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Skip the line Paris: Catacombs Tours, Skip the Line Louvre and Eiffel Tower Tickets, Paris Travel Passes

Best time to visit Paris Attractions, Avoid the Crowds in Paris, Paris Without the Crowds, How to Avoid the Crowds in Paris, Skip the line Paris Tips, Skip the Line tickets Paris, Paris Travel Passes, Paris Travel Tips, Paris tourist passes, Skip the Line Louvre and Eiffel Tower, Paris Catacombs Tours, Eiffel Tower Tickets #paris #skipthelineparis #moveablefeast

Paris Travel Blog 2018. Last update: April 2018

Visiting Paris for the first time? You would like to take it easy but your time in Paris is limited and you want to get the most out of the City of Light. Because this is your first time in Paris, you want to see the main Paris tourist places or at least some of them. You have seen Notre Dame, the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower sooo many times in books, travel magazines, and postcards. And finally, you have the opportunity to see them live.

But maybe you forgot that Paris is one of the most visited cities on this planet. You won’t be alone. Actually, right now there are thousands of people planning their very first time in Paris during your same dates. And probably these thousands of people also want to visit that same Paris Tourist Attractions, which means that Paris tourist lines will be long. Very long.

Sounds scary? It may be . . .

avoid the lines in Paris

Despite we enjoy talking about the alternative, more local side of Paris we are not here to tell you to avoid these Paris Tourist Attractions, just avoid the lines! And how to skip the line in Paris? You just need some planning and the right information. Because information is power. So don’t look further, we are going to give you some cool info and our best tips to spend less time in line. Go on reading . . .

 

1. MAIN PARIS TOURIST ATTRACTIONS LIST

This is the list of the 6 most popular museums and monuments (by the number of visitors) in the city*:

  • Louvre Museum (8.7M visitors)
  • Eiffel Tower (6.9M visitors)
  • Musée d Orsay (3.4M visitors)
  • Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie (1.9M visitors)
  • Grand Palais (1.77M visitors)
  • Arc de Triomphe (1.76M visitors)
*Latest Published Source: Bilan de l’Activité Touristique de l’Année 2015 by Paris Région

On this Paris Tourist Attractions List, we added the Catacombs of Paris because lately, it seems that everybody wants to visit Paris Catacombs  : -)

For each of these Paris tourist places, we are going to give you the best day and the best time slot to avoid the lines (or at least to avoid the longest lines), during the high season and low season.

 

2. BEST PARIS TRAVEL PASSES: PARIS CITY PASS AND PARIS MUSEUM PASS

Paris City Pass and Paris Museum Pass are two great Paris travel passes for visiting Paris. Both Paris tourist passes allow visitors to save lots of time and money thanks to their Paris skip the line tickets and many discounts.

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Paris City Pass

Paris City Pass is like a magic wand for Paris. This fantastic Paris tourist pass includes a 1-way transfer from the Airport to the city center, a Skip the Line Louvre Ticket, a Skip the Line Montparnasse Tower Ticket, a cruise on the River Seine and a 3 days metro card for exploring the City of Light. If this was not enough, Paris City Pass proposes also 20% discount on top museums, attractions, tours and excursions (we counted more than 50 proposals on the list!), like tickets and tours for Versailles, Paris guided tours, Paris Catacombs skip the line tickets, Paris Cabarets tickets and much more.

After booking your Paris City Pass online, you will receive your pass by email which avoids you the hassle of finding the pickup place of your pass in a city that you don’t know. This means that you can use your pass as soon as you land in Paris.

BUY NOW: Click here to Buy your Paris City Pass, with pick up at the Paris airport of your choice.

 

Paris Museum Pass

The Paris Museum Pass is another convenient option. This Paris Travel Pass offers visitors direct access to 55 of Paris top attractions and museums in Paris. If your time is limited and you want to visit as many Paris Tourist Places as you can, the Paris Museum Pass is for you.

