Paris has 37 bridges, their smallest bridge has collapsed several times (although he seemed like he might have been joking), and the rail bridge was a gift for Versailles.

We did our boat tour with Vedettes du Pont Neuf because they dock at Pont Neuf, which is close to the Saint Germain neighborhood (where we stayed).

Most boat tours leave near the Eiffel Tower. If you are staying closer to the Eiffel Tower, leaving from this dock at night will probably be better for you! Generally speaking, most tours are pre-recorded and do the same route.

Eiffel tower lit up at night is a must see with 5 days in Paris

Day 2 of 5 days in Paris: The Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, and Champs-Élysées

On day two of our 5 days in Paris, we are making it to the most iconic Paris attractions, the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe. If you decide to do this day first with so much excitement to be in Paris, I totally get it.

The Eiffel Tower

I recommend starting off at the Eiffel Tower. You may even want to do a sunrise photoshoot at Trocadero. I dreamed of wanting to stand under this tower as a little girl, so getting to see it up close and personal was a dream come true.

The reason I recommend getting here early is because it gets incredibly crowded here. So much so that it can feel overwhelming. There are street vendors trying to sell you stuff at every turn, and with larger crowds, pickpocketing happens more.

Therefore, show up nice and early and enjoy seeing the Eiffel Tower. If you want to go up the tower, I highly recommend getting your Eiffel Tower tickets months in advance.

We opted out since I want to see the tower as a part of the skyline, but I totally get wanting to go up! If you go with a Paris City Pass, this can be super helpful in securing a spot!

Don’t forget to also appreciate the tower from Champ de Mars. You can even come back here later in the afternoon for a picnic. During the spring and summer, the sun doesn’t go down until almost 10 PM – so you have a lot of daylight to enjoy Paris!

Paris fun fact: Did you know the Eiffel Tower was built in 1889 and took 2 years 2 months and 5 days to complete?

The photo below with the Eiffel Tower in the background was taken at Trocadero. It is one of the most popular places to take photos of the Eiffel Tower, but be very, very, vigilant of your things. It is also a hot spot for pickpocketing.

Eiffel Tower is a top attraction to visit with 5 days in Paris
The Eiffel Tower is one of the most photo worthy spots in Paris

Arc de Triomphe

Next, if the weather is nice, I’d suggest walking to Arc de Triomphe! The best part about walking around Paris is getting to really appreciate where you are and venture down beautiful Parisian allies.

Finally arriving at the huge roundabout (with crazy drivers, I should add) sits Arc de Triomphe.

This impressive Arc was built to honor those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars.

You can actually go to the top and view the city, although when we went, a ceremony was taking place, so we only got to view from across the street.

Watching the cars drive and look as if they are going to crash each time is an attraction in itself.

Address: Place Charles de Gaulle, 75008 Paris, France

Arc de Triomphe should be on any itinerary with 5 days in Paris.

Avenue des Champs-Élysées

Next, make sure to take a stroll down Avenue des Champs-Élysées. This is like the equivalent to 5th Avenue in NYC. As you wander down Champs Elysees, you will see tons of luxury stores and cafes. If you are ready to shop until you drop, this is the place you will want to be with 5 days in Paris!

While in the area, consider stopping by Ladurée, one of the most famous Paris macaron bakeries. Additionally, along the way is the Grand Palais, however, it will not reopen until the Spring of 2025.

Make sure to also stop by the Pont Alexandre III bridge for lovely views of the Eiffel Tower.

Champs-Élysées ends at Place de la Concorde, so if you want to skip it on your first day in Paris, you will be near it today as well!

Champs-Élysées street with the Obelisk and arc de triomphe in the background

Optional: Hôtel de la Marine

There is only so much you can do with 5 days in your Paris itinerary, so don’t feel overwhelmed if you can’t see it all! However, I wanted to include Hôtel de la Marine since it is also in the Place de la Concorde, and my Aunt, who visits Paris EVERY year, says it is her new favorite hidden gem.

This is a heritage museum, but she says it is like a little Versailles with beautifully decorated rooms. It is definitely on my list for our next trip. Learn more here!

