Are you looking for the most instagrammer spots in Paris? A perfect background for a selfie? Here you have our bucket list of the Paris best photo spots. From the most classic and must-do ones to some alternative places you must go, visit and take pictures of them.
Classic Paris best photo spots bucket list
Let’s face it, you can’t miss the Eiffel Tower in a visit to Paris. We have been many times in Paris and I think I have always gone close to take a proper look. Always magnificent, always crowded. The Eiffel Tower is probably the best-known icon of Paris. This is indeed the number one of every Paris best photo spots list.
It was built for the Universal Exhibition of 1889, in the 100th anniversary of the French revolution. Eiffel Tower meant to show the advance of the sciences but it’s particular aesthetic style provoked controversy until the arrival of the massive tourism after the IIWW. Nowadays, its surroundings and its views are a must for first-time and experienced visitors. There are always long lines to get up to admire the views from the top. We recommend to plan the visit and get the tickets on-line. You can check the prices and the opening hours on the official site of the Eiffel Tower.
Arc de Triomphe
Located at the western extreme of Champs-Elysees, everyone has seen it before going to Paris on TV or on the Press. The construction of the Arc de Triomphe started after the victory of Napoleon at Austerlitz in 1806, but it was not finished until 1836. Under the arch, there is the eternal flame of the tomb of the Unknown Soldier and if you watch up you will spot engraved the names of the locations of the most important battles of the French Revolution and the most significant victories of the Napoleonic Wars.
Ile de la Cité
Ile de la Cité is the oldest settlement in Paris. The Romans called this small island in the Seine river Lutetia. This is the heart of the old and the current Paris. It is located in between the neighborhoods of Saint-Germain-des-Prés (at South) and Châtelet (at North). Its streets are narrow and amazing along all its tiny walking-distance territory. It’s ideal for enjoying a walk under the sun or get into any of its iconic shops and creperies. Whatever you do, you will end up at Notre Dame, Pont Neuf and Pont de l’Archevêché.
On this river island the cute cobblestone streets are very picturesques. Every corner has its own character and the gates and the windows are awesomely French!
Notre-Dame de Paris
Notre-Dame is one of the most famous medieval catholic Cathedrals all over the world. Its fame got even bigger due to the novel of Victor Hugo Notre-Dame de Paris (better known in English as The Hunchback of Notre-Dame). Since then has been necessary in everybody’s visit to Paris. Unfortunately, it caught fire by accident in 15 April 2019. The French governments expects that the reconstruction will end up in 2024, year of the next Olympic Games in Paris. Due to that, currently the church and its treasures closed to visitors. Visit the church was free but to get up to the top and visit the Salle Haute, the Galerie des Chimères, the famous gargoyles, the belfry and the 13-ton great bell called “Emmanuel”, was a paid visit.
Pont Neuf, despite its name (New Bridge) is the oldest in Paris, among all those that cross the Seine. In our opinion, it is also the most interesting one. It is in the list of World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 1991. Pont Neuf was inaugurated in 1607 and has been always very popular. It is highly recommended to walk it across in order to admire the excellent views that provides. A very classic location on every Paris best photo spots list.
Sacred Heart Basilica
Basilique du Sacré-Coeur is one of the most famous churches in Paris. It was finishes by 1914 and despite being very new, it came up soon as a city symbol. It is located in the picturesque Montmatre neighbourhood and its shpe is visible from many points of the city. The basilica itself is huge and interesting inside but the views from the top of its hill are really stunning and very popular.
The entry is free. After the visit is highly recommended to get down to the city centre strolling by getting lost in its surroundings.
The Pantheon is an undated icon. It used to be the symbol of the city before the construction of the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe and it was the first building, which offered panoramic views of the city from the top. Inside is huge and magnificent and in the crypt it is possible to visit the tombs of the greatest French cultural celebrities such as Voltaire, Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Marie Curie, Jean Monnet and Alexandre Dumas. It is located in the Quartier Latin and the visit costs 9 Euros per adult. You should not skip it!
The Hôtel National des Invalides is a very important item to understand the history of France and its Empire. It was built in 17th Century as a residence for retired French soldiers where they could have a proper life with access to culture and decent facilities. Its golden cupula is visible from many points in the city but the visitors are going mainly because inside you are able to bend (difficult to watch it otherwise) to admire the tomb of Napoleon I. If you want to learn more about the French wars you can visit inside the building the Musée de l’Armée.
Place de la Concorde
This is the Square of the Obelisc! Place de la Concorde is a large round-about that connects Tuileries Garden and the Champs-Elysees. This place is very important for French history since during the French Revolution the revolutionaries cut many heads off at the square. Besides that, this is a very strategic location to arrive walking to the same other spot such as Arc de Triomphe and Champs-Elysées.
Place de la Concorde is one of the most important historical items in France. It is the second large square in the country and it was the chosen place the execute people by Guillotine during the French revolution, since it has been named before Place Louis XV. There, the revolutionaries cut the head off to Marie Antoinette, King Louis XVI and after a while even to Robespierre. Nowadays, in the middle of the square there is the famous Egyptian obelisk, brought in 19th Century from Luxor, as a gift from Khedive of Egypt. The visit to the square is a must because ofthe views of Paris. On one side, the visitor can spot Tuileries Garden and the Louvre Museum in the background, and on the other side, Champs-Élysées and Arc de Triomphe.
Paris best photo spots for a weekend city breaks
The Moulin Rouge is known as the inventor of the Can-Can dance and the concept of modern cabaret. It was founded in 1889 and has evolved as the most famous nightclub for dancing show in the world. It is located in Pigalle, a neighbourhood very much into nightlife. Despite Moulin Rouge is indeed a part of the history of Paris, nowadays is also a tourist attraction where enjoy different activities within the offering of the house. Just decide how you want to enjoy this palace of entertainment and you won’t regret it.
