Explore the art, history, and joie de vivre of Paris during this cultural stay program showcasing the City of Light, where you'll enjoy insightful excursions and time to follow your own pursuits.

Starting at: $4,340 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The Eiffel Tower overlooking the Seine   Seine cruise in Paris  Traditional French breakfast or <i>petit-déjeuner</i>  Parisian cafe. Credit: Paris Tourist Office / Photographer Daniel Thierry  Relaxing in the Jardin des Tuileries. Credit: Paris Toursim Office, David Lefranc  The Tuileries gardens near the Louvre  Entrance to the Louvre, Paris  Stained glass windows in a medieval chapel, Paris. Credit: Vincent Cheng  The Hall of Mirrors at Versailles  The Palace of Versailles  Traditional square in Dijon, Burgundy

Paris

A One-Week Stay in France

9 days from $4,340

Explore the art, history, and joie de vivre of Paris during this cultural stay program showcasing the City of Light, where you'll enjoy insightful excursions and time to follow your own pursuits.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Our other tour members were an interesting mix of people with different backgrounds from around the country. We enjoyed spending time with everyone and now feel they are our new friends.

- Mary Anne K.

We really like the 'city break' concept. You get the best of both worlds: the study leaders (always excellent) and time on your own. And, as always with Smithsonian tours, wonderful travel companions.

- Previous Journeys Traveler

You can count on Smithsonian for quality and excellence. First class all the way! 

- Carolyn D.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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SPECIAL OFFER

Save $250 per person on both our 2019 and 2020 departures when you book by June 14, 2019!

Special Air Rates & Services: As part of our special air program, FlexAir, available with this tour, you can choose from a wide variety of flight options. Visit the Tour Details tab and click on "Special Air Rates/Services" drop down. 

Overview

Immerse yourself in Paris to get an intimate look at the City of Light. Cruise the Seine, enjoy lunch with a view at the Eiffel Tower, and imagine courtly life in Versailles while still having ample time to linger in leafy courtyards, browse through chic boutiques, and search for the best macarons. From navigating world-renowned art museums to sampling artisanal foods, expert lecturers and guides help you make the most of every experience. Through these moments and more, discover why so many people have lost their hearts to this enchanting city. 

Highlights Include 

  • Cultural Insights: Gain a deeper appreciation of Le Marais, the neighborhood that is your home for the week, on a walking tour that shows off the city’s medieval quarter. See Paris’ landmarks from a different perspective during a Seine River cruise. Enjoy lunch at the Eiffel Tower, see the Rodin Museum’s sculptures, and savor artisanal treats during a culinary tour. 

  • Day Excursions: Go beyond Paris to the Palace of Versailles and the Burgundian town of Dijon on special day excursions. 

  • Flexible Schedule and Museum Pass: Fill your time with activities or enjoy a more leisurely pace — it’s your choice! Experts provide background knowledge for afternoon explorations. Your two-day museum pass offers free and expedited entry to more than 60 city museums so you can choose your schedule and follow your passion! Plus, you’ll get around easily with a “carnet” of 10 Métro tickets, and your resident director is always available with information about other activities. 

Our other tour members were an interesting mix of people with different backgrounds from around the country. We enjoyed spending time with everyone and now feel they are our new friends.

- Mary Anne K.

We really like the 'city break' concept. You get the best of both worlds: the study leaders (always excellent) and time on your own. And, as always with Smithsonian tours, wonderful travel companions.

- Previous Journeys Traveler

You can count on Smithsonian for quality and excellence. First class all the way! 

- Carolyn D.

Itinerary

Day 1 — In Transit

Depart for Paris, France.

Day 2 — Paris

Arrive in Paris, transfer to the Hotel Les Jardins du Marais. Your Paris “home-away-from-home” is located in the heart of the Marais District and near many fascinating city highlights. During your stay, your Smithsonian Journeys Travel Director will be available to assist with independent arrangements, dining suggestions, or other “concierge” services you may wish. Each traveler will receive an informative Welcome Kit that contains city information and map.

Excursion: Welcome to Paris! Explore the neighborhood around your hotel during an orientation walk and get a briefing on the Metro, Paris’ subway system, from your Travel Director.