Admission: Starts at 9.50 Euros

Hours: Monday-Thurday, Saturday, and Sunday: 10:30 AM – 7 PM. Friday: 10:30 AM – 9:30 PM

Address: 2 Pl. de la Concorde, 75008 Paris, France

Musée d’Orsay

Musée d’Orsay is often enjoyed more than the Louvre! It is much smaller, but the art is fantastic. The museum displays time periods from 1848 to 1914. You can find pieces from Van Gogh, Rodin, Claude Monet, and more

Did you know the museum was installed in the former Orsay railway station? It is also a well-known place to take Instagram photos by the clock, but that’s not why you should visit.

Usually, the crowds will also be a little better at Musee d’Orsay as well!

Admission: 16 €

Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 9:30 AM – 6 PM; Thrusday: 9:30 AM – 9:45 PM; Closed on Monday

Address: 1 Rue de la Légion d’Honneur, 75007 Paris, France

Musee dOrsay famous Clock. Visit this museum with 5 days in Paris.

See a Night Show

A cabaret show might not be for everyone, but it is such a unique Paris experience to add to your itinerary! I’ve been to the Latin Pardis and really loved the show.

This was also the first cabaret show in Paris. The most popular place to see a cabaret show is easily Moulin Rouge, however, if you want to go here, you really need to get tickets far in advance. I’ve been told Moulin Rouge also feels more like a tourist trap, but others love it.

If this type of performance is not your taste, then consider seeing an Opera Show at the incredible Palais Garnier.

Paradis cabaret show

Day 3 in Paris: Day trip to Versailles

Every Paris travel guide you look at will include a day trip to Versailles, and with good reason. So with 5 days in Paris, I’d definitely recommend a visit! This Palace will have you in awe as you walk through history.

For scope, around 37,000 acres of land were cleared for tree-lined terraces, walkways, and gardens holding thousands of plants and trees.

To think we could cover the grounds open to the public in one day would be nearly impossible as there is so much to see. Make sure to wear comfortable shoes!

Did you know Versailles was originally a hunting lodge used by King Louis XIII? It was King Louis XIV who built Versailles into the huge palace you see today, and boy, did Marie Antoinette and King Louie have good taste!

Getting To Versailles

Just Southwest of Paris, you can take the train for about 30 minutes, depending on your location.

From the train, it was about a 10-minute walk to the large golden gates. We paid to have access to the Castle and Trianon Estate, but unless you are there super early, I am not sure if it’s worth it since the gardens are free!

Paris Insider tip: I also believe it is better to buy your tickets online ahead of time, or even skip the line Versailles tickets since it’s very popular! We waited a very long time online (lesson learned). 

Gardens in Versailles

Being a nature lover, my favorite part was the gardens. The weather was absolutely beautiful as swans swam around the fountains.

As you walk down to the garden, in the distance, you can canoe around the pond. You can also rent bikes by the canoes, which are a lifesaver if you want to make good time around the Palace.

You pay by the hour, and they come with a lock. This helped us see a lot of the property and gave us a nice breeze on a rather hot day.

Versailles Travel Tip: We stayed until closing time and learned that the nearest train was closed for the day, meaning we had a hike to a much further train. So, make sure you check the train schedule!

We recently visited the Biltmore Estate (the largest Estate in the USA), and let me tell you, Versailles blows the Biltmore out of the water!

There also always seems to be a strike with the trains, so always best to double-check!

Read: More Easy Paris Day Trips

Hall of Mirrors in Versailles, Paris France.
The Hall of Mirrors in the main Palace.

Day 4: 5 Days in Paris Itinerary

On your 4th of 5 days in Paris, you will get a little off the beaten path and see some local Paris gems. This includes:

  • Exploring around Montmartre
  • Sacré-Cœur Basilica
  • Galeries Lafayette Rooftop
  • Palais Garnier
  • Luxembourg Gardens
  • Montparnasse Tower

Remember, these days are pretty jam-packed, so if you don’t get to everything, it is ok!

