Experiences & Tours

Experiences & Tours

A whole lifetime in Paris is not enough to see and do everything that the city has to offer. With its rich history, innumerable world-famous landmarks and museums, and so many lesser-known hidden gems to discover, there’s nothing more pleasurable than simply walking the streets to see what is lying around every corner, without needing to stick to an agenda. If time is of the essence, however, and you do not have the luxury of unlimited days to explore every nook and cranny, assistance with organising your tours and experiences in advance can make a world of difference to ensure you make the very best of every precious moment. Here To Stay is here to help.

Let us do all the leg work for you with a fully personalised itinerary that is custom-made to suit your individual requirements, guaranteed. We are here to assist you every time, whether you are looking for the most expert private guide, walking tour, cooking class or Parisian experience.

 

PRIVATE GUIDED TOURS

Enjoy a private and fully personalised walking tour with expert tour guide Justine, and experience Paris in true French style. Specialising in custom-made à la carte and themed tours, she will take you off the beaten track to share with you what you can’t always find in the guidebooks. Depending what’s on your Wish List, together you will discover local markets and secret gardens, lively streets and the restaurants where the locals choose to eat out, antique and second-hand shops or trendy boutiques, gourmet addresses for food-lovers and the best spots to picnic … the list is endless.

For newcomers to the city, you can also reserve personal assistance for your first steps in Paris to help decipher the lay of the land, the public transport system and key tips about French culture. Avoid the tourist traps and discover the secret addresses Parisians like to keep under wraps – to quote a satisfied guest: “If you want a tour guide that is patient, genuine, fun, intelligent, and has a great sense of humour, then Justine is the tour guide for you”.

Private Walking Tour duration : 4 hours.

To request further information and reserve your private guided tour please email [email protected].

 

EXCLUSIVE MARKET TOUR AND COOKING CLASS

Explore the local open-air Parisian food market with Charlotte and visit market stalls brimming over with wonderful seasonal produce where you will together select the final ingredients for your cooking class. Following your market visit, discover this Cordon Bleu trained chef’s professional kitchen in her 4-storey townhouse tucked away just off rue Cler to prepare a three-course meal that you have chosen together in advance. Learn all the secrets of French cooking and true Parisian lifestyle, then sit down around the table to enjoy your beautiful meal in a convivial atmosphere with a glass or two of wine. You will receive handouts of all recipes cooked at the start of the class, which can also be adapted to accommodate vegetarians and vegans. Weekly classes held on Tuesday-Friday, alternative times and evening classes also available, by special request.

Market Tour and Cooking Class duration : 4 hours.

Read our Here To Stay blog article here. To request further information and reserve your class, please email [email protected].

 

PRIVATE CHEF EXPERIENCE

There’s nothing more decadent than sitting down in the comfort of your holiday home after a busy day of sight-seeing, and being wined and dined by a professional personal chef who will prepare, cook and serve a whole menu of authentic Parisian dishes for you to enjoy. Celebrate a milestone birthday or anniversary with family and friends, or simply sit back, relax and treat yourselves to an informal dinner that has been tailored to your exact requirements. Personal chef Brian has over 20 years’ experience cooking in renowned French and Italian restaurants, with an impressive record of teaching market-based cooking both privately and at a highly reputed cooking school in Paris.  Author of “Les Marchés Français”, highlighting the four seasons of French market cooking, he has also created for presidents and personalities around Paris and Montreal.

For your exclusive private dinner, Brian will bring the restaurant to you, arriving at your apartment 2-3 hours before the agreed meal time to cook and plate everything up, serve and clean up: all you have to do is decide your 3-course menu with wine and champagne together in advance, cheese platter an optional extra. On the night, it’s up to you whether you wish to join Brian in the kitchen for a spot of cooking, or simply enjoy the decadence of having your Parisian meal prepared for you to sit back and enjoy. A personal chef experience that is truly the ultimate indulgence, guaranteed to be a highlight of your stay.

Private Chef Experience duration : circa 5 hours.

Menu options and further information for reserving your Private Chef Experience available here.

 

PRIVATE 2CV TOURS

Meet Thelma and Louise – and also Juliette and Yuna, the four original 2CV Citroën Deux Chevaux cars driven by former fire-fighter Cédric and his trusty team to help you discover Paris in all its glory. It’s impossible to imagine a more novel and completely authentic way to get to know the most stand-out landmarks and sights, as well as the tiny streets that most people don’t know and many larger vehicles can’t manoeuvre their way around. Travel through time and get on board for a unique, magical day tour or an illuminated night ride around the city.

