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Things to Do in Paris at Night – A Local’s Guide to Paris Nightlife [2021]


2021 France Travel Update


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04/03/21

Nightlife in Paris

Paris Streets at Night

Let me tell you a secret: there really is no city more magical after dark than Paris at night! Paris is full of stunning architecture and monuments that truly shine when the sun goes down; that’s why Paris is called the City of Lights.

So enjoy the city during the day, but save some energy for your Paris nights to experience nightlife in Paris.

What to do in Paris at night? Where to go? Go on reading this quick guide with the best things to do in Paris at night.

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Places to Visit in Paris at Night

If you are wondering where to go at night in Paris, this guide will help you. Even if the right bank has taken over where authentic Paris nightlife is concerned, there are places to enjoy Paris’ nocturnal atmosphere everywhere in the city.

Whether you prefer a quiet night out in Paris, an offbeat Paris night scene, or trendy bars + late-night clubs, a memorable evening out is guaranteed.

Here’s the list of best places to visit in Paris at night, with something for everyone:

LE MARAIS (Paris 4):  this area is one of the locals’ favorite spots for a night in Paris. This part of Le Marais is also (but not only) home to a thriving gay and lesbian scene, with rainbow flags everywhere.

SAINT GERMAIN & THE LATIN QUARTER (Paris 6): this area is perfect for those who wish to spend a relaxed night in Paris over a couple of drinks in cozy bars. Both neighborhoods offer a lot of restaurants, pubs, and bars. These are much cheaper in the Latin Quarter as it has been the students’ district for ages while prices are definitely higher in Odéon or Saint Germain’s trendy neighborhoods.

CHAMPS ELYSÉES (Paris 8): people looking for an exclusive night out in Paris will head to Champs Elysées. Around Paris’ most famous avenue there are some good choices for dancing and all-night partying. Expect higher prices in this part of the city.

BASTILLE (Paris 11): this lively and overcrowded neighborhood is dominated by the 20-somethings looking for a fun night in Paris, but it is also popular among tourists. This is the kind of place with something for everyone, starting with a bit of bar-hopping down rue de Lappe or rue Roquette to end up dancing any music somewhere else.

MONTMARTRE & PIGALLE (Paris 18): the upper heights of Montmartre are a good place to go for an evening or night stroll in the summer, especially during the hot summer nights in Paris. At the same time, cheeky Pigalle is Paris’ red-light district, with places like the Moulin Rouge or late-night clubs but also with interesting places playing rock or hip-hop.

BELLEVILLE (Paris 20): this neighborhood, still relatively untouched by tourists, has several lively streets packed with affordable bars that attract mixed crowds. Come to Belleville to experience an authentic night in Paris.

Paris at Night

Best Things to Do in Paris at Night [2021]

What to do at night in Paris? Here’s a list of fun things to do at night in Paris with something for every traveler:

A Paris Night Cruise

Seine River at Night

If you spend only one night in Paris, head to ‘Paris’ most beautiful avenue’ for a Paris night cruise along the Seine River. Depending on the season, the Seine banks are more or less lively, but it is always a beautiful cruise.

During the cruise, you can see some of the main Paris tourist attractions, such as Notre Dame or Les Invalides, this time beautifully illuminated. It is difficult not to be in love with Paris after a view like that!

The night Seine river cruises come with or without dinner, and they are a great way to spend a relaxed evening, perhaps with a glass of champagne.

TIP: This Paris Illuminations River Cruise always has great reviews!

Parisian Cabarets

Cabaret Paradis Latin
photo courtesy: Le Paradis Latin ©

Looking for cheeky, fun things to do in Paris at night? Then head to one of the Parisian Cabarets.

Today, cabarets in Paris are a fun and entertaining part of the nightlife in Paris. Cabaret shows usually include the crazy French cancan (our favorite part) but also singing, dancing, and juggling.

Most of the cabarets also come with the dinner option or a glass of champagne, so you are set for the whole night. From the Moulin Rouge or Le Lido to the Paradis Latin, there’s something for everyone.