Explore Montmartre

Located in the eighteenth arrondissement, Montmartre is probably one of my favorite neighborhoods in Paris! The charming cobblestone allies filled with art and food give all the Parisian vibes one could ask for!

I suggest taking the metro to the Lamarck – Caulaincourt station and making your way up to Sacré-Cœur Basilica. On the way, walk down Rue de l’Abreuvoir and pass by the famous La Maison Rose.

Wander around the allies, take a crepe to go, or sit down and have a meal while watching the artists live.

 Rue de l'Abreuvoir street in Paris
Rue de l’Abreuvoir

Sacré-Cœur Basilica

Sacré-Cœur Basilica (The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris), is an absolutely stunning church and another top attraction in Paris!

This Roman Catholic church is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It holds both religious and political importance, and it is free to visit. Because of this, lines can be long to get in, but it moves.

Even if you don’t want to wait in line to get in, you can still walk around the outside of the Cathedral and enjoy the gargoyles and impressive architecture. Additionally, it is perched on top of Paris, offerings some of the best views of the city!

Make sure to make your way down to Square Louise Michel and have a rest at the Carrousel de Saint-Pierre.

Address: 35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre, 75018 Paris, France

 Carrousel de Saint-Pierre - Paris in 5 days

Moulin Rouge

If you’re a fan of Moulin Rouge or even want to see the iconic windmill, continue walking through Montmartre heading west. Are there any Emily in Paris fans here? You can also stop by the Wall of Love on the way!

Moulin Rouge in Paris

Optional: Pink Mama for Lunch

Pink Mama has become one of the most Intagrammable eateries due to their decor and the food is actually good. So, if you’re in the neighborhood and you like trendy Insta-worthy restaurants, you can make a reservation.

Keep in mind, reservations need to be made well in advance!

Address: 20bis Rue de Douai, 75009 Paris, France

Galeries Lafayette Rooftop

If you love shopping and awesome views, Galeries Lafayette Rooftop should be on your 5 days in Paris itinerary! The building alone, with its giant stained glass dome, is enough to bring you in.

And the cherry on top, in my opinion, is the free rooftop observation deck. If you happen to be visiting Paris during the holidays, they deck this shopping center out so beautifully!

Paris Insider Tip: Don’t take the stairs. Instead, go to the escalator and take it up as far as you can to the rooftop!

Address: 40 Bd Haussmann, 75009 Paris, France

Galeries Lafayette Rooftop
Galeries Lafayette Rooftop
Galeries Lafayette Stained Glass dome

Tour the Palais Garnier

Just down the street is Palais Garnier – also known as the Paris Opera House. This Italian-style building is like a palace, which is why they have opened it up for tours – and I highly recommend visiting.

Walk up the grand staircase, see the incredible painted ceilings, walk through the library, and more! Just make sure to get your tickets ahead of time.

Address: Pl. de l’Opéra, 75009 Paris, France

Palais Garnier is a must with 5 days in Paris itinerary
Palais Garnier in Paris

Optional: The Centre Pompidou

Personally, I’ve never been one to really enjoy modern art, however, just because I don’t like modern art doesn’t mean you don’t. Therefore, I want to include The Centre Pompidou because this museum is wildly popular, with over 55 thousand views on Google.

You can also opt to wander through the Le Marais neighborhood, which is another really beautiful area in Paris.

Address: Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris, France

Luxembourg Gardens (Jardin du Luxembourg)

If you love beautiful gardens, you should certainly add the Luxembourg Gardens to your Paris itinerary. The garden was designed in 1612 and inspired by the Boboli Gardens in Florence.

Throughout the gardens, you will find beautiful flowers, statues, fountains, and more. On a nice day, it is a great place to rest your legs or even have a picnic!

Address: 75006 Paris, France

Tour Montparnasse

If one lookout wasn’t enough, head to Montparnasse to see all of Paris.

We took the train to Gare Montparnasse but had a little bit of a difficult time finding the entrance to the top.

Just ask a couple of times, and eventually, you will make it to the entrance. We had to walk around the building to another side and pay 18 euros each, but let me tell you, these views are incredible!

First, you are brought to the 56th floor, where there are telescopes, food, and a gift shop.

