Le Magazine Accor Hotels

The Delights of Paris at Night

See the City of Light from a New Perspective

The "city of romance", the "fashion capital of the world" or "the city of light", the French capital is beautiful at any time, but Paris at night is truly special. It's one thing to see those famous Parisian monuments by day, but an illuminated Basilica of Sacré-Cœur or a floodlit Notre Dame are sights you'll never forget. Take a boat trip on the River Seine and see Paris at night, and experience the city from a whole new angle as you float under the city's iconic bridges or discover popular after-dark haunts, like the world-famous Moulin Rouge or Lido cabaret clubs. Paris at night is full of surprises; shop late at modern malls like the Beaugrenelle or enjoy the view from an unusual vantage point in Montparnasse. Sip the latest creations in the most happening cocktail bars or take to the dance floor at popular nightspots like Chacha Bar or Batofar. Lots of exciting annual events take place after the sun sets like the Nuit Blanche contemporary art festival and the Fireman's Ball, making Paris at night an appealing prospect for all ages.

The Many Faces of Paris at Night

When you're deciding what to see in Paris at night, why not take a closer look at some of its famous neighborhoods? The city is split into twenty administrative districts called arrondissements and they're arranged in a clockwise spiral like the shell of a snail starting from the 1st arrondissement (where you'll find the Louvre) on the Right Bank, north of the River Seine. Some of the most popular places in Paris at night include, of course, the Butte Montmartre. The 18th arrondissement is simply referred to as the 18th, and it's a glowing hilltop jewel after dark.
The 16th arrondissement of Paris is often called "le 16em" by locals, and it's one of the city's most elegant addresses.
Other favorites with visitors who want to experience the unique character of Paris at night include Temple and Hotel Ville, the 3rd and 4th arrondissements, and the trendy Le Marais district. On the Left Bank, the 14th arrondissement of Montparnasse is well worth a visit. Of course, you'll find excellent hotels that make a great base for all your Paris at night adventures in every arrondissement, from Hotel Des Dame du Pantheon and Hotel Cujas Pantheon in the 5th to Hotel Waldorf Trocadero and Plaza Tour Eiffel in the 16th.

Take a Dinner Cruise on the River Seine

Bateaux Parisiens river cruises on the Seine are among the most popular things to do in Paris after dark. Your journey starts at Quai Branly at the foot of the Eiffel Tower as you step aboard one of the iconic glass-roofed sightseeing boats. Many of the city's most famous monuments are illuminated and Paris at night has a unique atmosphere that makes you feel as if anything is possible. You'll be captivated by the sight of the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, Ile de France, and Notre Dame as you experience them from a completely new angle, and large bay windows offer an outstanding all-around view of Paris. Sample a tasting menu, dance to live music or sit back with a glass of chilled champagne as the world's most romantic city drifts by. Luxury Bateaux Parisiens cruises are ideal for New Year's Eve or Saint Valentine's Day, and they add a touch a touch of magic to those warm summer evenings.

Magical Montmartre at Night

Montmartre is one of the most exciting parts of Paris, but you'll be surprised at how little traffic there is at night. The district is dominated by the Basilica of Sacré-Couer and its beautiful courtyard offers spectacular views over the sparkling streets of Paris. Be sure to take a selfie with the illuminated Basilica in the background. Stroll down the cobbled streets to the Place du Tertre which is often referred to as the artist's square and have your portrait painted by one of the many street artists. Although it's aimed at tourists, it's still one of those fun things to do in Paris after dark that you'll want to tick off your list.

See Sacré-Cœur by Night

Not to be missed Paris at night attractions include the magnificent Basilica of Sacré-Coeur, or the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, to give it its full name. The famous landmark is within walking distance of nearby Montmartre hotels like the Aparthotel Adagio Paris Montmartre, Le Grand Pigalle Hotel, and Ibis Styles Paris Pigalle Montmartre. The Sacré-Coeur, as it's commonly known, was designed by Paul Abadie and although work began in 1875, he died before its completion in 1914 - the church was consecrated in 1919 after the end of World War I.

If you're staying somewhere else, don't worry, it's easy to reach Montmartre in Paris at night; just take the Metro Line 12 (green) to Abbesses or take Line 2 (blue) to Anvers and walk up. If the steps seem like too much of an effort, you can take the funicular up the Butte Montmartre or hop on the Montmartrobus instead. Sacré-Coeur is one of the most visited places in Paris at night and the white-domed church is spectacular when it's illuminated. Did you know that the Butte Montmartre is the highest point in the city at 430 feet? Experience the breathtaking views of the city and relish in the pleasures of Paris at night.

On the Montmartre Tourist Trail

While you're on the after dark tourist trail in Paris, you should stop for a crepe at one of Montmartre's dozens of cafes and creperies en-route to the Moulin Rouge or Agile Lapin. These famous cabaret clubs present spectacular shows featuring the French cancan but, did you know that le Agile Lapin is opposite the only vineyard in the city of Paris? The Clos Montmartre was created on what was previously a piece of wasteland by the City of Paris in 1933 and it's now one of the arrondissement's best-loved landmarks.

Beautiful Night Time Walks in Paris

Nowhere in the world is quite like Paris at night and its famous streets are just waiting to be discovered. The Avenue des Champs-Elysées is considered the world's most beautiful street by many, and with good cause. Stretching from the Arc de Triomphe in Place Charles de Gaulle to Place de la Concorde and the Obelisk of Luxor, the street is known for its elegant stores and famous venues like the Petit Palais and the Grand Palais.

