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Arrondissements of Paris Paris Like a Local

Paris 1 Like a Local: where to eat, play & stay in Paris center and Louvre area

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Paris 1 Like a Local | Historic centre and Louvre Paris Districts | 1st Arrondissement Paris | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris City Guides | Paris Arrondissement Guide
Paris 1 Like a Local | Historic centre and Louvre Paris Districts | 1st Arrondissement Paris | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris City Guides | Paris Arrondissement Guide
Paris 1 Like a Local | Historic centre and Louvre Paris Districts | 1st Arrondissement Paris | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris City Guides | Paris Arrondissement Guide


From the Place Vendome to the Ile de la Cité, the 1st arrondissement in Paris is one of the oldest districts of Paris and also the district of the great Kings of France. The Royal Palace, the Tuileries Gardens, the Louvre Museum and the Palais de la Cité are the places where the royal power and its court were established for centuries, making the area one of the most sumptuous in the capital.

Paris arrondissement map

A nice introduction to Paris
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In this area, the Louvre Museum is the star. The former Royal Palace with its glass pyramid commissioned by François Mitterand attracts art lovers and novices alike. The neighboring streets are mainly devoted to retail and sometimes luxury, particularly in the direction of Place Vendôme.

READ MORE –  Visiting the Louvre Museum: best Louvre tips & artwork for your first trip to Paris

It is also in Paris 1st Arrondissement where we can find most of the “Royal Squares” in Paris. These squares were originally peaceful places of walk designed to admire the statue of the sovereign. Place Dauphine (1614), Place des Victoires (1686), and Place Vendôme (1699) are the Royal Squares in the first arrondissement.

Nestled between the Palais Royal and Île Saint-Louis, Les Halles mall was the traditional central market of Paris. In 1183, King Philippe II Auguste enlarged this marketplace and built a shelter for the merchants, who came from all over to sell their wares at “the Belly of Paris” Today the underground Forum des Halles replaces that old market and its new spectacular architecture deserves a little visit, even if you don’t want to shop. When night falls, the bars are packed and artists invade Place des Halles to take part in shows.



No surprises here: you can find all these Paris Monuments and Paris points of interest on all the guidebooks about Paris so no post talking about the first arrondissement would be complete without the top tourist attractions in Paris. If this is you are visiting Paris for the first time you will like to visit some of them, they are very touristy but beautiful!

Jardin des Tuileries

Jardin du Palais Royal

Place Vendôme (and its stylish stores)


Musée du Louvre

Musée de l’Orangerie

Conciergerie, a fortress in the heart of Paris

Les Bouquinistes (booksellers along Seine’s docks)



Some of them are part of famous places in Paris. Some of them are Paris best-kept secrets. This is our personal list of unusual things to see in Paris 1st Arrondissement to enjoy Paris Like a Local.

Salle d’Armes de la Conciergerie – quintessence Medieval Architecture

Cour Napoléon at Louvre – admire Pei’s Glass Pyramid. It is especially beautiful at night when it is lit up

Saint Germain L’Auxerrois Church (XII-XVth century) – one of our favorite churches in Paris

Main Nave at Musée des Arts Décoratifs – Monumental Architecture, beautiful mosaics

Sainte Chapelle’s Higher Chapel – stunning stained glass windows 15m high

Buren columns – they are funny!

The oldest public Clock in Paris – this clock has been giving time to Parisians since 1371!

Bourse de Commerce (Commodities Exchange) Main Hall – built in the XVIIIth century it was originally used for the storage and sale of wheat

Restaurant Le Grand Véfour (inside) – Jewel of the 18th century “art décoratif”, a place stuck in time

Le Forum Les Halles new architecture – Les Halles mall has a beautiful contemporary architecture in our humble opinion




On our Paris Arrondissement Guides, we like to encourage people to beat the crowds and explore Paris beyond its main sights. Despite being one of the most touristy districts of Paris, we like to visit Paris 1 from time to time, especially when the weather is nice. This is our personal list of unique things to do in the first arrondissement to enjoy Paris like a local.

Coffee at one of  Place Dauphine’s cafes on a sunny day – just a little break in one of the most beautiful squares in Paris

Check how Parisians set their watches in the XVIIIth century – learn the story of quirky Petit Canon

Quirky photo session at Buren columns – funny for kids and adults, with great photo opportunities

A picnic on the banks of the Seine – a locals’ must. Vin, fromage & baguette, Paris’ beautiful architecture, Bateaux Mouches . . . quintessential Paris as its best

Improvised concert under the Louvre’s archways – street musicians playing their most beautiful scores

Maillol Statues hunting (Jardin des Tuileries) – More than 20 sculptures scattered all over the gardens! Discover the feminine forms so dear to the artist

Coffee & crêpe at Café Diane (Jardin des Tuileries) – the perfect place for people watching on a sunny day

Paris Plages in summer time – for kids and not that kids : -)

Fall into temptation and buy a little box of Ladurée’s macarons – (Ladurée Macarons 14 rue de Castiglione 75001 Paris)

Explore quirky 59 Rue de Rivoli – the quirkiest (urban) art workshops in Paris 1

Walk, bike or cruise along the Seine at night – just magical




Check our proposals (by Paris arrondissements) on Yummy Paris. Affordable restaurants in Paris 1 but also Paris bistros or Paris street food. This is a living page which we are continuously “feeding” with our Parisian friends’ suggestions. Come back to Yummy Paris from time to time to read the newest additions.