Next, you can take the stairs and walk to the open-air terrace with incredible 360-degree views of Paris, including Eiffel Tower views and a champagne bar! Yep, that’s right, they have champagne!

Montparnasse Address: 33 Avenue du Maine, 75015 Paris, France

Additionally, also very popular in the area are the Paris Catacombs.

If you are interested in something a little more morbid (but extremely popular), check out the Catacombs, which hold the remains of more than six million people!

Catacombs Address: 1 Avenue du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy, 75014 Paris, France

Views from Tour Montparnasse in Paris is perfect for any itinerary with views of the Eiffel tower
Views from Tour Montparnasse

Day 5 in Paris Itinerary

You have already seen so much during your 5 days in Paris, and believe it or not, there is still so much to see. However, this will also be a time to see anything you missed in previous days.

  • Explore Saint-Germain-des-Prés
  • Panthéon
  • Parc des Buttes Chaumont

Or, if you love Disney, you can also take a day trip to Disneyland Paris.

Saint Germain

If you haven’t found yourself in the Saint Germain area yet, I suggest taking a stroll through this neighborhood. In fact, this is usually where we stay in Paris.

From Instagrammable cafes like Café de Flore, Les Deux Magots, and Maison Sauvage Saint-Germain-des-Prés, to historic street cafes and monuments, it is easy to fall in love with this area. I happen to really like eating at Le Molière.

Sitting at cafes is a must on any Paris itinerary

Panthéon

Located in the Latin Quarter, the Pantheon was built in the 1700s for King Louis XV. It was inspired by the Roman Pantheon, which you can definitely tell by the design.

The Panthéon also offers lovely views of Paris from the top. Believe it or not, from 1790 to 1889, the Pantheon was the highest point in Paris. Then the Eiffel Tower was built.

On your walk here, you can also stop by Shakespeare and Company or grab pastries from Odette.

Admission: €11.50

Hours: April – September: 10 AM – 6:30 PM; October – March: 10 AM – 6 PM

Address: Place du Pantheon 75005 Paris

Parc des Buttes Chaumont

If you want to feel more like a local Parisian, head to Parc des Buttes Chaumont. Known to be a hidden gem of Paris, this lovely park has suspended bridges, ponds, grassy lawns, and the Temple de la Sibyll at the top – offering panoramic views.

Parc des Buttes Chaumont reminded me of Central Park in New York City, but much cleaner. It is actually one of the largest and original green spaces in Paris.

Address: 1 Rue Botzaris, 75019 Paris, France

Parc de Buttes Chaumont in Paris

Père Lachaise Cemetery

If you want to visit some famous graves, you might want to add Père Lachaise Cemetery to your 5 day Paris itinerary. Some notable graves include Oscar Wilde, Jim (James Douglas) Morrison, and Edith Piaf.

The cemetery spans over 100 acres and has over 3 million visitors a year!

Address: 16 Rue du Repos, 75020 Paris, France

Free Walking Tour

Many neighborhoods offer guided walking tours where you can pay as you wish. If there was any neighborhood you would like to learn more about, a guided tour, or even a cooking class or food tour can be fun ways to spend your last day in Paris!

Paris food

Getting Around Paris

Now that you know the best things to do with 5 days in Paris, let’s talk about getting around Paris. The best way to travel around Paris is by walking and taking the Metro system.

I would suggest getting the Navigo Pass, and loading it up. You can get this card from a ticket agent and ticket machines. Additionally, you can download the app and use it at the turnstile. It will make it easier than always stopping at the ticket booth and worrying about putting the right stops.

I started my pass with 10 rides, which gives you a slight discount. You can check how many rides you have left on the app and even reload your card via app!

Additionally, you can grab a taxi or Uber to get around Paris. I prefer Uber, personally.

Other helpful transportation apps include Google Maps. I used Google Maps almost exclusively during my last trip and it worked perfectly. Another train app that can be helpful is the Bonjour RATP app.

View down the Paris Seine River at Sunset
View down the Paris Seine River

How to Get to Paris

The best way to get to Paris is generally to fly. If you are in Europe or the UK, you can also consider taking a train, which is really convenient.

