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Top 10 Free Things to Do in Paris

Paris Insider Guides Budget Travel
by Alessandra Kim Jul 29, 2008
Although you can spend a ton of money in Paris, there is plenty to enjoy for free. Follow these examples from native Parisians.
1. Couscous at Le Grenier

The couscous is complimentary for drinking patrons. Enjoy it all while listening to jazz or manouche in this lovable dive bar. Its location in the lively Oberkampf neighborhood makes it a good starting point for checking out the local scene.

152 rue Oberkampf, 11e. Tel. +33 [0]1 48 05 13 52

2. Student concerts at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris

One of the most prestigious music conservatories in Europe, its students stage free concerts throughout the year.

209 avenue Jean-Jaurès, 19e. Tel: +33 (0)1 40 40 46 47

3. Organ concert at the Saint-Eustache Church

Housing one of the largest organs in the world, Saint-Eustache is where Mozart held the funeral for his mother. Free concerts every Sunday at 5:30 pm.

2, rue du Jour, 1e.

4. Musée Carnavalet

Housed in two mansions in the trendy Marais district, this gorgeous museum chronicles the history of Paris from its founding to modern day. Admission to the permanent collection is always free.

23, rue de Sévigné, 3e. Tel: +33 (0)1 44 59 58 58

5. Rock and Electro Concerts at La Flèche d’Or

This bar/restaurant/club is in an old train station with windows overlooking the defunct tracks. One of the first venues to open in the Ménilmontant neighborhood, it still may be the coolest. Free admission from 8:00pm to 2:00am.

102 bis, rue de Bagnolet, 20e. Tel: +33 (0)1 44 64 01 02

6. Place des Vosges

The oldest square in Paris, you can lounge on the grass, listen to the street musicians, browse the art galleries and even visit the home of Victor Hugo where he wrote many of his works, including Les Misérables. Admission is always free.

6, place des Vosges, 4e. Tel. +33 (0)1 42 72 10 16

7. Le Showcase

A hot new nightspot with live jazz and rock is in the unexpected location under the stunning Alexandre III bridge. President Sarkozy has reportedly already had a few parties there. Admission is free before midnight.

Pont Alexandre III, Port des Champs Élysées, 82. Tel: +33 (0)1 45 61 25 43

8. Fashion shows at Galleries Lafayette

To many, Paris is synonymous with fashion and the quintessential Paris departmen store, Galleries Lafayette has a free fashion show every Friday at 3:00pm on the 7th floor.

Reservations are a must: email or call +33 (0)1 42 82 36 40. 40, boulevard Haussmann, 9e.

9. Père-Lachaise Cemetery

Wander around the grounds of the most famous cemetery in the world and pay your respects to Edith Piaf, Oscar Wilde, Chopin, Colette, Molière, Modigliani, Georges Seurat, Sarah Bernhardt, Gertrude Stein, Jim Morrison and many, many more.

16 rue du Repos, 20e. Tel: +33 (0)1 55 25 82 10

10. Radio France Concerts

Radio France presents free classical concerts on Sunday afternoons at the Petit Palais auditorium. Tickets are distributed 30 minutes before concerts.

116 av. du Président Wilson, 16e. Tel: +33 [0]1 56 40 15 16

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