You can buy your Paris Museum Pass for 2 days, 4 days or 6 days. The pass is available in different places like Paris airports, Paris museums included in the Paris Museum pass or dedicated kiosks. To avoid the hassle, we recommend purchasing this pass online. Your pass starts working only when you visit the first Paris attraction so you can buy it months in advance without any problem.

READ MORE –  Paris Museum Pass Review

BUY NOW:  Click here to Buy a Paris Museum Pass (2 days, 4 days or 6 days) with hotel delivery in Paris

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Visiting only few Paris Tourist Attractions?

If you want to visit only few Paris tourist places but still you hate the idea of wasting your time waiting in line, probably the best option for you is to buy separate Paris skip the line tickets or tours. We recommend buying Skip the Line Eiffel Tower and Skip the Line Louvre Tickets online. Also, Catacombs Skip the Line Tickets are worth the investment, more about this in the chapters below.

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3. BEST TIME TO VISIT PARIS TO AVOID CROWDS

The best time to visit Paris to avoid crowds is during the low season.

High season in Paris is considered from 1st April to 31st October. It means nice weather and more hours of daylight and many people will tell you this is the best time to come. But at the same time, this is not the best season to visit Paris in terms of budget (best accommodation booked, higher prices). Also, the city is too crowded with tourists.

Low season in Paris goes from 1st November to 31st March, with the exception of Christmas holidays and the days around Valentine’s Day. This is the cheapest time to visit Paris and the best time to visit Paris to avoid the crowds. If you decide to travel off-season you will get a more local experience and it will be easier to find good deals in accommodation, for example.

These travel essentials may help with the lines…

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4. SKIP THE LINE IN PARIS: WARNING

This information comes from many sources: museums’ websites, other Paris websites and also from our personal experience. This is not rocket science: we cannot promise that you won’t find long tourist lines during the time slots that we recommend for these Paris tourist attractions. Also, during a time slot considered as “very strong” lines might be significantly shorter if it rains a lot, if the weather is too cold or if there is a heat wave, just to give you some examples. So please take all this information with a grain of salt. Zero tourist lines in Paris do not exist but if you follow our advice we can promise that at least you won’t hate Paris when you leave 😉

NB: colors on the tables correspond to estimated waiting time by time slot: green means less waiting time while red means very long lines.

 

avoid the lines in Paris

Via Flickr CC @Daniel Lobo

 

 5. SKIP THE LINE EIFFEL TOWER SUMMIT AND SECOND FLOOR

Address: Champ de Mars, 5 Avenue Anatole France, Paris 7
Metro: Bir-Hakeim (L6), Champ de Mars Tour Eiffel (RER C); Velib Station #7.025, 7.023

We prefer to see Paris with the Eiffel Tower than Paris from the Eiffel Tower but we understand that Eiffel Tower (7th Arrondissement of Paris) is a rock star and all rock stars have rave fans! We tell you our best tips below.

 

Best Time to Visit Eiffel Tower

As you can see on the tables below, the Eiffel Tower never rests and it seems there is no best time to visit Eiffel Tower, especially during the high season (Eiffel Tower wait time up to 2 hours during “very strong” time slots). During the low season, lines at the Eiffel Tower are shorter, especially during the weekdays. The best time to visit Eiffel Tower during the low season is early in the morning and late in the afternoon.

the Eiffel Tower best time to visit

 

 Skip the Line Eiffel Tower Tickets

Eiffel Tower sells standard tickets to the Second Floor and to the Summit, both with a stop on the First Floor. The Second Floor can be reached by stairs or by lift. Once you are on the second floor, Eiffel Tower Summit can be reached by lift only. This means that there are 4  different standard Eiffel Tower tickets, but only two are available online.

» Standard Paris Eiffel Tower Tickets to the Second Floor by Stairs: on sale at the tower only.

» Standard Paris Eiffel Tower Tickets to the Second Floor by Lift: you can buy these Eiffel Tower tickets online.

» Standard Paris Eiffel Tower Summit Tickets by Stairs + Lift: on sale at the tower only.