If you are flying, Charles de Gaulle Airport is the most popular. From there, you have the option to take the train or take a taxi/Uber. I’ve done both, and I prefer taking an Uber for a number of reasons – but at the end of the day, it’s convenience and comfort.

FYI – I use Skyscanner to find the best flights and Going for flight deals straight to my inbox!

The Louvre in Paris

Should You Get the Paris Pass

The best way to know if you should get the Paris Go City Pass or even the Museum Pass is to do the math on the attractions you want to visit. Many times, having these passes will allow you to skip the ticket line, which will allow you to spend less time waiting in line and more time exploring.

Paris has always been a very popular European city to visit, but it is even busier nowadays! I couldn’t believe how long the lines were during our recent visit in May.

If you follow this itinerary, the passes will certainly be worth it, but I always suggest doing the math and making sure the pass makes sense for you!

If you don’t want to go with a pass, I would strongly recommend looking for Paris skip-the-line passes for popular attractions, including the Eiffel Tower, Louvre, and Versailles.


Where to Stay in Paris

Paris is divided into 20 arrondissements known as neighborhoods, and the numbers are in one big spiral.

During our 5 days in Paris, we stayed in Saint Germain, which is the 6th arrondissement.

I truly loved this area because we were very close to Notre Dame, the train stations, the Senie, there are tons of restaurants, and the area, in general, is very lively.

Other areas/neighborhoods you should consider are Le Marais, the Latin Quarter, and Montmartre.

If you want to be near the Eiffel Tower (which most do), you should look in the 7th ARR. in Champs de Mars. The best accommodations go fast, so make sure to book at least a couple of months in advance. 

Some hotels you may want to consider staying is: 

Grand Hôtel de L’Univers Saint-Germain: We stayed at this charming 3-star hotel right off the historic street Rue de Buci. It is lined with restaurants, close to the metro, and attractions. Also, the rooms are surprisingly spacious for Paris. I would definitely stay here again.

Le Metropolitan a Tribute Portfolio Hotel: Known for its beautiful direct view of the Eiffel Tower, this eco-friendly property is located in the 16th arrondissement of Paris. You will be within walking distance from the Champs Elysées, Arc de Triomphe, and more. They even have an on-site swimming pool!

Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile: Located in the 17th arr. Enjoy views of the Eiffel Tower. They offer free WiFi, 24-hour front desk service, and you will be located about 0.9 mi from both the Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysées.

Hôtel Sèvres Saint Germain: Located in the 6th district of Paris, the property is equipped with a 24-hr front desk, free WiFi, an onsite bar, and more. You will be less than a mile from 0.9 Musée d’Orsay and Notre Dame and just over a mile from the Louvre and Tuileries Gardens. 

Hôtel Crayon Rouge: Located in the 1st arr. You will be right next to Palais Royal. This elegant hotel features a wine bar, 24-hour front desk, and concierge service. You will be able to enjoy a 7-minute walk to the Louvre Museum or a 25-minute walk to Notre Dame. They also serve a continental breakfast. 

Le Bristol Paris – an Oetker Collection Hotel: If you are looking for top-of-the-line luxury, this stunning property has modern luxury mixed with French elegance. Located in Champs Elysées and La Madeleine Place, enjoy a rooftop swimming pool with Eiffel Tower views. Some rooms even feature Louis XV or Louis XVI style furniture, and they have an award-winning spa.

Grand Hôtel de L’Univers Saint-Germain
Grand Hôtel de L’Univers Saint-Germain

How Much Does Paris, France Cost

While Paris is an expensive destination, you can visit Paris on somewhat of a budget. To give you an idea of how much we spent in Paris for 5 days is listed below for 2 people.

  • Accommodation: $1050+ USD – If you look at hostels, you can get a much better price. 
  • Food and Drink: $500+ USD
  • Additional Activities: $ 350+ USD

So, not including flights, we spent around $2,000 for two people, and if this is too much, there is definitely more room to budget since we did splurge at times.

