What to do in Paris in January

In January, Paris puts style in the spotlight during Fashion Week. it buzzes with events.

Grands événements - janvier - soldes © Amélie Dupont

Paris hosts Fashion Week in January, with lots of fabulous events for style aficionados to enjoy. The city is a great shopping destination at any time of year, January in particular because it marks the start of the winter sales. Get ready to shop until you drop!

And there’s more! With a range of exhibitions, shows and sporting events on the programme, Paris can be enjoyed to the full even in the middle of winter. Make the most of the last few weeks of ‘Japonismes 2018’ to admire Japanese art – and do try to see 2018’s top exhibitions before they close! Those dark, short January days don’t slow down the pace in Paris: there’s always plenty to see and do.

Fashion Week

In January each year, Paris is top dog on the catwalk during Fashion Week. On this occasion, the biggest names in fashion, celebrities and journalists flock to Paris to discover the new trends in ready-to-wear for men (from 15 to 20 January) and haute couture (from 21 to 24 January).

Though the catwalk shows are trade-only events, style spills over into Paris streets – especially around major venues like the Grand Palais, the Palais Brongniart and the Palais de Tokyo, where you can easily spot famous faces including models and fashion designers. Keep an eye out!

Fashion is of course related to shopping. And this is one area where Paris comes into its own. The city is a genuine shopping mecca. If you’re looking to refresh your wardrobe, pick up a must-have accessory or purchase the It-bag of the moment, there’s no better time for it. January, as all Paris fashionistas know, offers rich pickings with the start of the much-awaited winter sales on Wednesday the 9th: four whole weeks of bargains, with reductions of up to 70%.

 More info on winter sales

Japonismes 2018: Last few weeks

Throne - Kohei Nawa © Kohei NAWA | SANDWICH Inc.

Until 27 February 2019, France is putting the spotlight on Japanese culture. Several exhibitions have been organized to celebrate the 160th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

From 17 October 2018 to 14 January 2019, the Guimet Museum of Asian Arts is casting an eye on Japan’s modern history with an exhibition devoted to the Meiji period in the late 19th century when the country entered the modern era.

Art lovers have until 27 January to learn about the Rinpa school of painting at the Musée Cernuschi: an opportunity to admire the famous Wind God and Thunder God screens, designated a National Treasure in Japan. This is the first time they are being shown in Europe. Some of the finest pieces in the collections of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs are on display until 3 March as part of an exhibition titled ‘Japon–Japonismes’, which examines how the Japanese and the French aesthetic have influenced each other in a variety of fields, from graphic art to fashion.

Meanwhile, from 16 January to 16 March 2019 the Maison de la culture du Japon in Paris is presenting the first major retrospective of the work of Tsuguharu Foujita, who symbolizes the cultural harmony between the two countries, and whose art beautifully meshes French and Japanese styles.

See also...

Exhibitions: Last chance to see

Affiche Mucha - Musée du Luxembourg 2018 © Musée du Luxembourg

Hungry for culture? Winter is the ideal time to catch up with exhibitions while staying out of the cold. And many of the exhibitions on the programme in 2018 are well worth seeing.

Klimt: Into the Heart of the Viennese Secession at the Atelier des Lumières (until 6 January)

Zao Wou-Ki: Space is Silence at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (until 6 January)

Picasso. Blue and Rose at the Musée d’Orsay (until 6 January)

Neanderthal at the Musée de l’Homme (until 7 January)

Picasso. Masterpieces at the Musée National Picasso (until 13 January)

Egon Schiele-Jean-Michel Basquiat at the Louis Vuitton Foundation (until 14 January)

Alberto Giacometti at the Musée Maillol (until 20 January)

Magnificent Venice! Venice: Europe and the Arts in the 18th century at the Grand Palais (until 21 January)

Alphonse Mucha at the Musée du Luxembourg (until 27 January)

Caravaggio’s Roman period. His friends and enemies at the Musée Jacquemart-André (until 28 January)

Paintings from Afar at the Musée du Quai Branly-Jacques Chirac (until 3 February)

Miró. Retrospective at the Grand Palais (until 4 February)

Shows and concerts

femme sur une chaise de cabaret

On stage, there is something for everyone: see A Bowie Celebration (16 January) and The Dandy Warhols (25 January) at Olympia. On 18 and 19 January La Seine Musicale will be hosting a concert by Ibrahim Maalouf, while the Philharmonie de Paris has a memorable cinema/concert event lined up on 5 January - Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.

If you love musicals, don’t miss Chicago at the Théâtre Mogador (in French with English surtitles, on until 30 June) and the classic Notre-Dame de Paris (‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’, staged in French only, from 2 to 6 January) at the Palais des Congrès de Paris.

The traditional circus is also in the spotlight in 2019 and celebrates its 251th anniversary under the spotlights of the Pinder circus big top and the electrifying performance of the Stars of Beijing’s Circus at the Cirque Phénix in the Bois des Vincennes until 20 January..


Affiche du Grand Prix d'Amérique, Paris © DR

Good news if you’re an ice hockey fan. French team Français Volants will be gearing up for the French ice hockey championship by playing second division fixtures at the AccorHotels Arena on 5 and 19 January.

And the horse racing calendar will get off to a superb start at the end of January at the Paris Vincennes racecourse, with the Prix d’Amérique Opodo, the number one trotting race, on 27 January.


This month the focus is on fashion, and cars too will be setting out in all their finery for the Traversée de Paris hivernale on 13 January: a superb parade of vintagecars through the streets of the capital.

Paris Fashion Week

Festival | Trade fair, trade show, exhibition
from 14 January 2020 to 19 January 2020
Tout Paris - Paris, Paris

Paris, more than ever the fashion capital!

Grand Prix d'Amérique

from 27 January 2020 to 27 January 2020
Vincennes Hippodrome de Paris - 2 route de la Ferme, Paris

The Prix d'Amérique: the best-known trotting race in the world.

Cirque Pinder

Show - circus
Novembre 2019 - January 2020
Pelouse de Reuilly - Bois de Vincennes, Paris

The legendary Cirque Pinder is back with an all-new circus show

La Traversée de Paris (Drive through Paris)

from 21 July 2019 to 21 July 2019
Paris et Ile-de-France - Paris et Île-de-France, Paris

740 vehicles of all makes and from all periods drive through the streets of the capital.

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