Julie France, Itinerary 31 Comments

If you are planning your first visit to Paris, this Paris itinerary is perfect for you. With 2 days in Paris, you have just enough time to visit the highlights of this extraordinary city. Visit the Louvre, enjoy the views from the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe, stroll along the Champs-Élysées, and explore the charming neighborhoods of Paris.

In this guide, learn how to plan a perfect two day visit to Paris. We cover the top sights to visit, how to get around Paris, where to stay, and of course, how to plan your time.

About this 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

So far, we have visited Paris four times. Paris is one of our favorite cities in the world and we want to share with you everything we have learned during our visits.

Paris is one of Europe’s most visited cities and with that, lines can be long at the more popular attractions. However, with some advance planning, you can book your tickets in advance, to avoid these long waits. We let you know how to do this in this itinerary.

The times listed in the daily schedule are rough estimates, just to give you an idea about timing throughout the day. Your times may differ, based on queues and how much time you decide to spend at each place. I did my best to anticipate waiting times and visiting times, but on very busy days (or very quiet days) these times can differ.

I do my best to keep the hours of operation and pricing up to date for each attraction, however, these can change at any time. I recommend getting updated hours and pricing for your dates of travel. The link to the official website is provided for each site.

Overview of Paris

The city center of Paris is bisected by the Seine River. The main sites in Paris are clustered on either side of this river.

The Right Bank (Rive Droite) refers to the area of Paris that is north of the Seine River. This is where you will find the Champs-Élysées, the Arc de Triomphe, and the Louvre, the Marais, and Palais Garnier, just to name a few.

The Left Bank (Rive Gauche) refers to the area of Paris that is south of the Seine River. This is where you will find the Eiffel Tower, Musée d’Orsay, the Rodin Museum, and the Latin Quarter.

Just to keep things interesting, there are also two islands that sit within the Seine River, Île de la Cité and Île Saint-Louis. This is where you will find Notre Dame and Sainte Chapelle.

Spiraling out from the Seine River are the 20 arrondissements of Paris. An arrondissement is a district. They are numbered 1 to 20, starting with 1 at the tip of Île de la Cité and spiraling out clockwise from here. The lower numbered arrondissements are located near the Seine River and the higher numbered arrondissements are located farther from the city center.

Finally, there are many different neighborhoods in Paris. Some of these neighborhoods are located in more than one arrondissement. For example, the Marais is located in the 3rd and 4th arrondissements. Other famous neighborhoods are Saint-Germain des Prés (6th arrondissement), Montmartre (18th arrondisement), and the Latin Quarter (5th arrondissement).

Notre Dame Paris View | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

View from Notre Dame | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

How Many Days Do You Need in Paris?

Paris is a large city that is filled with historical sites, museums, and some of the most famous landmarks in the world. Add in sidewalk cafes, rooftops bars, and charming neighborhoods to explore, and you could easily spend a week here and not run out of things to do.

Ideally, plan on spending at least three days in Paris. This gives you just enough time to visit the highlights, explore a few neighborhoods, and dine at a few restaurants. If you have three days, take a look at our 3 Day Paris Itinerary.

With 2 days in Paris, you can see the main highlights in two very busy days. It will be a whirlwind of a visit and booking your entrance tickets in advance will be key in maximizing your time, but what an amazing 2 days it will be!

In this Paris itinerary, we want to help you experience the best of Paris in the most efficient and enjoyable way possible.

Best Things to Do with 2 Days in Paris

Below is a list of the places to visit if you have 2 days in Paris. All of these are included on this Paris itinerary.

  • Eiffel Tower
  • Arc de Triomphe
  • The Louvre
  • Tuileries Garden
  • The Champs-Élysées
  • Place de la Concorde
  • Notre Dame Cathedral
  • Île de la Cité
  • Seine River
  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Montmartre
  • Sacre-Coeur Basilica

Montmartre Paris France | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Rue de l’Abreuvoir in Montmartre | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Best Time to Visit Paris

In general, spring and fall are the best times of the year to visit Paris. During this time, the weather is great for sightseeing and crowds tend to be lower than the busy summer months. But here is a breakdown by season of what you can expect in Paris:

WINTER: Paris is cold during the winter months, with average high’s ranging from 5 to 7°C (mid-40’s Fahrenheit) and the average low hovering just above freezing. Rainfall is slightly higher than most of the other seasons, with Paris getting about 8 days of rainfall per month in the winter. Skies tend to be overcast on a regular basis.

