01 Dec The Best Christmas Photo Spots in Paris
Are you looking for the best places take photos in Paris during Christmas? I got you covered! Christmas season is really a great moment to visit Paris! The city is really magical with its Christmas trees, dazzling lights and Santa vibes everywhere! There are many places that are decorated for the occasion: main squares and streets, Christmas markets, department stores windows, store facades… Therefore I am gifting you this guide with all the places you should not miss: the Best Christmas Photo Spots in Paris! Take a look at this list and you will know all the most instagrammable Christmas places in Paris!
The festivities are starting from mid-November until the very first days of January. If you have planned a trip to Paris during this time, discover here the best Christmas decorations and the best Christmas trees in Paris!
Place Vendôme is one of the fanciest squares in Paris and one of the best Christmas photo spots in Paris! In fact you can find here the world’s great jewellery brands and also the Ritz, a stunning 5 star hotel. Every year from November to beginning of January, a couple of huge lighted Christmas trees stand on the 4 corners of the square: some of the best Christmas trees and Christmas decorations in Paris! The facades of the fancy boutiques all around the square are also decorated with Christmas trees and lights. It create the perfect Christmas set-up!
Location: Place Vendôme
Galeries Lafayette’s flagship store is turning into a real Winter Wonderland during Christmas season! Christmas is a major tradition for the luxury department store located in Boulevard Haussmann, inside and outside. Read below all the reasons why it has to be part of the best Christmas spots in Paris!
Location: Galeries Lafayette Haussmann
Christmas tree in Galeries Lafayette
Every year the unveiling of the Christmas tree of Galeries Lafayette is a huge event! If you walk inside the Galeries Lafayette Haussmann during the festive season from mid November, you will discover a huge sparkling Christmas tree hanging from the gorgeous Art Nouveau dome. The theme and the style of the Christmas tree is different every time. This year in 2021 it’s “1, 2, 3, Christmas! “. Santa Claus is hanging around the Christmas tree dressed up as an astronaut and a giant blue geeky rabbit is the masterpiece of the christmas tree ornaments! As a reference (as you can see in the pictures), in 2019 the theme was the Christmas beehive, and in 2020 it was all about travel.
Every 30 minutes a light and sound show creates some magic around the Christmas tree! It’s playing on the hour and on the half hour from 10am to 8pm. This is one of the most beautiful Christmas trees in Paris!
The Glasswalk in Galeries Lafayette
If you want to get an extraordinary view over this Christmas tree and the whole departement store, you have to go to the Glasswalk! Located on the third floor of the main store, this 9-metre long walkway suspended 16 metres high in mid-air, will get you right into the middle of the dome and the very top of the tree! This experience is highly instagrammable for sure!
FYI: this year in 2021 the Glasswalk is unfortunately closed to the public. But you can enjoy a dedicated photo area to capture the christmas tree on the left side of the Glasswalk on the 3rd floor.
My secret tips: what you need to know before taking photos on the Glasswalk. You will be able to access the Glasswalk with a group of 10-15 people so taking pictures will be a challenge! Therefore to be more successful, I recommend you to be the first in your group to access the walkway or the last one to leave before the next group. The Glasswalk is open all year long but it’s more busy during Christmas time. People are even starting to queue in front of the Glasswalk before the 10am (opening especially during the weekends).
More info: Glasswalk Galeries Lafayette
Christmas windows in Galeries Lafayette
The facades and windows of the department store are completely decorated and illuminated. Every day during the holiday season, a crowd of people (especially families) are pressing themselves to watch the whimsical and stylish creations in the window displays! These Christmas windows are a must see if you are in Paris for the holiday!
The theme is different each year and some talented artists are working to create a magical installation to wow the visitors. In 2019 for example the store is turning into a Christmas beehive. Whereas in 2020 the theme was around travel and in 2021 it’s modern and high-tech.
Giant Roller-skating rink in Galeries Lafayette
Galeries Lafayette Haussmann is innovating in 2021 in partnership with Disney + with the creation of a giant roller skating rink on the 4th floor! Here you can dance and roll to the exciting rhythms of the best Disney musics. It’s free and accessible for all from December 1st to December 23rd. You can sign in directly at the department store and book your spot for the day of your visit!
