What to do in Paris in March and April 2021

Springtime returns to Paris in March and April, bringing a wealth of events with it.

Nota Bene - Covid

Springtime returns to Paris in March and April, bringing a wealth of events with it. There will be new exhibitions, activities for children and large-scale popular events. Here is our list of not-to-miss events!

2021 – Napoleon year in Paris

Affiche L'exposition Napoléon, Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris

There will be special events to celebrate Napoleon throughout the year, particularly from March to April 2021. From 31 March 2021 to 30 January 2022 the Musée de l’Armée - Hôtel National des Invalides, presents the exhibition Napoléon n’est plus [‘Napoleon is no more’], which retraces the different themes linked to the death of the emperor. Then, from 7 May 2021, a different perspective is offered to visitors through the exhibition Napoleon? Encore!As seen by contemporary artists.

In the north of Paris, the focus is also on the emperor in the exhibition ‘Napoleon’, which runs from 14 April to 19 September at the Grande Halle de la Villette. An immersive layout highlights more than 150 original pieces emblematic of Napoleon Bonaparte and the Empire style that left its imprint on the decorative arts.

More information and events for the 2021 Napoleon season.

2021 – The 150th anniversary of the Paris Commune

In 2021, the capital is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Paris Commune, an unprecedented period of insurrection by the people of Paris. This striking event in the history of the capital unfolded over a little more than 2 months, from 18 March to 28 May 1871, in the wake of the Franco-Prussian war. To commemorate this event, many arrondissement town halls and collectives are presenting free outdoor exhibitions, video content, guided tours or shows to raise awareness about this key period in the history of Paris.

More information on the 150th anniversary of the Paris Commune

SPORTING EVENTS IN PARIS IN MARCH - APRIL 2021

Equestrian or motor sports, rugby, martial arts, fitness …

Les dimanches au galop 2017 - Course de poneys, Paris

In spring, the Dimanches au Galop event, which introduces youngsters to the world of horse racing, is held at the Auteuil and Paris Longchamp racecourses on several Sundays over a period of nearly two months (from 25 April to 30 May 2021).

A must-see event for rugby fans, the closing match of the VI Nations Tournament: France / Wales (March 20, 2021) takes place at the Stade de France for an ultimate match not to be missed.

For the last 5 years, the E-Prix de Paris, the 100% electric car race over 1.9 km around Invalides, has taken place in April. Mid-March, fitness will be the focus at Porte de Versailles. Talks, equipment, trends ... professionals and amateurs gather at this event. The 2021 editions of these two events have been cancelled. See you in 2022.

EXHIBITIONS IN PARIS IN MARCH - APRIL 2021

In March and April, new exhibitions take over places of art and history in Paris.

En mars et avril, de nouvelles expositions investissent les lieux d’art et d’histoire de Paris.

Two much -awaited new exhibitions get underway at the beginning of March: a Paul Signac retrospective at the Musée Jacquemart-André (from 5 March to 19 July 2021) and women painters at the Musée du Luxembourg (from 3 March to 4 July 2021).

If royal life fascinates you, Rambouillet opens the doors of its castle, a former hunting lodge and a favourite residence of Louis XVI, and takes you into the secrets of La Vie Antique for an exhibition until 19 July 2021.

Finally, don't forget to escape to the Château de Champs-sur-Marne to discover the exhibition D'or et d'Orient by the artist Gabor Ulveczki until 2 May 2021.

Finally, many exhibitions have reinvented themselves in virtual format: take a look at them here

Outdoor exhibitions

The railings around City Hall are playing host to an exhibition by the artist Cabu, and the 17th arrondissement town hall will delight kids and grown-ups with its exhibition on the Fables of La Fontaine in LEGO. Search for the 10 art posters around the city with the exhibition ‘Mika brings color back to the streets of Paris’, or for Geluck’s ‘Cat’ on the Champs Elysées with the event ‘Le Chat Déambule’. Over in the 12th arrondissement, enjoy a stroll around Bercy Village to admire the 30 films posters relating to Louis de Funès. Finally, there are numerous outdoor exhibitions to discover including those on the square in front of the town halls of the 3rd and 11th arrondissements, and on the railings of the Sorbonne … as part of the 150th anniversary of the Commune of Paris.

ARTY EVENTS FROM MARCH - APRIL 2021 IN PARIS

From 1 to 9 March 2021, ready-to-wear Fashion Week makes its big comeback. Top brands like Chanel, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Hermès, and Balmain present their new autumn-winter collections 2021-2022.

From 6 March and until 2  May 2021, the Centquatre opens a new edition of Circulation(s), the Festival of young European photography

The programme includes exhibitions, round table discussions and screenings – and, what’s more, a pop-up photography studio at the weekend, where you can have your portraits taken by professional photographers ! 

FOR CHILDREN IN MARCH - APRIL 2021

Cité des sciences et de l'industrie - Exposition Espions, PAris

In April, there’s plenty to do in Paris with the kids during the school holidays.

Meanwhile, older visitors will enjoy visiting an exhibition titled Espions (Spies). Inspired by the French TV series Bureau des Légendes (The Bureau), the exhibition provides an immersive journey into the daily lives of secret service agents (until summer 2021) at la Cité des Sciences.

This year, Easter Sunday falls on 4th April, and there will be egg hunts for children in many different parts of the French capital. Bring your baskets!

 For more information, see our ‘Easter in Paris’ section

FUNFAIR, FAIRS AND MAJOR EVENTS IN PARIS IN MARCH AND APRIL 2021

Funfair, trade shows and fairs

Foire du Trône, Paris

Springtime is funfair season, and children in Paris look forward in particular to the Foire du Trône, which will be back on the Pelouse de Reuilly. Considered the biggest fair in all of Europe, it has attractions galore, and plenty of surprises in store.

Everyone with a tattoo and others are invited to discover the best artists in the business at the Paris Tattoo Convention at the Grande Halle de La Villette the dates for which have not yet been released.

Every year, the European Artistic Craft Days showcase artists and artisans in Paris and the Ile de France region. After being cancelled in 2020, they are reworking the theme of Materials from 6 to 11 April 2021. Artisans, training organizations, project leaders … All the expertise will be on show at meetings, open days and conferences.

For some savvy shopping, head to the Foire de Paris (from 28 April to 9 May 2021). If the health situation permits, exhibitors and visitors will be at the Paris – Expo Porte de Versailles, Europe’s leading trade show! Discoveries and innovations from the world of the home, craftsmanship and gastronomy are always on the agenda. Not to miss, the Concours Lépine an annual award for the best in innovation.

Festivals in Paris

Cinéma Les Fauvettes, salle de cinéma, Paris © Frederic Berthet

Springtime in Paris is also a time for festivals, with themes ranging from music and art to food ... you choose !

From 31 March to 16 May 2021, the multi-disciplinary festival 100 %, mixing theatredancecircus arts, music and contemporary art, will be back at La Villette.