75 offbeat things to do in Paris

Preparing a city trip to Paris is pretty easy; feed google with your destination and get 5 or five thousand lists of Paris’ top 10 sights that you can all tick off your lists once you’re there and there is A.B.S.O.L.O.U.T.E.L.Y. nothing wrong with it. Please do visit the Eiffel Tower, do climb up the stairs to Sacré Coeur and have a stroll on the Champs Elysées! It is lovely, each of it and you haven’t been to Paris if you didn’t see this part of the city. But there is a secret Paris existing, a Paris off the beaten path.

If you have been to Paris before or if you have a little bit more time, you wanna dive a little deeper, check out the stuff that is not necessary in the Lonely Planet, that is maybe too random for a first time visit or a short stay experience, but that is worth seeing, doing, and tasting nevertheless.

Don’t miss Romans tips on how to spend one day in Paris for as few as 50€ (including accommodation)! 

I assembled for you my 75 top tips on how to fill your free time after you’ve checked the top 10 Paris sights off your bucket lists or if you are up for some less mainstream activities.

  1. see the  Rocky Horror Picture Show at Studio Galande (be there 40min in advance to get tickets)
  2. eat a Falafel at L’As du Falafel, the favorite Falafel place of Lenny Kravitz
  3. have a walk at the Berge de Seine
  4. eat a Currywurst at Café Titon
  5. enjoy the free view over Paris from the roofs Galerie LaFayette
  6. have a drink at the Petit bain
  7. walk along the Coulée Verte, Paris’ highline on top of the Viaduc des Arts
  8. attend an open air concert in Parc Floral (the concerts are free but the parc isn’t)
  9. have some Macaron at Pierre Hermé
  10. visit the Museum of Modern Art 
  11. enjoy live music at fête de la musique
  12. rent a Vélib and have a ride along the Seine
  13. enjoy a free open air movie session at Parc la Vilette
  14. stroll over the  covered book market at Parc Georges Brassens
    Discover Paris off the beaten path. See the secret Paris and experience Paris like a local

    you can find some rare treasures at the book market at Parc Georges Brassens, in the south of Paris

  15. visit the Parc des Buttes Chaumont
  16. see the parade for Chinese new year at Place d’Italie
  17. attend a free reading session at Shakespear and Company
  18. see a photography exhibition at Galerie de l’Instant

    Click here to get to our selection of the 10 best hotels under 100€ for you and your family


  19. have wine on the Seine river banks
  20. have a picnic at Parc Montsouris and look out for the wild parrots living there
  21. attend the Salon des Vignerons Indépendants at Porte de Versailles and try the best wines
  22. get to know france agriculture at Salon de Agriculture
    Discover Paris off the beaten path. See the secret Paris and experience Paris like a local

    La coulée verte near Bastille, a lesser known activity in Paris. Especially nice in Spring

  23. see a movie at cinema harlequin
  24. take a picture of l’Arc de Triomphe from La Défense
  25. have a drink at Rue Mouffetard
  26. stroll over the flower market at l’Ile de la Cité
  27. play some board games and enjoy the geeky atmosphere at “le dernier bar avant la fin de monde
  28. have a walk on Ile Saint Louis
  29. check the market and stores Rue Montorgueill,
  30.  visit the arènes de Lutèce , check this guide to get more offbeat tips for the Quartier Latin
  31. search Simone de Beauvoir‘s grave at the cemetery du Montparnasse
  32. eat asian food in chinatown in the 13th arrondissement
  33. admire street art at la Butte aux Cailles
    Discover Paris off the beaten path. See the secret Paris and experience Paris like a local

    Street Art at Butte aux Cailles in Paris

  34. take metro line 6 and enjoy the stunning view between Trocadero and Bir Hakeim when crossing the Seine
  35. eat some melon bread or matcha brioche from Aki, a Japanese bakery near Opéra
  36. have a walk in Jardins du Luxembourg
  37. see the modern Paris around Bibiotheque de France and avenue de France
  38. have a walk in Jardins de Bercy
  39. ramble around Cours Saint Emillion
  40. sit on the stairs at Sacré Coeur and watch some street performance
  41. visit Paris’ famous university La Sorbonne
  42. stroll from one covered passage to the next
    Covered Passage in Paris

    Covered Passage in Paris

  43. visit the vineyards in Montmartre
  44. have some yummy treat at Le Bon Marché
  45. see a concert at the Batofar, a boat on the Seine that is actually a concert hall
  46. shop some vintage fashion in one of the kilo shops near the mairie
  47. visit the l’hotel de Sens
  48. see the painted house next to Parc Saint Medard
  49. see the oldest houses of Paris in Rue de Montmorency
  50. enjoy an outdoor apéro at Le Pont des Arts
  51. visit la place de la Sorbonne
  52. Enjoy some village shopping flair in rue de commerce
  53. have a walk at Canal St.Martin and if it’s summer, enjoy a nice outdoor apéro
    Discover Paris off the beaten path. See the secret Paris and experience Paris like a local

    Have a stroll along the Canal St. Matin in the north east of Paris

  54. have a swim on the Seine at the swimming pool Piscine Josephine Baker
  55. enjoy a summer in the city at Paris Plage
  56. dive into the arts of theatre and circus at the Musée des arts forains
  57. take idyllic pictures for your instagram account at Rue des Thermopiles #parismaville
  58. have a drink or join an event at la recyclerie
  59. visit the flea market at Porte de Vanves
  60. get some chocolates at Patrick Roger
  61. see free concerts at the Fnac Summer festival
  62. get your cultural input at nuit blanche
  63. visit a  museum for free on the first sunday of the month (not all museums offer this)
  64. read a Manga in Fnac
  65. eat a real Crèpe bretonne or Galette in Rue du Montparnasse near Montparnasse
  66. have a picnic at Champ de Mars
  67. check the statues in la Tuileries
    Discover Paris off the beaten path. See the secret Paris and experience Paris like a local

    enjoying the sun in Tuilerie, Paris

  68. have some Ramen Rue Sainte Anne
  69. visit the museum atelier of the sculptor Ossip Zadkine
  70. see the Statue of Liberty at Allées des Cygnes
  71. buy your lunch on one of Paris many markets
  72. drink some really good coffee at hexagone café
  73. visit the Gardens of Albert Kahn
  74. buy some cheese at Fromagerie Quatrehommes
  75. drink rhum at la rhumerie

Top day trip idea from Paris: visit the castles in the Loire Valley and enjoy a wine testing! Do you want to see more photos of Paris? This way!

If you find this guide useful, spread the word and share it with your friends, let them enjoy a secret Paris off the beaten path as well.  Are you visiting Paris in Winter and need some secret Paris tips for enjoying the city off the beaten path? Check out my 23 reasons to visit Paris in Winter!

Have you been to Paris and did any of the listed above? What’s your favourite thing to do in Paris? Or do you have some secret Paris top tips that I should check out? I am looking forward to reading your ideas! Leave them in a comment below 🙂

If you need more tips about Paris, check out the Paris section on this blog and find tips and recommendations for Restaurants, Bars and activities with and for kids. Or: read my hilarious list of 10 things I’d wish I’d known before moving to Paris! 

Also have a look to our Ultimate Guide to Paris’ Transportation System to learn everything to need to know to move around like a boss!

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p class=”p4″>experience Paris off the beaten tracks - Tips from a local

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67 Responses

  1. These are great! I love finding offbeat things to do but didn’t have time to do any when I was in Paris. Will keep this list handy for next time!

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