Picture yourself in Paris. (Off to a good start, right?) Now picture an amazing sunset in Paris- only, you’re stuck in the metro/blocked by buildings/nowhere near anywhere you would want to be to fully take in the beauty as only nature (and Paris) can provide. Well, no longer- I’ve rounded up the 5 best sunset spots in Paris, and almost all of them are free! (the only one that isn’t is worth it, trust me)
We’ll start with the paid one first: the Arc de Triomphe. Despite the 284 steps (elevators are only available to the handicapped and pregnant), it’s completely worth the climb for the amazing panoramic view over the city. The sun shifts depending on the season, so sometimes it will be over La Defense, the business district just to the west of the city, or in between La Defense and the Eiffel Tower. Either way, you get front-row seats for the sunset, overlooking the Champs-Elysees to the east, the Eiffel Tower to the southeast, and Sacre-Coeur on top of Montmartre to the northeast. In terms of best sunset spots in Paris, the view gets it a high marking, but the fee drags it down a bit.
Hours: 10-22:30 (1 October- 31 March); 10-23:00 (1 April- 30 September). Last entry 45 mins before close. Closed 1 January, 1 May, 14 July, and 25 December, and the mornings of 8 May and 11 November. More info here.
Entry fee: 12€ full price; 9€ for 18-25 from outside of the EU. Free for under 26 if EU resident (must provide proof).
Another personal favorite vantage point is from the Jardin des Tuileries. If you go towards the big gold-gated entrance that leads to Place de la Concorde, but instead of exiting, go up the hill to the right, you get this great view over the Eiffel Tower in the distance with the added bonus of the Grande Roue (Ferris wheel) to make it more visually interesting. This is one of my go-to spots when I don’t have time to get to the others!
I love the back of the Cathédral Notre Dame more than the front, so it’s just to my liking that the sun sets so conveniently towards the front. Pont de la Tournelle is the perfect place to capture these sunsets, not only because you’re right off the Île Saint Louis which is a prime picnicking spot in the summer, but because it allows you to capture the sunset’s colors on the water as well as in the sky.
The Pont Alexandre III, named for Tsar Alexander III of Russia, is regarded by most as the most beautiful bridge in the city, and I’m definitely not going to dispute that. Between the Art Nouveau streetlamps, ornate gold details, and the four massive winged statues at the corners of the bridge, it’s a stunning piece of architecture that also happens to photograph very well, especially under a sunset. While the bridge itself, shown above, is gorgeous, it also happens to have a pretty good view on the Eiffel Tower to add even more Paris-ness to your sunset viewing.
Aaand last but not least (and the location of one of my most popular Instagram photos to date), the Terrasse du Printemps– that is, the rooftop of the department store Printemps- has become one of my go-to best sunset spots in Paris, and not only because I live on the same metro line. I mean, how can you pass up this view? I’ve also gotten some awesome Paris rooftops shots from here, and there’s a cafe on the rooftop where you can get a small coffee for 2 or 3 euros. Definitely a nice place to go chill with a view, especially because they have wifi!
And as they say- if you can’t be in the place with the best sunset view, love the sunset view you’ve got. Sometimes it might surprise you! This is rue de Charonne, in my neighborhood.
How many of these make YOUR list of the best sunset spots in Paris? Where was the best sunset you’ve ever seen?
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