free things to do in paris

Best Free Things to do in Paris | Museums, Gardens & More

Paris, fondly called 'The City of Love' is one of the world’s most beautiful cities, but can often be an expensive destination to visit .Despite this, Paris still has a lot for you to explore in terms of free attractions, ranging from walkways over the city to galleries. Here are 20 of the best free things to do in Paris.

Top 20 Free Things to do in Paris

1
Parc de la Villette Free Open-Air Cinema

Considered to be an essential summer meeting destination in north east Paris, Parc de La Villette turns itself into a huge open-air cinema screening, giving a magical theatre experience. The films displayed are in their original version with French subtitles.

Address

211 Av. Jean Jaures, 75019 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
6 AM:1 AM
Handy Tip

Be wise and get a blanket with some comfy cushions or rent out deckchairs online for a comfier set up as you enjoy a great evening watching cinema in the open air.

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2
Watch the Twinkling Lights of the Eiffel Tower
free things to do in paris
Landmark
Outdoor
Family-Friendly

Watching the lights at the Eiffel tower is a must on your bucket list! Watch the lights sparkle every night, on the hour, every year. The best part is, it is completely free.

Address

Champ de Mars, 5 Av. Anatole France, 75007 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
Sunset:1 AM
Handy Tip

We recommend you grab a seat on the steps at the Sacre-Coeur or in the Parc du Champ de Mar to enjoy the lights and the glorious city.

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3
Free First Sunday (For museums)
free things to do in paris
Museums
Family-Friendly

 There are a lot of museums in the city that allow free entry on the first Sunday of the month like the Paris Museum of Modern Art, Galerie Lumiere des Roses, Maison de Victor Hugo, Musée Carnavalet, Musée de la Vie romantique, and many more.

Handy Tip

 Before you visit any of the free museums in Paris, make sure you look at the timings and try visiting when the crowd is the least to avoid the chaos.

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4
Stroll through the Jardin du Luxembourg

Located on the borders between Saint-Germain-des-Pres and the Latin Quarter, the Jardin du Luxembourg is a blend of French and English styles. Within the grounds sits a breathtaking collection of orchids, a rose garden and an apiary to learn bee-keeping.

Address

75006 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
7:30 AM:9.30 PM
Handy Tip

You can enter the Jardin du Luxembourg for free, although you will pay extra for certain activities such as the model-boat rental, children’s playground, tennis and pony rides.

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5
Visit the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris

The Cathedral de Notre Dame is Paris’s most famous Gothic church and is simply beautiful both inside and out. One of the most iconic sights in the city, with sculptures and stained glass, it is a sight to behold.

Address

6 Parvis Notre-Dame – Pl.Jean-Paul ll, 75004 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
8 AM:6. 45 PM
Handy Tip

You can enter the main areas of the church for free between 7:30 am to 7:30 pm in winter and 7 am to 9 pm in summers

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6
Explore the Père Lachaise cemetery

Rub shoulders with souls of literary greats like Proust and Balzac, Oscar Wilder, Jim Morrison and more at Paris’ most haunting spots. The tree-lined avenues and calling crows add on to making Pere Lachaise an atmospheric walk in the city.

Address

16 Rue du Repos, 75020 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
8 AM:5.30 PM
Handy Tip

 Get off at Gambetta station where you will head straight to the back entrance of the cemetery, allowing you to take a relaxing walk downhill instead of uphill after entering Pere Lachaise.

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7
Walk La Promenade Plantée

A railroad track with an elevated walkway, offers a great view and allows you to walk through the lush green archways. This 4.5km pathway covers most of the 12th arrondissement and can be joined from Avenue Daumesnil, next to the Bastille metro stop.

Address

La Promenade Plantée, 75012 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
8 AM:5.45 PM
Handy Tip

It's best to wear comfortable footwear and clothing as you go on a long walk at La Promenade Plantee.

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8
Late Night Picnic at the Square du Vert-Galant

Spend an evening with a bohemian vibe by heading down to the Square du Vert-Galant, on the western tip of the lle de la Cite. Enjoy a cosy environment as you watch boats sail on either side of the island.

Address

15 Pl. du Pont Neuf, 75001 Paris, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

Get a nice bottle of wine with some bites as you to gaze at the sparkling lights that make the city glow.

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9
Visit Marché aux Puces de St-Ouen

The flea market puts together close to 2000 second-hand and antique dealers spread over the markets and the surrounding streets. More than 7 million visitors come here for its old furniture, bronzes, records and other objects, perfect for bargain hunters.

Address

Porte de Clignancourt 93400 Saint-Ouen. Find on map.

Timings
10 AM:7 PM
Handy Tip

Hungry? Explore a few of the 21 restaurants within the area that serve various famous French delicacies that suit your palette.

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10
Discover Parc des Buttes Chaumont

Since 1867, the Parc de Buttes-Chaumont has been one of the largest public parks in Paris. Inspired by the Italian Temple of Vesta, the most famous feature is the Temple de la Sibylle, 50 meters above the waters of the artificial lake.

Address

1 Rue Botzaris, 75019 Paris, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

You can enjoy hiking and cycling around the paved trails or take a run through the park while you visit an artificial waterfall and the cave system at the place.

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11
Admire Street Art at Canal St-Martin

A perfect mix of cool, lively and tranquil, the Canal St Martin in Paris is a spot where all the creative minds went when Montmartre got too expensive. Stroll through the streets and find the walls adorned with street art.

