One of the best value and most convenient ways to see the sights of Paris is with the Paris Pass and other Paris cards like the Paris Museum Pass.

Here’s why:

The Paris Museum Pass

It is previously known as Carte Musées et Monuments, which is a pre-paid entry card that allows entry into over 70 museums and monuments around Paris. They include all the best things to do in Paris.

The pass comes in 2-day (€52), 4-day (€66) and 6-day (€78) denominations (prices as of August 2020). Note these are consecutive days (you can buy the pass here). The card allows you to jump otherwise sometimes lengthy queues and is available from participating museums, tourist offices, Fnac branches and all the main Métro and RER train stations. You will still need to pay to enter most special exhibitions.

For best results and to avoid having to wait in the first long queue to purchase the Museum Pass, stop to purchase your pass at one of the smaller museums or sites covered, or at one of the non-museum purchase points. 

The day you purchase the pass or pick it up at one of the locations does not have to count as one of the days; you specify on the pass the first date of use, and the days covered are consecutive after that. 

Do not write your start date until you are certain you will use the pass that day. Be careful to use the European date style as indicated on the card (day/month/year).

Note that most museums and galleries are closed on either Monday or Tuesday – check ahead to avoid disappointment! – and most ticket counters close 30 – 45 minutes before final closing. Louvre museum is closed on Tuesdays while Orsay museum is closed on Mondays, good to know when setting visit plans.

The Louvre in Paris, France
The Louvre in Paris, France

The Paris Pass

Also consider the Paris Pass (you can purchase one here) also a pre-paid entry card and queue jumping to 60 attractions including The Louvre, The Arc de Triomphe, as well as a river cruise and allows free metro & public transport travel.

Also note a cheaper alternative with this new combined pass available is the Paris Combo Pass, which comes in Lite/Premium versions. All national museums are open free of charge on the first Sunday of the month; note, however, that this may mean long lines and crowded exhibits.

Keep away from Paris during Easter week. It’s really crowded! People have to queue up at the Eiffel tower for several hours. Entry to the permanent exhibitions at city-run museums is free at all times (admission is charged for temporary exhibitions).

The Arc de Triomphe with the Paris Pass
The Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France

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  • Bridget Langer