From world-famous sights to hidden-away secrets: Make the most of your city break in Paris

Planning a few days in Paris? With so much to explore, see and do, it can be hard to choose between a sight-seeing extravaganza of the City of Light or a fantastic foodie’s weekend away. Here’s all the information you need to help you plan the perfect Parisian escape.

History and culture in the City of Light 

Paris is undeniably one of the world’s most beautiful cities, with enough visual, historic and cultural clout to fill a lifetime of weekend breaks. Its pleasures are both simple and grand – from a café crème at a pavement cafe and a stroll along the Seine, to an afternoon at the Musée d’Orsay admiring the greatest collection of Impressionist paintings in the world. It’s the fashion capital of the globe, where Dior-dressed ladies stroll down tree-lined avenues, peering over giant sunglasses into chic designer boutiques. Its reputation for good food is legendary, with a new emphasis on simplicity alongside its traditional high-end restaurants. And its village-like vibe lends the city a special atmosphere, where every quarter has its own charm.

Art lovers can hang out world-class institutions from the Louvre, home to more than 35,000 works including the Venus de Milo and the Mona Lisa, to smaller museums like the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, which are equally compelling. If you’re into architecture, tour Paris’s iconic buildings like the Opéra Garnier and the Sacré Coeur rubbing shoulders with the Centre Pompidou, La Défense’s Grande Arche and other 20th-century landmarks.

But most of all, Paris is ageless. From Le Marais to Montmartre to Montparnasse, whether you already know it like the back of your hand, or you’ve just opened the shutters on your first day in town, France’s capital is infinite and timeless and deserves to be savoured at length.

How to get there 

The best way to get to Paris is by Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris Gare du Nord, with connecting tickets from your local railway station if needed. The shortest journey is two hours 16 minutes, and you can choose from 14 trains per day; the Eurostar has free Wi-Fi and plenty of legroom, and you’ll arrive bang in the heart of Paris.

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