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10 tours that you should make in Paris during the 2016 European Heritage Days


  • Event

Each year, during the 3rd weekend of September, the European Heritage Days take place, which allow you to discover the treasures of European heritage.

Many heritage sites are recognized, and this is the time to take the opportunity to visit the places that are closed to the public the rest of the year, or to visit iconic sites.

We have selected 10 tours that you should not miss this weekend:

Set out on your discovery tour from Paris’ 1st arrondissement, and begin with the Louvre’s Jardin de l’Infante (garden of the princess), which will be open to the public for the first time on September 18, 2016 from 3:00 to 4:30, for a special (and free!) visit. Located between the Louvre and the Seine, this garden takes its name from the ephemeral fiancée of Louis XV and has many stories to tell, which you can count on during this visit. Remember that the number of spots for this visit is limited, so make sure to reserve yours!
The neighborhood of the Halles has been undergoing a complete transformation for a number of years, but do you know its history? Join an organized tour in the heart of the Halles on September 17, and discover its history and its development. You can visit the new gardens, the cemetery of the Innocents, and the astronomic tower of Catherine de Medici. Registration is already open, and the visit costs €3 per person (free for those under 18).
One of the largest institutions of France is found in the 7th arrondissement of Paris: the Assemblée Nationale. It is in the Palais Bourbon, and for European Heritage days, it is opening its doors to the public. This is the opportunity to see the Hôtel de Lassay, which is adjacent to the Palais Bourbon. It is also the official residence of the president of the Assemblée Nationale.
Visit the Place de l‘Etoile to see the Arc de Triomphe and learn about its history. This visit is free. The edifice is open to the public from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The view from the Arc de Triomphe is well worth the visit; it gives you an excellent vantage point over the twelve avenues that radiate out from the Etoile and into Paris.
For European Heritage Days, the Republican Guard will open the Célestins district (the staff headquarters) to the public. During this visit, you can discover the unique talents of the Republican Guard and admire the roof of the structure of the armory, created by Gustave Eiffel.
Continue your adventure of discovery of Parisian Heritage, of which the metro is an integral part, by visiting the head office of the RATP. From Saturday at 10:00 a.m., you can see: “The treasures and secrets of the Paris metro”, then strike a pose at the back of a mythical bus from the 30s and leave with your souvenir. Take advantage of the many fun activities that are available for the whole family!
In the south of the 14th arrondissement, you have a choice between:
  • The flea market of Vanves: 380 merchants await you along Avenue Marc-Sangnier and Avenue Georges-Lafenestre, and/or
  • The Cité Internationale Universitaire: the various buildings of the cité help you to learn about their culture through the arts. Don’t miss Mexico, Argentina and Norway.

In the heart of the 19th arrondissment, visit the Philharmonie de Paris to discover La Cité de la Musique and the Musée de la Musique. There you can see the collections of musical instruments and objects of art dating from the 17th century until today. In addition, don't miss the mini concerts that the museum presents, and especially, on Saturday, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., concerts with the theme of French and Spanish music.
Visit the heart of Boulogne-Billancourt, and you will discover two unusual museums:
  • The Paul-Belmondo Museum exhibits an exceptional collection of sculptures, designs and medals created by the artist, who is one of the last classical grand sculptors of the XXth century. A guided tour is scheduled for Saturday the 17th at 2:30 p.m. Don’t miss it!
  • The museum of the 30s, entirely devoted to those crazy years, exhibits the art from the years between-the-wars. From Saturday September 17, you can participate in a number of unusual visits organized for the Heritage Days.

Find all of the schedules on the official site of the European Heritage Days.

Paris Republican guard