» Standard Paris Eiffel Tower Summit Tickets by Lift: you can buy these Eiffel Tower tickets online.

IMPORTANT: During the low season, last access by stairs is at 6 pm while last access by lift is at 11 pm!

If you decide to buy these standard Eiffel Tower tickets online, you will pick a date and also a time slot. Time slots are every hour which means that you are reducing the possibility to wait in line a lot.

 

WE RECOMMEND: Skip the Line Eiffel Tower tickets are one of the best investments if you come to Paris for sightseeing. When you have Eiffel Tower Skip the Line tickets, within minutes, you will be inside the elevators and on your way to discover the second floor of the Eiffel Tower. This is too cool and saves you lots of time. Only tour operators like Viator or Get Your Guide sell this kind of tickets, alone or in combination with other Paris sights.

 

BUY NOW:

 

IMPORTANT: Skip the line Eiffel Tower Summit Tickets are very rare to find. We did not find any actually. If you decide to buy Eiffel Tower Tickets Skip the Line with other operators, be careful and read the small letters to understand what kind of access for each part of the Eiffel Tower they propose.

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 6. LOUVRE MUSEUM SKIP THE LINE

Address: Rue de Rivoli, Paris 1
Metro: Palais-Royal – Musée du Louvre (L1, 7), Louvre Rivoli (L1); Velib Station #1.025

Louvre Treasure Hunt in Paris

We like visiting Louvre Palace and Museum (1st Arrondissement of Paris) a lot and we visit this fantastic museum at least twice a year, usually in the winter time. You can check our Louvre Museum Guide below, where we share all the information and our best tips to visit the Louvre like a pro.

READ MORE – Louvre Museum Guide with our best Louvre Tips

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Best Time to Visit the Louvre Museum

The best time to visit the Louvre depends on the season. Generally speaking, it is a good idea to go during the week, maybe arriving half an hour before the opening time.

the Louvre best time to visit

 

Skip the Line Louvre Tickets

WE RECOMMEND: Louvre Museum Skip the Line Tickets are always a good investment because there is a special line for these tickets (with zero or few minutes waiting time) and you are in very fast. You can buy Louvre Skip the Line Tickets alone or combine them with an audio guide or a guided tour. The truth is that a guided Louvre Skip the Line Tour is a temptation difficult to resist in one of the most interesting museums in the world! We recommend buying all these Louvre tickets online.

BUY NOW:

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7. PARIS CATACOMBS SKIP THE LINE 

Address: 1 Av. du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy, Paris 14
Metro: Denfert-Rochereau (L4, 6, RER B); Velib Station #14.005

Catacombs of Paris are former underground quarries which were reused for stocking the bones of disappeared cemeteries in Paris. Paris Catacombs tours and visits have become very popular amongst tourists, probably because of its original, spooky character. For this reason, queues in front of Catacombs Paris entrance are always long, very long. If you are visiting Paris Catacombs, we recommend planning your visit in advance. This is another Paris activity where we suggest to buy Skip the Line Catacombs Paris Tickets or to join a Paris Catacombs Tour Skip Line.

READ MORE –  Carrières des Capucins: locals’ alternative to Paris Catacombs

 

Best Time to Visit Paris Catacombs

Paris Catacombs open from Tuesday to Sunday. As you can see below, the best time to visit Catacombs Paris is early in the morning.

Paris Catacombs best time to visit

 

Skip the Line Catacombs Paris Tickets and Skip the Line Paris Catacombs Tours

Catacombs of Paris proposes two kinds of tickets but only one is available online:

» Standard Catacombs Paris Tickets: on sale at Paris Catacombs entrance only.

» Paris Catacombs Tickets Skip the Line with Audio Guide: you can buy these Catacombs Paris tickets online.

 

WE RECOMMEND: if we had to visit Paris Catacombs again, we would definitely choose a Skip the Line Catacombs Paris Tour with Special Access. This is the best Paris Catacomb Tour because you avoid the line and it is the only way to see one of the most beautiful parts of Paris Catacombs,  the hall called “La Plage”. Actually, this hall was the main reason for us to visit the Catacombs and we were very disappointed when the security guy told us that it was visited only by guided groups (we had a standard ticket). In the end, whatever you choose, book well in advance.

