46 Fun Things to Do in Paris : Boats, Tours, Bikes, Art

Visiting Paris and want to make the most out of Parisian life? We propose you a list of fun activities  to do in Paris.Whether you are just passing through the city or taking a long vacation, these activities can be done alone, with friends, with your significant other or with your family.

Boat and cruising activities in Paris

This is one of the most popular things to do when visiting Paris for the first time and makes for some good times with friends.

  • Boat Tour in Paris

    Boat Tour in Paris

    Bateaux Parisiens (Parisian Boats) – This is one of the best-known boating companies in the city. From the simple trip passing by Paris’ most beautiful landmarks to a romantic dinner cruise, the choice is yours! The boat leaves from near the Eiffel Tower and sails to the Port de la Bourdonnais. Prices from 14 euros to 265 euros. Book your tickets online.

  • Bateaux Mouches (Tourist boats on the Seine) – The Bateaux Mouches company also offers river tours and cruises leaving from the same area. Book your Bateau mouche cruise online.
  • Canauxrama – This is the most unique of boat rides in Paris and it goes from the Villette lake and Port de l’Arsenal to Bercy, passing through a long tunnel on the St-Martin canal. Book your Canauxrama cruise online.
  • Vedettes de Paris – Leaving from Port Suffren, the Vedettes de Paris offer different types of boat trips and cruises on the Seine.
  • La Marina de Paris – From a simple boat-ride to a romantic dinner on the Seine, it’s up to you. Find out more.
  • Vedettes du Pont Neuf – The famous Vedettes de Pont Neuf leave, as their name suggests, from Pont Neuf near Notre Dame.
  • Marins d’Eau Douce – Electric boats on the Villette lake, these small vessels and for hire and allow you to take your own trip on the lake or the Canal de l’Ourq.

For more ideas, take a look at our Guide to Visiting Paris

Places to Visit and Guided Tours

  • Orsay Museum on Tuesday

    Impressionism at Orsay Museum

    Guided Tour of the Louvre – visit one of the world’s most beautiful museums and see the Joconde or the Egyptology department. We would recommend  you to book a queue-jump ticket in advance.

  • Bargain-Hunting at Flea Markets – Another activity to do just outside of the city in Saint-Ouen, where you will find Europe’s largest flea market.
  • Visit of Old Montmartre – Stroll through the steep and narrow streets of Montmartre hill and enjoy the bohemian atmosphere of this quarter whilst walking in the footsteps of the famous artists who once lived there.
  • Visiting the Trendy Quarter of Le Marais – This is a quarter which is rich in color and incredibly lively is also one of the oldest in the capital with many historic hotels.
  • La Route des Impressionnistes (The Impressionist Way) – You can begin with a visit of the Musée d’Orsay or l’Orangerie and finish in Normandy, passing through Chatou, Auvers sur Oise, and Givrent. Book tickets here.
  • Climb the North Tower of Notre Dame – Go to the lookout of Quasimodo and the gargoyles of Notre Dame by climbing the North tower.
  • Take an Open-Top Bus Sightseeing Tour – Take a tour of the most famous of Paris’ landmarks with Open Bus.
  • Climb to the top of the Arc de Triomphe

Paris by Bike and Rollerskates

  • Marne banks ParisCycle along the Banks of the Marne – If you want to venture outside of the city walls for a bike-ride, you can cycle along the banks of the river Marne. You can leave from the Vincennes woods or Nogent sur Marne, getting ever further away from Paris as you cycle next to the river. Cyclorama Events offer bike-hire and route plans.
  • Cycle along the Quays of the Seine – You can also ride along the quays of the Seine and enjoy a beautiful view of Paris’ famous landmarks.
  • Rollerblading in Paris – With Pari Roller, take a tour of Paris on skates! Trips leave every Friday at 10pm from Place Raoul Daurty in the 14th arrondissement.

See also: Couples’ Activities in Paris

Cultural Activities in Paris

  • Art Gallery in le Marais

    Art Gallery in le Marais

    See a Musical – There are always musical comedy events around Mogador, in Châtelet theater, and in Casino de Paris – the choice is yours.

