Things to do in Paris in Winter
There are a lot of things to do in Paris in Winter. In fact, from end of October to the beginning of May, we consider that it’s winter, therefore, there are always numerous things to do in Paris, no matter what the weather is like (read more about the weather in winter). However, is it more important to know the best addresses and to plan a precise program, so you don’t end up wandering under the rain all day. Here are some examples that will make you fall in love with grey and cold Paris! Read on to find out the best things to do in Paris in Winter!
Drink a Hot chocolate to warm your heart and soul
For many people, drinking a hot chocolate is one of the most comforting activities to do in winter in Paris. Here are some addresses where you can try out the best hot chocolates in Paris:
- Angelina, 226 rue de Rivoli. The drink is so creamy and dense that a spoon could stand in it!
- Café de Flore, 172 Boulevard Saint Germain. The taste is intense, and you have a little pitcher full of Chantilly. Plus, the café is located in such a charming Paris neighborhood! It is a great place to drink a hot chocolate while people-watching!
- Charles Chocolatier, 15 rue Montorgueil. You cannot savor it inside, because there’s no room. But drinking a delicious hot chocolate and warming your hands at the same time, is great too!
If you prefer tea, find the best tea salons in this article.
Go skating in Paris Winter ice rinks
The city of Paris installs rinks every winter for Parisians’ leisure. These are the main places:
- Hôtel de Ville. The access is free and you have to pay 5 Euros to rent skates. However, you should know that the place is very crowded during the weekends.
- Trocadéro. You pay 5 Euros to rent skates. Besides, you a have a gorgeous view on the city and the Eiffel Tower!
- Grand Palais. The price is 12 Euros to access the rink and rent skates. This is much more than the others, but this rink is my favorite. In fact, you can try it out at night from 8 pm to 2 am on some days. A light show and a DJ make this moment even more joyful!
Attend Parisian shows and exhibitions
Winter in Paris is also a good moment to find out good theater plays and exhibitions. Going to exhibitions is a must if you want to live the “Parisian Experience” to the fullest. Paris is one of the richest cities in terms of culture, knowledge and activities, mostly thanks to the incredible amount of exhibitions organized every year. And you are in luck, because this winter it happens that there are some pretty cool exhibitions for you to attend to.
For instance, starting on October, 24th of 2017 until February, 25th of 2018, you can attend “Les visiteurs de Versailles (1682-1789)” at Versailles Castle. If your are interested in visiting Versailles and its castle with a guide, book a tour here. The exhibition allows us to discover how it was back then, who were the Versailles visitors, their outfits, the decorations, their customs. I really think it’s a great exhibition! It gives a new perspective on Versailles (plan your trip to Versailles with this article). By attending this exhibition at the Versailles castle, I highly recommend you to visit the town at the same time, which is very cute and peaceful!
Another exhibition I think is worth the visit is the “Picasso 1932. Année érotique” exhibition that starts on October, 10th of 2017 and ends on February, 11th of 2018. It happens at the Picasso Museum in Paris (learn more about our Picasso Art Tour in Le Marais). The exhibition simply presents Picasso’s whole year of 1932. You will get the chance to see all his 1932 major works and find out how important this year was for his carrer.
Join the locals on Christmas markets
In general, the Christmas markets are crowded and a bit commercial, but the atmosphere is pretty nice (read more about the things to do for Christmas in Paris)! You can enjoy hot wine, crepes, waffles and local cuisine. Here are the main addresses:
- Champs Elysées. Decorations embellish the most beautiful avenue in the world, making the road very picturesque!
- La Défense. I prefer this one, despite of La Défense square’s cold wind. It is the biggest one in Paris, that is why it is very crowded, but the atmosphere is totally worth it!
- Tour Eiffel. There is also a Christmas market in front of the Eiffel Tower! It is worth it, by the simple fact of being located right beside one of Paris greatest landmarks!
Have a look at the decorations in religious buildings
Every Christmas means religious buildings celebrating the events. In almost every church of Paris in Winter, you will be able to admire scenes of Nativity of Jesus. Here are my favorite artworks…
- La Madeleine. Their creations are usually more modern than usual. If you are too conservative, you might not like it… But it really offers an interesting point of view and a surprising and outstanding experience.
- Notre Dame. Every year, Notre Dame‘s creations are more lively and attractive than the previous year. So, let’s go check how it looks like this time!
Enjoy Grands magasins’ windows
For Christmas and New Year, the famous “Grands Magasins” (big stores such as Galeries Lafayette or Printemps) fill their windows not with clothes, but artworks and gorgeous light worlds. You and your children will be amazed by this free and poetic show (more activities to do with children). Paris truly is the City of Light!
Ferris Wheel on Place de la Concorde
There’s really no season to enjoy a panoramic view of the city, but it can be stunning to do it in winter in Paris, especially in the famous Ferris wheel on Place de la Concorde. Sometimes, it happens to snow in Paris during Winter, making the city look even more beautiful! Moreover, this is also a good way to admire light decorations on the Champs Elysées and all around Paris.
You now know some of the things to do in Paris in Winter! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this article and that it has been useful to you! There are plenty more stuff to do in Paris. From visiting its landmarks to enjoying the same places locals go to, I’m sure you will spend the best winter of your life in Paris! If you like walking in Paris streets, you can book a free (tip only) walking tour in the place of your choice. See you soon in Paris!