Choose between the Authentic Paris tour, ideal for first-time visitors and including all the famous monuments for which Paris is best known, the Night Tour for a romantic drive of the enlightened city after sunset, or the most popular Secret Paris route, which takes you off the beaten track to reveal a wealth of hidden spots. Photo opportunities abound, and as well as drinking in the sights (and champagne served in an ice bucket for all tours over two hours!), you can sit back and relax while your driver share his unbridled passion for his home town. All five impassioned guides were born and raised in Paris, and in fact the company makes a donation to orphans of fire-fighters with every tour. You’ll be in very good hands, from start to finish, guaranteed.

Stop press! For larger groups and families, why not take a spin in the company’s newest recruit, Bert? This alluring combi VolksWagen can accommodate 7 passengers as well as your chauffeur guide, and has a fantastic sun roof for even better photo opportunities en route.

Private 2CV/VolksWagen Tour duration : from 1h30 hours.

To request further information and reserve your 2CV/VolksWagen Tour : please email [email protected].

 

CHAMPAGNE DAY TOUR FROM PARIS

Rolling hills, vast vineyard plains and the majesty of Reims Cathedral: ideal for wine and history lovers alike, the region of Champagne is just 120 km from Paris, and there is a whole new world waiting to be discovered during this all-encompassing small group day tour. Collected from your residence by minibus at around 8:00, you will be able to enjoy fresh hot drinks, croissants and newspapers offered on route for Champagne, where you will experience the warm hospitality of the wine growers in this historic area from the very first stop at a local vineyard. A wine tasting with a small champagne producer will follow, before partaking in a traditional French lunch in a restaurant in historical Reims.

As well as including your meal, another highlight of this visit is an early afternoon guided tour of the UNESCO World Site heritage of Reims Cathedral, the gothic masterpiece where the former kings and queens of France were crowned. The private visit will then proceed on to one of the most famous champagne houses (including Pommery, Taittinger, Mumm, Lanson) for a second champagne tasting session where you will also discover the step-by-step techniques of the wine-making process ‘from grape to champagne’, and enjoy a sparkling glass of bubbly, before being accompanied back to Paris.

Champagne Day Tour from Paris small group duration : 11 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people

 

PARIS GUIDED WALKING TOURS

Please find below a selection of the most popular walking tours; do contact us for information on additional or customised tours for you and your group, and assistance with planning your personalised itinerary : [email protected].

Best of Paris Walking Tour & Seine River Cruise

This 6-hour walking tour is the perfect introduction to Paris, covering all the best-known locations you need to see on foot, as well as revealing many of those hidden secrets known only to the locals. Starting up at the panoramic and charming streets of Montmartre, you will get a chance to experience living history, before taking a 360-degree view of the city from the Place de la Concorde where the infamous French Revolution guillotine beheadings took place, drinking in the sights of the Champs-Elysées and iconic Eiffel Tower on one side, with the sweeping Tuileries garden and historic Louvre palace just across the way.

After enjoying lunch in the trendy Marais district with its authentic bistros and plentiful shops, you will step back in time to experience the magic and beauty of medieval Paris with the world-famous Notre Dame cathedral located in the very heart of the city. At the end of your walking tour, your guide will hand you your Seine tickets, so you can sit back and relax at your leisure, enjoying the views on your hour-long river cruise (tickets valid for same-day use or for another time during your stay).

Best of Paris Walking Tour & Seine River cruise duration : 6 hours.

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place at 10:00 on Monday, Thursday and Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

Eiffel Tower Private Skip-the-Line Tour

Keen to scale the heights of the Eiffel Tower, learn about Paris’s best-loved monument and snap memorable photos with unparalleled views of the city, while avoiding those eternally lengthy queues for your entrance ticket? Join a small group tour in the company of a local expert guide for this informative visit of France’s iconic Iron Lady, originally constructed as a temporary exhibit for the 1899 World Fair and arguably the world’s most famous landmark today and a must-see for any first time or return visitor. Skip-the-line access means that you will have priority for the elevators after passing the security checks, and be whisked straight up to the second floor for a 360° bird’s eye view of Paris. Please note that tickets to the summit need to be purchased directly at the second floor on the day of your tour if you wish to ascend to the very top of the tower.

Eiffel Tower Private Skip-the-Line Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people.

Tours take place at 19:30 on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday, plus additional days and time slots, all subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

VERSAILLES PALACE & GARDENS PRIVATE GUIDED TOUR

With almost 10 million visitors every year, the Chateau de Versailles is one of the most-visited destinations of them all, and for good reason. During this private exploration of the world’s most opulent residence with your accredited Versailles expert, you will discover room after room of ostentatious splendour reflecting the pomp and grandeur of court life from the days of the Sun King and beyond, with gold, crystal and sheer luxury at every turn. Following in the footsteps of Louis XVI and his young wife Marie-Antoinette, you will pass through all the rooms where the rituals and ceremonies of royal routine took place, including the King and Queen’s Apartments and the magnificent Hall of Mirrors.