BUY NOW: Skip the Line Paris Catacombs Tour with Special Access

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8. VISIT ORSAY MUSEUM

Address: 1 rue de la Légion d’Honneur, Paris 7
Metro: Solférino, L12 and Musée d’Orsay, RER C; Velib Station #7.007

Best Time to Visit Musée d’Orsay

The best day to visit Musée d’Orsay is on Wednesday and also on Friday. Try to avoid Tuesday, when the Louvre is closed and Musée d’Orsay lines are longer. Few people know that on Thursday the museum is open until 9 pm. During the night slot, from 6 pm to 9 pm, Musée d’Orsay wait time is shorter (10 minutes maximum) and it is cheaper (Orsay Museum tickets online cost 10.50€).

Musée d Orsay best time to visit

 

Orsay Museum Tickets Skip the Line

Musée d’Orsay waiting time can be long. Despite this, there are not many skip the line Musée d Orsay proposals. Your best option to avoid the line at Orsay Museum is to book online an Orsay Museum Guided Tour. Musée d Orsay Guided Tour groups are small, you will skip the whole line, and you will get the most out of this great museum thanks to the professional guide.

BUY: Skip the Line Guided Tour to Orsay Museum

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 9. SKIP THE LINE ARC DE TRIOMPHE

Address: Place Charles de Gaulle, Paris 8
Metro: Charles de Gaulle Etoile (L6, 1, 2, RER A); Vélib station #8.028, 8.056, 8.057

 

Most Paris visitors want to climb up to Arc de Triomphe because of its great views of Champs Elysées and the Eiffel Tower. Apart from getting one of the best views of Paris, there is a small exhibition space about the Arc’s architecture and sculptures.

 

Best Time to Visit Arc de Triomphe

The best time to visit Arc de Triomphe to avoid the lines is, obviously, when the weather is bad. However, as you can see in the picture below, there are not many problems with long lines. We always go to the top of Arc de Triomphe when it is free and we never found a long line…

 

Paris Catacombs best time to visit

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10. VISIT CITÉ DES SCIENCES ET DE L’INDUSTRIE

Address: 30 Avenue Corentin Cariou, Paris 19
Metro: Porte de la Villette (L7, T3b); Vélib station #

reasons love paris

Best Time to Visit Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie

Cité des Sciences best time to visit

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 11. VISIT GRAND PALAIS

Address: 3 Avenue du Général Eisenhower, Paris 8
Metro: Champs Elysées-Clemenceau, L1 and 13 ; Velib Station #8.029

 

Best Time to Visit Grand Palais

This is the most difficult museum to predict because in Grand Palais there are always 2-3 different exhibitions at the same time but in different spaces. If you want to visit Grand Palais to see its amazing central nave, be sure that you choose the right exhibition (you can check the exhibitions’ location online). Also, the waiting time will depend on the success of the exhibitions.

Below, we show the waiting times for one of the current exhibitions (at the time of writing). We have been following these diagrams for the last months and more or less all the exhibitions in Grand Palais show the same pattern. As you can see, Grand Palais does not make the difference between high /low season but between out of school holidays (in France) /on school holidays.

Check the waiting times for your chosen exhibition on Grand Palais website

Grand Palais best time to visit

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12. HOW TO AVOID THE LINES IN PARIS: OUR TIPS

» Try to avoid high season, when waiting lines are longer. January, February, November, and December (except during Christmas) are the months with less waiting lines.

» Avoid bank holidays and French school holidays, when parents need to do anything to keep their bored kids busy. Click on the link to know the dates of school holidays in France.

» Make a list of your must-see sights and with the help of our graphics choose the best day and the best time slot for each of them.

» Purchase your tickets online whenever possible. Consider buying the skip-the-lines tickets for some sights.

