A tour is one of the best ways to discover the treasures, the secrets and the legends of Paris. On foot, by bus, with or without a guide: here is a list of totally free tours of Paris.
The Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau has many suggestions for themed itineraries through the capital, in different districts and based on your interest in shopping and/or sightseeing. There’s a theme to suit all tastes: legendary Paris; Paris is a village; unusual Paris, and much more.
More info on Paris walks
The City of Paris gives details of several self-guided walks to explore various districts, and Balades Paris Durable, a set of 20-odd walks for a taste of an alternative side to the capital.
For film buffs, the City of Paris’s cinema trails, Les Parcours Cinéma, take you on a tour of famous, off-the-beaten-track and/or historical Paris districts featured in films shot in the French capital: Chocolat, La Môme, Ratatouille, Le Petit Nicolas, The Devil Wears Prada, etc.
More info on cinema trails
Anecdotes and historical information are provided in free podcasts available to download on websites such as Cityzeum.com and Zevisit.com. Put on your headphones and listen to the podcasts for fresh insights into various Paris districts (the Grands Boulevards, the Marais, Invalides, etc.) in the course of a walk.
To explore some of the most authentic places in Paris, get in touch with a ‘greeter’. These volunteer guides take you on free walks through little-known parts of the city and show you around the Paris they know and love. Tours can be booked on Paris greeters.
Hankering for greenery? Head to the capital’s many parks and gardens! The City of Paris organizes free guided tours of the Jardin sauvage Saint-Vincent in the 18th arrondissement.
More info on guided tours in parks and gardens
Set off to explore the Jardin des Tuileries with a free tour in the company of the park wardens. Tours start at 3.30pm at the foot of the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel du Louvre (the arch in Place du Carrousel) on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, from April to end-October.
More info on tours in jardins du Carrousel and des Tuileries