In 2019, Galeries Lafayette went the extra mile and built a 160 square-metre 160 square-metre ice rink on the store’s rooftop terrace. It was open every day from 10am to 8pm and accessible to all visitors for free during 20 minutes. Additionally you can enjoy from here a fantastic view over Paris overlooking Boulevard Haussmann, the Opera Garnier and even the Eiffel Tower! In 2021, the rooftop terrace is open to the public but there is no ice-skating rink.
More info: the Terrace at Galeries Lafayette
The Christmas Market in the Tuileries Garden
From the 15th of November until the 5th of January, a wonderful Christmas market stands in the Tuilerie garden. This beautiful park located close to the Louvre museum will be animated with wooden chalets and Christmas lights for the greatest joy of locals and tourists, with or without kids! This is the biggest Christmas market in Paris: 13 to 15 million visitors are visiting it during the season!
Let me tell you what you can find in this Christmas market:
- Crafts and gift ideas, for example 10 French craftsmen (cabinetmaker, glass blower…) and designers from Paris are selling their products
- Entertainments and merry-go-rounds such as flying chairs, a ghost train, mazes, a train, a Ferris wheel and a skating rink
- Tasty food with gastronomy coming from all over France: there is a gourmet market with 20 cabins gathering 20 French regions, a Wine Bar and several restaurants.
Location: Jardin des Tuileries
Opening hours: The market is open from Monday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 12:45 a.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. But it’s open only from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on December 25 and 31.
The entrance is free! You should absolutely walk around here: it’s the best Christmas market in Paris!
Village Royal is a chic passageway in Paris filled with luxury retailers. Every year they decorate this little village for Christmas and it’s very pleasant to walk around!
This year in 2021, like in 2019, they have set up the cutest teddy bear Christmas sculptures: a big one with a bench in front of it and a smaller one carrying red balloons. They are absolutely adorable and unique in Paris! It’s one of my very favorites and one of the prettiest Christmas decorations in Paris!
Location: Village Royal – Cité Berryer
More info: Village Royal
Le Bon Marché
Le Bon Marché (Rive Gauche) is one of the most nicely decorated department stores of Paris! The white-tiled escalators you have in the background are really outstanding with their unique design. And when you add all the hanging Christmas trees, it’s even better! That’s why you should put Le Bon Marché on your list if you want to see the best Christmas decorations in Paris!
This department store will please the fashionistas, the home decorating addict and the foodies with the Gourmet market on the first floor La Grande Epicerie!
Opening hours: Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday/Saturday 10am – 8pm, Thursday 10am – 7:45pm, Sunday 11am – 7:45pm
Location: Le Bon Marché
More info: Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche
Galerie Vivienne is one of the most beautiful covered arcades in Paris! It was built in 1823. You will find there beautiful Christmas decorations during the festive season! But the mosaics on the ground and the glass roof are also amazing. It had to be inside my guide of the best Christmas photo spots in Paris!
The passage is filled with boutiques like fashion designers and old bookstores. If you are a foodie, the gourmet food and wine shops will please you. On top of that, you can also restore yourself in one of the three restaurants.
My secret tips: What you need to know before taking photos here. The entrance of the Galerie is free. But it’s a private place and you need an authorization to do a photoshoot here. Therefore make sure to take your photos quickly or you might get kicked out!
Location: Galerie Vivienne
Opening hours: 8:30am to 8:30pm (closed on Sundays)
More info: Galerie Vivienne
Place Maurice Barrès/ Rue St Honoré
Since 2020 this is one of the most popular places to see beautiful Christmas decorations in Paris! Place Maurice Barrès in the 1st arrondissement is not famous as such, but around it you will find some luxury boutiques like Dior St Honoré and Chanel, and also a beautiful Roman Catholic church named Eglise Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption. Comité du Faubourg St Honoré has set up here a magical giant hot air balloon for the holidays. This hot-air balloon is illuminated as well as the façade of Dior and it’s stunning!
As you can imagine this Christmas decoration is highly instagrammable and is a must to visit! Rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré and rue St Honoré are also all lit up so you will enjoy strolling in this fancy neighborhood!
My secret tip for your photos: the hot air balloon is illuminated from 10am.
Location: Place Maurice Barrés
The facade of Louis Vuitton in Place Vendôme
Louis Vuitton’s very first store is located in the luxurious Place Vendôme. Louis Vuitton Maison Vendôme occupies two historic hôtel particuliers designed in 1714. Each year the beautiful facade is decorated for Christmas.