SPRING: The spring brings warmer temperatures and clearer skies. In early April, the average high temperature is still on the cooler side (about 16°C or 60°F). The average high in May is 19°C (66°F) but it can be much warmer than this, on unusually warm days. April is a beautiful month to visit Paris, when the trees begin getting leaves and flowers are in bloom.

SUMMER: Summers are warm with sunny skies. The average high is 24°C (76°F) but during a heat wave, it can get up to 38°C (100°F). This doesn’t happen every year, but it is a possibility. Crowds are at their highest during the summer.

FALL: In fall, the weather turns cooler and rain chances increase slightly over the summer months. October is another beautiful month to visit Paris, with cool weather and a hint of fall colors.

VERDICT: Our favorite months to visit Paris are April and October. The weather is wonderful and crowds aren’t at their peak levels.

2 Day Paris Itinerary | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Paris and the Seine River | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Museum Closings in Paris

One more thing to cover before getting to the itinerary: museum closings.

Mondays and Tuesdays are the days when many museums in Paris close, so ideally, plan your visit for Wednesday through Sunday, when the museums are open. If you plan to visit Paris on a Monday or Tuesday, there is a good chance that you will have to modify this Paris itinerary.

Note: not all of these museums are included on this itinerary, but I am listing them, just in case you plan to alter the itinerary and visit one of these museums.

Paris Museums Closed on Monday:

  • Musée d’Orsay
  • Musée Rodin
  • Versailles

Paris Museums Closed on Tuesday:

  • Louvre
  • Musée l’Orangerie
  • Pompidou Centre

2 Days in Paris Itinerary

2 Days in Paris Itinerary: Day 1

Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Champs-Élysées, Arc de Triomphe

On your first day in Paris, you will visit several of the most popular attractions in the city.

This day is an exact copy of day #1 of our 3-day Paris itinerary. I think this is a great way to spend your first day in Paris, especially if it is your first time in the city. Not only do you get to see some of Paris’ most famous sites, but it’s a nice mix of walking, big views, and this first day doesn’t go crazy with museum visits.

How to Use This Map: Click the tab in the top left hand corner of the map to view the layers (places to go and the walking routes). You can click the check marks to hide or show layers. If you click the icons on the map, you can get more information about each point of interest.
If you click the star next to the title of the map, this map will be added to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.

9 am: Eiffel Tower

If it is your first time in Paris, climbing the Eiffel Tower for panoramic views of the city is a great way to start off your visit.

Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower

How to Visit the Eiffel Tower

When you visit the Eiffel Tower, you have several options on how to do it. There are several levels to visit (the first level, the second level, and the top of the Eiffel Tower aka the summit) and two ways up the Eiffel Tower (by elevator or by stairs).

The line for the stairs is typically much shorter than the line for the elevator, so if you did not book your tickets in advance, consider climbing those stairs to avoid a long wait in line.

PRO TRAVEL TIP: Book your tickets in advance. This can literally save you hours of time. I have heard of people waiting up to 3 hours to enter the Eiffel Tower. I also recommend that you book your tickets as soon as you know your dates of travel. During peak season, tickets can sell out almost as soon as they become available (which is 60 days in advance). If tickets are sold out, we recommend this tour, which is one of the cheapest tours of the Eiffel Tower (we took this tour and had a great experience).

Should you go to the second level or top level of the Eiffel Tower?

We have visited the Eiffel Tower multiple times. In our opinion, you get the best experience on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower. The views of Paris are spectacular but you don’t have to spend more money (about €10 extra) or more time (adding on the summit adds 45 minutes to 2 hours to your visit, depending on how long the line is for the elevator to the third floor).

Eiffel Tower View | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

View from the second level of the Eiffel Tower



View of the Tocadero from the Eiffel Tower


View from Eiffel Tower Summit

View from Eiffel Tower Summit

Plan Your Visit to the Eiffel Tower

More Information: Check out our Guide to the Eiffel Tower, which has a lot more valuable information about how to visit the Eiffel Tower.
Getting here by Metro: Line 9, stop Trocadero; Line 6, Bir-Hakeim; Line 8, stop Ecole-Militaire. For the prettiest walk to the Eiffel Tower, get off at the Trocadero metro station and enjoy the view as you approach the tower (allow 15 minutes for this walk).
Hours: For updated hours, visit the official website.
Cost: Elevator to 2nd floor €18.80; Elevator to the top €29.40; Stairs to 2nd level €11.80; Stairs to 2nd level and elevator to the top €22.40
Tickets: Book your ticket in advance on the official website.
If tickets are sold out for your dates of travel, you can book a tour for skip the line access to the Eiffel Tower. Here are several highly rated tours that allow you to skip the line at the Eiffel Tower.



