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Simply put, there is no honeymoon destination in the world that can compete with Paris. And if you’ve just tied the knot, chances are The City of Love is at the top of your bucket list as far as lovebird-worthy locales are concerned. It’s been glamorized by artists, playwrights, and poets; claimed center stage in countless memoirs, paintings, and French Revolution-inspired biopics; and most importantly, it’s served as the setting for some of the greatest love stories of all time. Plus, did we mention le cuisine? There’s really no question as to why this illuminated metropolis is perfect for your post-nuptials getaway, but if you need more convincing, we’ve outlined all the wanderlust-worthy reasons to book your trip below, with the help of a few Paris pros.
Meet the Expert
- Kate Schwab is the Media Relations Manager for the France Tourism Development Agency, Atout France.
- Amina Dearmon is a luxury travel expert & owner of Perspectives Travel (a SmartFlyer affiliate).
- Brandon Berkson is the founder of boutique hotel & travel guide, Hotels Above Par.
Planning Your Paris Honeymoon
Paris is the quintessential honeymoon destination for all types of couples: those who love Michelin-starred meals and gourmand experiences, art aficionados keen on visiting the plethora of museums and galleries, self-care seekers in search of the best spas and wellness offerings in the city, and first-timers to La Ville-Lumière ‘City of Lights’ who want to take everything in, hand in hand, during romantic strolls along the Seine.
As for the best times to visit, Kate Schwab, Media Relations Manager for the France Tourism Agency Atout France urges planners to consider May, June, September, and October. “Paris is romantic all year round but if you’re looking for warm weather and not too many crowds, these are the best months,” she explains. “July and August will be quite hot and many Parisians are on vacation, which means many shops and restaurants will be closed.”
On the contrary, Paris can also be magical in the cooler fall and winter months. “Being in Paris when it’s a little chillier outside is a great excuse to cuddle up at a cafe,” says Amina Dearmon, luxury travel expert and owner of Perspectives Travel. “Plus, many dining establishments do a great job of keeping their outside spaces heated in the winter, so you’re able to sit outside year-round.”
Another reason to visit in the winter is flight costs can be significantly lower, as long as you avoid the holiday rush. According to skyscanner.com, roundtrip tickets to Paris in December/January fall in the $316-$608 range depending on where you're flying in from, while ticket prices can reach $529-1,000+ during the months of May/June.
Here are our Paris basics:
- Language: French
- Currency: Euro
- When to Go: May, June, September, and October.
- Getting There: Paris is one of the biggest metropolitan hubs in the world, so most major airlines fly into one of their two airports: Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and Orly. As for one of the most honeymoon-worthy ways to arrive, there’s La Compagnie, the business-class-only boutique airline with full-flat seats and complimentary Wi-Fi whose rates can often be 30 to 50 percent less expensive than their competitors. Then there’s French Bee, which is a great option for honeymooners who are looking to fly in comfortable Premium Economy (for a fraction of the cost) and leave the splurging for Paris. Rates begin around $228 one-way, but you can take book add-ons for couples like the Instant Duo—an aperitif pre-meal, bottles of Champagne, and plates of warm canapés. JetBlue also just announced a nonstop leg from NYC to Paris beginning this summer.
- Transportation: Ubers are easily accessible and effortless as far as booking a ride from your phone is concerned, but the Paris Métro is super convenient and less costly than taking cars everywhere. Paris also has taxis, city buses, and numerous trains for day trips from one of their six stations: Gare du Nord, Gare de l'Est, Gare de Lyon, Gare d'Austerlitz, Gare Montparnasse, Gare Saint-Lazare.
- Must-Pack: Sneakers and walking shoes for exploring the city by foot, light layers and a rain jacket for the spring, sweaters and a warm coat for the winter, and evening attire.
Places to Stay During Your Paris Honeymoon
When it comes to all the decisions that go into planning a Paris honeymoon, choosing where to stay is arguably the best part of the process. From five-star palaces with white glove butler service and candle-lit turn-down amenities to luxe maisons boasting unparalleled views of the Eiffel Tower and charming B&Bs that feel intimate and undiscovered, we could wax poetic about all of the romantic hotels this city has to offer forever. But for now, we’ll start with the crème de la crème of accommodations.
Hôtel Dame des Arts
“Hôtel Dame des Arts is a new boutique hotel in Paris' Saint-Germain-des-Prés that’s—in my opinion—one of Paris' most romantic,” says Brandon Berkson, founder of boutique hotel & travel guide, Hotels Above Par. “It will win you and your partner over, from its rooftop with vantage points of notable Parisian monuments such as the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame to its abundance of rooms with private outdoor balconies (over one-third of the rooms have them), and supply of bath products from Diptyque's luxe L'Art du Soin collection that makes a bubble bath with your S.O. that much more tantalizing.
Another one of Berkson’s top picks, Hôtel Lutetia, is situated on Paris' Left Bank and is as luxe and exceedingly romantic as they come. “Couples here will be privy to the nourishing onsite spa focusing on holistic wellness and if in the mood to splurge, the Eiffel Penthouse and its top-floor, 360-degree rooftop terrace will win your heart,” he says. “To even add more magic to your stay, the hotel can arrange a private dinner for two up here.