After a dazzling tour of the chateau, you will be able to take a turn in the extensive gardens to discover a seemingly endless display of manicured lawns and labyrinths, embellished with Greek and Roman statues and a wealth of extraordinary fountains. You will learn about the history of their creation and their unique role in the summer festivities at the palace, with fireworks, music and the acclaimed musical fountain shows.

Please note that Versailles is closed on Mondays and that skip-the-line access is included, although there will still be queues to pass the security gates.

Versailles Palace & Gardens 5-Hour Private Tour duration : 5 hours

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place departing from your Paris hotel or apartment at 9:00 on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

A luxury ‘Behind Closed Doors’ tour of Versailles including private entry into the King’s Private Bedroom and Royal Chapel/Opera House is also available, as well as a tour specifically geared to appeal to families travelling with younger children (see Specialist Family Tours section below). For those passionate to learn more about the decadent life and tragic destiny of the ill-fated royal queen, email us for further details of the Marie-Antoinette’s Paris Tour at [email protected].

 

Louvre After-Hours Early Evening Small Group Tour

Break the typical tourist mould by joining this intimate small group tour during the Louvre weekly late opening with a certified guide and passionate art expert by your side. In just two manageable hours you will see more of the Louvre than most can experience in an entire day. Rather than wait in line, you will discover much more than just the clichés, and you’ll see a surprising side of art history that’s fun and accessible to all levels of interest. After the crowds are gone, learn the secrets behind Da Vinci, Delacroix, the ancient Greeks, the Italian Renaissance and so much more, amid a relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere. Avoid large groups: just you and a maximum of 5 other people will form this small group tour. The beauty of this visit is that you will be able to see all the masterpieces when everyone has already left. Stress-free skip-the-line access and tickets into the museum are included.

Private tours of the Louvre with a specialised local art historian for adult groups up to 6 people and also for families  are also available upon requestPlease note that the Louvre is closed on Tuesdays.

 

Louvre After-Hours Small Group Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people.

Tours take place at 17:00 on Friday and some Wednesdays, subject to availability.

 

Louvre Private Tour and Private Family Tour duration : 2.5 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people.

Tours take place at 10:00 on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, subject to availability. Please note that Wednesday mornings can be very busy due to school group visits.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

MUSÉE D’ORSAY PRIVATE TOUR

This beautiful former train station built in 1900 in the Beaux-Arts style houses one of the world’s foremost collections of Impressionist and post-Impressionist masterpieces. Skip those long lines and join an impassioned art expert for a thrilling two-hour exploration of room after room of dazzling paintings by Degas, Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh … the list is endless. You will be guided through the multi-coloured cafés, cabarets, music halls and salons of 19th-century Paris, closely observing treasures that will allow you to see the world of art in a whole new light.

The paintings are only part of the story: on this private tour you will also learn about the eccentric personalities holding the paintbrush, and the circumstances leading to the world’s first truly modern art movement. In addition to admiring works by household names such as Manet and Toulouse-Lautrec, you will also be introduced to some less known characters such as Gustave Courbet, and will have time to admire the breath-taking panoramic views through the giant clock towers at the top of the building, take a turn in the stunning turn-of-the-century ballrooms and catch a glimpse of the glorious museum restaurant, complete with its golden mirrors and luminous chandeliers.

Family private tours with a specialist guide also available upon request.Please note that the Musée d’Orsay is closed on Mondays and that certain paintings may be on loan to other museums for temporary exhibitions at any given time.

Musée d’Orsay Private Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people.

Tours take place at 15:00 on Tuesday – Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

Montmartre and Sacré Coeur Walking Tour

Secret spaces and hidden details can be found around every corner among the narrow cobblestoned streets of this hilltop oasis. Once home to a whole legion of artists from Picasso to Van Gogh, Montmartre retains the legendary cabarets, cafés and old winding streets where these artists took refuge. Some of the iconic must-sees include the flashy and provocative Moulin Rouge, the outdoor artists of Place du Tertre, bird’s eye views of Paris from Sacré Coeur and the quirky stories of a local cabaret. You will also pass by a bakery selling award-winning baguettes, the world’s first-ever bistro, filming locations from the hit French film Amélie and the location of Picasso’s most famous studio. You will discover some of the most interesting shops, bars, cabarets and restaurants Paris has to offer : even if you’ve only got a short amount of time in Paris, Montmartre is truly a must.

Montmartre & Sacré Coeur Small Group Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place at 10:00 on Monday, Thursday & Saturday, and at 15:00 on Tuesday and Sunday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

HISTORY OF FASHION PARIS WALKING TOUR

Haute couture and French glamour are synonymous with Paris, and the capital has always been recognised as being the absolute epicentre of the fashion scene world-wide. The starting point of this fashion-lovers’ tour is appropriately in the heart of the Palais-Royal, next to the stunning arcades where the art of shopping all began back in the eighteenth century, and where your resident expert guide will immerse you in this stylish world and its travel through time. Historically the home of fashionistas ever since, you will then explore the celebrated neighbouring streets of the rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré and Place Vendôme, which remain the addresses par excellence for the top designers of the day, and are the place to be seen during Fashion Week.