This year in 2021, (like in 2017, 2019 and 2020) the luxury brand has set up a unique decoration: a giant golden sun streaming spiralling metal rays. It’s extraordinary and highly photogenic! It’s different from the usual Christmas facade ornaments, but this sun sculpture is one of the best Christmas decorations in Paris!
FYI, in 2018 a quirky Christmas tree was implemented on the building. This tree didn’t look like the traditional Christmas pine tree but more like a magical weeping willow!
Location: Louis Vuitton Maison Vendôme
Avenue des Champs Elysées
I don’t need to introduce you to the Champs-Elysées, the world’s most beautiful avenue! This iconic avenue is a must-see during the holiday, not only to do some Christmas shopping or have a look at the famous Arc de Triomphe, but also to enjoy the Christmas decorations! The trees lining up the avenue are adorned with red LED lights from November 21, 2021 to January 9, 2022. These are for sure some of the best Christmas lights in Paris!
Location: Avenue des Champs Elysées
Avenue Montaigne is connecting the Champs-Elysées to the Alma Bridge. It is one of the most exclusive and luxurious arteries in Paris! This glamorous street is illuminated with thousands of lights during the holiday season. It’s really a beautiful scenery! I recommend walking here at night: you will enjoy some of the most beautiful Christmas decorations and Christmas lights in Paris!
Location: Avenue Montaigne
The facade of Dior in Avenue Montaigne
The facade of the birthplace of the house of Dior in Paris located in the 30 of Avenue Montaigne is usually amazingly decorated from sidewalk to eaves for the holiday season!
For example, in 2018 the facade was adorned with a huge and luxuriant white lighted Christmas tree populated with a menagerie of wild animals (such as giraffes, monkeys, tigers and birds). But the installation was really different in 2017: it was dedicated to the Cruise 2018 collection, with impressive hot air balloons! Unfortunately since 2019, the historical store is under renovation so the facade is covered. The good news: it will get three times bigger when they will reopen!
Update in 2021: the facade is still under renovation unfortunately 🙁
Location: Dior avenue Montaigne
Four Seasons Hotel George V
Located near the Champs Élysées and the Arc de Triomphe, the Four Seasons Hotel George V is a 5-Star hotel. Built in 1928 this luxurious place is offering a beautiful art-deco architecture in the 8th arrondissement.
For the holiday season the hotel is full of festive vibes with stunning Christmas decorations. In fact, in 2019 they built a Christmas dome of lights in their courtyard. Entering there was like entering a fairy tale bubble!
And in 2020 they opened a gastronomic Christmas pop-up boutique managed by Michael Bartocetti, the Hotel’s pastry chef, and Eric Beaumard, second best sommelier in the world. You will find here a great selection of refined pastries and fantastic wines, perfect for a gift or to treat yourself! It’s open every day from 12:30 to 19:00 until Jan 10, 2021.
There is always a good reason to visit the Four Seasons Hotel George V at Christmas, one of the best places for sure!
Location: Four Seasons Hotel George V
Hôtel de Ville
Every year a Christmas village is set up in front of the Hôtel de Ville, the town hall of Paris. Until beginning of January, you can find here a mini-Christmas market, carousels for kids, and even a climbing wall! Also, when the night comes, a little video show is projected on the façade of the Hôtel de Ville. It’s a nice place to enjoy some Christmas decorations in Paris!
Location: Hôtel de Ville
The Panthéon is located in the Latin Quarter (in the 5th arrondissement) in Paris. It’s the Temple of the French Nation and the Great Men who have made the history of France. It dates back to the end on the 18th century and its architecture is quite impressive! Therefore, it’s one of the most iconic landmarks in Paris!
And every year for the holidays the entrance of the Panthéon is decorated with some twenty Christmas trees all around. These trees are 3 to 6 meters high so you cannot miss them! They are part of the best Christmas trees in Paris!
Location: Place du Panthéon
More info: Panthéon
If you would like to see some pretty Christmas trees in Paris, head to Place Dauphine! Place Dauphine is a public square situated in the 1st arrondissement of Paris. Its location is very central near the western end of the Île de la Cité and close to the Pont Neuf. Its triangular shape makes it very original and unique! It was built in 1607 at the request of Henry IV to create public squares in Paris.