11 am: Picnic in Champ de Mars

For an early lunch, go shopping on Rue Cler and have a picnic on Champ de Mars with a view of the Eiffel Tower.

From the Eiffel Tower, it is a short walk to Rue Cler. On this shopping street, you can visit the markets, boulangeries (bread shops), and fromageries (cheese shops) to put together your picnic lunch.

Cheese in Paris | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Fromagerie on Rue Cler

Places to visit on Rue Cler:

  • Le Chocolat Alain Ducasse for gourmet chocolate
  • La Fromagerie for cheese
  • There are other small markets where you can purchase fruit, bread, crackers, meat and cheese
  • Les Grandes Caves for a bottle of wine

Take your goodies back to Champ de Mars, find a picnic bench or a spot on the lawn with a view of the Eiffel Tower, and enjoy your picnic lunch.

Note: If you have no desire to put together a picnic lunch, there are many sidewalk cafes near the Eiffel Tower where you can have lunch.

Eiffel Tower Picnic

Picnic in Champ de Mars

1 pm: The Louvre

The Louvre is the world’s largest art museum. This building was once the home to French Kings, including Louis XIV. During the French Revolution in the 18th century, the Louvre was converted to a museum.

Louvre Museum

View of the Louvre from Hotel Brighton


Angelinas at the Louvre

Want to find out where you can indulge at Angelina’s inside of the Louvre? Take a look at our Louvre Guide for more information.

This place is enormous and you literally could spend days here. I find the Louvre to be crowded and overwhelming. My favorite part about visiting the Louvre is just taking in the grandeur of the building. The sheer size of this place is impressive. Several rooms, like the Apollo Gallery (where the crown jewels are kept), are gorgeous.

If you are an art lover, take several hours and enjoy this spectacular place. However, if you just want to visit the highlights, you can do so in about an hour.

The main sites to visit in the Louvre are the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, and the Winged Victory.

How to Skip the Line at the Louvre:

There are several ways to avoid waiting in a long line to get into the Louvre.

  • Purchase the Museum Pass. This allows you to skip the ticket line but you may still have to wait in a much shorter security line. With the Museum Pass, you must book a time slot in order to guarantee access into the museum. You must provide the serial number of your Museum Pass, so you cannot do this until you are in possession of the Museum Pass. Learn more here.
  • Book your tickets online in advance.On the official Louvre website, you can purchase your tickets in advance. These cost €22 and the website advertises less than a 30-minute wait if you purchase your tickets in advance. You can also get a timed entry ticket here.
  • Take a Tour.There are numerous skip-the-line tours and guided tours that you can take. Click here to learn more.
  • Go first thing in the morning or Friday evenings when the Louvre is open until 9:45 pm.

Getting here: From Champ de Mars, walk to the Ecole-Militaire metro station. Take Line 8, direction Creteil, transferring at Concorde to line 1, direction Chateau de Vincennes, to Palais Royal Musee du Louvre.
Hours: daily 9 am to 6 pm; CLOSED TUESDAYS; on Fridays, it is open from 9 am to 9:45 pm, get updated hours on the official website.
Cost: €22 under 18 years are free; included in the Museum Pass
All visitors must reserve a time-slot, even if you have a free pass.

In our Guide to the Louvre, we cover the essential paintings, sculptures, and historical artifacts to see, plus lots of important tips on how to have the best experience. We also have a walking tour that quickly and efficiently gets you to the highlights and then goes deeper into the Louvre, if you have more time.

3:30 pm: Indulge at Angelina

Hopefully you worked up a bit of an appetite because now it’s time for a little indulgence. From the Louvre, walk through the Tuileries Garden and cross Rue de Rivoli to Angelina. Angelina is an elegant tea room that serves decadent hot chocolate and delicious French pastries. This is the main location, although there is a smaller restaurant in the Louvre. Enjoy!

