Activities & Adventure 6 MINS READ

The Best Things To Do For Christmas In Paris

The Best Things To Do For Christmas In Paris

Activities & Adventure 6 MINS READ
Christmas in Paris

Christmas in Paris is an unmissable time to feel joy and good cheer everywhere. Paris celebrates Christmas with a sense of wonder, with millions of lights adorning iconic landmarks like the Champs-Elysées, the Grand Magasins, the Hôtel de Ville, and the Eiffel Tower.

Noël in Paris is a festive season with colorful displays, patisserie shelves filled with seasonal delights, and special holiday menus created by restaurants. Chocolate shops and Christmas markets enchant visitors with mulled wine, roasted chestnuts, and gingerbread. So, if you’re thinking about taking a holiday to Paris or are just planning a trip there for Christmas, keep reading as we’ve put together a list of the most festive ways to celebrate Christmas in Paris.

Christmas In Paris – 5 Popular Things To Do

Admire the twinkling Parisian Christmas lights

Admire Paris’ Christmas Lights
🌟🎄🌟 Best spots to catch the lights✦ Champs-Elysées | Find on map
✦ Montaigne (8th Arr) | Find on map
✦ Bercy Village | Find on map
✦ Montmartre | Find on map
✦ Place Vendôme | Find on map

Paris, known as the ‘City of Light’, celebrates Christmas with its festive light shows, marking the start of the holiday season. Although most parts of Paris are decorated for the holidays, the Champs Elysées boasts the most extravagant decorations. On 400 trees along the Champs Elysées, more than a million bulbs are hung.

One of the best things to do in Paris is to take a stroll among the luxurious stores and chic restaurants that line the boulevard. Begin from the Place de la Concorde and move toward the distant, illuminated Arc de Triumph. Additionally, don’t forget about the lights in Montmartre and on Avenue Montaigne. Also, there are some amazing decorations at Bercy Village.

Unsure about where to begin? See them all by hopping aboard an open-air tour on the Toot Bus!

Visit bustling Parisian Christmas markets

Visit the Paris Christmas Markets
🎄🎁 Best Christmas markets in Paris✦ La Magie de Noël at Tuileries Garden
✦ Notre Dame Christmas Market
✦ Le Village de Noël at Les Halles
✦ Village de Noël at the Eiffel Tower
✦ Montmartre Christmas Market

Paris is filled with Christmas markets that open in November and sell a wide range of gifts, local foods, and crafts. Every market offers a unique atmosphere, a variety of activities, and delicious seasonal foods and drinks.

One of the largest Christmas markets is at La Défense, spanning 10,000 square meters with more than 300 stalls. The most lovely is the Marché de Noël Notre Dame, which is located in the charming Square Viviana near the Latin Quarter. In other places, the ‘Magic of Christmas’ is found at the Jardin des Tuileries market, an essential part of the Parisian calendar.

So copy the Parisians – enjoy mulled wine, roasted chestnuts, sausages, and cheese while exploring markets and shopping for Christmas, a tradition dating back to the Middle Ages.

“Great Jardin des Tuileries market with a good mixture of foods, drinks, and crafts,” says Mary, an enthusiastic tourist. “If you decide to bring the children, there are lots of rides and other entertainment alternatives.”

Feast your eyes on festive Christmas window displays

Do Some Window Shopping
Photo credit: Trip savvy
🪟✨ Best Christmas window displays✦ Printemps Haussmann | Find on map
✦ La Samaritaine | Find on map
✦ Le Bon Marché | Find on map
✦ Galeries Lafayette | Find on map
✦ BHV Marais | Find on map

Paris’s exquisite window displays capture much of the spirit of Christmas in the city, from festive pastry shelves to the most imaginative and extravagant nativity sceneries and shows.

Windows are often on show through the end of the year, with the reveal happening in early November. The displays at Galeries Lafayette Haussmann particularly have captivated visitors every year since 1912. Further, many other shops have beautiful holiday window decorations that are well worth checking out.

The grand Printemps Haussmann and Le Bon Marché, one of the world’s earliest department shops, are favorites. Le BHV is another fantastic show in the trendy Le Marais area.

Kylie, a regular visitor, advises “Galeries Lafayette Haussmann is one of my favorite spots to go. You have a lot of options for what you desire. And I highly recommend this shop to people who enjoy purchasing unique, luxurious clothing and perfume. Those with loyalty memberships in this place can take advantage of many deals and discounts.”

