I love Paris so very much. No. That's not enough. It needs all caps. I LOVE PARIS SO VERY MUCH!!
I have to admit initially I was not a fan. My friend Meg and I went as a part of a Iceland, Amsterdam, Brussels, Paris trip and while the company was delightful, I just don't think we did things the right way.
As I've traveled I've discovered a secret when traveling cities that attract loads of tourists. Are you ready?
MAKE SURE YOU GO ON A TOUR WITH A GUIDE ON DAY 1. MAKE SURE THE GUIDE IS A LOCAL OR THE COMPANY PERSON IS VERY HIGHLY RATED.
I have several options for great local guides. My good friends Alex Kaiser and Marie Dubbuison and absolutely fantastic guides. Both are native Parisians and have what seems to be an endless knowledge of art, history, and culture. What's more they give super FUN tours. You won't be bored at all I promise. They both do custom tours or have ready made tours and you will have the time of your life plus they will be happy to give you advice for the rest of your time in Paris (including where to eat). Alex
When a city rises in popularity the biggest attractions and the places featured in popular tourist books often get overhyped (and WAY overcrowded which also significantly decreases one's enjoyment. This applies to London, to Paris, to Rome, Barcelona for sure.
So if you are going in key tourist season (May-August) do not do more than 1 major tourist attraction a day. You will spend so much time in line and it will feel wasted. In fact you may want to consider skipping the attraction all together. For instance DO NOT bother climbing the Eiffel Tower. You can go to the museum campus near the tower, take your signature photos, or better yet grab some delicious wine, cheese, bread and meat and have a picnic near it (bonus points for a romantic evening picnic). But I tell people to skip it because there are other places in Paris with better views where you can actually SEE the Eiffel Tower. Plus advance tickets are extremely difficult to get online, and even with them you still have to wait in the long line for the elevator. If you do want to do it buy tickets online if you can and if you want some excercise and to avoid lines take the stairs. Trust me with the delicious food you'll be eating this isn't the worst idea in the world.