Angelina Paris


4:30 pm: Place de la Concorde

From Angelina, stroll through Tuileries Garden or along the Rue de Rivoli to Place de la Concorde. This famous square is full of French history. This was the spot during the French Revolution where King Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette and Robespierre were executed by guillotine.

From mid-November to early May a giant Ferris wheel sits in Place de la Concorde. If the line is short and you want a nice view of Paris, consider taking a ride.

5 pm: Champs-Élysées

The Champs-Élysées is one of the most recognizable streets in the world. It is famous as being the finish of the Tour de France and the location of the Bastille Day military parade. Restaurants, shops, the theaters line the Champs-Élysées. It has a touristy feel but it’s still worth the stroll.

Champs Elysees | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

The Champs-Élysées | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Along the way, if you want another French treat, consider stopping into Laduree for macarons.

From Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe, it is a 2.3 km (1.4 mile) walk. You can walk the entire length of the Champs-Élysées or shorten the walk by taking line 1 on the metro from Concorde to Franklin D. Roosevelt or George V.

6:00 pm: Arc de Triomphe

It’s time to take in the view from the mighty Arc de Triomphe. This is my favorite view of Paris. There’s just something about looking down the Champs-Élysées to the Louvre, out to La Defense, and of course, having a wonderful view of the Eiffel Tower.

Arc de Triomphe Paris

Arc de Triomphe


Arc de Triomphe View Paris

View from the Arc de Triomphe 

While on top of the Arc, look straight down. You are standing at one of the world’s largest round-abouts, where twelve avenues come together. Watching the cars navigate this circle is very entertaining.
Hours: April 1 to September 30: 10 am to 11 pm; October 1 to March 31: 10 am to 10:30 pm; get updated hours here.
Cost: Adults €16; 17 and under are free; included on the Museum Pass. Click here to purchase a skip the line ticket.
Closest metro station: Charles de Gaulle Etoile lines 1, 2 and 6



Evening: Dinner and Drinks

End the day with dinner and drinks.

For dinner, your options are endless. Paris is filled with rooftop bars and restaurants with a view of the city, quaint sidewalk cafes, and fine dining restaurants.

For recommendations on where to eat and drink, check out our guides to the Rooftop Restaurants and Bars in Paris and 10 Foods to Eat in Paris (and where to get them).

Some of our favorite places to eat are Les Ombres (an upscale French restaurant with an incredible view of the Eiffel Tower), Langosteria (an upscale Italian restaurant with a view of Pont Neuf and the Seine River), and if you want the experience of dining on the Eiffel Tower, Madame Brasserie or Le Jules Verne.

For an amazing culinary experience with a view of Paris, take a look at L’Oiseau Blanc, a 2-star Michelin restaurant with a fantastic view of the Eiffel Tower.

You also have the option to take a Seine River cruise. There are sunset cruises, dinner cruises, and nighttime cruises along the Seine River. These typically last 1 to 2 hours and some cruises include drinks and/or a meal. This evening dinner cruise gets rave reviews and starts at 8:30 pm, so you have plenty of time to visit the Arc de Triomphe and get to the meeting point for the cruise.

2 Days in Paris Itinerary: Day 2

Historic Center of Paris, Musée d’Orsay & Montmartre

8 am: Île de la Cité

This morning, you will spend your time on Île de la Cité, the historic center of Paris. This is the location of Notre Dame Cathedral.

In 2019, a fire burned much of the cathedral, and since this time it has been undergoing a major restoration project. Currently, you can only view Notre Dame from the outside. There is a goal of reopening it in time for the 2024 Summer Olympics.

How to Get to Île de la Cité

For a scenic walk to Île de la Cité, I recommend taking the metro to Louvre-Rivoli, walking towards the Seine, and then walking along the river to Pont Neuf. Pont Neuf is the stone bridge that crosses the Seine on the western edge of the island. From Pont Neuf, enjoy the view along the Seine, to the next bridge, Pont des Arts, and to the Eiffel Tower off in the distance.

Pont Neuf

Pont Neuf

This walk, of course, is optional. It takes 20 minutes and is 1.4 km (1 mile) long from Palais Royal Musée de Louvre to Sainte-Chapelle.

Alternatively, you can take the metro to Cité, which is located on Île de la Cité and just a few steps from Sainte-Chapelle.