Discover together the most prestigious boutiques where so many famous luxury brands are established, as well as the story behind avant-garde geniuses whose craftsmanship played such a significant role in the modernisation of art jewellery and accessories, then enjoy a coffee break with a difference, where the phrase ‘people-watching’ absolutely comes into its own. For the ultimate in window-shopping, you will conclude your visit by learning just why self-made icon Coco Chanel was labelled the industry’s most influential name in fashion and just why she will go down in history for being a true visionary. And if your appetite has been whetted during the History of Fashion tour, don’t hesitate to enquire about a Personal Shopping experience during your stay, for expert assistance in hunting down everything you need to dress like a Parisian…

History of Fashion Paris Walking Tour duration : 2.5 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 14:30 on Wednesday and Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

PARIS FLEA MARKET TOUR

Revel in an antique shopper’s fantasy during this exploration of the famous Clignancourt flea market, complete with its historic French paraphernalia, vintage clothing, old books, distinguished furniture, home furnishings and so much more. With over 2,000 stands, les puces is a real feast for the eyes, but it’s easy to lose your way and feel overwhelmed on arrival, so we make sure you will be in good hands and organise for you to meet up with your guide at the Garibaldi metro station right on the edge of the market.

A professional and passionate bargain hunter who knows the markets inch by inch, your expert guide will show you the nooks and crannies that are all too easy to miss, and you will learn all the tips and tricks of how to not only find what you’re looking for, but how to negotiate a fair price with the sellers. Advance notice is a great help if you’re in search of something specific, as our specialised guide will then be able to hone in on your personal treasure hunt request. If you simply want to wander and discover a dream purchase without too much forward planning, the world is your oyster and you will be spoilt for choice with everything from contemporary design furnishings and clothing pieces dating from the 1900s to furniture of all shapes and sizes and vintage hand-held mirrors.

Paris Flea Market Small Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Tours take place at 11:00 on Sunday, subject to availability.

Private Tours can also be arranged. The price for 1-4 people is €199, while for 5-6 people the cost is €239.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

Paris Covered Passages and Palais Royal Walking Tour

Have you ever dreamed of discovering a hidden part of Paris, in search of secret spaces so concealed that even many locals pass right by them? The covered passages transport you back almost 200 years to a time when ladies were only seen in long, flowing dresses and gentlemen wore top hats and carried walking canes. Once the classy prototypes of today’s shopping malls, they are still packed with boutiques, antique sellers, dusty bookshops and historic cafes that offer a true off-the-beaten-track excursion full of the charms of Old World Paris. You’ll discover the hotel where Chopin visited his mistress, a favorite outdoor market street known only to the locals, and will walk in the footsteps of Napoleon, Balzac and Zola, as well as taking a tour of another best-kept secret of Parisians. The Palais Royal exteriors are made up of stunning French architecture, flowering gardens and regal promenades. As you stroll through these tranquil tucked-away places you’ll hear tales of the area’s saucy past, the site of the very first covered passage.

Covered Passage & Palais Royal Walking Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 10:00 on Tuesday and Friday, subject to availability.

Read more about visiting the Covered Passages over the Christmas period in our Here To Stay blog article here. Request further information and reserve your tour all year round here.

 

Literature of Paris Guided Walking Tour

There is no better city in the world where you can retrace the history of so many of the greatest talents in literature, from Hemingway to Joyce to Oscar Wilde, and from Voltaire to Victor Hugo. During this walking tour in the company of an experienced guide, you will see a host of places and people just spring to life, as you discover where Sartre and de Beauvoir drank their coffee and penned their novels, and stroll through some of these novelists’ most romantic and picturesque arrondissements. Who better to guide you than an expert in French literature, who also happens to be head over heels in love with the city and who has sought out those mythic spots where the pulse of these geniuses beats on? Turn back a few pages in history and revisit some of the literary VIPs who left their indelible mark on Paris: the Romantics of the 19th century, the Lost Generation between the wars and the Beat Generation of the 1950s and 60s. It’s a book lover’s paradise.

Literature of Paris Walking Tour duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 15:00 on Wednesday and Saturday, subject to availability.

Read our Here To Stay blog article here. Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

TAKE A WALK ON THE DARK SIDE OF PARIS EVENING TOUR

The City of Light also has a more mysterious, shady side to it, full of legends and spine-tingling secrets that are unveiled during this two-hour evening quest to discover its intriguing history. Beginning at the ancient Île de la Cité, the darkest hours of Paris are revealed, along with intimidating gargoyles, extraordinary bell towers and an infamous prison dating back to the era of the French Revolution. Illustrating tales of assassins, apparitions, lost treasure and more are recounted against a backdrop of stunningly illuminated landmarks and monuments, from Notre Dame to the home of the Knights Templar and the legend of the Holy Grail.

