Are you looking for 2 days in Paris itinerary? Two days seems like such a short time if you’re visiting Paris for the first time.
However, if that’s all the time you have then it’s best to make the most of it.
In my last visit to Paris early this year, I only had 2 days to spare as I had to go to Portugal. But I managed to squeeze a lot of places in my two days in Paris to take more pictures for this website as I planned my itinerary well. This itinerary is the exact itinerary I used the last time.
Also, this is more of a self-guided walking tour, and took Uber to get to my first destination from my hotel and from my last destination back to the hotel. Cases were rising in France while I was there so I avoided the crowd as much as possible so rest assured that this 2-day itinerary is aimed to maximize your time and money well as I didn’t use the metro at all.
It seems daunting to squeeze all the best sights in 2 days in Paris but it is quite doable though. Without further ado, here’s an ideal 2 days in Paris itinerary that takes you through some of the best spots in the city.
Things you'll find in this article
- 2 Days In Paris Itinerary (Walking Tour + Maps and Tips)
- Day 1 of 2 days in Paris itinerary
- Day 2 of 2 days in Paris itinerary
2 Days In Paris Itinerary (Walking Tour + Maps and Tips)
Day 1 of 2 days in Paris itinerary
I started my day in Palais Garnier at 9 am. I landed at 7 in the morning and because I only had 2 days in Paris, I didn’t waste time and left my hotel as soon as I checked in. I took an Uber from my hotel in Gare Du Nord but you can also take the metro of course. Just take the metro that goes to Opera Metro station.
Said to be an ode to Parisian architecture, the enchanting Palais Garnier is an important part of Paris’ ballet and classical music scene. Also called the Opera Garnier Paris or simply the Paris Opera, this cultural jewel has a history that’s as fascinating as the productions within its walls.
Home to the Paris Ballet, the Palais Garnier is regarded as one of the grandest and most prestigious opera houses in the world. If you’re not familiar with this place, it is the setting of The Phantom Of The Opera and it was also used as one of the settings in Emily In Paris. Remember when Emily followed Pierre Cadault to the Opera House discussing Gossip Girl and her grand staircase scene with the French professor telling him he is such a snob? Yep, they were taken in Palais Garnier.
It’s so easy to spend an hour or two in this place admiring the architecture. But since I was pressed with time, I only spent half hour in Palais Garnier. Get those headsets to help you with your self-guided tour and don’t forget to take pictures of the grand staircase!
Recommended Hours: 1-1.5 hours
From Palais Garnier, I just walked towards the Louvre. It’s only about 1.5 km from the Opera House and it’s only around a 15-minute walk. I actually stopped quite a few times to admire the architecture along the way. I took Architecture in college so yes, I love architecture if that is not obvious yet.
It was also my first time in the Louvre but unfortunately, I managed to drop by during the start of the pandemic, and the museum was closed.
I just decided to take photos outside of the museum. But if you manage to visit during a better time, my friends recommend spending at least a half-day to appreciate the artworks in one, if not the best, museums in the world.
The Louvre that we know today wasn’t always a massive repository of the world’s greatest fine art collections. The museum palace was initially built as a fortress at the start of the 13th century, then it became a palace, and then the Parisian museum that we know today.
Recommended Hours: At least 4 hours to peruse some of the world’s most coveted fine arts but if you don’t have enough time, you can do it for 2 hours. If the museum is closed just like what I have experienced, half-hour will suffice to take those profile pics by the Louvre pyramid!
If you want to save time, you can buy your skip-the-line ticket for the Louvre here.
Domaine National du Palais-Royal
Because I wasn’t able to enter the museum, I decided to just visit the palace across from the Louvre. Domaine National du Palais-Royal is a former residence of the French royal families before the Palace of Versailles was built. It is quite a popular place in Paris for Instagrammers due to the small columns on the palace grounds and a popular relaxing place for locals.
The palace also has a beautiful garden that you can relax on after a few hours of sightseeing. There are several restaurants in the area so I took the opportunity to have my lunch here.
Recommended Hours: 1-2 hours
Ticket: Access for everyone is free
Pont des Arts
From Domaine National de Palais-Royal, it’s only around a 10-minute walk to Pont des Arts. Pont des Arts is popularly known as the “love lock bridge” famous around the world for lovers, who attached padlocks and threw the keys to the Seine river signifying eternal commitment.
This had become a serious safety problem though and the local authority had to remove the padlocks and discouraged the tourists from leaving more padlocks.
There’s nothing special to this bridge in my opinion, even with the old padlocks before, but it is located in the Seine river which is one of the most romantic and scenic parts of the city.
You can walk along the area and just enjoy the view of the river or the architecture along the river bank.
Shakespeare and Company
As a bookworm, I recommend dropping by this historic bookstore. Shakespeare and Company is a literary institution in the Left Bank of Paris, directly opposite the Notre Dame of Paris.
Founded by American George Whitman in 1951, it became a popular gathering place for inspiring writers. Among the writers who used to come here were Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Ford Madox Ford, among others.
The original bookshop was named Le Mistral but was renamed after William Shakespeare as a tribute for his 400th birth anniversary.
Recommended Hours: As someone who loves books so much I’d recommend staying for the whole day but if you are pressed with time, a half-hour to one hour will suffice to find some good books.
Notre Dame of Paris
Notre Dame is literally across the river from the bookstore and it’s a short walk from Shakespeare and Company.