Sainte-Chapelle is home to one of the world’s best displays of stained glass.

Sainte Chapelle | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary


This is another location that is notorious for having long lines so, for the best experience, purchase your ticket in advance (on the official website, you will book a time slot for your visit). 

Hours: April 1 to September 30: 9 am to 7 pm; October 1 to March 31: 9 am to 5 pm; closed January 1, May 1, December 25
Cost: €13; included with the Museum Pass
Combo Ticket with Conciergerie: €20
Metro Station: Line 4, Cite
Website: Sainte-Chapelle can close on other days during the year. Check their website to confirm hours before your visit and to purchase your ticket with a time slot in advance.
Skip-the-Line Tickets: You can get a skip-the-line-ticket combination ticket for both Sainte-Chapelle and the Conciergerie.

The Conciergerie

This is optional, but for those with an interest in French history, you can visit the Conciergerie. This is where people were imprisoned before taken to Place de la Concorde to be executed. Marie Antoinette is the most famous prisoner.

The Conciergerie is located next to Sainte-Chapelle.

Hours: Open every day 9:30 am to 6 pm
Cost: €13; Combination ticket with Sainte-Chapelle €20; included with the Museum Pass

Notre Dame Cathedral

From Sainte-Chapelle it’s a very short walk to Notre Dame Cathedral.

In front of Notre Dame Cathedral a small plaque marks Point Zero (Point Zero des Routes de France), the historic center of Paris.

Since Notre Dame is currently closed, you will only be able to see the cathedral from the outside (it is planned to reopen in late 2024).

Eiffel Tower 2023

Notre Dame in March 2023

Walk through Île de la Cité and from Notre Dame, it is a quick walk to one of the prettiest storefronts in Paris, Au Vieux Paris d’Arcole. This is a small cafe so you can eat an early lunch here.

Au Vieux Paris | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Au Vieux Paris d’Arcole | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

11:30 am: Views of Île de la Cité and Notre Dame

From Au Vieux d’Arcole, walk along Rue Chanoinesse to the back side of Notre Dame. This small park is a great spot to take a break, if you need to sit down for a few minutes, and admire this view of the cathedral.

Note: Currently, the back of Notre Dame is covered with elaborate scaffolding. It’s still a sight to see, the amazing amount of work that is going into restoring this landmark.

Paris in April | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Paris in April

When you are ready, cross Pont de l’Archeveche to the Left Bank. From here, you get another beautiful view of Notre Dame Cathedral.

Notre Dame 2018

View of Notre Dame from Pont de l’Archeveche (photo taken before the Notre Dame fire)

Walk west along the Seine River. As you continue your walk along the river you will notice stands set up selling books. These booksellers, or “bouquinistes” sell used books, magazines, and posters.

You will also pass Shakespeare & Company. This bookstore opened in 1919 and was a gathering place for Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, and Ezra Pound.

12:00 Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain-des-Prés

Have lunch at a café in the Latin Quarter or St.-Germain-des-Prés. There are many cafes to choose from as you walk through these neighborhoods but here a few of our recommendations:

Le Petit Bouclerie. This small café serves crepes and is a good option if you don’t want to spend a lot for lunch. It is located on 33 Rue de la Harpe in the Latin Quarter.

Le Procope: Some say that this is the oldest café in Paris. It is located in Saint-Germain-des-Prés and Rousseau, Diderot, Benjamin Franklin, Napolean, and Marie Antoinette all dined here.

Les Deux Magots: Also located in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, this is one of the most famous cafes in Paris. Ernest Hemingway, Pablo Picasso, Julia Child, James Joyce, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Simone de Beauvoir all dined here.

Les Deux Magots

Les Deux Magots

2:00 pm: Musée d’Orsay

Musée d’Orsay houses the largest collection of Impressionist art in the world. It is here that you can see Monet, Manet, Degas, Cezanne, Renoir, Van Gogh, Gaugin and more. It’s literally a collection of the who’s who in the Impressionist art world.

But this museum is more than just Impressionist art. The building is also a work of art. Musée d’Orsay was once Gare d’Orsay, an old train station, that was renovated and became this art museum. It is beautiful inside.

Musee DOrsay

Musée d’Orsay

On the top floor, look for the giant clock windows that give you a very unique view of Paris and make a creative photographic spot.