On “Where to Stay in Paris” section we like to propose our top options in each price bracket (budget hotels in Paris, mid-range hotels in Paris and luxury hotels in Paris) for a specific district of Paris. However, hotels in 1st Arrondissement Paris tend to be more expensive than in other areas and it is really difficult to find quality budget hotels (-100€ /night) in this district of Paris. For this reason, we preferred to give you two Mid Range Hotels instead. These are our picks for Paris first arrondissement, hope you will like them! You can also click on the following link to check all the hotel options for Paris 1

NB: The same hotel may be in two different price brackets depending on the kind of room you choose.

Luxury hotels in Paris


Ranked among the most luxurious hotels in the world and recently renovated, Ritz is all about location, (Place Vendôme), history and glamour. Featured in many notable works of fiction, the Ritz hosted people like Chanel, Hemingway and Princess Diana of Wales.

Click here for the Latest Prices

best hotels in paris


Good location (5 min walk to Louvre or Tuileries) and a beautiful building with the charm of Parisian Belle Époque. Rooms have an exclusive atmosphere, all decorated with that French style that you are looking for. The hotel’s Bar is a real institution in Paris.

Click here for the Latest Prices

best hotels in paris


If you are looking for a more contemporary style, this is the hotel for you. Good location (facing Palais Royal) and an ancient building from the outside but pleasantly modern inside. The ensuite rooms are cozy and big by Paris standards.

Click here for the Latest Prices 


Hotels are still the most popular option to rest your head at the end of the day but if you dream of living the Paris lifestyle, then an apartment is the best way to get a feel for the local atmosphere. We are talking about enjoying your Parisian holiday in the comfort of your own Paris furnished apartment, regardless of the length of your stay.

Read our full review or click here to find your Home Away Home in Paris 1



Paris 2 Like a Local: where to eat, play & stay in Quartier Montorgueil and Quartier du Sentier

Paris 3 Like a Local: where to eat, play & stay in le Marais and Temple

Click here to read other Paris Arrondissement Guides

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Paris 1 Like a Local | Historic centre and Louvre Paris Districts | 1st Arrondissement Paris | Paris Travel Inspiration | Paris Bucket List | Paris City Guides | Paris Arrondissement Guide

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Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, meaning we get a small commission if you make a purchase through our links. It costs you nothing more (in fact, if anything, you’ll get a nice discount) but helps us to go on creating incredible Paris content for you. We trust all products promoted here and would never recommend a product that isn’t of value.
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  • Alice
    12/13/2017 at 9:50 am

    I’m following your blog for when I go to Paris, this is an amazing resource!! Thanks for sharing

  • Agness of eTramping
    07/20/2017 at 3:31 pm

    Paris is breathtaking and magical! Experiencing it like a local is the best thing!

  • Marion Halliday (Red Nomad OZ)
    05/02/2017 at 2:53 pm

    I’ve always wanted to see Paris – but it might be a bit of a culture shock compared to the red, open spaces of the Australian outback where I usually hang out! But this is such a great guide that you’ve almost inspired me to book my ticket!

    • WorldInParis
      05/06/2017 at 8:35 pm

      Make me know when you really book it, Marion 😀

  • Nic
    04/09/2017 at 3:40 pm

    Awesome guide, it’s been a long time since I’ve been to Paris which means it’s about time we visited again! There are so many things on here that I missed the first time and that’s just in such a small area!

    • WorldInParis
      04/10/2017 at 6:39 pm

      Glad you enjoyed this mini list of suggestions, Nic! And cool that you want to come back, Paris is always a good idea 😉

  • Nisha
    04/05/2017 at 7:03 pm

    That’s a lovely guide to Paris. When we went we spent just about 3 days and enjoyed every bit of it. Travelling by “metropolitain” was so much fun and it got us to any place we wanted to go . As I read your post , images from my travels flipped in mind’s eye. Thanks/

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 7:39 pm

      Good that my post brought you nice souvenirs about Paris 🙂

  • Veronika Tomanova
    04/05/2017 at 7:35 am

    I visited Paris some years ago and the city did not really take my breath away- it seemed so big and crowded. I tried to see it in just 3 days and I think you really need more. Your post makes me feel like I want to revisit it again! I would like to come back with my boyfriend for at least a week and stay in one of the hotels you recommend.

