Itinerary: A Perfect Day in Paris Without Seeing a Museum

Itinerary: A Perfect Day in Paris Without Seeing a Museum

Paris has plenty of fantastic museums to discover, however if you're looking to hit the major sites without waiting in long lines and to explore a new angle of the city, read ahead!

Morning - Breakfast at Parisian Cafe

We started our morning off at a cafe close to our hotel and enjoyed an oven fresh baguette with butter, orange juice and a cappuccino. Grab a seat outside, face the street and watch the world go by.

Daytime - Walk the Promenade Plantée & view the Eiffel Tower from Trocadéro

View from the Promenade Plantée

We walked the Promenade Plantée, a 5km elevated parkway through the city, which I think is one of the best kept secrets in Paris. We started at Bel Air and ended at Bastille. The walk is a quiet break from the busy streets with locals out for runs and wonderful shade. We continued to Île Saint-Louis, an island on the Seine river filled with boutiques, cafes and restaurants. We stopped for lunch and some delicious gelato.

From there we waded through the hoards of people at the famous Notre Dame cathedral. Although very touristy, you must see the architecture of the church from the flying buttresses to the creepy gargoyles on the side. The gargoyles have two purposes. First, to project rainwater away from the building and second, to protect the church from evil or harmful spirits.

View from Trocadéro

Next, we hopped on the metro to Trocadéro for one of the best views of the Eiffel Tower day or night. It's the same view as the famous picture taken of Hitler posing with the tower after occupying Paris in 1940.

Evening - People watch at Montmarte & keep the night going at Le China


After admiring the Eiffel tower, we hopped back on the subway to Montmarte. The large hill in Paris was formerly a bohemian district home to every type of creative artist in the 19th and 20th century. Picasso,  Monet, and Vincent van Gogh lived and painted here! Today it's touristy, but it has a lot of charm you don't want to miss.

We climbed up the stairs and walked through the cobblestone streets in the former artists' district. We found the perfect seat at an outdoor cafe to drink Aperol Spritz and eat dinner and relax. It's the perfect people watching spot. Try a game when you see a tour guide holding up their flag - "Where do you think the group is from?".

Downstairs Le China

Once finished, we caught a view of the glimmering Eiffel Tower on our way back down the steps. We jumped on the subway and got off at Bastille to keep the night going at Le China. This lounge is dim inside with red lights and a sexy vibe. People are well dressed here and the cocktails are immaculate. Upstairs is more relaxed midcentury cocktail piano while downstairs gets a bit more lively. We also nibbled on an order of the delicious chicken spring rolls and could not stop ourselves from ordering another.  

If you're looking for a way to see Paris, the people living there and the people visiting there, this is the way to do it. No museums required.