Go ice skating on dreamy rinks

Go Ice Skating
⛸️❄️ Dreamiest ice rinks in Paris✦ Grand Palais | Find on map
✦ Hôtel Plaza Athénée | Find on map
✦ Hôtel du Palais Royal | Find on map
✦ Parc Astérix | Find on map
✦ Eiffel Tower Ice Rink | Find on map

Ice skating and typical Christmas markets go hand in hand in Paris. The Jardin des Tuileries, Champs Elysée, and Trocadéro are a few of the most festive markets that offer access to spectacular ice rinks.

The Hôtel de Ville and the Eiffel Tower, which has a small rink on the first level, are two of the city’s most famous locations for ice rinks. A lot of people also visit the rink located beneath the Grand Palais’ glass dome.

Catch a Christmas concert

Listen To A Christmas Concert
💃🎻 Best venues for Christmas shows✦ Saint-Eustache Church | Find on map
✦ Sainte‐Chapelle | Find on map
✦ Saint-Germain-des-Prés | Find on map
✦ Palais Garnier | Find on map
✦ Église Saint-Sulpice | Find on map

Attending a performance at a magnificent historic venue in Paris is the best way to celebrate the holiday season. Enjoy the beauty of classical odes by Bach, Beethoven, Purcell, Vivaldi, and Chopin in stunning venues like Sainte-Chapelle, Palais Garnier, and Église Saint-Sulpice.

Sainte-Chapelle, which hosts daily concerts from December 22–31 (apart from Christmas Day) is one of the most spectacular. The walls of this Gothic chapel are covered with 16 enormous stained glass windows that take up more than 600 square meters. It’s amazing when the musicians are playing and the light streams through the windows, making them feel otherworldly.

Christmas In Paris – The Weather

Christmas in Paris Weather

Temperatures in Paris are usually between 2°C (36°F) and 7°C (45°F), however, things might get chilly around the end of December. Winter arrives in December, with milder but still cold temperatures throughout the first few weeks of the month.

December in Paris can be cloudy, with an average of 15 days of rain (although most of it is light). Of course, snowfall is a possibility throughout the Christmas season.

Seeing Paris during its snowy season captures the city’s ultimate beauty. Also, bear in mind, that wearing layers of clothing—such as a coat, scarf, and gloves is recommended to stay warm.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it worth celebrating Christmas in Paris?

Paris offers a magical Christmas experience, catering to romantic retreats, festive family extravaganzas, and raucous celebrations with friends. The City of Light treats Christmas with flair and style, embodying the spirit of France.

How is Christmas in Paris different?

  • Focus on Christmas Eve: Christmas Eve is a bigger celebration than Christmas Day in Paris. Many families attend church services and enjoy a special Christmas Eve dinner.
  • Christmas Markets: Paris comes alive with charming Christmas markets selling festive food, drinks, decorations, and crafts.
  • Fewer Decorations on Christmas Day: Shops and restaurants might be closed on Christmas Day, and decorations might be slightly less prominent.

What are some popular things to do for Christmas in Paris?

  • Visit the Christmas markets.
  • See the Champs-Élysées decorated with lights.
  • Go ice skating at an outdoor rink.
  • Attend a Christmas Eve church service.
  • Enjoy a special Christmas Eve dinner at a restaurant.
  • Take a boat cruise on the Seine to see the city lit up.
  • Spend Christmas Day at a museum or attraction (many are open).

Will things be closed on Christmas day?

Many shops and restaurants will be closed on Christmas Day. Museums and major attractions might have shorter hours or be closed. It’s best to check opening times in advance.

What should I wear for Christmas in Paris?

Paris in December can be cold and wet. Pack warm clothes, comfortable shoes for walking, and an umbrella.

Will spending Christmas in Paris be expensive?

Even though Paris is a costly city, you can still go there on a limited budget. You may enjoy a trip to Paris without going over budget if you take advantage of the many artistic, cultural, and outdoor activities available.

How many days in Paris is enough?

It’s possible to see both well-known attractions and hidden gems in Paris in 4 days.

Ritesh Raj

COO at CuddlyNest

Editorial Policy

Last update: 11 June 2024

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