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: $4,290 Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The Eiffel Tower overlooking the Seine   Notre Dame Cathedral, along the Seine River  Gargoyle from Notre Dame looking out over Paris  Traditional French breakfast or <i>petit-déjeuner</i>  Parisian cafe. Credit: Paris Tourist Office / Photographer Daniel Thierry  The Tuileries gardens near the Louvre  Relaxing in the Jardin des Tuileries. Credit: Paris Toursim Office, David Lefranc  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 $4,290

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 off of the 2019 departures when you book by December 7, 2018!

Overview

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. View Special Air Rates/Services to learn more.

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. 

*Please note: The October 14, 2018, and all 2019 departures, accommodations will be at the Les Jardins du Marais. 

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.

2018 Itinerary

Day 1 — Depart the U.S.

Depart the U.S. on an overnight flight to Paris, France.

Day 2 — Paris

Arrive in Paris and transfer to your hotel which is located close to fine shopping, the Paris Opera Garnier, the Louvre and many interesting city highlights. During your stay, your Smithsonian Journeys Travel Director will be available to assist with independent sightseeing arrangements, dinner and shopping suggestions. Depart the hotel with your travel director who will show you around the neighborhood. This evening Smithsonian Journeys travelers will gather for a welcome reception with their Smithsonian Journeys Expert. Enjoy opening remarks followed by dinner at a popular Parisian brassiere.​ (R,D) 

Day 3 — Paris

Enjoy a full buffet breakfast each morning at the hotel. Embark on a guided visit to the famed Rodin Museum. 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, a cruise is planned on the Seine River. The banks of the Seine are a designated World Heritage site. On this remarkable river, you’ll see Notre Dame Cathedral, the Ile St. Louis, the Louvre Museum, and the French Institute. This evening gather for dinner with fellow Smithsonian Journeys travelers at a popular restaurant. (B,L,D)

Day 4 — Paris

Explore the many flavors of Paris today on an excursion that introduces you to French gastronomy. Paris is known as a “moveable feast” and on this culinary walking tour, you’ll sample a basketful of delightful French delicacies. Later, attend a private lecture that will take you back to the days of WWII. Learn how the Parisians survived the dark years of the occupation from 1940-1944. Hear the stories of the Gestapo, the heroic, enigmatic Resistance and the joyous Liberation on August 25, 1944. (B) 

Day 5 — Paris and Dijon

Travel at 200 miles per hour aboard France’s TGV high-speed train to the city of Dijon in Bourgogne. An expert guide will introduce you to the historic city center and to the sights and heritage of this charming city. Luncheon will be served at a historic home in Dijon. There’s time to explore on your own before boarding the train for the trip back to Paris. (B,L)

Day 6 — Paris

With your Paris Museum Pass in hand, explore the iconic Louvre Museum on your own. Dinner this evening will be served at a popular restaurant. (B,D)

Day 7 — Paris

This morning travel to the Marais neighborhood where you’ll meet a local expert guide for a walking tour of this historic district. Explore the artistic and cultural heart of Paris in this neighborhood known for its historic Jewish community. Stop at a bistro in the Marais for lunch with fellow travelers. The afternoon is at leisure. Take advantage of the included Museum Pass to explore the Musee D’Orsay at your own pace. Gather with fellow travelers in Smithsonian Journeys Traveler’s Corner for lively conversation and an exchange of travel experiences. (B,L)

Day 8 — Paris and Versailles

Depart Paris by train for the trip to Versailles to visit the most famous and 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 center of France. An expert local guide will offer fascinating narrative during the tour. Luncheon will be served at a bistro nearby. After returning to Paris, gather for a farewell dinner at a select Parisian restaurant. (B,L,D)

Day 9 — Depart for the U.S.

Depart the hotel and transfer to the Charles de Gaulle Airport for return flights to the U.S. (B)

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

2019 Itinerary

Day 1 — In Transit

Depart for Paris, France.

Day 2 — Paris

Arrive in Paris and transfer to the Hotel Les Jardins du Marais. 

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. 

Join your fellow travelers at a welcome reception and dinner. (R,D)

Day 3 — Paris

Excursion: Le Marais. 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

Independent Exploration: Spend the afternoon exploring on your own. The city is filled with historic landmarks and world-class shopping. You may wish to use your museum pass to visit some of Paris’ excellent museums, including the Musée d’Orsay and the Centre Pompidou(B)

Day 4 — Versailles

Excursion: Versailles. Visit France’s grandest palace on a guided tour. The baroque chateau was France’s political capital and seat of the royal court from 1682-1789. Step back in time and walk in the footsteps of kings, queens, and courtiers. The Treaty of Versailles, which ended World War I, was signed in the famous Hall of Mirrors.

Enjoy lunch at a nearby bistro before returning to Paris.

This evening, savor a dinner featuring delectable French specialties. 

Day 5 — Paris

Educational Focus: World War II Paris. Learn about occupied Paris from a local expert. Hear about the people who formed the Resistance and stories of their fight to free France from German control. 

Excursion: Musée Rodin. Admire the work of the talented sculptor Auguste Rodin. 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. Take the Métro to the Eiffel Tower. There, enjoy lunch at 58 Tour Eiffel and marvel at a view of the city from the first-floor restaurant. 

Excursion: Paris by Boat. Cruise the Seine River for a different perspective of Paris. See Notre Dame Cathedral, Île St. Louis, the Louvre Museum, and the French Institute. End your cruise near the Musée d’Orsay. (B,L)

Day 6 — Dijon

Excursion: Dijon. Take the high-speed train to this ancient Roman city, which continues to blossom with each passing age. Stroll through the Old Town, known for its grand homes, and see the archaeology museum inside an ancient monastery. Gather for lunch at a historic mansion in Dijon. The owners of this elegant home, which has remained in the same family for several generations, greet you and share some tales of events that took place here. 

Independent Exploration: Enjoy some time at leisure in Dijon before returning to Paris(B,L)

Day 7 — Paris

Excursion: Flavors of France. Step into the world of French gastronomy in the neighborhood next to the Champs-de-Mars. It’s only fitting that this food journey takes place in the area that was Paris’ 16th-century market garden! With an expert leading the way, discover several of the city’s best artisan-made foods. From cheese to charcuterie, taste your way through France’s culinary heritage. 

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: Visit the Louvre and Paris’ other museums at your leisure with your museum pass. If you prefer to see more of the city, stroll along the Seine, visit the Tuileries Gardens, or relax in the Luxembourg GardensYou may also wish to visit the Latin Quarterso named because the neighborhood has been the intellectual hub of Paris for centuries. 

Tonight, join your fellow travelers to raise a toast to your Paris adventure at a farewell dinner. (B,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)