It’s surrounded by beautiful buildings with traditional Parisian facades. As Yves Montand and Simone Signoret used to live here at the number 15, Place Dauphine became even more famous!
For the holidays some pretty Christmas trees are set up. Fortunately, you can enjoy them far from the crowd as this place is usually quiet! Therefore it’s one of the most peaceful Christmas spots in Paris!
Location: Place Dauphine
Bercy village is an open-air shopping mall located in the 12th arrondissement. This place in Cour Saint-Emilion used to be for over a century, the largest wine market in the world. With its paved courtyard bordered with storehouses, it’s registered as a Historical Monument. The storehouses have been renovated and transformed into boutiques and restaurants. It’s quite charming! Moreover the central path is often decorated with original creations that vary depending on the seasons.
In 2021, they unveiled for the end of the year a beautiful umbrella sky created by the artist Patricia Cunha. Can you imagine shopping under a sky of 1200 white sparkling umbrellas?! It’s simply magical ! It will stay here until the 16th of January. Additionally a giant Christmas tree is set up in front of the cinema UGC Ciné-Cité. It’s impressive with its 11 meters high and it’s also decorated with white umbrellas. I highly recommend it if you are looking for the best Christmas trees in Paris!
Therefore Bercy village is one of the best Christmas spots in Paris and a great place to hang out. You can go there not only for shopping but also to go to the movies, grab a drink with friends or dine out.
My secret tips for your photos: I came here in the morning to have the alley empty, but you can also come at night to enjoy the illuminations even more.
Location: Bercy Village, Cour St Emilion
More info: Bercy Village
Passage Jouffroy is one of the most charming places to see Christmas decorations in Paris! Actually, Passage Jouffroy is another one of those charming covered arcades in the capital. It was built in 1836 and is situated on the Grands Boulevards.
The holiday is a good moment to visit this passage as it is housing many interesting establishments. One of them is a cute toys store named “La boîte à Joujoux” which means in English « the Toy Box ». A fabulous boutique selling antiques and decorations – especially unique Christmas decorations – named La Maison du Roy is also located here. It’s a real Aladdin’s Cave that will amaze you! Then the Hôtel Chopin has some pretty little Christmas tree in front of its entrance.
But if you walk in Passage Jouffroy, do not miss the beautiful iron and glass architecture and the marble paving! And last but not least, the Musée Grévin and its famous waxwork models will please adults and kids!
Location: Passage Jouffroy
The Ritz Hotel
The Ritz Hotel is a 5-star hotel located in Place Vendôme in the 1st arrondissement in Paris. Every year for Christmas The Ritz Paris has a Christmas counter offering yummy treats. Here you can indulge a hot chocolate and delicious pastries by the chef Francois Perret, named best pastry chef in the world in 2019!
Close to the counter at the entrance of the hotel, a pretty 2 meters high Christmas Teddy Bear is here to welcome you! It’s a really cute and super instagrammable Christmas decoration in Paris!
Opening: from December 12, 2020 to to Jan 07, 2021 (open from 2 pm to 7 pm every day).
Location: Ritz Place Vendôme
Ladurée is an iconic luxury macarons and sweets maker house in Paris. Created in 1862, Ladurée is the most famous premier sellers of the double-decker macaron in the world! They have a few boutiques in Paris, one of them being especially nicely decorated for the Holiday Season. So, if you want to enjoy both yummy macarons and pretty Christmas decorations in Paris, head to Ladurée Bonaparte, in rue Bonaparte in the 6th arrondissement!
Location: Ladurée Bonaparte
More info: Ladurée
There are so many places to see during the holiday in Paris that you will have more than enough to fill in your vacations! Do not forget to visit the Best Chocolatiers in Paris if you want to bring some gifts to your loved ones (or treat yourself)!
If you want to see all the iconic places of Paris you should also read The Best Of Paris in one day !
I have shared all my tips about Paris: the best photography spots and best places to eat are in my Paris section, take a look! If you want to get some gorgeous pictures of you, you can hire me for a Photoshoot in Paris! And I am also offering my foodie services as your Food Concierge in Paris!
In case you are looking for more Christmas vibes, take a look at my blogpost about A Magical Christmas Getaway in Alsace.