» With Paris City Pass and Paris Museum Pass you can avoid the lines in Paris main sights. They are a great option for serious Paris sightseers who want to save time and money.

» If you are in Paris only for the weekend, choose Saturday to visit the main sights. On Saturdays Parisians do the groceries or other household tasks, go shopping or other personal things.

» Be an early bird. Arriving there before the opening means shorter waiting line and fewer crowds once you are inside.

» If you are interested in a specific temporary exhibition in Paris, especially if it is a successful one, avoid the two first weeks and the two last weeks.

» Bring lots of water, some snacks and something to protect you from the sun, rain or cold weather. A book or your Kindle (lighter) or your iPod to keep your entertained is not a bad idea either. We give you some ideas at the end of the post.

»Take it easy. You can start a conversation with your neighbors, maybe you can share useful tips or good eating addresses in Paris while waiting.

» NTripping wrote a cool post about some useful tricks to avoid madness in Paris

And if in the end you decide that queuing is not for you, there are many cool, non-touristy things to do in Paris far from the crowds. You can also check our list of FREE Museums in Paris. These museums are very nice and most of them, despite being totally for free, don’t see many visitors!

 

Would you like to visit the Main Sights of Paris? Which one is on the top of your wish list?

 

Click here to read more Paris Travel Info & Tips posts

 

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Paris Arrondissements GuideParis Arrondissements

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Best time to visit Paris Attractions, Skip the line Paris Tips, Skip the Line tickets Paris, Paris Travel Passes, Paris tourist passes, Skip the Line Louvre and Eiffel Tower, Paris Catacombs Tours, Eiffel Tower Tickets #paris #skipthelineparis #moveablefeast #paris

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Cover Picture: Tour Eiffel picture via Flikr CC @Mohamed Yahya

 

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  • Onur Aslan
    01/28/2018 at 10:57 pm

    Wow, I wish I had seen this post before I visited Paris years ago. Really good tips to not spend all day queuing in Paris. First time I spent more than 2 hours for Eiffel tickets, which could have been saved with this post.

  • Gearoid McSweeney
    01/27/2018 at 7:53 pm

    I loved this post since it comprehensively covered all the great sights of the city (although I love just wandering and exploring the city). Still, Musée d’Orsay has long been on my list and I still haven’t managed to get there yet. The information here could be useful for that next trip.

  • Louise
    01/27/2018 at 4:36 pm

    What a brilliant in depth article of Paris’s best sights! This will be so useful to so many people – well done for writing it! 🙂

  • Carlee Hebert
    08/25/2017 at 11:48 pm

    This post was super helpful! I’ll be studying abroad in France in the spring and blogging about it! I’ll be in Grenoble, but I have a feeling I will be making a trip to Paris at least once!

    • WorldInParis
      08/26/2017 at 11:30 am

      That’s cool, I wish you the best in France! I don’t know how is it from Grenoble but there is a very fast train connection Paris – Lyon

  • Aanchal Iyer
    07/18/2017 at 12:34 pm

    Have never been to Paris, but hope to visit there soon as I’m getting engaged next month, my fiancee has planned a visit to Paris on the top list. And yea, have to say all your articles are quite informative this will really help me out while travelling.
    Keep posting Cheers:-)

    • WorldInParis
      07/29/2017 at 6:15 pm

      CONGRATULATIONNNNNSSSSSSSSSSS!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Carmen Edelson
    07/07/2017 at 12:30 am

    This is so helpful! Thanks for sharing 🙂 I just love Paris, but I certainly don’t love waiting in line.

  • Nina Danielle
    07/06/2017 at 11:15 pm

    Oh my gosh, those photos are amazing! I’m a morning person so I’m always first in line at attractions when I travel, and always happy to be when I see the lines behind me. This guide is fantastic. Definitely returning to this page if I go to Paris!

  • melody pittman
    07/05/2017 at 5:57 pm

    Wow, this is so helpful. Having never been to Paris, I had no idea that they received that many visitors. Incredible and I would definitely refer to your guide to optimize my time and lessen my wait times.