Montmartre Neighborhood

5 Days in Paris Travel Guide Overview

This concludes our 5 days in Paris itinerary. I hope you have the most incredible time exploring this magical city!

As you can see, there is so much to see and do! I still have a bucket list of things I plan to visit the next time I find myself in the city of lights!

Want more tips for visiting Paris? Check out my Ultimate Paris Travel Guide and my France Travel Guide.

Have any questions about this 5 days in Paris itinerary, or feel like I missed something? Let me know in the comments below or email me, and I will do my best to help you!

Love this 5 Days in Paris Itinerary? I’d appreciate it if you could share it below!

5 Days in Paris Travel Itinerary Vacation travel guide.
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Samantha Oppenheimer

Samantha Oppenheimer (Sam Opp) quit her corporate marketing job in 2018 to travel the world and become a travel writer, blogger and content creator. She loves experiencing authentic travel experiences, photography, and nature. Sam shares helpful travel itineraries, travel tips, budget tips, and travel advice from her personal experiences. You can also find Sam's words featured in large publications including Mirror, Thrillist, and Well + Good.

13 thoughts on “EPIC 5 Days in Paris Itinerary – Perfect Paris Travel Guide”

  1. Do not forget one of the cemetery. And the area of the Sorbonne up to the river. And the Luxembourg Garden. And the Saint Chapel. And la Concergerie. And the Rodin Museum. And etc, etc, etc…

    Reply
    • Thanks for those additions Leo! Paris really does have some many places that it would take way more than 5 days to explore them all!

      Reply
  2. That’s an ambitious itinerary. I may be presumptuous but once you go to Paris.. you end up returning ( Most of the time)
    With the Louvre, for First-timers, i would suggest concentrating on one area. Plan out other areas on return trips.
    Be a flâneur. Walk around the city and allow Paris to guide you because you never know what you will discover.
    I always suggest a visit to the home of Eugene Delacroix. It’s out-of-the-way on a quiet street on the 6th and afterwards you can discover that arrondissement.
    Like old churches with a history ? Don’t ignore St. Séverin ( it’s got the greatest musky scent) or St. Sulpice.
    For fun-try to make a project out of spotting and snapping a photo of each Wallace Fountain you pass by.
    There is just so much going on in Paris? You need to savor and really enjoy the city as opposed to squeezing everything in.

    Reply
    • Thank you for taking the time to add your recommendations! There most certainly is a lot going on in Paris and would take way more than 5 days to explore the many gems of the city. As a first-timer, I wanted to make sure to include all the top things to do just in case this is your one and only shot in Paris.

      Reply
  3. This is a great itinerary 🙂 Your blog makes me want to go back to Paris. I visited Paris five years ago, but I didn’t have the chance to explore all these places. I am saving your guide for the future.

    Reply
  4. There are so many fantastic things to see and do in Paris! I wish I had spent a few more days there on my last trip, because it looks like I missed a few things on your list. Great itinerary!

    Reply
  5. I’m so jealous of everything you got to see in 5 days! I only had 2 days which I now know is not nearly enough time to see Paris!

    Reply
  6. Great guide Sam! This definitely took me back to when Paul surprised me with a trip to Paris for my 20th birthday! That was already nearly 7 years ago so I think I need to go back!

    Reply
  7. I spent 3 days in Paris back in 2011 and saw most of the main tourist spots but would love to go back and explore so many of these other areas! Thanks for all of the great ideas for when I am able to travel there again 🙂

    Reply
  8. You pretty much hit every one of the main landmarks! I can keep going back to Paris and feel like I haven’t seen everything! Because I went in December I didn’t get to go to Versaille!! I feel like it’s a must see and I have to keep going back to Paris because it’s amazing.

    Reply
  9. Thank you for providing the ultimate guide for Paris, as I will be there in Paris for my Honeymoon shortly and these tips will surely create a great impact on our trip, I will surely share this with my husband as well so that we plan the trip accordingly.

    Reply
  10. Cruising down the Seine sounds like a fun way to see the city and get a different perspective! Good tip about the metro tickets! Every city does transit differently, it can get confusing! Sounds like a busy, fun five days!

    Reply

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