This evening, gather for a welcome reception at the hotel. The Smithsonian Journeys Expert will offer welcoming remarks. Afterward, dinner will be served at a popular Parisian bistro or brasserie. (R,D)

Day 3 — Paris

Excursion: Enjoy a full American-style buffet breakfast at the hotel each morning. After breakfast, stroll through Le Marais’ narrow streets. Learn about the history of the district as you walk by medieval houses and elegant mansions with courtyards and pretty gardens. See the ruins of the medieval city wall, its Jewish quarter, and the Place des Vosges. Then stop for a visit to the Musée Picasso Paris, which holds over 5,000 works of art, and enjoy a guided tour of this renowned landmark.

Independent Exploration: Spend the afternoon exploring on your own. You may wish to use your museum pass to visit some of Paris’ excellent museums, including the Musée d’Orsay and the Centre Pompidou.

This evening, savor a dinner featuring delectable French specialties at a popular Parisian restaurant. (B,D)

Day 4 — Versailles

Excursion: Depart Paris on an excursion to Versailles to visit the legendary and most opulent palace in France and a designated World Heritage Site. See the Hall of Mirrors where the Treaty of Versailles was signed. Prior to the French Revolution, Versailles was the political and cultural heart of France. Lunch will be served at a nearby bistro before you return to Paris.

Get-together with fellow travelers in Smithsonian Journeys Traveler’s Corner for lively conversation and an exchange of travel experiences.  (B,L)

Day 5 — Paris

Educational Focus: This morning, step back in time to World War II with a local speaker who will talk on the French Resistance and its fight to free the French people from Nazi control.

Excursion: Afterward, tour the famed Rodin Museum. The story of the Musée Rodin is as fascinating as the sculptor’s life and work. In the early 19th century, Rodin rented rooms at the Hôtel Biron, where Henri Matisse, Jean Cocteau, and many other members of Paris’ creative community also resided. The French government acquired the hotel from the owner, who lost the hotel because of financial reasons, and allowed Rodin to remain. He offered all his works to the state in exchange for living in the mansion and the creation of a studio, where young artists could be trained. The museum opened in 1919, two years after his death. Afterward, take the Metro across the Seine to the Eiffel Tower for lunch at 58 Tour Eiffel, a restaurant that offers splendid views of Paris. After lunch, there’s leisure time to explore the area around the Eiffel Tower.

Excursion: In the late afternoon, a cruise on the Seine River is planned. UNESCO has designated the banks of the Seine as a World Heritage Site. On this remarkable river journey, you’ll sail under many of the beautiful and historic bridges spanning the Seine including the Pont Royal, Pont Neuf, and Pont Des Artes, plus view the Musee d’Orsay  ​Notre Dame Cathedral (adjustment to the itinerary to come shortly)​, the ​Île St. LouisLouvre Museum and the from a different perspective. (B,L)

Day 6 — Dijon

Excursion: Travel at 200 miles-per-hour aboard France’s TGV train to the ancient Roman city of Dijon in France’s splendid Bourgogne region. An expert guide will introduce you to the historic city center and to the sights and heritage of this fascinating city. Luncheon will be served at the Hôtel Malateste a historic mansion that has been in the same family for many generations.

Independent Exploration: There’s time to explore Dijon on your own before boarding the train for the trip back to Paris.

In the early evening, get together with fellow travelers in Smithsonian Journeys Traveler’s Corner for lively conversation and an exchange of travel experiences. (B,L)

Day 7 — Paris

Excursion: You’re in for a treat today! On a morning tour, you’ll discover the many flavors of France on an excursion that will initiate you to the delights of French gastronomy in an area of Paris that was historically the city’s Market Garden near the Champs de Mars and Eiffel Tower. Ernest Hemingway famously said that Paris is a “moveable feast” and on this culinary walking tour, you’ll sample a basketful of delightful French food specialties. 

Independent Exploration: Craft your own itinerary during an afternoon at leisure. Shop at Paris’ legendary department stores or revel in the pace of local life at a sidewalk café.​ (B)

Day 8 — Paris

Independent Exploration: With your Paris Museum Pass in hand, explore the iconic Louvre Museum or the famed Musée d’Orsay. Follow your own path and explore the city at your own pace.

Tonight, join new friends and fellow Smithsonian Journeys travelers and raise a raise a glass to your Paris adventure at a festive farewell dinner. (B,R,D)

Day 9 — Depart for the U.S.

Transfer to the airport for the return flights to your gateway city(B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)