As well as sharing stories of the murky depths of the Seine river, your local expert guide will take you back in time to report scandalous tales of the royal-palace-turned-museum Louvre, regale you with the grisly story of the city’s macabre serial killer and show you the sites where public scenes of torture and mass public executions took place in times of yore. After leading you off the beaten path to explore lesser-known corners of the city where some of its darkest secrets lie dormant, you will never look at the city the same way again…

Take a Walk on the Dark Side Paris Evening Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 20:00 on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, subject to availability.

Read our Here To Stay blog article here.

 

The “Liaisons Dangereuses” Scandalous Walking Tour

Travel back in time, and go off the beaten track to explore a new and scandalous side of Paris, with an intriguing and original walking tour that begins at the elegant Palais Royal hidden close to the Louvre. Starting at Place Colette, named after one of French literature’s best known female authors, you will hear risqué stories and anecdotes featuring a whole cast of charismatic and fascinating characters. Along this entertaining walk, you will be introduced to some of the raciest personalities to have peopled the city, from general Napoleon Bonaparte to artist Toulouse Lautrec, while making your way to the home of the Belle Époque painters who depicted life among the courtesans and cocottes who once lived there. The tour will finish in suitable style, at an exquisite former maison close decorated in decadent velvet, where you will sip a cocktail and soak up the early 20th Century atmosphere in the heart of the newly bohemian Montmartre district.

“Liaisons Dangereuses” Scandalous Walking Tour duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place at 16:00 on Tuesday and Thursday, subject to availability.

Read more in our Here to Stay blog article here. Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

WWI & WWI PARIS GUIDED WALKING TOURS

Not one, but two unique small group tours that treat in turn the delicate years of the Great War and ensuing Second World War, and the impact and implications of life in Paris during these turbulent times. Both come highly recommended, and can be experienced either singly or as a joint venture.

World War I Tour

This three-hour living history walking tour paints a vivid picture of the ‘domino effect’ of the events leading up to the start of war, starting from the Invalides and passing by the Eiffel Tower, which was actually used as an anti-aerial defence system. In the company of your expert guide, you will be able to imagine the incredible departure of over four thousand young soldiers, transported to the front lines by 600 taxis, and will then pass in front of the Grand Palais which was subsequently converted into an 800-bed military hospital in under a month. Learning of the medical innovations that helped palliate the government’s lack of preparation, you will be able invited to imagine how Parisians adapted to the life of a city of war.

An important time for the women who were left behind, it was a also a time of great social progress, and as you walk through the now-glamorous Place Vendôme you will be able to imagine the rise of personalities like Coco Chanel and witness the growth of the theatres that flanked the Champs-Elysées. Your tour will fittingly end at the Arc de Triomphe where the tomb of the Unknown Soldier lies at rest, and this vivid journey into the past will leave you with a decimated nation and the era of the roaring twenties just around the corner…

World War I Paris Walking Tour duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 15:00 on Sunday and Thursday, subject to availability.

Minimum age 12 years old, custom and private tours available upon request for private groups and families with younger children.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

World War II Tour

Offering a unique perspective of the complex historical facets of Paris during the Second World War, this 3-hour walking tour begins in the heart of the Marais, the city’s Jewish quarter. Parachuting straight into action, your impassioned guide will outline the events leading up to the invasion of France and the resulting mass exodus, followed by the deprivation of those who remained behind to survive the curfews, food rationing, black market and the struggle for even the simplest daily provisions. As you walk through the Marais you will see touching testimonies of the dark days of the deportation, passing by the Holocaust Museum and Wall of the Righteous before crossing the river to the Île de la Cité.

Your tour will also touch upon some of the unsung heroes who played a part in turning the tides of oppression, and you will see where the war’s key battles were won and lost in front of Notre Dame Cathedral, the Préfecture and the Conciergerie. Rife with bullet holes and artillery impacts that are hidden yet in plain sight which your guide will point out to you, this is also the setting for some of the most dramatic scenes of the French Resistance and the anonymous everyday heroes who mounted a narrow victory that defied all odds. To conclude, you will relive the tense final days of the Occupation, including Hitler’s orders to destroy Paris and the arrival of the Allied Forces just in the nick of time…

World War II Paris Walking Tour duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 10 people.

Tours take place at 14:00 on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, subject to availability.

Minimum age 12 years old, custom and private tours available upon request for private groups and families with younger children.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

PARIS STREET ART WALKING TOUR

Step away from the traditional Haussmanian areas of central Paris and unearth the city’s inner beat with the up-and-coming Street Art creativity that is alive and kicking in the dynamic 13th arrondissement, yet is often overlooked by visitors. Starting from the picturesque Butte aux Cailles area with its village-like atmosphere, follow the history of this underground movement and see for yourselves brilliant examples of works designed by artists such as Invader, Le Diamantaire and American-born pioneer Shepard Fairey.