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 7:40 pm

      So you will give Paris another chance! That’s nice 🙂

  • Jes
    04/05/2017 at 2:09 am

    I have to say we loved staying right by the Eiffel Tower, but my kids favourite museum was D’Orsay. There is just something about it, that we didn’t really find in any of the other big museums. Having said that, we have not seen all of the places that you mentioned, so you’ve given us yet another reason to return… 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 10:22 pm

      You know Jes, Paris is always a good idea 😉

  • Trisha Velarmino
    04/04/2017 at 8:15 pm

    It looks quite easy to live like a local in the City of Love! After all, what I find the best thing to do here is to watch and observe people! Xx

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 10:22 pm

      I like people watching a lot! Especially on a sunny day 🙂

  • Lara Dunning
    04/04/2017 at 6:58 pm

    Top on my list is seeing some of Monet’s paintings. Love his work. I’m always up for quirky sights and I’ve made note of your list Great tips on the hotels, and I like that you’ve included the prices.

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 7:41 pm

      More Monet’s stuff coming soon! 🙂

  • Jetsetter Jenn
    04/04/2017 at 5:20 pm

    I just love the City of Lights and this is a fabulous guide! I will definitely share it with friends. Happy travels 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 5:24 pm

      Oh thank YOU! We LOVE to be social 🙂

  • Greg
    04/03/2017 at 5:08 pm

    I had no idea Paris was divided up like that!

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:48 pm

      Ooohh! So you learn something new today 😉

  • Castaway with Crystal
    04/03/2017 at 1:11 pm

    Such great information in there and I love your ideas on what to do! Thanks for this 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:48 pm

      You are welcome, Crystal. Glad that you liked my ideas!

  • Rosemary
    04/03/2017 at 3:55 am

    Love Paris and this post takes me back to the time when I lived in the city of lights. Indeed, great recommendations of things to do with Jardin des Tuileries being a favorite. Great post and looking forward to your other ones about the different arrondisements 🙂 I lived in the 12th. Can’t wait to read what you’ll highlight!

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:49 pm

      Thanks Rosemary. I did not know that you were once a Parisian! Cool things to see & do in the 12th but you must know better than me 😉

  • Debra M Schroeder
    04/02/2017 at 6:02 pm

    There’s so much to see and do in Paris, especially the gardens. I was there last June but didn’t get a chance to see many of the places you’ve listed. Have bookmarked this post for when I’m able to visit again.

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:50 pm

      Thanks Debra! Hopefully you will come back to Paris soon 🙂

  • Drew
    04/02/2017 at 3:14 pm

    Hard to not fall for Paris! I personally love Sainte Chapelle. It is one of my favorite sites in the city, and always head back there when I’m in Paris. Of course, just walking along the Seine and talking in the atmosphere is always nice as well!

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:51 pm

      Nice picks! I am always frustrated with Sainte Chapelle, cannot get its real beauty on my pictures :-/

  • Raksha Nagaraj
    04/02/2017 at 12:46 pm

    It’s so nice to read and realise that Paris has many more things to offer than just the Effile Tower. All the places quoted here looks so interesting.

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:52 pm

      Thanks Raksha. Well, all this blog is about these “many ore things Paris has to offer” 😉

  • Jing
    04/02/2017 at 8:45 am

    Paris is a very famous destination and what I love about your site is that you provide off-the-beaten sights from a local’s perspective.

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:52 pm

      Thanks for your nice comment, Jing! 🙂

  • Lois Alter Mark
    04/02/2017 at 4:38 am

    Paris is one of my favorite cities, and these are all great tips. Just seeing those macarons makes me want to plan another trip right now!

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:53 pm

      He heee, I totally can understand you 🙂 🙂

  • kenzie
    04/01/2017 at 10:33 pm

    I love your photos! I’ll be sure to check out more of the sights on my next trip 🙂 i also wrote a post for Paris check it out 🙂

    • WorldInParis
      04/04/2017 at 4:54 pm

      Thanks for the link, Kenzie! Feel free to post it on our FB page, we love to read other bloggers’ posts about Paris 😉

  • Lauren Craving Sunshine
    04/01/2017 at 10:01 pm

    What an incredible guide! I’ve never been to Paris but it’s on my list! This guide gives me everything i need to plan an awesome trip.

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 10:23 pm

      Hey, wait! There are some other 19 arrondissements here in Paris, lol

  • Chrysoula
    04/01/2017 at 2:52 pm

    The first time I visited Paris I wasn’t that impressed, from your list of things to do I have only been to the Louvre. I think I left the real Paris out. So I am saving this post and planning a new trip there. maybe this time I will fell in love with it!

    • WorldInParis
      04/05/2017 at 10:24 pm

      Who knows, Chrysoula! 🙂