  • Corinne
    07/05/2017 at 7:29 am

    This is a great article. I love how you put the tables of when the places are busy and not busy. Very helpful. Thanks!

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:37 pm

      Thanks for your kind comment Corinne. Hope people visiting Paris will find it useful too 🙂

  • Nathan
    07/04/2017 at 9:24 pm

    There’s so much helpful information here! I’ve not been to Paris yet but when I go I’ll be using this to plan times. Thanks so much!

  • Anneklien Meanne
    07/04/2017 at 8:17 pm

    Greattips here, i been to Paris but i missed out some toursty plave, i think its about time to revisit the Paris, your tips will be handy.

  • Punita Malhotra
    07/04/2017 at 5:00 pm

    In Paris, one can never really imagine a no-crowd scenario, I guess.. Luckily, as crowds grow, so do crowd-hacks. Great tips here on beating the queues in Paris.

  • April
    07/04/2017 at 4:08 pm

    A very comprehensive and useful information! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  • Megan Jerrard
    07/04/2017 at 1:31 am

    Seems like overall, the early risers are always better off – which I’ve always known, I just don’t like to wake up lol!!! Interesting to see that in high season, and on weekends and holidays though there’s really no avoiding the crowds at any time of day. Thanks for this really insightful info.

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:42 pm

      Thanks Megan for your nice comment. Euh, yes, unfortunately some places like Eiffel Tower are crowded most of the time and especially on weekends

  • Castaway with crystal
    07/03/2017 at 12:48 pm

    This is such useful information. You’ve set it out really well, making it so much easier to get your head around. So AWESOME! Thank you!

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:38 pm

      Thanks for your nice comment Crystal 🙂

  • Carol Colborn
    07/03/2017 at 5:16 am

    Wish I could archive this in my email or somewhere! Thanks.

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:38 pm

      You can pin or flip the article to your private boards Carol 😉

  • Drew
    07/03/2017 at 1:31 am

    Wow, amazing resource! Great job putting in the time and effort to put this together. This is certainly super helpful for visitors to Paris. Avoiding long queues can make a holiday significantly more enjoyable! Agree on the tips to avoid high season too, as I think Paris (or any city) loses its mystique when there are just hoards of tourists roaming the city!

  • Danik
    07/02/2017 at 2:10 pm

    GOod advice here and I am so glad that I done all the touristy stuff. Hoping to find some off the beaten stuff later this week when I arrive in Paris

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:39 pm

      Enjoy your trip to Paris, Danik 🙂

  • Jing
    07/02/2017 at 6:22 am

    A very useful post. I didn’t know that there are times when the Louvre Museum goes free. I wish I knew this before I went to Paris. We actually skipped going up the Eiffel Tower due to the long queue.

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 3:08 pm

      Yes, you can visit Louvre for FREE. I always do. But you need to go early, otherwise the queue is very long

  • sherianne
    07/01/2017 at 7:49 pm

    I was there in November. It rained. And it was cold. And there were still lines! Such good information — thank you for compiling it!

    • WorldInParis
      07/06/2017 at 1:40 pm

      Unfortunately rainy days are the perfect time to visit the museums 😉

  • Natasha
    07/01/2017 at 6:04 pm

    These travel hacks are amazing and I will defo be using these when I visit Paris for sure. Why wait in ridiculous lines when you can get in faster. Thanks for the tips!

  • Karla Ramos
    07/01/2017 at 3:43 pm

    I love how detailed this post is complete with visuals. I’ve been to paris on a very busy season. I wish I had known this then. This would really be useful

    • WorldInParis
      07/01/2017 at 5:45 pm

      Maybe next time! 🙂

  • Mei from Travel with Mei and Kerstin
    07/01/2017 at 12:24 pm

    We lived in Paris for a decade, and can confirm that most museums and monuments can be very crowded at times. This post can really help travelers and tourists to avoid the crowd. Thanks for sharing this.

    • WorldInParis
      07/01/2017 at 5:46 pm

      Thanks to you for your nice comment! Always happy to help 🙂