Once considered an illegal eyesore on the horizon, the different styles and techniques of Street Art graffiti, tags, stencils, murals and mosaics are now celebrated and considered as important as the hip-hop and punk movements they paralleled. From 1970s buildings to more modern constructions, an abundance of small, easily-missed artworks line the streets alongside gigantic mural frescoes painted by the most renowned contemporary artists and creating a dramatic setting on this urban landscape. Perfect also for families and art-loving children over 8 and teenagers, this walking tour reveals another side of Paris that should not be missed. With nothing set in stone, and new artwork appearing every day, you can be sure to discover something fresh every time you return.

Paris Street Art Walking Tour duration : 2.5 hours.

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place at 13:30 on Monday, and at 10:30 on Wednesday & Thursday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

SPECIALIST FOOD TOURS

Canal Saint-Martin Artisan Food Tour

Join a flavour-packed and mouth-watering gastronomic journey through the up-and-coming bobo area of Canal Saint-Martin, discovering the very best Parisian cheeses, charcuterie, wine, bread and pastries the city has to offer. To tempt your taste buds from the start, your tour will begin by exploring one of Paris’s historic markets with fresh, regional produce artfully displayed on every stall, followed by a first sweet sample at an expert artisanal chocolatier.

A highlight is next in store at a renowned shop specialising in cheese and accompanying cured meats, where you will also have the opportunity of quaffing regional wines selected by passionate professionals in their field. As well as stopping to window shop at various organic vegetable stalls, wine merchants and other local artisanal boutiques along the way, you will also be invited to taste freshly baked baguette and traditional bread in one of the area’s new generation and highly reputed boulangeries in the heart of Saint-Martin – not to forget taking in all the local sights and sounds of this fabulous, dynamic neighbourhood.

Canal Saint-Martin Artisan Food Tour duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Tours take place at 16:00 on Tuesday & Thursday, and at 11:00 on Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

FRENCH PÂTISSERIE / MACARON BAKING CLASSES

There’s nowhere better in the world to reveal the magic of how to produce perfectly baked French treats back home in your own kitchen, than in a genuine Parisian kitchen and under the careful guidance of a classically trained pastry chef. Choose to attend a morning class learning the techniques for creating the notoriously tricky and seriously colourful macaron, or an afternoon session preparing not one but three deliciously classic French pastries.

Whatever your level of cooking experience, your entry into the exquisite world of macarons and pâtisseries will begin the moment you enter English-speaking Noémie’s fully-equipped professional kitchen located in the lively Batignolles district of Paris, an area famous for its organic food market and charming bars and restaurants. As you don your aprons you will learn about the origins of the desserts you’ll be mastering during this friendly and hands-on cooking class with your expert chef, who trained at the prestigious Lenôtre culinary school and is keen to share all the techniques and secrets of her trade. Morning macaron enthusiasts will have the opportunity to follow every step of the baking process in order to be able to replicate the preparation back home, while the afternoon course will include instructions on creating luscious desserts such as Paris Brest, Sablé Breton and Chouquettes. It is also possible to make a day of it, and sign up for both classes; early reservation advisable to avoid disappointment.

 

French Macaron Baking Class duration : 2.5 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Tours take place at 10:00 on Thursday, subject to availability.

 

French Pâtisserie Baking Class duration : 2.5 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Tours take place at 14:30 on Thursday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour(s) here.

 

SAINT-GERMAIN SWEET SIDE OF PARIS WALKING TOUR

Sink your teeth into this two-hour tasting tour of the luxurious Saint-Germain-des-Près neighbourhood. Renowned for having the highest concentration of pastry and chocolate shops on the Left Bank, you will get to savour the very best of French treats as you explore this historic and vibrant part of the capital. On your gourmet travels you will visit a number of world-renowned boutiques, tasting more than six French specialities, from Brigitte Bardot’s favourite cream puff to the oldest waffles in town, and from spice-infused award-winning chocolates to the ultimate in silky-soft, scented macarons.

This special tour with a passionate food specialist includes a pit stop to admire Patrick Roger’s extraordinary patented chocolate sculptures, a visit to more than one exclusive Meilleur Ouvrier de France pâtissier and a chance to shop at chocolate masters whose trade dates back to medieval times. This most indulgent way of sampling high-end Parisian pastries is also the perfect opportunity to help you decide on some great gastronomic gifts to take back home at the end of your stay: a sheer delight for anyone with a sweet tooth.

Saint-Germain Sweet Side of Paris Walking Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Tours take place at 15:00 on Tuesday and Saturday, subject to availability.

Read our Here To Stay blog article here. To request further information and reserve your class, please email [email protected].