If you're lucky enough to be visiting Paris over the festive season, you'll love the Champs-Elysées Christmas Market and the sparkling Christmas lights. Still looking for free things to do in Paris at night? Take a walk along the banks of the River Seine from the Musée d'Orsay on the Left Bank to the Port de Solférino by the Eiffel Tower. The route is pedestrianized and there are lots of cafes and bars where you can enjoy a late-night drink as you admire the boats passing under the Seine's bridges and gasp at illuminated landmarks like the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower.

Night Time Views of Paris

Paris is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and, although the French capital doesn't have as many high-rise buildings as some, you can still enjoy some spectacular bird's eye views. The Eiffel Tower is one of the most romantic places to visit in Paris at Night. Open till 11:00 p.m. and until midnight in summer, you can't fail to be impressed by the glass first floor. The glass has been treated so you can walk above the Place de Champs du Mars without fear of slipping. Head to the top and enjoy a glass of chilled champagne as you spot landmarks like the Arc de Triomphe, the Basilica of Sacre-Coeur, and the Montparnasse Tower.

Visit the Montparnasse Tower

The 56th observation floor of the Montparnasse Tower is one of those fun things to do in Paris at night that few people are aware of. Step into the fastest elevator in Europe and you'll be whisked from ground level to the 56th floor in just 38 seconds. The comfortable space has floor-to-ceiling windows and you'll enjoy some of the most beautiful views of the city. If you prefer to see the lights of Paris from an outdoor space, just head to the terrace. The sheltered terrace has specially designated areas to help you get the very best photos of Paris at night. A visit to the Montparnasse Tower is also a chance for you to see the city's Latin Quarter. The neighborhood has over 60 cinemas and 10 theaters including the iconic Théâtre du Montparnasse and Théâtre de la Gaîté.

Events That You Won't Want to Miss

Some of the city's biggest events are also some of the most exciting free things to do in Paris at night. The Nuits Blanche contemporary art exhibition is dedicated to making modern art accessible to everyone and lots of the city's most famous museums and venues, including the Philharmonie de Paris and Forum des Halles, open their doors for the occasion. It's now in its 17th year and the October event attracts locals and visitors on to the streets of Paris at night. Sculptures, installations, screenings and concerts are just a few of the things you might encounter as you navigate one of the two routes, Center and North, that take you from the La Chapelle neighborhood to the banks of the River Seine.

If you're going to be in Paris for Bastille Day, you'll almost certainly be celebrating well into the night. The 14th of July is a fun-packed day of parades and concerts that culminates in fireworks displays and the famous Fireman's Ball. The city's fire stations throw open their doors to the public for a night of music and dancing that's certain to become one of your best-loved memories of Paris at night.

Fun for Movie Lovers

Outdoor cinema is a delightful part of the Paris at night program and there are some great events each summer. Open Air Cinema at la Villette is the ideal choice if you're searching for free things to do in Paris during July or August. Parc de la Villette is in one of the most happening areas of northeast Paris and the annual summer film festival is eagerly anticipated by locals and tourists alike. Take a blanket or rent some deckchairs for a small fee and enjoy classic and popular movies under the stars. All screenings start as soon as it is dark enough and movies are shown in their original languages with French subtitles. Highlights of the 2017 edition of Open Air Cinema at la Villette included the well-loved animated film Ratatouille, Billy Wilder's 1955 classic Sabrina, and the 2013 hit The Lunch Box.

A Must for Fashion Fans and Shopaholics

You might not immediately think of shopping as one of the top Paris at night attractions, but then you realize that you're in the world's fashion capital. Window shop after dark in the oh-so-stylish rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré where you can marvel at the displays in iconic luxury stores such as Chanel, Cartier, Gucci, Burberry, and Valentino. Or, treat yourself to some real retail therapy at the modern Beaugrenelle Centre shopping mall on the Left Bank close to the Eiffel Tower and the Bir-Hakeim Bridge. Over 45,000 m2 of space is given over to shopping and entertainment in this stylish mall. With 120 shops including favorite brands like Hollister, Uniqlo, Zadig & Voltaire, Mango and the biggest branch of Zara in France, restaurants, beauty salons, and a 10-screen multiplex cinema, the Beaugrenelle Centre has become one of the most popular spots in Paris at night.

Shows That You'll Love

Although it may not have the reputation of London or Berlin in clubbing circles, Paris at night is just as thrilling, if you know where to look. Batofar is a great example of a Parisian club that has managed to retain a fresh and happening feel over the years. It's popular with locals as well as tourists and the converted barge on the River Seine at Quai François Mauriac in the 13th arrondissement is open almost every night. Go along for a night of rock, techno, hip-hop, and dubstep played by some of the best local DJs. 
Head out in Paris at night and try Chacha in the 1st arrondissement for electro, pop and techno after midnight or the Rex Club in the 2nd or to the "Grands Boulevards" district for a night of techno and grunge and bass-heavy house and electronica that revisits some of the big London club nights. The Grands Boulevards district is home to several of the best places in Paris at night, including Celtic style pub cum trendy club night, Le Truskel, and Le Social club, which is housed in the same building that George Clemenceau's "L'Aurore" newspaper was once printed in.

Shows That You'll Love

You'll find lots of great shows in Paris at night, whether you enjoy drama, comedy or musicals. Catch How to Become Parisian in One Hour at the Théâtre des Nouveautés. The popular comedy show is presented by Olivier Giraud on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights and it's in English. Or you might prefer Oh My God, She's Parisian! with Julie Collas at Theatre Bo in Saint-Martin. Musical lovers can see Grease the Musical at the iconic Theatre Mogador in the 9th arrondissement, or you might still be able to grab tickets for Singin' in the Rain in the Nave of the Grand Palais until the 11th of January 2018 for a family outing in Paris at night.

Did you like it? Share it!

Want to know more?

Continue the journey

Our hotels in Paris

At random

More travel ideas

Find your dream destination

With the Dream Detector

Use our Detector