Paris is a city for hopeless romantics (like me) – and what is more romantic than watching the sun set over the age-old city of lights?
I can’t even count how many times I have been to Paris, but every time I try to make sure I experienced the sunset at least once during my trip. I love how the gorgeous orange light touches the Haussmann buildings and how the whole city becomes almost ‘softer’ like an aquarelle painting.
Finding a great place to watch the sunset from is not very hard in Paris, but I can imagine that people who do not know the city that well might not really know where to start. That is why I have compiled a list of 10 places where you can watch the sun set over Paris.
The Eiffel Tower
Watching the sunset from The Eiffel Tower is a bit of a weird one. On the one hand you are standing on France’s best loved monument, a symbol of romance, to watch the sunset. On the other hand – the best views in Paris are the views OF the Eiffel Tower!
If you are – like me – a sucker for a great view, then The Eiffel Tower will be a great place to watch the sunset from. You will have a very wide, panoramic view over the whole city.
If you would like to see the sunset from the Eiffel Tower you will need to book your tickets online and in advance as these will sell out fast! You can choose whether you would like to take the stairs up or the elevator. There is a steep difference in price and thus I would always choose the kind of ticket that fits your ability to climb stairs and your budget.
Watching the sunset from the Eiffel Tower is a once in a lifetime experience (unless you live in Paris…) and if you are looking to climb and visit the Eiffel Tower anyway I would do so at sunset.
Printemps Department Store
Make a sunset visit to the rooftop deck of the Printemps Department Store for some unique and beautiful pictures. If you reserve a table enough in advance, you can even enjoy a panoramic Parisian sunset dinner!
The Printemps Department Store rooftop deck is known for its beautiful view over the neighboring Haussmann style buildings and in fact the rest of Paris. The cool thing is that the view is actually 100% free! You can simply walk into the Printemps Department Store which is next to the famous Galleries Lafayette and take the stairs or the elevators up to the rooftop deck.
I would say that this observation deck is a perfect spot to have a drink, have a bite and experience the Parisian sunset!
On Top of the Arc De Triomphe
The Arc de Triumph is yet another famous Parisian landmark. Not many people know, however, that the view from the top of the Arc de Triomphe is absolutely spectacular. The wide view over La Defence right up to the Champs Elysees and of course The Eiffel Tower…
Not many people know about this great sunset spot and thus the chance that the roof of the Arc de Triomphe will be reasonably quiet is huge. You will need to buy a ticket to the Arc de Triomphe but entry is free every first Sunday of the month (January to March and November to December) which can save you a pretty penny if you let those two coincide!
On the Arc de Triomphe you will see the sun set beautifully behind the Eiffel Tower. It is a very romantic experience and if you are not visiting the Eiffel Tower during your trip but the Arc de Triopmhe IS on your list, then you will want the sun set from here!
Not many people may know this but… the view from Centre Pompidou is amazeballs! I was in shock the first time I went up! I had no idea it was so beautiful!
This fairytale-like sunset spot is free to visit and you do not have to go into the museum (for people who do not like art) in order to see the sunset from the roof of Centre Pompidou. Just take the escalators up through the see-through tubes at the front of the building. The escalators will provide you with a beautiful view over Paris – Montmartre especially.
I would say that this modern art museum has one of the best rooftops in Paris. If you like art, do not forget to visit the museum as it houses works of some of the greatest modern artists in the world – think of Picasso, Leger and Duchamps (the one who painted a moustache on the Mona Lisa).
On the banks of The Seine
I LOVE watching the sunset on the banks of the river Seine! I would normally get some cheese, charcuterie, a baguette and a bottle of sparkling wine (mostly crémant d’Alsace) to have a romantic little picnic on the banks of the river Seine.
Where you would sit is completely up to you but I would recommend sitting by Voie Charles Pompidou near the Notre Dame or when you want to see the Eiffel Tower near Port Debilly (not many tourists know of this) for amazing views of the Eiffel Tower.
Afterwards you can easily hop onto a metro or an RER and make your way into the city for some great food and a glass of wine.
One of my absolute favourite places in Paris to watch the sunset is Montmartre. Simply climb (or take the little cable cart) up to the Sacré-Cœur Cathedral with a bottle of bubbly and be amazed of the view and the beauty of Paris as the sun goes down.
The vantage point at the Sacre-Coeur will indeed attract many tourists as it is the highest natural point in the city, but you will definitely find a great little spot on the steps from where you can enjoy the sunset. From the Sacre-Coeur you will be able to see the Eiffel Tower in the distance, just as the Notre Damme and Centre Pompidou.
From this breathtaking view you can see all the lights come on in Paris. It truly is magical.
From here you can walk down (avoid the scammers at the bottom of the park) and head to Rue Des Trois Freres where you can find many amazing little restaurants and bars.
“But I don’t want to be that kind of tourist” is not a good enough reason not to take one of the many river cruises in Paris at least once in your life. During the sunset river cruise you will be able to see the Notre Dame Cathedral from a unique angle and watch as the lights of the Eiffel Tower go on and start their light show.
A river cruise is the favorite way of many tourists to enjoy the Paris sunset. There are many kinds of different river cruises you can book.
First of all you can book a river cruise that is just that – it takes you around the Seine for a set time, talks about the history of the city and shows you the famous sights from the water.
You can also opt for a river cruise that serves a set dinner. These are often in Bistro style and are utterly romantic. I cannot recommend experiencing one of these cruises at least once.
Last but not least you can also board a special wine and champagne tasting cruise – my favourite – so you can drink a nice glass of wine or champagne while floating past the most romantic sights of Paris.
I will have to start off by saying that actually not many tourists know about Tour Montparnasse – or they just choose to ignore it. Joke is on them as the sunset from Tour Montparnasse – the Montparnasse Tower is absolutely sublime.
The tower lies in the South of Paris and boasts a massive observation deck on top. With 59 stories high it is one of the tallest buildings in Paris and it offers an imposing view of the city beneath. From Tour Montparnasse you can clearly see The Eiffel Tower, Montmartre, Notre Dame and all other famous Parisian sights.
You can easily bring a tripod to Tour Montparnasse to capture the sunset – something that is not always as easy at other sunset hotspots.
Champs de Mars
I am not always a great fan of the Champs de Mars, but when it comes for sunsets, this is a great place for a picnic!
Although Champs the Mars normally heaves with tourists, during sunset most of them will be sitting at a little romantic restaurant or have retired back to their hotel. Great for you as this means you can watch the sunset at Champs de Mars without the hustle and bustle that comes with a Parisian Tourist Hotspot.
From Champs de Mars you have an amazing view onto the Eiffel Tower and you can sit down on one of the many benches in the park and have a little sip of wine or a little amuse bouche to tide you over during sunset.
Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
If you ask me – Parc des Buttes-Chaumont is one of the most underrated places to visit in Paris. This amazing parc in the middle of Paris offers a great vantage point and panoramic view over the city and its many Haussmann style Parisian buildings. I stumbled onto this Parisian parc by accident one of the very first time I visited the city. We went back in the evening with a bottle of Merlot to watch the sunset. It was magical!