 

PARIS PHOTO SHOOT

Dispel the possibility of uninspiring mementos of your stay and enlist the assistance of a professional photographer to ensure top quality photos and long-lasting memories of your vacation. Mark the occasion of your landmark birthday, anniversary or family trip and immortalise your holiday, set against the breath-taking backdrop of the City of Light. Choose a leisurely three-hour private tour with photo opportunities along the way on a proposed itinerary that begins at the photogenic Palais Royal and concludes in front of the inimitable Eiffel Tower, or opt for the speedy one-hour shoot if time is of the element, which also includes a premium editing service. Already have a specific location in mind? Simply let us know in advance and everything possible will be done to accommodate your preferences, from sunrise to sunset.

 

Private Photo Shoot duration : 3 hours. Take home around 200 high quality digital pictures right after the shoot.

Maximum size of group : 7 people.

Photo shoots possible every day of the week, by prior reservation and subject to availability.

 

1-Hour Photo Shoot duration : 1 hour. 50 HD digital photos delivered, ideal for printing.

Maximum size of group : 6 people.

Photo shoots Monday-Saturday, by prior reservation and subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your photo shoot here.

 

SPECIALIST FAMILY TOURS

VERSAILLES « KINGS & QUEENS » PRIVATE FAMILY TOUR

Take a trip back in time on this specialist family-oriented tour, and discover what life was like in the times of the Kings and Queens of Versailles. Meeting you at your front door, your qualified guide will accompany you to the Chateau and will adapt the rhythm of your customised visit according to the ages and specific requirements of your group. On route to this former hunting lodge turned palace, your children will find out fun facts such as why Louis XIV was named the Sun King, which of the royals wore wigs and how many horses towed the King’s carriage.

On arrival at the world’s largest royal domain, you will enjoy skip-the-line access into the palace, where everyone can discover the magnificently ornate rooms and golden doorways, organised by themes of mythology, hunting, love and war: smaller children can seek out royal emblems and search for wild beasts, while would-be princesses will see where the palace balls took place and be able to imagine how Marie-Antoinette would have been dressed. You will all be able to appreciate the importance of light in the unique Hall of Mirrors before going outside to explore the vast, majestic gardens with their spectacular fountains, extravagant statues and intriguing labyrinths. Illustrated activity sheets will enable young adventurers to navigate the mazes and spot the symbols of the Sun King in a perfect blend of education and entertainment.

Please note that Versailles is closed on Mondays and that skip-the-line access is included, although there will still be queues to pass the security gates.

Versailles Family « Kings and Queens» Private Tour duration : 5 hours

Maximum size of group : 8 people.

Tours take place departing from your Paris hotel or apartment at 10:00 on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday, subject to availability.

Request further information and reserve your tour here.

 

FAMILY TREASURE HUNT AT THE LOUVRE

Far and away the most popular family tour, this specially designed 2-hour skip-the-line treasure hunt is a fun-filled and educational way for children and parents alike to seek out nine of the Louvre museum’s most famous highlights in the company of your private, experienced guide. The tour will of course include the world-famous Mona Lisa painting, as well as the Venus de Milo and the Winged Victory of Samothrace. En route, you will learn entertaining stories from the Middles Ages and the Italian Renaissance, not to mention tales dating all the way back to Ancient Egypt. There will be clues, puzzles and riddles along the way, with a games booklet to keep and a secret treasure at the end of the adventure for your children. Once the visit is over and you have parted from your guide, you are welcome to stay in the museum to explore other collections, such as the fascinating child-friendly Egyptian department – and if you are travelling with older teenagers, there is a dedicated tour which offers more difficult clues to be solved, which tends to be very popular with the parents too! Skip-the-line tickets to the museum included, although there may be queues at the security checks.

Family Treasure Hunt at the Louvre Private Tour duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people. Minimum age : 6 years old.

Request further information, check availability and reserve your tour here.

 

BAKING FRENCH BREAD & CROISSANTS

Designed to entertain even the youngest children, you and your family can roll up your sleeves and learn how to bake French croissants and bread together in the comfort of a private Parisian kitchen at this special cooking class. Our experienced baker will share the secrets of making the long, thin baguette (or ‘wand’ in French) that is a favourite for all ages, as well as the nation’s most popular choice at breakfast time, the unmistakably crescent-shaped croissant. Following the expert chef’s cooking instructions, this hands-on experience is the perfect way to let everyone try their hand at rolling out the dough and learning a traditional French recipes, before tucking in to enjoy the fruits of their labours along with a choice of delicious toppings at the end of the activity. A treat for all the family and suitable for even the smallest hands, you will also receive the recipes back home to replicate in your own kitchen.

This class can also be adapted for gluten-friendly requirements, by prior arrangement. Please note that while this class is suitable for older children, teenagers may be find the French Macarons Class more challenging and interesting (email [email protected] for more information).

Baking French Bread & Croissants Private Class duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people. Minimum age : 3 years old.

Request further information, check availability and reserve your tour here.

