Le-Meurice

Paris: The best things to see and do this summer

Explore the city of love - and discover the perfect hotel

Chloe Best

Paris is a beautiful and romantic city to visit at any time of year, but there is surely no better time to visit than the summer, when - weather-permitting - there is even more opportunity to explore the picturesque gardens, stroll along the Seine or simply sit pavement-side at one of the French capital's bustling bistros with a glass of vin rouge while watching the world go by.         

Although vast in its size, many of Paris' major landmarks can be explored on foot, with a walking tour taking in the sights of the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and Notre Dame Cathedral one of the most enjoyable ways to get around should you have the time and energy.

WHERE TO STAY:

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If you are just visiting for a short weekend break then you'll want to maximise your time in the city by booking a hotel that is centrally located and within walking distance of some of Paris' most iconic destinations. Le Meurice is the ideal choice for a true taste of Parisian luxury, just metres away from the Tuileries gardens, the Louvre museum and the river Seine. This five-star hotel dates back to 1835 and is part of the Dorchester Collection, which is synonymous with luxury and elegance, and it certainly lives up to its name; stars like Beyoncé and Jay Z, Kate Moss and Justin Bieber have all been known to all stay there during their trips to the French capital.

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Hotel rooms and suites are beautifully decorated, with their own individual decor and enviable vantage point across the Tuileries. With the Michelin-starred Alain Ducasse restaurant, the stunning Bar 228 and incredible spa all under one roof, you may well understandably be reluctant to leave, but your hotel room will still only be a short stroll away from many of Paris' most famous landmarks when you do manage to resist the allure of the incredibly inviting beds.

WHAT TO SEE:

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Whether you're a first time visitor to Paris or returning for the second, third or even twentieth time, there's nothing quite like seeing the Eiffel Tower's glittering light display on the hour, every hour from sunset until 1 or 2am. Enjoy a leisurely dinner at one of the city's many bistros before taking a walk over to Place de la Concorde, which is arguably one of the best spots to see the light show.

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Other must-visit sites during the summer include the Jardin du Luxembourg, located south of the river just a 15 minute walk away from Notre Dame. Here you will be able to explore or simply sunbathe in the perfectly manicured gardens, with the beautiful sight of the Luxembourg Palace in the background.

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Nature lovers will be enamoured by Jardins des Plantes, some 24 hectares of land dedicated to growing rare botanicals, with its very own zoo and museums at the centre. Or if you want to see the city skyline from up above, including the Eiffel Tower, you'll be hard pushed to find a better view than from Tour Montparnasse. Head there in the evening for the chance to see Paris while it is still light and also at sunset. Entry costs €17 (around £15) for an advance online ticket.

GETTING THERE:

Eurostar runs 14 services a day from St Pancras International to Paris Gare du Nord from £39 each way.

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