The Louvre at Night

The Louvre has cancelled the night sessions until further notice

Louvre Museum At Night

One of the best places to visit in Paris at night (or at least to pass by) is the Louvre Palace, lit up by the glowing glass pyramid dominating the Cour Napoléon.

If you are spending a Wednesday or a Friday night in Paris you can visit the Louvre Museum until 9.45 pm, without crowds. Inside the Louvre, some information panels are difficult to read but the sculptures look incredibly beautiful when they are lit by the moon.

TIP: Read how to get the most of the Louvre Museum in 2 hours or less

The Eiffel Tower at Night

Shangri-La Paris Terrace
photo courtesy: Hotel Shangri-La Paris ©

With nearly 7 million visitors in 2018, the Eiffel Tower is the symbol of France and one of the world’s most popular attractions. Thanks to its monumental size, it is possible to see the Eiffel Tower from almost every corner of the city, usually outstanding amongst Paris’s quintessential rooftops.

The Eiffel Tower is one of the best things to see in Paris at night, especially when it lights up. It is just so romantic to see the sparkling Eiffel Tower, not to mention it is more photogenic! Click here for the best views of the Eiffel Tower, day and night.

There are many ways to enjoy the Eiffel Tower at night, from a picnic in Champs de Mars to a night river cruise on the Seine River, or just admire it from the Trocadéro Square. The Eiffel Tower lights up hourly from sunset until 1 am or 2 am during summer. The illumination lasts around 5 mins each time, do not miss it!

The good news is that some of the best 5-star hotels in Paris, well known for their great facilities and amazing interiors, come also with the best views of the Eiffel Tower. So if you are traveling to Paris for a few days and you can afford it, why not treating yourself with a hotel with Eiffel Tower view so you can also enjoy it from your room?

A Night at the Opera (Garnier)

A night at the Opéra Garnier, with the right program, is a great way to start a night out in Paris. We suggest arriving well in advance to admire its architecture and rich decoration.

Feeling thirsty during the interlude? Then head to the Grand Foyer, grab a glass of champagne and admire this stunning gallery, inspired in the Hall of Mirrors of Versailles Palace.

If opera or ballet is not your thing, but you don’t want to miss one of the most beautiful attractions in Paris, then take the Mysteries of the Opera night tour. Learn about Palais Garnier’s history and its most famous guest, the phantom of the Opera, and visit his reserved balcony#5 (option available only during the night tours).

Click here to book your Mysteries of the Opera night tour

Wine Tasting with a Professional Sommelier

Wine Tasting in Paris

Learn about the wine regions in France through an informative master wine class with wine tastings.

An expert sommelier will lead you through a tasting of exceptional French wines from different corners of the country and selected to ensure a full and unique tasting experience.

Some of these tours come with a platter of cheese and charcuteries (cold cuts) to complete the wine tasting experience. If you know already that you will end up buying some bottles, don’t forget your wine tote bag!

TIP: This French wine tasting experience has always great reviews

Paris Nights from a Rooftop Bar

Rooftop bars in Paris
Photo courtesy: Terrass Hotel Montmartre ©

When the weather in Paris is good, and the sun starts to set down, there are few better ways to enjoy a night in Paris than from above, cocktail in hand gazing across the lights and landmarks that define the city.

Check out our list of favorite rooftop bars in Paris, with something for everyone.

Paris Night Tour with Champagne on a Vintage Car

Vintage Drive - Romantic Things to do in Paris

Drive through the city’s illuminated streets and avenues in style on a classic Vintage Citroën 2CV and get the most out of Paris by night.

Enjoy a glass of champagne while admiring the Paris attractions beautifully lit up, such as Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and the Sacré Coeur in the neighborhood of Montmartre.

This Paris night tour includes a fun and informative driver /guide, so you just need to sit in the back, relax and enjoy Paris (and the champagne).

Click here to book your night tour on a vintage car

Enjoy Traditional French Cuisine in a Brasserie or Bistro

Paris Bistro

Dining out is one of the best ways to start your nights in Paris, especially if you opt for local food.