 

IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF THE IMPRESSIONISTS

Combining a world class art museum with an introduction to Impressionist art in a private workshop, this hands-on private tour will teach your children how to paint like Monet and produce a family masterpiece to take back home as a reminder of your visit to Paris. Your class will begin by visiting the beautiful Nymphéas paintings in the Orangerie Museum with your experienced art teacher, before hopping aboard your chauffeur-driven Mercedes minivan to be transported to a private art workshop located in central Paris. With your museum tour still freshly engraved in your minds, the whole family will then participate in the creation of a giant piece of Impressionist artwork. Using pastels and following the instruction of your teacher, everyone will choose the part of the painting he/she wants to work on, resulting in your very own perfect reproduction of Monet’s Water Lilies at the end of the 2-hour session. Skip-the-line tickets to the museum and all materials are included. This tour is also suitable for art-loving teenagers.

In the Footsteps of the Impressionists Private Class duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people. Minimum age : 6 years old.

Request further information, check availability and reserve your tour here.

 

SCULPTING LIKE RODIN

Enjoy a private hands-on sculpting workshop after an inspiring visit of stunning world-famous sculptures like The Thinker and The Doors of Hell at the Musée de Rodin in central Paris. You will meet your experienced art teacher at the museum and see for yourself the master’s revolutionary techniques and approach to his art displayed in his magnificent home and gardens, before hopping into a luxurious minivan to be chauffeur-driven with your teacher to your private workshop. Once arrived at your destination, it is time for everyone in the family to become a modern-day Rodin: after a brief introduction on the various techniques used to sculpt a 3D object, you will each begin sculpting and carving the clay. Up to you to decide whether your prefer to reproduce one of Rodin’s masterpieces, or create your own from scratch. As the clay needs to dry in a special oven for several hours, your family’s sculptures will be delivered at your hotel or apartment the following day, or they can be shipped to your home address, by prior arrangement. Skip-the-line tickets to the museum and all materials are included. This class is also very suitable for artistic teenagers.

Sculpting Like Rodin Private Class duration : 3 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people. Minimum age : 6 years old.

Request further information, check availability and reserve your tour here.

 

CREATE YOUR OWN PERFUME IN PARIS

Learn the art of making perfume in the company of an experienced connoisseur at this wonderfully engaging private workshop, which takes places in a perfume atelier in the heart of Paris. During the course of the two-hour hands-on class, your family will learn the different steps involved in this craft and be introduced to some of the technical terms of the trade, exploring the fascinating world of scent-making and unlocking the power of your senses. Your first job will be to try and identify smells we are all generally familiar with, from fruit extracts to floral scents, and more – which member of the family will be the best at recognising them in the fun blind test animated by the specialist?  Next you will each choose your favourite extracts and mix them to create your very own personalised scent, while hearing captivating stories about the world of fragrances and the history of perfume as you work. At the end of the workshop, everyone gets to take their own small bottle of branded perfume back home. Suitable for both girls and boys, this lesson in the science of perfume-making is a real education, and will also appeal to older chilldren and teenagers, as the workshop will be adapted accordingly.

Create your own Perfume in Paris Private Class duration : 2 hours.

Maximum size of group : 6 people. Minimum age : 6 years old.

Request further information, check availability and reserve your tour here.

 

TRAVEL WI-FI POCKET HOTSPOT

Photo credit © Travel WiFi

Worry no longer about not being able to stay connected with life back home while you are on your travels by reserving your Travel Wi-Fi hotspot device in advance. Simply carry the handy pocket-sized wireless modem with you as you go, and you will have instant, constant access to unlimited 4G speed Wi-Fi wherever you are. Connecting up to 10 devices simultaneously, you can forget about unexpectedly large roaming bills on your return from France (or anywhere from Europe, as they have a “Europe Premium” Plan (5Gb/day – which is unlimited), and can easily stay in touch with family, friends and the office without a care in the world. Excellent value for money, Travel Wi-Fi starts at just €6.90 per day. Easy to book online, the device can be collected at the Parisian airports (Charles de Gaulle or Orly) or delivered to your destination (the first hotel hotel or apartment you are staying at), and is simply returned in the pre-paid mailing envelope upon departure (from France or anywhere in Europe).

Request further information at [email protected] and reserve your Travel Wi-Fi hotspot here.

 

Photo of Brian DeFehr copyright Anna Usik. Musée d’Orsay photo : Renoir’s « Bal au Moulin de la Galette ». Thanks to Localers for Best of Paris, Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Louvre, Flea Market, Walk on the Dark Side, Photo Shoot & Scandalous photos, and to Family Twist for the photos of the Family Treasure Hunt at the Louvre, Baking French Bread and Croissants, In the Footsteps of the Impressionists, Sculpting Like Rodin, Create Your Own Perfume in Paris, Notre Dame and Medieval Paris.