  • Go to the Theater – Is there anything more Parisian than going to the theater? You can visit small venues, the Comédie Française or of course other well-known stages.
  • Visit Art Galleries – If you would like to see the artistic side of Paris, there is far more than just the grand museums. You can visit one of the many art galleries in Paris in quarters such as le Marais, Saint-Germaine, Montmartre, and near the St-Martin canal.
  • See a Ballet – This is a spectacular experience for anyone who sees it. You can choose between Opéra Garnier (métro: Opéra), or the newer Opéra Bastille (Place de la Bastille).
  • Go and see the Street Art in Belleville or in the 13th Arrondissement – Art is everywhere in Paris, even in the streets. Admire these many creations in the 13  arrondissement (rue Jeanne d’Arc or avenue d’Ivry), and on the Dénoyez wall in Belleville.
  • See a Film in one of the City’s Symbolic Cinemas – There are plenty of cinemas with that old French feel: Le Louxor, Le Grand Rex, and Le Champollion.
  • Go to a Jazz Club – For many decades Paris was the European capital of Jazz, and there are still plenty of events that will give you a night to remember such as Jazz Club Etoile.
  • Go to a Classical Music Concert – The Salle Pleyel is a popular venue for this.
  • Visit Art and Music Exhibitions – for Paris Philharmonic events, see Paris Exhibitions.

Read also our Paris museum guide.

Unique Activities in Paris

  • Visit the Paris Catacombs – Descend several meters below ground to see centuries-old catacombs.
  • Paris Catacombs Visit

    Paris Catacombs Visit

    Visit the Paris Sewers – This is one of the most unique museums in Paris. discover the sewers, the channeling, and the waste water treatment systems.

  • Escape Game – This is one of Paris’ hit activities, teams of 5 to 10 people are locked in an apartment and must guess which of them is the assassin.
  • Treasure Hunts in the Breezeways – Several companies organise treasure hunts in the breezeways of the Belle Epoque. With this activity, a journey through time is guaranteed.
  • Spend a day Shopping with a Personal Shopper – Are you a shopaholic? Have you ever thought about getting a personal shopper? Go all out and treat yourself in the Fashion Capital.
  • Paris with 2CV – One of the most romantic activities in Paris, this tour in a Citroën 2CV takes you around the most beautiful sights of the City of Lights.
  • Disney Land – Coming to Paris is a fantastic opportunity to visit Europe’s largest amusement park. Book in advance to avoid disappointment.

Sport and Sporting Events in Paris

  • See a Soccer Game at Parc des Princes – Whether or not you are a fan of Paris Saint-Germain football club, this is a good opportunity to witness the fantastic sporting spectacle in a great venue.
  • See a Red Star match at Jean-Bouin – Staying with the theme of soccer, the Red Star offers an alternative to PSG. The crowds are smaller but just as passionate.
  • See a Stade Français match at Jean-Bouin – At Jean Bouin you will also find the Stade Français Rugby Club.
  • See the French National teams for Soccer and Rugby play at the Stade de France 
  • Watch a Tennis Tournament – Both Roland Garros and Paris-Bercy offer different atmospheres and serve as stages for the greatest players in the world of tennis.
  • Visit the Longchamps Hippodrome

Outdoor Activities

  • Christmas Decorations and Lights – During the end-of-year celebrations, shop window displays try hard to impress. Many streets and landmarks are also decorated, and the City of Lights lives up to its nickname.
  • Stroll through the Père Lachaise Cemetery – Père Lachaise is a true open-air museum. It is also a very peaceful, green area. Guided Tours of the Cemetery are Available.
  • Discover la Coulée Verte (The Green Path) – This elevated walkway is is a unique place for a walk.
  • Have a Picnic in one of Paris’ Green Areas – This is a very popular activity among Parisians on nice days. Chaumont, the Vincennes woods, and the Montsouris park are fabulous settings for a picnic.
  • Take a Boat-Ride on the Minimes Lake in Vincennes Woods 
  • Play Pétanques at the Villette lakeside

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