This 4-day Paris itinerary includes all the must-sees so you can make the most of your time in the city of light. Although you would clearly need many more days to get to know Paris in depth, 4 days will allow you to visit its most famous neighbourhoods and main attractions.
Based on my experience after several trips to Paris, I put together this itinerary that you can follow so you don’t miss out on the most popular attractions in the city. This is a post that took me a long time to write because Paris is a giant city full of monuments, history and places to visit. There is sooo much to see and it is impossible to see it all in 4 days. That is why it is very important to plan your trip in advance and at least have an idea of what you want to visit each day, although you should always leave room for spontaneous plans.
On this post you will find:
This post contains affiliate links. That means, if you click on certain links within this post and make a purchase, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Read more about it here.
How to save money in attractions in Paris
Activities in Paris are quite expensive, so a good option might be to buy an attraction pass that will allow you to save money. Depending on what activities you are interested in doing, one or the other card will suit you. Paris tourist cards are:
- Go City “all-inclusive pass” – With this card you can choose the number of days (2, 3, 4 or 6 days) and it includes access to more than 60 attractions, museums and tours. It is a very convenient option if you plan to visit many paid attractions.More info about the Go City Paris here.
- Go City “explorer pass” – This pass allows you to choose the number of attractions you are going to visit (3, 4, 5 or 7 attractions) and you will have 60 calendar days to use it. It is an option that allows you to explore the city at your own pace and convenient if you plan to visit few paid attractions. More info about the Go City Paris here.
4 days in Paris itinerary
>DAY 1 – Montmartre, Ópera Garnier y Galerías Lafayette
Sacré-Cœur – Mur des je t’aime – Moulin Rouge – Palais Garnier – Galerías Lafayette – Pintemps
Start your first day in Paris by visiting Montmartre, one of the most beautiful neighbourhoods in the city. Montmartre is known for being the area of painters, with its cobbled streets and its picturesque buildings. Here you will find many of those famous places that we saw in hundreds of movies or read about once, such as the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. I recommend that you take the metro directly to the basilica, since afterward you will have to walk a lot and most likely uphill.
- Montmartre free walking tour
If you want to know more about the history of Montmartre, you can take this free walking tour in english in which you will visit the main attractions of the area. More info about the free tour here.
Undoubtedly one of the must-see attractions in Paris. Access to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica is free, but to climb its dome or access the crypt you have to buy a separate ticket. Just below the basilica there is a viewpoint with incredible views of almost all of Paris, don’t miss it!
After seeing the basilica, I recommend that you get lost in the little streets of the most picturesque neighbourhood in Paris. Don’t forget to go through the Place du Tertre, a square with a lot of life at all times. In all the streets that surround this square you will find bars, shops and very picturesque places such as the iconic Maison Rose.
- Mur des je t’aime
Another place of interest in Montmartre that not many people visit is the Mur des je t’aime (I love you wall), a wall made up of 612 tiles on which 311 “I love you” are written in 250 languages! The authors of the mural are Frédéric Baron and Claire Kito.
- Mouling Rouge
Another must-see in Paris is the Moulin Rouge, the most famous cabaret in the world. You can walk through the street where it’s located to take a photo of its iconic façade or even live the experience of attending a show at the Moulin Rouge.
- Palais Garnier
Once you get tired of walking around Montmartre, take the metro to Opera Garnier, one of the most iconic buildings in Paris. The Palais Garnier is one of the most spectacular theaters in the world. In addition to admiring it from the outside, you can visit its inside in one of the tours. Buy your ticket for the Opera Garnier here.
- Lafayette Galeries and Printemps
Even if you don’t like shopping, you can’t miss visiting Galeries Lafayette, which is located right in front of the Opera Garnier. Its central hall is impressive! But the best thing is its terrace, with free access, which offers an incredible view of the Opera and all of Paris.
Another good option is to visit the terrace of the Printemps Haussmann store, located a few meters from Galeries Lafayette. On the top floor they have a restaurant that is ideal for eating or having a drink admiring the views of the city. You can visit them before going to the Opera and eat a good croque madame or monsieur for lunch.
