Highlights of Paris: A Top 10

My own first thought when reading the title of this post is that there are way more than just ten highlights of Paris. It would be extremely easy to compile a list of, say, the thirty highlights of Paris. Narrowing them down to ten is a bit harder and involves some subjectivity. Anyway, it’s a pretty exciting list, so definitely read on!

I stayed in Paris for four days a couple of years past and I loved the city. Although people may seem rushed a lot and they’re not always very friendly, Paris has many more good sides than bad sides. The city breathes culture and history; everywhere you look there are grand buildings, historic landmarks, magnificent boulevards, green parks, and palaces—the list goes on and on. It’s a truly exciting city and, I think, one of the greatest on the planet.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris

10. Place de la Concorde

The large square – the largest one in the city – connects the Champs-Elysées with the Tuileries Gardens. The two major landmarks of this public square are the towering 3,200-year-old obelisk that stands in the middle and the fountain.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Place de la Concorde
Place de la Concorde

9. Pont Alexandre III

Easily the most beautiful bridge across the River Seine in Paris, Pont Alexandre III is adorned with reliefs, monuments and sculptures. It wasn’t built for transportation reasons, but rather for diplomatic purposes. It was named after the Russian Tsar Alexander III and symbolizes the French-Russian alliance of the late 19th century.

8. Hôtel de Ville

The massive City Hall has been the center of Parisian politics since the mid-14th century. The building has been through some turbulence though, just like the city has. It was, for example, completely burned down in 1871 and beautifully rebuilt in the former grand Renaissance style. The inside is nothing less than spectacular.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Hôtel de Ville
Hôtel de Ville

7. Tuileries Gardens

This large urban park is located in front of the Louvre and extends to the Place de la Concorde. It consists of numerous sculptures, a few fountains and many benches. Street performers and vendors make it a lively place all day every day.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Tuileries Gardens
Tuileries Gardens

6. Centre Pompidou

Arguably the most bizarre building in France, Centre Pompidou looks like it’s been turned inside out. And technically that’s exactly what it is; the exterior of the building is made up of water pipes, power lines, air-conditioning pipes, elevators and so on. On the inside you’ll find one of the finest museums of modern art in the world, a huge public library, a movie theater and a bookstore.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Centre Pompidou
Centre Pompidou

5. Notre-Dame Cathedral

The Notre-Dame Cathedral, the most-visited of all the top 10 things to see in Paris, was one of the very first Gothic cathedrals ever constructed. Located on the Île de la Cité in the middle of the River Seine, the cathedral’s site has always been the religious heart of the city. It’s probably the most famous church in the world and absolutely worth visiting – if you are patient enough to stand in line for a couple of hours!

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Notre-Dame Cathedral
Notre-Dame Cathedral

4. Champs-Elysées

This is without question the most prestigious street in Paris. The Champs-Elysées stretches from the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe and is lined with high-end stores, fashion outlets and fancy restaurants.

3. Eiffel Tower

The symbol of Paris, the Eiffel Tower is visible from most parts of the city. When visiting Paris, it is literally impossible not to see the Eiffel Tower. The queues are enormous there as well, but the tower is equally as impressive from ground level as it is from the inside.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: The Eiffel Tower
The Eiffel Tower

2. The Louvre

Probably the most well-known museum in the world, the Louvre is a not-to-be-missed attraction in Paris. It originally was a royal palace and now houses one of the world’s largest, finest and most important collections of art. Absolute highlights are the Venus of Milo and the Mona Lisa.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: The Louvre
The Louvre

1. Montmartre

Maybe a surprising number one, but Montmartre is by far my favorite neighborhood in Paris. Located on a hill, the area overlooks Paris and consists of cobblestone streets, squares filled with painters and other artists, cozy cafés and restaurants. A major landmark in Montmartre, and also definitely one of the main highlights of Paris is the imposing Sacré-Coeur Basilica, which is my personal favorite building in the entire city.

Top 10 Things to See in Paris: Montmartre
Montmartre and the Sacré-Coeur Basilica

These top 10 things to see in Paris  are merely a sample of what Paris has to offer. Other major attractions and landmarks include the Père Lachaise Cemetery, the Musée d’Orsay, Panthéon, Pont Neuf, Hôtel des Invalides, Moulin Rouge and the Grand Palais.

About Bram

Website: http://www.travel-experience-live.com

Bram is a Belgian guy who's currently living in the USA. For over four years now, he has been wandering the globe, with jobs here and there in between. So far, his travels have taken him to four continents and twenty-two countries. Bram likes to try different styles of travelling: from backpacker and adventurer to tourist and local, he has been all those stereotypes and probably will be many more in the future. You can follow his adventures on his travel blog, on Twitter and on Facebook.

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