Paris in November: 5-Day Itinerary
Arts & Culture
Food & Wine
Whether it’s your first trip or your hundredth, there’s always something new to see in Paris. While June might be most people’s favorite time to visit Paris, I love Paris in November. The city is generally less crowded, starting to light up for the holidays by the end of the month and feels extra cozy and romantic as the weather gets a little chillier. I’m so excited to share this five day itinerary that includes Paris food, shopping and art for solo travelers, couples or groups of friends. This itinerary will help you get the most out of your “low season” visit.
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Hôtel Le Grand Mazarin
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Day 1: Arrive and Explore the 7th & 16th Arr.
Arrive in the morning and drop off your bags at your hotel. The best way to fight jetlag is to go outside and get fresh air, so head straight over to the Eiffel Tower. My favorite places for that perfect Eiffel Tower picture are 3 Port Debilly and the Jardins du Trocadéro. If you’re up for it, you can also go to the top of the tower (but you must book your tickets well in advance).
From here, grab lunch at Girafe for a view (book online one week in advance of your trip to get a reservation), Arnaud Nicolas for upscale charcuterie, or Bambini at the Palais de Tokyo for their truffle pasta and a view (book online a few weeks in advance). Wherever you pick, definitely stop by the Palais de Tokyo to experience whatever new contemporary art exhibit is on while you’re there, and browse the incredible collection of books, magazines, and gifts at the bookshop.
After lunch, head back to your hotel to check-in and freshen up before dinner. The first night after a red-eye can be a struggle to stay awake, so I recommend just simply looking up a highly rated neighborhood brasserie near your hotel and saving your must-try restaurants for your other nights.
Day 2: 1st, 2nd, and 9th Arr.
Thursday is one of the best (i.e. least busy) days to spend at the Louvre. Absolutely be sure to buy your tickets online in advance so you can use the “secret entrance” which tends to be slightly less crowded than the main entrance. To get there, look for the stairs down labeled Le Carrousel de Louvre, continue down below ground past the pyramid until you see the museum entrance sign. If your Wi-Fi doesn’t work below ground, save or screenshot your ticket/QR code.
You can get free admission to the Louvre if you are under 18, EU residents 18-25, all visitors the first Friday of the month after 6pm, art teachers, ICOM and ICOMOS members, journalists, disabled visitors, job seekers and those on income support. Just make sure to bring proof and IDs.
There’s so much to see at the Louvre, so you’ll want to budget at least a few hours.
For lunch after the museum, try Bistrot Richelieu or Cafe de la Regence. Or, for a more casual lunch before your next stop, head up to the top of the Galleries Lafayette Haussmann for a quick bite in the food court. After lunch, be sure to head to the roof for an amazing free view of the city. The Galleries has some of the best department-store shopping in Paris and a beautiful dome ceiling. Treat yourself to a new fragrance so you can remember your trip every time you use it back home. If you want a classic French brand, the Galleries carries Chanel, Christian Dior, and Guerlain, amongst others. After you’ve tired yourself out of shopping, stop by the wine bar on Floor 1 for a glass of wine or champagne before you go.
If you still have time in the afternoon after shopping, head over to Palace Garnier, an Italian-style opera house with stunning 19th-century paintings and art. Buy a ticket in advance and check the online calendar to make sure it’s not closed for a performance, rehearsal, or event. Or book a ticket to a performance for the full experience.
If you’re visiting Paris in late-November and still have energy after dinner, head down to the Tuileries Christmas Market for entertainment, a cup of mulled wine, and some sweets.
Day 3: Canal St Martin, 10th, & Le Marais Arr.
Get some stretching in this morning because it’s going to be a long day of eating!
Head straight to Du Pain et des Idees (open weekdays only) for the best croissants in all of Paris. Be sure to try at least one pistachio pastry and take them over to the canal to enjoy the view while you eat. After breakfast, explore the shopping streets of Canal St Martin and the 10th, where you can find vintage stores and boutiques. Thanx God I’m a V.I.P. has one of the largest and most impressive collections of vintage clothing, bags, and accessories. While you’re in the 10th, you must stop at the super casual Urfa Durum for the best kebab in Paris or a quick cheese snack at one of the many cheese shops on Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis.
Or, if you are looking for a more sit-down lunch, call ahead to make a reservation at the Restaurant Georges on the roof of the Pompidou (reservations are required and only available by phone). After lunch, explore the art and exhibits at the Centre Pompidou (open every day except Tuesdays). Definitely book a ticket in advance and check out the website to see what exhibits are available.
After the Pompidou, you can explore Le Marais neighborhood, which has some of the best vintage and boutique shopping in all of Paris. If you didn’t already eat at the Restaurant Georges or just find yourself hungry in the afternoon for a snack, definitely grab falafel at the grab-and-go L'As du Fallafe.
For dinner, make a reservation at Shabour, the first Israeli restaurant in France to receive a Michelin star. Chef Assaf Granit serves up incredible food and wine pairings in a cozy space. Or check out the recently opened Boubalé, in Le Grand Mazarin hotel, by the same team behind Shabour.
Day 4: Montmartre & 9th Arr.
Treat yourself to a leisurely breakfast before another packed day. After breakfast, head up to the Montmartre and visit La Basilica du Sacré-Coeur, a 19th-century basilica built by the French government following the Franco-Prussian War – now one of the most iconic landmarks in Paris.
If you are visiting in late November, you can stop by the Abbesses Christmas Market, or if not, there are tons of small shops and stores throughout Montmartre. Rue La Vieuville, in particular, is lined with cafes, vintage shops, designer boutiques, art galleries, furniture shops, and more.
Day 5: Day trip
For your last day in France, take a day trip to either Versailles or Strasbourg.
The Palace of Versailles is a former royal residence built by King Louis XIV located in Versailles, just west of Paris. It has been listed for the past 30 years as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and constitutes one of the finest achievements of French art of the 17th century. There’s so much to see, including thousands of works of art in the Palace, the Estate of Trianon, and the gardens. If you go, absolutely get tickets in advance. You can purchase self-guided tickets or as part of a tour. Keep in mind that Versailles is about 45 minutes from Paris by train or taxi, and you’ll want to spend at least a half day there at a minimum.
Strasbourg is the capital of the Grand Est region, formerly Alsace, in northeastern France. Because of its close proximity to the German border, you’ll find cultural and architectural influences from both Germany and France. Its Gothic Cathédrale Notre-Dame features daily shows from its giant clock and impressive views of the Rhine River from up in its spire. It can be easily visited via high-speed train and takes about one hour and 46 minutes. If you are visiting between November 24 - December 24, Strasbourg has one of the best Christmas Markets in Europe.
Go big for your last dinner in Paris at the two Michelin-star Guy Savoy, which features haute French food and wine pairings. Or Plénitude, a three Michelin-star modern French restaurant that has made it into the World’s 50 Best Restaurants (email or call for a reservation but know that it books out 6+ months in advance).
Day 6: Head Home
Many museums are closed Mondays and Tuesdays so it’s the perfect day to fly back home in the morning. You should be aware that the Charles de Gaulle airport is notorious for long lines at check-in, security, and immigration, so definitely get there with plenty of time to spare. If you did any tax-free shopping while in Paris, arrive at the airport even earlier with all of your purchased items easily accessible. Find the Detaxe VAT Refund machines before you check your luggage since customs may inspect your purchased items.
Need to Know
For more travel tips, check out Fora Advisor Christina Gales's guide, Three Days in Paris - Getting the Most Out of a Short Parisian Adventure.
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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Paris.