>DAY 2 – Triumphal Arch – Champs Elysees – Eiffel Towe
Triumphal Arch – Champs Elysees – Les Invalides – Eiffel Tower
- Triumphal Arch
I suggest you start your second day in Paris by visiting the Arc de Triomphe. It was built between 1806 and 1836 by order of Napoleon Bonaparte and is one of the most famous monuments in Paris and in the world.
It is impressive just to see it but the best thing for me is the view from its terrace. You can see all of Paris including the Eiffel Tower. Keep in mind that to get there you have to climb almost 300 steps up a spiral staircase.
↣If you want to avoid lines, I recommend you buy the entry ticket in advance. The entrances ticket to the Triumphal Arch is included in Go City.
After visiting the Arc de Triomphe, walk along the Champs Elysees avenue, where the most luxurious shops in Paris are located. It is a really beautiful street. Almost at the end of the avenue, you will be able to see two very important buildings in Paris which are the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais.
- Les Invalides
Keep walking and cross the Seine River over the Alexandre III Bridge to reach Les Invalides, a group of buildings where the tomb of Emperor Napoleon is located. Les Invalides was built as a residence for retired French soldiers and military, and today houses the army museum.
Honestly, I don’t think this is an essentia visit if it’s your first time in Paris, but if you have time to do enter, it is a very interesting museum. If you don’t visit it, I recommend you pass through the door to see the dome of the building. You can book your ticket to visit Les Invalides here.
- Eiffel Tower
From Les Invalides walk to Champ de Mars, a huge garden overlooking the Eiffel Tower. It is the perfect place for a picnic if the Parisian weather allows it.
Finally you will arrive at the undisputed icon of Paris. The Eiffel Tower was designed by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 World’s Fair in Paris and it is one of the most incredible monuments in the world.
There are two ways to access its viewpoint, and according to this the price of the ticket varies: by elevator or by stairs. To go up in the elevator there is usually a long line to buy the tickets at the tower so it is best to buy the tickets in advance. You can buy a ticket to the 2nd floor or a ticket to the 3rd floor of the Eiffel Tower.
One of the best views you can have of the Eiffel Tower is from the Trocadero square located right in front of the tower. End your second day in Paris by admiring the city from the Eiffel Tower or taking this River Seine cruise that leaves right from the pier next to it.
>DAY 3 – Paris museums
Tuileries Garden – Louvre Museum – Musée d’Orsay – Musée de l’Orangerie – Place de la Concorde
Today will focus on visiting some of the best museums in Paris. The route for this day is almost circular, so you can start it where it suits you best depending on the location of your accommodation in Paris. If you choose not to visit museums, you can visit the Tour Montparnasse as an alternative.
- Tuileries Garden
Start the day in the most famous gardens in the city. The Jardin des Tuileries is a beautiful public park, ideal for a walk or a picnic.
After crossing the gardens you will get to the Louvre, the most famous and largest museum in the world. The museum is really huge so if you don’t want to miss any important piece of art, I recommend you take a guided tour in english.
There are always a lot of people visiting the Louvre so it is best to buy your ticket online. Admission to the Louvre is included in Go City.
After visiting the Louvre I recommend that you go visit the gardens of the Royal Palace. They are very close to the museum and its access is free.
- Musée d’Orsay
Cross to the other side of the River Seine to reach the Musée d’Orsay. It is one of the most spectacular museums in Paris, not only for its exhibition of impressionist works but also for its particular building, which is the old Orsay railway station. Admission to the Musée d’Orsay is included in Go City.
- Musée de l’Orangerie
After visiting the Musée d’Orsay, continue walking along the Seine River and cross it again to reach the Musée de l’Orangerie, located at one end of the Tuileries Gardens. This museum is a must for Monet lovers, as it exhibits 8 murals of his unmistakable paintings of water lilies.
It is a small museum so if you are not already tired of this museum-focused day, I recommend you visit it. Otherwise you can simply skip this stop. Admission to the Musée de l’Orangerie is included in Go City.