Address

Nested between Gare du Nord and Republique, North-eastern Paris, 10th arrondissement. Find on map.

Handy Tip

If you wish to grab things for a picnic, there are cheese shops, French and Italian charcuteries, veggie shops that will have your basket bursting.

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12
Explore Musée Carnavalet

Discover the ancient origins and learn all about Paris’ history at its recently renovated Musee Carnavalet, where there is no entry charge and allows you to wander through the drawing rooms and reconstructed baroque interests free of cost.

Address

23 Rue de Sevigne, 75003 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
10 AM:6 PM
Handy Tip

If you are opting to travel by metro, the closest stops are Chemin Vert (line 8) and Saint Paul (line 1).

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13
Discover the Neighborhood of Montmartre

An ideal melting pot of music, art and culture. You can take a stroll down the roads, visit the art galleries and museums and other prominent hubs. Check out the view from the top of Sacre Coeur, a masterpiece of grandeur.

Address

Montmartre, 75018 Paris, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

If you wish for a truly Parisian experience, and if your budget isn’t too strict, try watching the show here and it is worth an experience!

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14
Window-Shopping through Champs-Elysees
free things to do in paris
Outdoor
Landmark
Shopping

The Champs-Elysees is a popular street lined with luxury boutiques and restaurants where you can spot celebrities shopping and dining. A stroll through these streets is definitely one of the top free things to do while you are in Paris.

Address

Champ-Elysees, 75008 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
10 AM:8 PM
Handy Tip

Fancy shopping? Avoid visiting on a Friday and Saturday and the streets can get highly crowded and most of the shops are closed on Sundays and any public holidays.

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15
Visit Maison de Victor Hugo

Located in the Place de Vosges in the heart of the Marais district, the Maison de Victor Hugo welcomes you into the private home of the well-known French writer, who resided on the 2nd floor and wrote some of his major works.

Address

6 Pl. des Vosges, 75004 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
10 AM:6 PM
Handy Tip

There are various services available at the establishment like gift shops, book store, educational activities, to name a few.

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16
Go to Trocadéro Square

Easily one of the top free things to do in Paris, located opposite of the Seine to the Tower in Pari’s 16th Arrondissement, this raised platform at the end of the gardens, gives a perfect view to the Eiffel Tower.

Address

Place du Trocadero, 75016 Paris, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

Avoid visiting the attraction on a Thursday, Saturday and Sunday as it is considered to be amongst the busiest days of the week.

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17
Admire Arc de Triomphe
free things to do in paris
Landmark
Outdoor

The Arc de Triomphe is a symbol that honours all those who fought and died for France during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, with the names of the generals and French victories inscribed on its inner and outer walls.

Address

Pl.Charles de Gaulle, 75008 Paris, France. Find on map.

Timings
10 AM:10.30 PM
Handy Tip

Looking at the outside of the attraction is free, but if you wish to enter, you will have to pay a free of €12 to check out of Arc de Triomphe.

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18
Walk Along the Banks of the Seine
free things to do in paris
Landmark
Outdoor
River

The popular UNESCO heritage site is a free spot for long walks or a place to sit and admire the lights against the night sky. You can also admire the bridges across Seine like Alma or Archbishops Bridge, which are popular tourists’ attractions.

Address

Northwest of Dijon, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

Wander through the banks at night and see the 33 of the 37 bridges illuminated that cross the Seine.

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19
Free Walking Tours
free things to do in paris
Guided Tour
Walking Tour

Paris is known for a variety of Free Walking Tours with tour volunteers who give you an insight into the beautiful city. Choose an area of an interest, take a highlight tour or take a night time tour based on your requirement.

Handy Tip

Their free walking tours are actually pay-what-you-wish tours, where there is no upfront pricing and you can pay what you think the tour was worth for.

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20
Visit Parc Champs de Mars

This massive park in Paris is perfect to take a stroll in or lounge around for a bit. Located at the base of the Eiffel tower, it offers stunning views of the landmark attraction along with greenery all around.

Address

2 All. Adrienne Lecouvreur, 75007 Paris, France. Find on map.

Handy Tip

The open spaces and blooming orchards make it a perfect site for family outings.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Free Things to do in Paris

What are the best free things to do in Paris?

Some of the best free things to do in Paris are: check out the market at Saint Paul, stroll through Canal St Martin, admire the Parisian monuments from the banks of Seine, visit Place des Vosges and more!

What are the best free things to do in Paris for nature lovers?

Discover the vineyards of Paris,  Check out Marché aux Fleurs, Walk around the Jardins des Tuileries.

What are the best free things to do in Paris for art and history buffs?

 Stroll up to the Sacre Coeur,  Discover the hidden gems of Montmartre,  Wander through the streets of Le Marais.

What are the best free things to do in Paris for families?

   Explore the free museums,   Watch a nice movie at Parc de la Villette free open-air cinema,  Have an enjoyable picnic at Square du Vert-Galant,  Go and see the Eiffel Tower.

What are the best free things to do in Paris at night?

Take stroll along the river Seine in the night, watch the twinkling lights of the Eiffel tower to experience the magic of Paris at night.

What day is the Louvre free?

The entrance is free for all those aged under 18, all year round and for those under 26, on Friday evenings. The entrance is free for everyone on first Saturday of every month between 6 pm and 9:45 pm, and 14th July (Bastille Day)