French cuisine sounds fancy, but in the end, it’s all about quality – fresh produce and creating a harmonious dish that elevates the quality of the main ingredient. That said, you don’t need to go to a Michelin-starred restaurant to enjoy good local meals, and you can eat most of the best French recipes in a nice brasserie or bistro.

What to choose, a Brasserie, or a Bistro? Both places serve typical French cuisine. A bistro is usually a pretty casual neighborhood restaurant, with a limited offer and specific opening hours for lunch and dinner while a brasserie serves throughout the day until late at night, and have a larger menu.

Traditionally, a bistro was a low-key place, but nowadays, you can find great Parisian bistros with excellent culinary proposals. Go to dinner not in search of gastronomic revelation but rather in the hope of being well-fed in the best French traditions of culinary simplicity.

Night Photography in Paris 

Paris Nightlife Photography

Paris at night is a great experience for professional photographers or just photography aficionados. A guided photography night tour with a professional photographer is always a good idea, especially if you want to improve your photography skills.

Apart from their invaluable photo tips, local photographers know the best Paris photo spots so that you can end your day with really cool shots. Remember to bring your own travel tripod, especially if you want to ‘play’ with long exposures.

Check out this night photo tour in Paris, lead by a professional photographer guide, that explores the most picturesque corners of Montmartre.

Clubbing and Dancing in Paris

Clubbing in Paris

For some, clubbing and dancing will be the best way to spend a Saturday night in Paris. When it gets dark, the City of Lights has some legit clubs and bars for dancing and partying with all kinds of music. Here’s the list of locals’ favorites:

Les Bains: this place was Paris’ answer to NYC’s Studio 54 and welcomed everyone with a name on its dancefloor and in its (adjacent) swimming pool. Address: 7 Rue du Bourg-l’Abbé, Paris 3

L’Heritage: this place promises a unique clubbing experience at once sophisticated and classy. Address: 37 Avenue de Friedland, Paris 8

Le Baron: an exclusive club that hosts both some of the city’s best DJs and featuring live music acts. Address: 6 Avenue Marceau, Paris 8

Le Bus Palladium: located in the heart of Pigalle, this is the favorite place for rock lovers. Address: 6 Rue Pierre Fontaine, Paris 9

La Java: this is a historic place dedicated to alternative, underground, and emerging new music talents. Address: 105 Rue du Faubourg du Temple, Paris 10.

Wanderlust: its 1,600 square-meter terrace is the perfect place for hanging out and dancing during the summer nights in Paris. Address: 32 Quai d’Austerlitz, Paris 13

La Machine du Moulin Rouge: The iconic cabaret’s former boiler room has been transformed into an underground dance floor. Address: 90 Boulevard de Clichy, Paris 18.

La Bellevilloise: this club is perfect for a trendy indie clubbing experience in one of Paris’s coolest arrondissements. Address: 19-21 Rue Boyer, Paris 20.

A Night Dip in an Art Déco Pool

Belle Époque Pool in Paris
photo courtesy of  @guide-piscine

What to do in Paris at night after a busy day? Head to the 5th Arrondissement of Paris, to the Art Déco-style Piscine Pontoise for some night laps.

Built during the ’30s, the unattractive external facade at 19 rue de Pontoise hides a listed building with a vintage touch, individual changing cabins, a huge glass ceiling, and mosaic frescoes.

The pool is open until midnight from Monday to Friday, and it isn’t easy to find a more attractive setting for a late-night swim.

So there you have it, the list of best things to do in Paris at night to enjoy the nightlife in Paris. Have you tried any of our favorites?

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  • Stephanie
    06/05/2018 at 1:45 pm

    Your blog is just darling! I have done two Europe trips and shockingly never managed to fit Paris in (I think i’ve always heard mixed review- of either the best city in the world or those who haven’t taken to it). You really show the city from so many angles i definitely need to make the time to visit sooner rather than later.
    Stephanie

  • Lauren
    06/05/2018 at 2:15 am

    Great post! So lovely to see such nice nighttime photos!