Musee DOrsay View

Musée d-Orsay is one of our favorite art museums in the world. Most people spend about 2 hours here, but your visit could last longer, if you are a fan of Impressionist art.

Hours: Daily 9:30 am to 6 pm; open until 9:45 on Thursday; closed Mondays, May 1, and December 25
Cost: €16, included with the Museum Pass.
Website: Get updated hours and pricing on the official website.

4:00 pm: Sacre-Coeur and Montmartre

Spend the rest of the afternoon and evening exploring Montmartre. This maze of hilly streets is one of Paris’ prettiest neighborhoods to visit.

To get here from Musee d’Orsay, ride metro line 12 from Concorde to Lamarck-Caulaincourt, direction Aubervilliers Front Populaire.

From the Lamarck Cualaincourt station, walk towards the Sacre-Coeur Basilica. This is a very nice walk that takes you past photogenic spots such as La Maison Rose and Le Consulat Restaurant (the walking route is on our map above).

Paris France

View from the steps near the Lamarck-Caulaincourt metro station


La Maison Rose

La Maison Rose

 Le Consulat Paris

Le Consulat

Before arriving at Sacre-Coeur Basilica, you will walk through Place du Tertre. This small square is filled with artists. Go shopping, grab a drink at a café, or have your portrait drawn.

Place du Tertre

Place du Tertre | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

The Sacre-Coeur Basilica sits atop the highest hill in Paris. The steps in front of the Basilica are a popular spot to watch the sunset. You also have the option to climb the 300 steps to the top of the Dome for an even better view.

Sacre Coeur


Hours: 6:30 am to 10:30 pm; the dome is open from 10 am to 5 pm
For more information, visit the official website.

7:00 pm: Dinner

Here are a few dinner ideas for tonight.

On our most recent trip to Paris, we dined at Restaurant Rochechouart, which is located inside of Hotel Rochechouart, within walking distance of the Sacre Coeur basilica. We had a wonderful dinner, dining on roasted turbot and seared scallops and the largest artichoke I’ve ever seen. On top of the hotel is a rooftop bar and terrace with a view of Sacre Coeur and the city skyline.

Le Relais Gascon. We had a wonderful dinner here. This restaurant serves French food and is located in Montmartre.

La Maison Rose. The photogenic café also makes a great spot for dinner. It is located in Montmartre.

Le Moulin Rouge. End the day with a show at the Moulin Rouge. Dinner shows start at 7 pm and includes a 3-course dinner along with the show. The later shows (at 9 pm and 11 pm) do not include dinner. Tickets for the Moulin Rouge book up months in advance and if tickets are sold out for your visit, you can also check GetYourGuide.

After dinner, Le Chat Noir is a great spot for drinks, if you aren’t quite ready to end the day. It’s just a short walk from the Moulin Rouge.

From the Sacre-Coeur, you can walk to the Moulin Rouge or ride the metro to Pigalle.

Should You Get the Museum Pass?

The Museum Pass covers your entrance fee into almost every site in this itinerary and it allows you to skip the ticket lines. Just be aware that it does not guarantee getting into every attraction without a line. During busy times, you still may have to queue for security.

If you plan to visit the Louvre, the Arc de Triomphe, Sainte-Chapelle, the Conciergerie, and the Musée d’Orsay (all sites included on the Museum Pass), you will spend €74. The 48-hour Museum Pass costs €62, it saves money, plus it gives you the ability to skip the ticket lines at these attractions. Just remember to book your Louvre, Sainte-Chapelle, and Conciergerie time slots in advance.

What about the Paris Pass?

You may also hear about something called the Paris Pass. It includes attractions and tours, most of which are not listed on our itinerary.

The cost is €179 for 2 days, although this sometimes goes on sale (in January it was reduced to €159).

Unless you also plan on taking the hop-on hop-off bus tour, a walking tour, a Seine River cruise, and visiting places like the Paris Aquarium, you will not get your money’s worth so we do not recommend purchasing the Paris Pass.

Our Recommendation

Purchase the 2-day Museum Pass for €62 and a 2-day Paris Visite Pass for €24.30 for a grand total of €86.30.

You can purchase your Paris Visite Pass at the ticket booths in the metro stations (do this the first time you ride the metro). This will pay for your transportation on the metro, RER, bus, and the Montmartre funicular. Learn more here.

