Did you know that Paris can actually be an amazing place to visit by yourself? It’s not just a city for romance (though you may find it here!). In fact, it may actually be better to opt for a solo trip to Paris and escape the inevitable pressures of a perfect romantic getaway.
Paris, like any big city, can be intimidating because of the endless array of choices. Sometimes it may seem impossible to make an itinerary and stick to it! To start, pick what interests you the most, then make a list of the things you enjoy doing and arrange your trip accordingly. Don’t subject yourself to hours at the Louvre if art doesn’t strike your fancy (or just because you feel that you should). It’s okay!
There are countless things to do by yourself here. Not many of us get the opportunity to travel solo, so take advantage of it!
To help you out, here are some travel tips for your solo trip to Paris.
How to Become an Honorary Parisian
Paris is one of the best cities with which to develop a personal relationship. You have to get down and dirty. Become a local. It will completely change your perspective.
It’s the difference between a stiff dinner date and a whirlwind romance. Solo travel in Paris lets you get up close and personal with this city.
If you go local, you will remember it not through the filter of your Instagram account, but on a personal level. Like your best friend’s house, or your college town. It will bring back all those fuzzy feelings you felt, even years later.
The fact is, solo travel in Paris doesn’t mean you’re alone all the time! Find your inner Julia Child and take a cooking class, or go behind the scenes at a museum. You’ll make friends everywhere you look.
You’re Going to Want to Know the Best Museums in Paris
What would visiting Paris be without a museum? You practically couldn’t show your face back home. There are the obvious choices, like the Louvre, the Musee d’Orsay, or Centre Pompidou. There are also many other amazing museums.
In fact, there are over 78 museums in the city of Paris.
You can be picky and choose to visit only the ones that actually interest you. There’s Musee du Quai Branly, for example. This amazing building is worth visiting even if you’re on a budget and can only look at the outside. It is masterfully composed of one of the most breath-taking vertical gardens on earth. Inside, there is a unique collection of ethnic art from all over the world, including contemporary indigenous art.
Musee des Arts et Metiers is one of the oldest science museums in the world, if not the oldest. Get your geek on and explore this wonderland of old scientific devices, models, and things that were touched by some of history’s most influential scientists.
If you’re in the mood for something more out of the ordinary or are looking for some seriously crazy Instagram opportunities to prove that solo travel to Paris is simply magnifique, there is also the Museum of Carnival Arts. Here, you can see hand made carousel horses, whole carousels and interiors. You can even take a few rides!
There’s also a Sewer Museum where you can explore the famous sewers of Paris and the rather gruesome museum of Medical Oddities, and a Police Museum with its strange and fascinating collection of crime souvenirs.
Long Thoughtful Strolls Are Oh, So Parisian
So bring your walking shoes. And make sure they’re comfortable. This is what no one tells you when you wonder how French people can be in such great shape and eat all that butter. Paris is an incredible walking city. You end up walking a LOT, even if you use the metro.
Besides, we recommend you not use the metro as much as you’re tempted to. Why hide underground? There are companies that charge for walking tours, and if you plan ahead you can make one up yourself.
Walking is the best place to start when you want to get a feel for any city, and in Paris, it’s very easy to stroll through the very heart of everything. Rue Rivoli and the Louvre, Tuileries gardens, and all the surrounding areas can be encompassed in just one walk.
Plan on stopping and sitting at one of the cafes just to watch the daily city life play itself out in front of you. Solo travel in Paris can’t happen without some serious people watching. Get lost in your thoughts and read a book. Or take out a sketchbook and remember how to draw. The best part of taking a trip alone is getting to know yourself again.
If you’re here in the springtime, make sure you take a slow walk through Luxembourg Gardens and see the fresh foliage and flowers. This is where you will fall in love with Paris.
One last tip, though. Make sure you’re settled in before you start walking. A stroll from the CDG airport is far from a good idea. Just stick with Paris airport transfers instead ?
Top Tip For Solo Travel in Paris: Go Grocery Shopping
You’re going to be doing some cooking by yourself if you’re staying at a hostel or a rented apartment. This is a perfect opportunity to feel like a local, and shop like a local. Go where all famous chefs start: the market.
Experiencing a French market is an absolute must not only for hardcore foodies but for all people who eat. If you don’t eat, feel free to cross this off your list.
Cooking can take on a different dimension of solo travel to Paris. Markets like Marche d’Aligre, Marche Dejean, or Le Marche Sait-Germain will overwhelm you with beautiful local produce, seafood, baked goods, and trinkets.
If this strikes your fancy you can easily spend most of your time in Paris just going to a different outdoor market every day. This well won’t run dry, even if you’re in Paris for weeks. It’s also a very affordable way to eat here, as restaurants tend to be pricy.
At the end of the day, solo travel in Paris is always a good idea. There’s nothing to fear—the city is wide open and it’s just waiting for you. I hope you’ll take advantage of everything this city has to offer!