Saint James Paris
As a member of the esteemed Relais & Châteaux family, a stay at Saint James Paris will have you feeling like you're living in your very own chateau. Perhaps that’s because it’s the only chateau-hotel in Paris, in the center of the posh 16th. It’s also worth noting that they’re home to one of only two Guerlain spas in in the city outside of the famed Institute, just completed a massive indoor pool renovation, and are known for their gourmet restaurant Bellefeuille, as well as a cluster of exquisite suites that are perfcutly suitable for never leaving.
Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris
“The Eiffel Tower views from the rooms at the George V make it the perfect choice for honeymooners who want a view,” raves Dearmon. “The stellar hospitality that the Four Seasons brand is known for means that honeymooners can really customize their stay with unique experiences from touring the Champagne region to spending the day with the chef of the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant.”
Cheval Blanc Paris
Dearmon is also partial to Cheval Blanc Paris, which she says feels like the best kept secret in Paris with just 72 rooms and suites. “The balcony rooms offer privacy and views of the Seine or the Louvre and a massage for two in the Bonheur Suite at the hotell’s Dior Spa is the perfect way to kick off a honeymoon.”
Le Bristol Paris
One of the darlings of the prestigious Oetker Collection, Le Bristol Paris, was the first hotel in France to be awarded ‘Palace’ status so if your’re in the mood for a ‘moon designed for royalty—this is it. Their resident Burmese cat Socrate roams the grounds in a bespoke Goyard collar; their prime real estate location on the iconic Rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré is next to Hermès, Givenchy, and Saint Laurent; and most recently, the hotel launched a quintessentially Parisian partnership with the Opera Gallery, including a private viewing of Marc Chagall’s ‘Les Mariés au coq’ followed by a Michelin-star dinner in the Paris Suite. It doesn’t get more grand than this, lovers.
Finally, Schwab says a roster of romantic Parisian hotels wouldn’t be complete without acknowledging Hotel Amour in the 9th arrondisement. “Not only is love in the name but the rooms are cozy and there’s a beautiful back garden that’s very private,” she adds.
A sweet respite from the hustle and bustle of the city, La Réserve offers honeymooners a highly personalized experience in sumptuous accommodations that feel more like a private mansion than a hotel. With views of the Eiffel Tower, the Pantheon, and the Grand Palais, this stunning property has a spa that you'll want to plan a whole day around.
Things to Do During Your Paris Honeymoon
If you’ve never been to Paris (and even if you have, but not as a newlywed), there’s an obvious first stop on the itinerary: the Eiffel Tower. No Paris honeymoon would be complete without a candid in front of this landmark, along with the Louvre, but once you’ve checked those off the list it’s onto the gardens and gorgeous chateaus. Here are a few of our favorite romantic things to do in Paris.
Visit Famous Gardens
While it may be hard to squeeze in every picturesque garden Paris has to offer, there are a few non-negotiables like Jardin de Tuileries. “This is a beautiful park right across from the Louvre,” explains Berkson, “and when here, you can lounge on chairs encircling the central fountain, walk down pathways lined with verdant topiary, or ride the Ferris wheel at the north end and soak up views of one of the world's prettiest cities from above.”
Stroll Through Parks and Plazas
Also worthy of an afternoon designed for two—Place des Vosges—a pleasant-plaza-like park in Paris' trendy Le Marais neighborhood. “The park is one of the oldest in Paris and is surrounded by well-kept 17th-century-style buildings housing cafes and galleries, among other haute haunts,” shares Berkson. “You'll see swaths of locals here as it's not as touristy-heavy like other parks in the city.”
Take a Tour of Versailles
And then there’s Versailles! Dearmon says her most requested honeymoon activities are a private sailing down the Seine River (departing right before sunset with a bottle of chilled champagne to take in the city sights during golden hour) closely followed by a helicopter ride to Louis XIV’s royal residence. “This is always a memorable way to arrive and it also cuts down on the travel time to Versailles,” she adds.
Enjoy a Waterfront Picnic
A Parisian picnic by the Pont des Artes bridge is another highly suggested pastime of Dearmon’s. “While the locks that made the bridge famous are no longer there, it’s still a beautiful area to visit and enjoy a picnic or just watch the boats sail by,” she says.
Have Cocktails at a Legendary Bar
Last but not least, do not leave this city without cozying up in the corner with your love at Bar Hemingway at The Ritz Paris. Known for the best bartenders in the city—and Colin Peter Field’s (clean) dirty martini with an olive juice ice cube—it’s perhaps the most notorious watering hole in Paris, thanks to famous expat guests like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Cole Porter, and Ernest Hemingway himself.
Explore Reims and The Champagne Region
According to Schwab, a 58-minute train ride will take you to Reims, the capital city of the Champagne region. “For honeymooners who love wine, this is a no-brainer,” she shares. “There are several Champagne houses that are within the city limits or it’s easy to arrange transportation to the surrounding vineyards and the town of Epernay, where visitors can walk along the appropriately named Avenue de Champagne and visit multiple Champagne houses for tours and tastings.”