Paris Metro Sign

Paris metro sign | 2 Days in Paris Itinerary

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the best time to visit Paris?

April and October are two wonderful months to visit Paris. During both of these months, the weather is pleasant and visitation is not at peak levels. In April, flowers are blooming, making this one of the most beautiful and romantic months to visit Paris. In October, you can see a hint of fall colors and the weather is great for sightseeing. 

What is the best way to get around Paris?

The Paris metro is cheap, fast, and very efficient. While in the city center, you are never more than a 5-minute walk from a metro station. It costs roughly €15 per day for unlimited rides on the metro, so you can travel around Paris without spending a lot of money. I recommend the Paris Metro Map and Routes app (available for free in the Apple App Store) or something similar, which gives you real-time schedules and helps plan your metro routes through the city.

Is Paris expensive to visit?

Yes, Paris can be expensive to visit, if you stay in 5-star hotels and dine at Michelin starred restaurants. But you can also have a great experience and visit Paris’ top sights with some money saving tricks.

There are plenty of highly rated hostels and budget hotels to help keep accommodation costs low. Rather than dining at restaurants, put together picnic lunches and dinners at the market. Purchase the Museum Pass to visit the attractions with a discount and skip the ticket line. Riding the metro is very budget friendly. Without splurging on meals or accommodations, it is possible to tour Paris for €100 per person per day.

Where to Eat in Paris

In our article 10 Foods to Eat in Paris, we cover ten dishes to try in Paris, with recommended restaurants. In our Guide to the Rooftop Bars and Restaurants in Paris, we list the best places to eat and drink with a view of the city.

Where to Stay in Paris

For more recommendations on where to stay, read our Best Hotels and Neighborhoods Guide for Paris. Learn where to stay for a great view of the Eiffel Tower and get recommendations whether you are looking for a budget hotel, luxury hotel, or if you are traveling as a family.

If you have any questions about this 2 days in Paris itinerary, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to France

HOW TO VISIT PARIS: Start with our article How to Plan a Trip to Paris. Read our guide to the Best Things to Do in Paris for ideas of what to do in Paris. In addition to this 2 day Paris itinerary we also have a 3 Day Paris Itinerary. We also have a Paris Hotel Guide, advice on visiting Paris with kids, a Paris Food Guide, and advice for visiting Paris at Easter.

THE LOUVRE: In our Guide to the Louvre, we cover the top things to see, a walking route through the Louvre, plus lots of tips to help you get the most out of your visit and avoid the crowds.

EIFFEL TOWER: In our Guide to the Eiffel Tower, we cover what there is to see and do, ticket options, best tour options if tickets are sold out, and unique experiences to have on the Eiffel Tower.

VERSAILLES: In our Guide to Versailles, we cover the best things to do, how to get to Versailles, and the best way to visit Versailles without the crowds.

EUROPEAN ITINERARIES WITH PARIS: If you want to visit Paris plus one to two other European cities, you have several great options. A 10 day trip to London and Paris makes a great trip if it is your first visit to Europe (or if you just want to visit two great cities). With 10 days, you can also visit Paris, Brussels, and Amsterdam trip or London, Amsterdam, and Paris.

EUROPE ITINERARIES: If you have 10 days for a trip to Europe, check out our 10 Days in Europe Itinerary, which lists 10 itineraries for your next trip to Europe. If you have less time, we also have an article that lists 25 different ways to spend one week in Europe.

Read all of our articles about France in our France Travel Guide.


2 Days in Paris Itinerary


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Comments 31

  1. Avatar for LF

    Hi Julie!

    We are in a similar situation to SK. We are arriving from the US at 9:00 am and have 1 more full day.
    Our hotel is in the 8th arrondissement.
    We’re trying to make a plan that makes sense travel wise, and would love your help.
    Things we’d like to see:
    Eiffel Tower (sunset time if possible)
    Arc de Triomphe (sunset time if possible)
    Place de la Concorde
    Saint Chapelle

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      On your first day, you could go to Montmartre first and see the Sacre Coeur. In the afternoon, that evening go to the Eiffel Tower. You’ll have some free time midday so you could walk around one of Paris’ other neighborhoods, visit a museum like Musee d’Orsay or the Rodin Museum, or take a Seine River Cruise (a nice low key thing to do on your first day). On day 2, start at Sainte Chapelle, then the Louvre, then Place de la Concorde, and walk up the Champs Elysees to the Arc. Again, you may have some free time, but you will be near your hotel, or you could metro to something else in Paris that looks interesting. This would also be a good day for Musee d’Orsay since it is near the Louvre and Place de la Concorde. Cheers, Julie

