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Top Attractions in Paris

Paris offers countless things to see and do, including museums, monuments and various unique neighborhoods. Here is a list of the top landmarks and attractions in the city

The city’s five top landmarks

  • Torre Eiffel Over a century old, the Eiffel Tower has become the city’s icon and the most visited monument in the world.
  • Catedral de Notre Dame Notre Dame Cathedral is the country’s most important gothic cathedral. Designed during the twelfth century, it took nearly a hundred years to finish building.
  • Arco del Triunfo The two-century-old Arc de Triomphe has witnessed the city’s most relevant turning points. It has become, along with the Eiffel Tower, one of the symbols of Paris.
  • Panteón de París The Panthéon was originally built as a church and is the oldest monument in Paris. It was built before the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower, and was the first building that offered a panoramic view over France’s capital.
  • Los Inválidos Also known as Hôtel national des Invalides, it was constructed during the seventeenth century as a retirement home for war veterans. It is now the place where Napoleon’s remains are buried. 

Other top attractions

  • Ópera Garnier Also referred to as the Opéra Garnier, it makes up the Paris Opera with the Opéra de la Bastille. This impressive neobaroque building was commissioned by Napoleon III.  
  • Basílica del Sagrado Corazón The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris is a popular landmark in Paris and is situated at the top of the Montmartre hill.
  • Sainte Chapelle Built between 1242 and 1248 to house the Passion relics, the Sainte Chapelle (Holy Chapel) is one of the world’s most famous gothic churches.

One of the world’s most popular palaces

  • Palacio de Versalles A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Palace of Versailles is one of the world’s most famous palaces. At the end of World War I, the signing of Peace, the Treaty of Versailles took place here.

Other attractions to visit in Paris

  • Puentes de París It is worthwhile visiting some of the city’s bridges and walkways along the banks of the River Seine. 
  • Torre Montparnasse The Tour Montparnasse is the second tallest skyscraper in Paris standing 689 ft (210 m) tall and offers some of the best views of the city from its observation-deck.
  • Catacumbas de París What began as a stone quarry was transformed into an underground ossuary holding the remains of over six million people. 

Interesting churches

  • Basílica de Saint-Denis The Basilica of St Denis holds the remains of the French monarchy and is the city’s first gothic-styled church. 
  • Iglesia de la Madeleine In French “L’église de la Madeleine”. This is one of the most original churches in Paris, as it was designed as an ancient Greek temple in honour of Napoleon’s army. 
  • Iglesia de Saint Sulpice As well as being one of the tallest churches in Paris, Saint-Sulpice is best known as the temple in Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code.

Less-recommended attractions

  • Capilla Expiatoria The Chapelle expiatoire is a commemorative monument built where King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette were buried after being executed.
  • Palacio Real de París The Palais-Royal is located north of the Louvre and despite its name, was built as the personal residence of Cardinal Richelieu, not as residence for the French monarchs.
  • Conciergerie Built as a personal residence and seat of the French monarch between the tenth and fifteenth century, the Conciergerie was transformed into one of the hardest prisons of the periods.  
  • Castillo de Vincennes The Château de Vincennes is the only royal residence of the Middle Ages still intact. It was built during the twelfth century.

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