Paris is the perfect summer destination, with a huge range of attractions catering for all tastes and ages.
What’s more, the capital has an array of good deals in store for visitors in these exceptional times. Museums, walking tour organizers and show venues have lined up some pleasant surprises to help you make the most of your stay in the City of Lights.
Discover our selection of special offers for a summer 2020 stay in Paris for couples, families and friends.
Paris Tourist Office: Free guided tours
For this unusual summer, the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau has tied up with France’s national federation of licensed guide lecturers to offer visitors a number of free guided tours. Uncover the secrets of districts like the Marais, Bercy, the Butte aux Cailles and Montmartre in the course of some entertaining walks, including puzzles to solve.
Fontainebleau : Forest walk with a nature guide
Enjoy a breath of fresh air only a short distance from Paris. Take a guided walk through the Fontainebleau forest in the company of a guide on any Saturday from 2pm onwards and explore the rich biodiversity of this protected natural place. This is a chance to reconnect with nature within a unique landscape.
Greets Paris : Private tour and encounter with a Paris Opera dancer
Step inside the Opéra Garnier in the company of a guide lecturer, who will decode the stunning architecture of this venue built during the reign of Napoleon III and reveal its many secrets. You can admire the ceiling painted by Marc Chagall, the 8-ton chandelier, the stage machinery and other fascinating details at your leisure. A Paris Opera ballet dancer joins you at the end of this Greets Paris tour to provide an insider’s view of the opera and answer your questions.
Holland Bikes Guided bicycle tours
Paris is full of unusual places and amazing cultural gems, and a cycle ride is a great way to see the multiple facets of the city. A guided cycling tour – on a classic, electric or cargo bike, with children’s bikes available too – is an outing the whole family will enjoy, especially since your Holland Bikes guide will tell you many amusing anecdotes on a picturesque route through the City of Lights.
Domaine de Chantilly : Sports lessons in the castle grounds
The Domaine de Chantilly has tied up with personal training firm Ton Coach Sportif to offer yoga, Nordic walking and walking meditation classes and a fitness boot camp in the Chateau’s parkland from 20 June to 20 September 2020. A must-try.
Domaine de Chantilly : Guided tour of the gardens and the Raphael exhibition
From 1 July to 30 August, French-speaking visitors will be able to take a guided tour of the Chantilly estate’s historic gardens (4pm daily, from Monday to Friday). You’ll discover the secrets of these magnificent gardens in the course of the 1-hr30 tour. For art lovers, there are guided tours of the stunning exhibition ‘Raphael at Chantilly: The Master and his Pupils’ every Saturday and Sunday at 3pm and 4pm.
Paris Visites : Guided tours of Paris
Rediscover Paris this summer on a private guided tour with Paris Visites. On the day and time of your choosing, set off to explore your preferred itinerary: unusual Montmartre, the heart of Paris from the Louvre to Notre Dame Cathedral, or the covered passages. This 2-hour tour provides historical details and anecdotes and an opportunity to feast your eyes on Paris sights. Tours for groups of up to 9 people.
Fontainebleau forest on an electric scooter
An unusual way to explore the Fontainebleau forest is to rent an off-road electric (hence silent) scooter. Head out of Paris along the Scandibérique (the French section of the Eurovelo3 long-distance cycling route). The route follows the Seine through peaceful countryside all the way to the forest, where you will find some stunning trails in a beautiful woodland setting.
Musée du Louvre : Quick tours
This summer, the Louvre is hosting a series of ‘quick tours’ from 8 July to 20 September. These 20-minute tours with a guide are free. Each tour provides insights about a specific theme: Ancient Egypt, the Louvre’s beginnings, Napoleon, the leading Italian masters, French art, Islam, etc. No need to book your visit in advance. Tours take place daily, subject to availability, from 10am to 11.30am and from 2pm to 3.30pm.
Run Run Tour : Explore Paris while running
Here’s something different: sightseeing while running. With Run Run Tour, you’ll run through Paris monuments, museums and lesser-known sights in the company of a guide. Covering a distance of 5 to 7km, the tour is a great way to see the top sights in Paris in the cool of the evening. These are not timed runs; everyone runs at their own pace, so you can relax and enjoy discovering the City of Lights.
Open Tour : Paris sights
For some morning sightseeing, Open Tour have a 10.30am tour in an all-electric bus with an experienced local guide. The 2-hour tour is packed with surprise discoveries, little-known facts and wonders to be admired around every corner.