  2. Avatar for Sk

    Hi Julie,

    I was wondering if you would be able to give me a few suggestions. We are traveling to Paris end of June. We will be there, for 1 full day and 2 half days.
    I would like to do the following :
    Arc de triomphe go to the roof top.
    Louvre (1-1.5 hours)
    Eiffel (not planning to go inside)
    But planning to do a 1 hour evening river cruise
    If time allows visit Latin quarter.

    Our hotel is in the 17arrondissement.

    Do you suggest us doing all the above on our full day ? We are not sure of what we could do on our 1st (1/2 day) as we would be arriving from the US.
    We are certainly open to walking around and exploring without a set schedule on both 1/2 days ( which include travel).

    Thank you so much for your time and patience. Appreciate your valuable input.
    As always HUGE fan of your blog 😊

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello SK, nice to hear from you again! I think walking around Montmartre the afternoon and evening you arrive would be very nice and maybe making a dinner reservation here. We had a nice dinner at the restaurant in Hotel Rochechouart and they have a rooftop bar. We try to be in bed by 9 pm our first night in Europe and set our alarm for 6:30 to 7 am and this has worked well to get us adjusted the time very quickly (so keep that in mind when making a dinner reservation). On your full day, start with the Louvre and follow our walking tour. You could then go for a stroll up the Champs Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe. Then do your evening cruise. The next morning go for a stroll in the Latin Quarter. As for the Trocadero, you might be able to visit it just before the cruise (some cruises start near there…ours did). If it doesn’t, you could do the Louvre, metro to Arc de Triomphe, metro to Trocadero, and then metro to the cruise starting point, to do it all in one day. I hope this helps and let me know if you have any questions. Cheers, Julie

      1. Avatar for Sk

        Thank you so much for the valuable suggestions. Appreciate it. I do like your input on what we should do on all those days. Thanks so much 😊

  3. Avatar for José Cidras
    José Cidras

    Olá, vamos estar em Paris em 15 de março chegada a Charles de Gaulle 20h40 e partida 17 março Charles de Gaulle 21h20. Portanto dois dias em Paris. Compramos ticket para visita Torre Eiffel 16 de março 12h00, e passeio de barco no Sena também para dia 16 sem hora marcada. Hotel no 19º Arr.. Face a estes horários podem dar um roteiro de visita durante os dois dias? Obrigado

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      The morning of the 16th, you could visit the Montmartre area of Paris, since that is not far from your hotel. You would have just enough time to stroll the streets and see the Sacre Coeur. Then go to the Eiffel Tower and do the cruise. Spend the afternoon on Ile de la Cite and end in Saint Germain des Pres/Latin Quarter. On day 2, start at the Louvre, visit Musee d’Orsay, and the work your way to the Arc de Triomphe (most of our day 1 itinerary, adding in the Louvre). by doing it all in the order, you should still be able to get to everything we list in this itinerary. Have a great trip! Cheers, Julie
      Na manhã do dia 16, você poderá visitar a região de Montmartre em Paris, já que não fica longe do seu hotel. Você teria tempo suficiente para passear pelas ruas e ver o Sacre Coeur. Depois vá até a Torre Eiffel e faça o cruzeiro. Passe a tarde na Ile de la Cité e termine em Saint Germain des Pres/Bairro Latino. No dia 2, comece no Louvre, visite o Museu d’Orsay e siga até o Arco do Triunfo (a maior parte do nosso itinerário do dia 1, acrescentando o Louvre). fazendo tudo na ordem, você ainda conseguirá chegar a tudo que listamos neste roteiro. Tenha uma boa viagem! Felicidades, Julie

      1. Avatar for José Cidras
  4. Avatar for Joe

    Hi, I’ll be in Paris for a few days mid-Arpil 2024. Is it possible to tour Paris, lodge outside the city, and tour on bicycle?

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      That is possible. If you plan to use the metro to get into the city center, just look up the rules and regulations for taking a bike on the metro. I’m also not sure where to lock up your bike as you visit sites, but I’m assuming there are places to do this (that would be worth looking into in advance as well). Cheers, Julie

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