Between place de l’Étoile and Concorde, the avenue des Champs Elysées is the emblematic portion of a line of perspective that runs through the city of Paris, from the La Défense financial district all the way up to the Louvre.
The place de la Concorde is only closed on one side, to the north, by two monumental palaces; a superb perspective towards the Champs-Elysées is therefore preserved, and from the Obelisk, placed on the exact axis of the avenue, you’re perfectly placed to take advantage of the extraordinary view. Be sure to take a look at night, when the lights of the “most beautiful avenue in the world” are ablaze.
Even though they were built relatively late in the city’s history, the Champs Elysées are one of the most important symbols of Paris today. They have existed in their current state since the middle of the 19th century, evolving into one of the prime symbols of luxury and chic in the 20th century. However, of this reputation, not much remains today: instead, the modern Champs-Elysées are above all a commercial axis, where the biggest names in clothing and fast food coexist. If you want to walk along the Champs Elysées, we suggest the first part, from Concorde until the roundabout. Finish your walk in the English gardens, a little haven of peace in the city center. Over the course of this walk, you’ll pass the Petit Palais and the Grand Palais, as well as beautiful squares filled with statues and fountains. To avoid crowds, head immediately to the Arc de Triomphe after the walk.
Napoleon wanted this monument to be of “colossal grandeur, so that any traveler entering Paris would be overcome with admiration.” There’s no doubt of his success! Before heading to the terrace and witnessing the incomparable view over Paris, be sure to procure a guide, which will allow you to identify the different sculpted allegories on the arch. Situated in the middle of the axis connecting the Louvre to la Défense, the Arc de Triomphe is, today, the connecting point between historical and modern Paris, the center point between the older Arch at the Louvre and the newest one at la Défense.
Discover the Champs Elysées during the winter holidays, when they’re illuminated by Christmas decorations, or attend the parade for Bastille Day on July 14th. Both will leave you with lifelong memories!
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Highly recommend. Private tour is a great way to get more personalized insights on Paris history. Guide was very knowledgeable. Will definitely use again.
We have done several tours with Localers and they are definitely worth the money! We are pretty independent travelers, but there is no substitute for local knowledge. Localers has the best guides!
I did 2 tours with Localers and would enthusiastically do more when I return to Paris. The main reason is the quality of the tours themselves, the fact they are authentic experiences, and you learn so much!
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