Regarded as one of the most important cathedrals in France, Notre Dame de Paris is also one of the most famous in the world.
Built in 1163, this medieval Catholic cathedral is said to be one of the best examples of French Gothic architecture.
It is located on the Île de la Cité in the 4th arrondissement of Paris. The Notre Dame is known as the most visited monument in Europe, even after the April 2019 fire. The affected areas are slowly being reconstructed based on an accurate reconstruction plan.
I only managed to take pictures from far away due to construction so I only spent less than 15 minutes in the area.
From Notre Dame, you can easily walk to The Pantheon. Not to be mistaken for The Pantheon in Rome, the Pantheon in Paris was originally a church. It was built around 1757 by the architect Jacques-Germain Soufflé as the Church of Sainte-Geneviève.
Later on, during the French Revolution, the church was secularized. It is now the final resting place of many French luminaries.
The Panthéon’s illustrious crypt contains the remains of famous French personalities such as Marie Curie, Victor Hugo, and Voltaire.
Be sure to check out the replica of Foucault’s pendulum here and see how it gave evidence of the earth’s rotation.
This was also my last destination for my first day in Paris. I actually had ample time to visit 1-2 more places as my sightseeing ended around 4 pm but jetlag was starting to catch up with me so I decided to have an early dinner and booked an Uber straight to my hotel.
Recommended Hours: 1 hour to 1.5 hours
Ticket: €11.50/ €9 (concessions). €3 extra to access the upper parts of the Panthéon (April-October). Free admission: First Sunday of the month from 1 November to 31 March. Free for those under 26 from countries within the European Union, as well as primary and secondary teachers.
Day 2 of 2 days in Paris itinerary
I started my day earlier on my second day in Paris. At 7 in the morning, I was already on my way to the Arc de Triomphe after eating breakfast at my hotel. Again, I took an Uber.
Arc de Triomphe
One of the iconic symbols in Paris, Arc de Triomphe honors those who fought and died for France.
This famous landmark has the names of those generals and French victories inscribed to its outer and inner surfaces but do you know beneath its vault lies the remains of an unknown soldier? He symbolizes all those unnamed heroes who died during World War I.
Arc de Triomphe is located at the center of Place Charles De Gaulle connecting all the 12 major avenues in Paris. The juncture formed by these twelve avenues creates a star thus the official name of this landmark is Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile, which translates to Triumphal Arch of the Star.
Recommended Hours – half hour to one hour
Ticket: If you are planning to go up the arc, a ticket is around €13.
Trocadero Gardens and Eiffel Tower
From Arc de Triomphe, it’s about a 15-minute walk to Trocadero Gardens. This garden is the best place to take your Eiffel Tower pictures. And no Paris itinerary is complete without visiting Eiffel Tower.
Designed by Gustave Eiffel, the tower was inaugurated during the 1889 Exposition Universelle. Many influential Parisians at that time called this an eyesore.
Today, it remains to be one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world, an ultimate symbol of Paris and a beloved tourist destination.
I actually spent the entire morning here as unlike the previous day, I wanted a more relaxed itinerary on my second day in Paris. I also enjoyed a nice lunch in one of the restaurants with a view of the Eiffel Tower.
Recommended Hours – 2-3 hours
|Adult Rate||Youth Rate
|Disabled(1)||Child under 4 Rate(2)
|Ticket with access lift
|Ticket with access lift
|Ticket with access stairs
|Ticket with access stairs 2nd floor
Pont Alexandre III
From Eiffel Tower, you can walk to Pont Alexandre III. It’s around 12-14 minute walk only. The Alexander III bridge was built to honor the alliance between France and Russia and was opened in 1900.
It is regarded as one of the most beautiful historic bridges in Paris, with its elegant imperial design adorned with golden statues and its columns.
The bridge connects the Invalides on the left bank and the Grand Palais and Petit Palais on the right bank of the River Seine.
Situated just a few minutes away from Champs Elysées, the Alexander III bridge stands out with its beautiful Art Nouveau lamps. Ornate and extravagant, a walk here is one of the must do’s when in Paris.
Recommended Hours: half an hour
From Alexandre III bridge, I took an Uber to Sacré-Cœur. The area is walking distance to my hotel so I decided to spend my whole afternoon here.
Situated in the north of Paris at 130 meters high hill of Montmartre. It’s a fascinating area that’s known for the white-domed Basilica of the Sacred Heart (Sacré-Cœur) and as an artist hub.
A must visit in the area is the Square of Tertre, not too far from the basilica. This is where artists set up their workspaces or showcase their art.
This part of Montmartre is a reminder of how this very same place was the hub of modern art in the early 20th century.
It was where artists such as Amedeo Modigliani, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, and Vincent van Gogh worked.
By 3 pm, I was already done exploring Montmarte and decided to just head back to my hotel. I could have added Moulin Rouge since it’s also walking distance from Montmarte but I have already visited it before so I decided to just grab a light dinner on the way to my hotel and started packing for my early flight the next day.
Recommended Hours: 2-3 hours
So there you have it, a perfect itinerary for 2 days in Paris. Enough to visit the best attractions in Paris but also enough not to tire yourself out and still enjoy these places.
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Hi, I’m Christine – a full-time traveler and career woman. Although I’m from the Philippines, my location independent career took me to over 40 countries for the past 8 years. I also lived in 3 continents – from the Caribbean, South East Asia to Africa. France remains special to me, however. From architecture, history, and arts – France is truly an amazing place.