Saint-Sulpice Church dates back to the 12th century. The current building was built in the 17th century and it is famous for being one of the biggest churches in Paris. It is located in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Près district. Even though it has always been worth to visit, Saint- Sulpice became very popular thanks to Dan Brown’s best-seller Da Vinci Code.
Inside, we can admire religious art and some mural paintings by Eugène Delacrois. The visitors can play to find the representation of the meridian line and some more recognizable corners on the Ron Howar’s film of 2006.
Besides the Arc de Triomphe, this is one of the most well-known avenues in Paris. A classic for the chic clothing stores and one of the most famous avenues in the World. Just wander around and choose a good spot to take a picture avoiding the cars!
Have you ever seen Louvre’s Pyramid? It was very controversial but became one of the icons of Paris.
The Louvre was once the home to French Kings. During the French Revolution, it was converted to a museum and nowadays is the world’s largest art museum. So, be aware that The Louvre is huge and choose good your favorite highlights (Da Vinci, Goya…).
This is much more than an Impressionism Art museum. It is a piece of Art itself. The building was created as a train station, actually one of the most beautiful ones of its period. Nowadays we can admire many of the artistic elements of that construction in iron at the same time that we enjoy the permanent exhibition. Just get to one of its clocks and you will have interesting angles for a perfect picture.
Le Marais is one of the most picturesque neighbourhoods in Paris. It is full with small cafès and restaurants of popular and etnic cuisine. Such as very famous falafel restaurants. In the background you will easily find white baroque buildings contrasting with the colorful fast food restaurant signs.
Palace of Versailles is not actualy in Paris but it is one of the main attractions of the city. Its location is about 20 kilometres southwest of the centre of Paris. Historically, It was the royal residence of France from 1682 until the French Revolution in 1789. The visitor may need at least a full morning to visit it since it is a huge ancient luxurious residence with a lot of emblematic saloons and all kind of glamourous rooms to visit. The single tickets for adults coast 18 Euros but there are 2 days passes and even year passes. Check your options here at the official site of the palace. Pictures inside or at the exterior with the façace in the background are awesome!
This is one of the most famous neighbourhoods in Paris. It is located at the top of a small hill and it has some sort of village atmosphere. Montmartre is a real melting pot of art, culture, and cuteness where the artists have been inspired since the 19th Century. Still nowadays it is a pleasure to stroll around and admire the painters working on their portraits on the street. Definitely, Montmartre is one of the places you cannot miss on your Paris best photo spots list.
Paris “Besides the Obvious” best photo spots
At Canal Saint-Martin you will see an interesting contrast between the nearby architecture and the small shops with colorful facades. Amateur photographers will be delighted to highlight this place as they were the impressionist painters of the past. The mirror effect of the reflection of the bright colors on the canal makes this place a place full of charm. This amazing landscape is even more extraordinary as it changes its appearance with the seasons. Don’t miss it!
Seine is beautiful and picturesque at many points. This is the main artery of the city. It splits the city in two and connecting both sides of the old town we can find nice historic bridges and some boats on the water, including the cruise services. No matters to which side you look you will spot baroque buildings with splendit iconic roofs. And besides that, from time to time you will be able to admire some of the most well-known attractions of Paris.
This is one of the most important examples of classic high-tech architecture. It is named after Georges Pompidou, the President of France who commissioned the building, but it was officially inaugurated in 1977 by President Valéry Giscard d’Estaing. It houses the Bibliothèque publique d’information (Public Information Library), the Musée National d’Art Moderne, which is the largest museum for modern art in Europe; and IRCAM, a centre for music and acoustic research.
Nowadays, the building is not innovative anymore but it has enough iconic power to be worth some pictures. Besides, There are some eclectic art pieces around you can admire, enjoy and shoot.
Alexandre III Bridge
This bridge from the 1900s is one of the most impressive in Paris, and the widest bridge in the capital of France. It is definitely awesome for its architecture and beautiful because of its decoration. It crosses the Seine and links the 7th and 8th districts. Its majestic golden pillars and its perspective will highlight your photos. At night, the Eiffel Tower glows in the background and makes your photos unforgettable!
The Bir-Hakeim Bridge is located on the quai de Grenelle in the 15th arrondissement of Paris. The symmetry of the columns and the view of the Eiffel Tower allow you to play with the frame to obtain a photo of Paris worthy of a professional. This bridge has been the perfect scenery and background for some movies and thousands of wedding portfolios.
Rue Crémieux is a pedestrian street located in the 7th arrondissement of Paris. It is quite famous for its colorful facades, perfect as a Paris best photo spots location. This is a perfect place to take colorful photos in Paris. A calm and peaceful atmosphere, away from the bustle of the city and very far away from the Baroque idea we have about Paris.
We speak here about a garden created for royal purposes in 1612. Today, still is doing a “public” service since it houses the French Senat in the palace. It is open for visitors for free and it is a delight. There is an artificial lake, the palace, some squirrels running back and forth and the available calmness of taking a free chair to read in the middle of Paris.
Do you want to spot some street art in Paris? Dénoyez Street shows colorful graffiti along over 150 meters. This street is particularly photogenic. The street is in the heart of Belleville, between Rue Ramponeau and Rue de Belleville. You may know that the graffiti there could change from one day to another. The spontaneity of the artists’ works, many of them anonymous, is what makes this alley out of the original common. Don’t expect something permanent but for sure you will get something original!
Opera Garnier dates back to the 17th century. This place opens for visitors so you will be able to enjoy the interior which is also very photogenic. You can also take wonderful photos around the Opera with a beautiful view of the capital. You cannot skip it on your Paris best photo spots list!
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