Top Paris Attractions – Louvre Museum

The Eiffel Tower

Paris Attractions in the 1st Arrondissement

Top Paris attractions – The 1st arrondissement is one of the oldest districts and famous area of Paris.

The Île de la Cité had been the heart of the city of Lutetia, conquered by the Romans in 52 BC, while some parts on the right bank including Les Halles date back to the early Middle Ages.

Paris Attractions - Ile de la Cite in the Seine River
Ile de la Cite in the Seine River

The 1st arrondissement is located mainly on the right bank of the Seine River, but also includes the west end of the Île de la Cité, the island in the Seine River.

One of the great Paris attractions in the 1st Arrondissement is Place du Chatelet.

This is a famous theatre district with many delightful restaurants and bistrots.

Paris Attractions - Place du Chatelet
Place du Chatelet and the Theatre District

Place du Chatelet is also a main hub for the Paris Metro as many lines cross here.

Place du Chatelet is close to many great attractions including La Conciergerie, the shopping district on Rue de Rivoli and the Les Halles shopping mall.

The Louvre Museum

Adjoining the Louvre and one of the most relaxing Paris attractions in the 1st arrondissement is the Tuileries Gardens.

This is the least populated of the city’s arrondissements and one of the smallest by area, as a significant part is occupied by the Louvre Museum.

Much of the remainder is occupied by businesses, tourist attractions, wonderful parks, charming hotels, boutiques, restaurants and cafés.

Louvre Museum
Louvre Museum

The Louvre Museum is a magnificent chateau and one of the main tourist attractions.

You will need at least 2 days to see everything it has to offer, unless you make a decision to see only your favourite exhibits.

Paris Attractions - Louvre Museum Fresco
Louvre Museum – Fresco on the Ceiling

When I have been short of time but wanted to at least visit the Louvre, I have been able to see it several times in around 3 hours on each visit.

I get a map of the museum and pick my favourites exhibits.

Louvre Museum Ceiling Fresco
Louvre Museum – Ornate Guilded Architecture

As you can see, not only is the art on the walls to be desired, but also the architecture of the Louvre itself is spectacular.

If you don’t get to see everything the first time, or find it overwhelming and tiring to stand and walk so much, make it a goal to come back and see something different next time.

Alternatively, there are restaurants and seating areas where you can take a break.

Louvre Museum Vaulted Ceiling
Louvre Museum – Vaulted Ceilings

Take a stroll along the rue de Rivoli or take a break at one of the great restaurants or cafés under the famous arcaded facades that extend for almost a mile and enjoy the views of the Louvre and the Tuileries Garden.

Paris Attractions - Jardin de Tuileries - Tuileries Gardens
Tuileries Garden at the Louvre Museum

East along the rue de Rivoli are more Paris attractions in the 1st arrondissement.

The Place des Pyramides, is the gilded statue of Joan of Arc situated close to where she was wounded at the Saint-Honoré Gate.

Paris Attraction - Joan of Arc Monument
Joan of Arc Monument near the Louvre Museum

Palais Royal

Opposite the west wing of the Louvre museum is the Place du Palais-Royal.

Hidden past the arches is a spectacular courtyard with unique black and white columns of varying heights protruding from the ground and a lovely garden beyond where one can relax and read a book.

Paris Attractions - Palais Royale
The Courtyard at Palais Royale is one of the Hidden Paris Attractions

The courtyard at Place du Palais-Royal is surrounded by arcades, splendid boutiques, classy restaurants and other Paris attractions.

From rue de Rivoli and heading towards the Place de la Concorde, the side streets offer many delightful things to do in Paris.

Rue de Rivoli at the Louvre Museum
Rue de Rivoli with the Louvre Museum on the Left

Turn right on the rue de Castiglione which crosses rue Saint-Honoré, a fascinating street with haute couture shops, cozy restaurants and cafes great for people-watching, and local grocery stores, boulangeries and pâtisseries where you can pick up fresh local bread and mouth-watering pastries.

Further along rue de Castiglione leads to more Paris attractions including the Place Vendôme, with the statue of Napoleon Bonaparte mounted on its Vendôme Column and the luxurious Paris Ritz Hotel.

The Paris Ritz Hotel – One of the Best Paris Attractions

The Paris Ritz Hotel has several great bars and restaurants, including the famous Bar Hemingway.

Paris Attractions - Paris Ritz Hotel Garden Birthday Party
A Garden Restaurant at the Paris Ritz Hotel

In the photo above, I was celebrating my birthday with a friend in the beautiful garden restaurant.

Treat yourself to a wonderful lunch on the terrace restaurant or have a glass of wine in one of the luxurious bars.

Paris Attractions - Paris Ritz Hotel Lounge and Bar
A Luxurious Lounge and Bar at the Paris Ritz Hotel

Stroll through the hotel and select a cozy bar to relax in as I did in the photo above. This bar has a spiral staircase that takes you to the luxurious washrooms downstairs.

After a visit at the Ritz Hotel, take some time to wander around Place Vendôme to see the Vendôme Column erected by Napoleon and to shop in the lovely boutique stores which surround the square.

Rue de Rivoli meets up with Avenue des Champs-Élysées, another famous grand boulevard, beyond Place de la Concorde.

The Champs-Élysées stretches all the way over to the Arc de Triomphe, the centrepiece of Place Charles de Gaulle in the west in the 8th arrondissement and sometimes called the Place de l’Étoile.

Top Picks of the 1st Arrondissement

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