Musée Delacroix : Free admission until September 30, 2020
Liberty Leading the People is a painting of great historical significance in France. How much do you know about Eugène Delacroix, the man who painted it? The Musée Eugène Delacroix, housed within the artist’s own home, is the place to learn about his life and works. Book your time slot online and enjoy a free visit to admire his paintings. The museum is a peaceful haven in the heart of the 6th arrondissement, and the garden is a pleasant place to sit and relax after your visit.
Sunset Sunside : Piano Nights
The piano takes pride of place at the Sunset Sunside this summer, with performances by some of the most talented current-day pianists. From 1 July to 23 August, you can hear Macha Gharibian, Jacky Terrasson, Paul Lay, Alain Jean-Marie, Giovanni Mirabassi, Laurent De Wilde, Leila Olivesi, Yonathan Avishai, Pierre de Bethmann, Baptiste Trotignon and many others play some fantastic solos.
Fontainebleau : American Conservatory students given carte blanche
Students enrolled in the summer session of the American Conservatory branch of the Fontainebleau Schools (also known as Ecoles d’art américaines) are given carte blanche every weekend in July to enchant visitors to the Jardin anglais (English Garden) of the Château de Fontainebleau. Performing under the direction of the cellist Diana Ligeti, the session’s young musicians from the United States attending the summer programme give exceptionally high-quality concerts.
Fontainebleau : Climbing for beginners
Whether you’re just starting out as a climber or looking to improve, you will enjoy a climbing session on the world-famous sandstone boulders of the magnificent Fontainebleau forest. Every Sunday from 10am to 1pm, a qualified instructor provides tips on tackling the most beautiful climbing site in the Île-de-France region.
VirtualTime : 25% off on a virtual reality session
Try an immersive experience this summer. VirtualTime is offering a 25% discount on virtual reality tours for the entire duration of the summer sales using the code ETE20VR. Sessions last an hour or longer. From 15 July to 11 August 2020.
Monnaie de Paris : Free admission
This summer only, the Monnaie de Paris (Paris Mint) is offering visitors free admission every Sunday. To get the most out of your visit, try the guided tour, see demonstrations of the art of engraving (July/August) and take a creative workshop (July). A treat for people of all ages!
Fondation Royaumont : A shot of culture this summer
Every Sunday this summer, at 3.30pm, the Abbaye Royale de Royaumont is hosting a 45-minute cultural event geared to appeal to children and adults alike, be it a jazz or opera concert, a dance performance or a fable reading sessions. The performances are included in the price of the entrance ticket.
Domaine de Chantilly : Chantilly cream workshops
Something for future foodies! From 20 June to 26 August 2020, learn how to make the perfect Chantilly cream the traditional way – by hand – from the experts: the confrérie des chevaliers fouetteurs (the knights of whipped cream brotherhood) at the Château de Chantilly. By the end of these one-hour workshops – a great outing with the family or with friends – your Chantilly will be as delicious as any pastry chef’s. All the equipment is provided, and you’ll be given a certificate at the end.
Palais de la Découverte : Purchase one ticket and get one visit free
Summer is a time for romance, so what could be more appropriate than the De l’amour exhibition – extended to 27 September – at the Palais de la Découverte. The museum has a special offer to celebrate reopening: buy one ticket and get another one free. So you can return for a second – free – visit to the museum until 15 October 2020.
Cheese Geeks : Cheese and wine tastings
Cheese Geeks is a paradise for cheese lovers. Learn the subtleties of cheese in a fun and friendly atmosphere during their 2-hour interactive workshops, including exercises using all your senses, to really taste a selection of 6 farmhouse cheeses, paired with 3 organic wines. And, of course, lots of cheesy anecdotes!
Ferrandi cookery class x Un air du Sud
As of 7 July, Galeries Lafayette Paris Haussmann has placed the focus on Provençal cooking. Awaken your taste buds with a cookery class led by a famous chef. Learn to make delicious Mediterranean recipes such the ‘Pissaladière’ savoury tart, ‘petits farcis niçois’ (Niçoise-style stuffed vegetables) and the mouthwatering Tarte Tropézienne, made out of buttery brioche. The chef shares his tips and techniques in this series of classes.
Saint Clair : Summer picnic hampers
Summer means picnics, and Saint Clair puts together 2 delicious hampers to share: one filled with savoury items to accompany alfresco drinks for 8-12 people, and the other with a complete menu including dessert for 10-12 people. A selection of refreshing drinks is an optional add-on to your summer picnic basket. Delivery throughout Paris, La Défense and the inner suburbs.