You don’t have to look hard for something beautiful in Paris, but you have to look a bit harder for that perfect Instagram shot.
Part of traveling to a new destination is making sure you have your most amazing experiences recorded. After all, you want to be able to share them with friends, family and your followers! For some, Paris is a once-in-a-lifetime trip, while others may only live it through your photos. Make them beautiful, make them count, and make that engagement number grow!
Need some help getting started? Here are our top Instagrammable spots in Paris—both the iconic, can’t-miss shots and the photo ops only locals know.
1. The Eiffel Tower
It wouldn’t be Paris without the classic shot of the Eiffel Tower. Amazing views can be found just next to the Trocadero metro station, but if that’s too crowded for your liking, we suggest approaching the famous tower from the back. Get off the metro at École Militaire and walk through the gardens. Bonus points if you manage to get that clear blue sky and the cherry trees in bloom.
2. Paris’ doors
Paris’ huge doors are totally iconic. Pick a door—any door—for that understated but quintessentially Parisian image.
Of course, not all doors are created equal, and our favorites lie in le Marais. It’s a picturesque door paradise: carved wooden inlays, jeweled colors, and stone-sculpted faces guard each porte, and we love sneaking a peek into the interior courtyards, too.
Palais-Royal is a 17th-century shopping mall, and used to house some of the city’s top up-and-coming shops, artist studios and writers’ lodgings. Nowadays, it’s a calm sanctuary away from some of the capital’s busiest streets and a stone’s throw from the Louvre. Tiled floors and stone arcades surround beautifully kept formal gardens, complete with square-topped trees and chic flower displays. The sculpture by celebrated French artist Daniel Buren is a perfect photo op, as is the uber-trendy Café Kitsuné, nestled in the northwest corner of the gardens. Seek out the perfect flat white in a setting perfect for Instagram.
4. Covered passageways
The passages couverts were the shopping arcades of old Paris, and a bylaw still decrees they must house only small or boutique businesses. You’ll find some of the best boutique shopping in the Passage du Grand Cerf or Galerie Vero Dodat, while Galerie Vivienne and Passage des Panoramas are both great places to eat and drink.
Each passage is privately owned and has its own distinctive character. We especially love the mosaiced floor and round cupola of Galerie Vivienne, and the glass ceilings and old fashioned signs of Passage Jouffroy. It feels like you can’t go wrong with the passageways, as each one is as photogenic as the last.
READ MORE: Hidden Paris: Passageways
5. Galeries Lafayette
Shoppers at Galeries Lafayette have admired its ornamental glass dome for more than 100 years. An amazing vestige and perfect example of art deco in Paris, the glass dome shines over seven levels of shoppers. Edith Piàf once gave a concert from the seventh floor, but that’s not the only reason we love the top of the building. On the quiet top floor, you have amazing rooftop views of the Eiffel Tower too.
6. Sing it from the rooftops
The Parisian rooftop is an Instagram shot that never gets old. If you can’t rent an Airbnb with a rooftop view, we suggest making your way to Le Perchoir, a trendy rooftop cocktail bar in the east of the city. It’s got a great view over the pointed patchwork of city roofs to the majestic Sacre Coeur on the hill of Montmartre. Their second address, Le Perchoir Marais offers amazing views of Hôtel de Ville (city hall) and the same great cocktail menu.
7. Best bistro shot
Paris offers a lot of choice when it comes to that perfectly photogenic bistro. If it’s cute cracked floor tiles and Formica you’re looking for, try Café du Coin. Situated in Paris’ trendy 11th arrondissement, it’s also a natural wine lover’s paradise and general cool kid hangout.
But maybe you’re after the prettiest façade? In that case, check out Au Vieux Paris on the Île Saint Louis. Built in 1512 and classified as a historic monument by the City of Paris, the trailing wisteria and ancient sign add to the village feel of this tiny backstreet.
If you’re looking for a classic interior, try Aux Lyonnais. Open since 1890, it’s where Woody Allen filmed parts of “Midnight in Paris,” and has been taken over by France’s most famous, most decorated chef Alain Ducasse. Not only is the decor amazing, but the food will blow your mind too.
8. Haussman’s playground
Paris is famous for its Haussmannian architecture, and there are some amazing monuments that capture the architect’s 19th-century vision of the perfect city. Of course there’s the Opéra Garnier and the Arc de Triomphe, but we think the Haussmann-style apartment buildings are the most quintessentially Parisian. Take a walk around any arrondissement and you’ll find some amazing buildings, but some of our favorites can be found on rue Benjamin Franklin 75016 (near the Trocadero) rue Lagrange 75005 (near Notre Dame) or at the Bastille.
9. Pont Alexandre III
The Seine river, flowing through the French capital, is where some of the most iconic Parisian shots are taken. Bridges provide a great vantage point for the perfect portrait, and our favorite is Pont Alexandre III, complete with double lanterns and gold leafing. Framed on either side of the river by the Grand Palais and Hôtel Invalides, this is truly the most opulent of all the Parisian bridges.
10. Louvre Pyramid
You’ll be one of many lining up to stand on the square posts and pose with the iconic Louvre pyramid, but for good reason. It’s modern architecture ensconced in an 18th-century palace; it’s the contemporary entrance to antique palatial collections. And it’s a necessary Paris shot, and we can’t help but love it when the tip of the pyramid and the tip of your finger line up. It’s one that will never get old.