- Place de la Concorde
End this third day in Paris almost where we started it: at the Place de la Concorde, located at one end of the Jardin des Tulleries. This square is historic as Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette and many others were executed here during the French Revolution.
>DAY 4 – Latin Quarter, Île de la Cité and Le Marais
Latin Quarter – Luxembourg Gardens – Notre Dame – Sainte-Chapelle – Le Marais – Centre Pompidou
- Latin Quarter
For the last of these 4 days in Paris, I suggest you start the day in the Latin Quarter, which in my opinion is one of the most beautiful neighbourhoods in the city. Nearby are the Luxembourg Gardens, characteristic for its palace. The Pantheon of Paris is also located in this neighbourhood, where several well-known French figures such as Victor Hugo, Voltaire, Marie Curie, etc. are buried. Admission to the Pantheon is included in Go City.
- Notre Dame
After walking around the Latin Quarter, cross the Seine River to reach the Ile de la Cité, where the Notre Dame Cathedral is located. After the great fire in 2019, the cathedral is closed to the public until further notice and it is only possible to see it from the outside, but I still think it is a must for any visit to Paris.
Near Notre Dame is Sainte-Chapelle, an impressive Gothic chapel with huge stained glass windows. It really is one of the most beautiful churches I have visited. To avoid queues, it is best to buy the ticket online. Admission to Sainte-Chapelle is also included in Go City.
- Le Marais
Cross the Seine River again to reach the Le Marais. This is my favorite neighbourhood in Paris because it feels very local and authentic. You will find many shops, restaurants, bars, etc. If you have time you can walk to the Place de la Bastille, a historical point for the French Revolution.
- Centre Pompidou
The last visit of this day is Centre Pompidou, a museum of modern and contemporary art. Among the works you can see here are paintings by artists like Picasso, Kandinsky and Matisse, but you will also find photography exhibitions, projections and other type of artistic expressions.
This building is my favorite in Paris! It was designed by Richard Rogers and Renzo Piano and is unique in the world for its innovative character. Undoubtedly, a very different museum from the ones I’ve mentioned earlier in this post. Admission to the Pompidou Center is included in the 4 or 6 day Go City passes. To end your 4-day visit to Paris, I recommend you eat at one of the many places that the Marais district has to offer and then walk along the banks of the Seine River which is beautiful at night.
>EXTRA DAY IN PARIS: Palace of Versailles
If you have an extra day in Paris, you can’t miss visiting the famous Palace of Versailles. Many people skip this visit on their first trip to Paris but I consider it essential to understand the splendor of France at the time of the monarchy. It is very easy to get to Versailles from Paris and it really is a very worthwhile visit.
Click here to book a guided tour to Versailles from Paris
4 days in Paris itinerary map
With this itinerary you already know what to do in Paris in 4 days. This map has the itinerary for each day marked, you can save it on your cell phone and use it during the trip.
Where to stay in Paris
Paris is a very large city with thousands of accommodation options. These are some of the hotels that I recommend:
- Generator Paris: this was the hostel where I stayed in Paris and I strongly recommend it. Generator Hostels is a chain of hostels characterised by its contemporary and young design. They offer both private and shared rooms (with bathroom inside the room which is a plus). Generator Paris has a terrace, a bar and a common space with games and couches to relax. Click here to see photos, availability and prices.
- Ibis Paris Tour Eiffel Cambronne 15eme: I stayed in this hotel in 2021 and I think it is an excellent option if you want to wake up looking at the Eiffel Tower at a very low price compared to other hotels. The rooms are small but overall the hotel is good. Click here to see photos, availability and prices.
- Moxy Paris Bastille: Moxy is a mid-range hotel chain characterised by its modern and youthful environments. It is located south of the district very close to Le Marais. Click here to see photos, availability and prices.
For a more depth guide read: Where to stay in Paris: best areas and hotels
Other useful posts:
- Where to stay in Paris: best areas and hotels
- Visiting Villa Savoye from Paris
- 5 best museums in Paris
- Tips for planning your first trip to Europe