Discover Paris champs élysées all you need to know before visiting Paris. what to see in champs elysees paris ? what is champs elysees in paris ?

What to see in champs élysées Paris ?

Welcome to the Avenue des Champs-Elysees, once described as “the most beautiful avenue in the world” and it’s probably the most famous too. You might think of the Champs-Elysees as crowded, touristy and full of traffic. That may be true, but times are changing. The city plans to turn the street into an “extraordinary garden”, reducing traffic by half and tackling air pollution. But for now, let’s find out more about this famous street.

Tuileries Gardens

The origins of the Champs-Elysees go back to the famous French king, Louis XIV, and his desire to make a beautiful extension to the Tuileries gardens here at the eastern tip of the avenue. The Tuileries are a highlight in themselves, home to the Orangerie Museum where you can see Monet’s famous water lilies. The Grand-Cours, as it was known back in the 17th century, was renamed the Champs-Elysees, or Elysian Fields, which might have actually been a joke, as it used to be swampy marshland.


Place de la Concorde, Fontaine des Mers

To begin your stroll up the Champs-Elysees, start here at the Place de la Concorde. It’s the second largest square in the country, and during the Terror of the French Revolution over 1,200 people were guillotined here, including Marie Antoinette and Maximilien Robespierre. There are two extraordinary fountains on either side, one representing the sea and the other representing rivers. 


Place de la Concorde, Obelisk

It’s impossible not to notice the jewel in the square, the 23 metres high, 3,000 year old Egyptian obelisk. It was discovered in Luxor, in Egypt, and exchanged for a mechanical clock. While the dazzling golden-tipped obelisk takes pride and place here in the square, that clock was broken on arrival and never got fixed. 

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Jardin des Champs-Elysees, in between Petit Palais and Grand Palais

As you walk west, you’ll find a park with monuments, statues as well as plenty of quiet places. With the Invalides to the south, you can come here and stand in between these two breathtaking buildings built for the 1900 World’s Fair, the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais. While the Grand Palais is an exhibition hall and also houses a science museum, the Petit Palais is a magnificent art museum.


Stores champs Elysées

The Champs-Elysees is famous for its shopping, and you can find every brand you can think of here. It’s the most prestigious place a company could have an outlet, and that’s part of the reason there is almost no residential property here, the rents are astronomical. 


Walking along the avenue 

Some of France’s most important celebrations happen right here on this street. Every year it’s home to the world-famous Bastille Day parade on the 14th of July, and it was here that millions of Frenchmen and women gathered together to celebrate Les Bleus triumph in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. It’s also the final stop in the world famous cycling championship, the Tour de France.

The Champs-Elysee avenue is also famous for being home to some of Paris’ best bars and nightclubs. Make sure to come to one of the many terrasses on a night out for some of the best night-time views of the city.


Arc de Triomphe 

When you finally reach the end, you reach the star of the Champs-Elysees, l’Arc de Triomphe. It was commissioned in 1806 on the orders of the great general Napoleon Bonaparte to celebrate his military victories. 

This incredible monument is full of symbolism, from the twelve different avenues emanating from the roundabout it sits on to the names of the French victories and generals from the Napoleonic Wars honoured on the structure. You can enter the museum and pass underneath to get right up close as well as to see the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.