Take a Trip toMaison Caillebotte or Auvers-sur-Oise
For art lovers, these two destinations are ideal day trips. “At Maison Caillebotte, you’ll find the home and gardens of Impressionist painter Gustave Caillebotte,” says Schwab. “There are rotating exhibits, a restaurant on site and it’s just 45 minutes from Paris on the commuter rail. “Auvers-sur-Oise is also 45 minutes by train and is best known as the town where Vincent Van Gogh spent the last months of his life. Visitors can see several of the landmarks he painted and visit his grave as well.”
Visit Beaune and Lyon
Two of Dearmon’s favorites for vinophiles turned honeymooners. “Take a romantic stroll through the old city in Beaune, before spending the day wine tasting in Burgundy,” she recommends. Also not to be missed while in Beaune: a leisurely lunch at 2-Michelin-starred Côte d’Or at Le Relais Bernard Loiseau. The famed 5-star hotel, which dates back to 1875, has welcomed guests like Edith Piaf, Charlie Chaplin, and Salvador Dali over the years and just completed a state-of-the-art spa renovation with multiple pools, hammams, and a VIP suite fit for twosomes. In addition to Beaune, Dearmon loves Lyon for its emblematic Lyonnaise cuisine, charming cobblestone alleyways, iconic traboules, and Renaissance architecture.
Can't Miss Romantic Experience: Climbing the Eiffel Tower is likely on every Paris-bound couple's itinerary, but for an incredible view of the Eiffel Tower, add the Montparnasse Tower to the list.
Where to Eat During Your Paris Honeymoon
It’s also worth making reservations when it comes to dining, especially if your eyes—or stomachs—are set on forefathers of romantic French dining like Epicure, Le Cinq, and Le Jules Verne. Here are a few of our expert's favorites:
Dearmon recommends Restaurant Lasserre to all of her discerning clients, saying anytime a restaurant has a 19th-century painted wooden ceiling that opens to the sky and over 160,000 bottles of wine in its cellar, there is a wow factor that makes it date-night worthy.
Also on Dearmon's highly-praised list: Apicius. “The lush garden and courtyard setting of this former private mansion is a perfect way to experience a Michelin-starred meal.
For those couples who prefer to dine indoors, the airy dining rooms feature beautiful chandeliers and interiors by François-Joseph Graf.” Berkson favors Le Derrière, a charming eatery in Le Marais. “It's upscale, and they have an inviting courtyard terrace that's cozy when temperatures warm up a bit—whether that be for lunch or dinner,” he recalls. “Expect French food in a trendy setting and the eccentric art collection inside will definitely catch your attention.”
La Crème de Paris
“In true French fashion, sweet-toothed couples should careen over to La Crème de Paris in the 9th arrondissement for superlative crepes,” says Berkson. “It's the ultimate après date-night dessert—and the Banana Nutella Crepe with a scoop of vanilla ice cream is always a good idea.”
Another unique idea for a honeymoon is Madame Brasserie, which, according to Schwab, recently opened on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower. “Celebrity chef Thierry Marx offers prix-fixe menus and it’s a memorable experience. For an even more romantic aspect, be sure to book the Paris View section when reserving so you can dine overlooking the lights of Paris.”
An outsized budget isn’t necessary for having a candlelit dinner to remember. Cléo turns out gorgeous, refined food at less-than-outrageous prices and the charming and dimly lit Viola is another with beautiful food at reasonable prices.
Café des Musées
"You have to do a classic French bistro, like Josephine Chez Dumonet or Café des Musées," says Moynihan, "both with Belle Epoque roots and classic dishes like beef bourguignon and sole meuniere (the dish that made Julia Child fall in love with French cooking)."
If you want dinner to take you on a little ride—literally—hop on board Le Bustronome, an actual bus with a restaurant inside that allows you to see Paris all lit up as you dine. And of course, there are multitudes of options on the river as well as beside it. Bottom line: It’s almost impossible not to feel seduced by the after-dark scene in the historic city.
Budgeting for Your Paris Honeymoon
Budgeting for a Paris honeymoon will depend on the season you're traveling to this European destination. Peak season, as mentioned above, is June through August, so our experts recommend that honeymooners book their trip during shoulder months like May and October when prices will be milder for flights and accommodations (you'll also avoid the heat and tourist crowds).
Before you book your trip, be sure to look at the euro-to-dollar exchange rate. Budgeting for a honeymoon in Paris is sort of akin to solving a Rubik's cube. Shuffling funds from one colored block (dining) to another (hotels) which are the hardest to align. If you're a splurge-loving couple, then the sky is the limit budget-wise—we're talking upwards of 10k for a week here, but if you like to live modestly (yet romantically) it's quite possible to get by on $150 per person a day (not including accommodations). By taking the metro in lieu of Ubers, visiting free or reasonably priced attractions, and dining at fast-casual restaurants instead of the culinary heavy hitters, Paris can actually be more affordable than you think.