Christmas time is the time to shop for gifts and it is best to start early in Paris to avoid the last minute rush in shops. However, Paris has lots of ideas for finding the perfect presents: fashion, toys, books … here are a few addresses to get you started.
© Stéphane Laure
Find a selection of products signed Paris je t'aime, ideal for your Christmas shopping.
© Paris je t'aime
This year, why not offer someone an opportunity to perfect their culinary skills? Many Parisian chefs are happy to unveil their secrets, and now propose online as well as face-to-face workshops. Take a pastry-making class or learn how to cook a delicious and unusual dish with Cook'n with Class Paris and many others. Like making things? Brew your own beer, or choose from a range of handicrafts using leather, plants, ceramics or textiles, as well as cookery or jewellery-making. You’ll find plenty of ideas on WeCanDoo and workshops can be booked for up to two years ahead.
In the heart of the 18th arrondissement, take part in the Parcours de Noël à la Goutte d'Or, organized by the Eugène Griotte workshop, on December 2 and 3. It brings together independent retailers and committed local artisans.
Along its itinerary, you'll discover a variety of local shops with unique creations and craftsmanship. You'll receive a warm welcome from the participants, who are keen to share their stories and discuss local initiatives.
And for a truly amazing experience, how about a virtual reality tour? Discover Paris from a new perspective with FlyView, climb to the top of the Eiffel Tower or onto the roof of the Grand Palais, or admire all the details of the Sainte Chapelle – all in VR.
© Gabrielle Arnault Lazard
To discover Paris in a different way, think of offering vouchers for tours of the city that are off the beaten track, led by professional guides like My Urban Experience, the Potins de Paris or L’échappée Belle.
© P. Monnetta
Paris is full of delicatessens, caterers, chocolatiers and other confectioners! So as the festive season approaches, you can go shopping at the Lafayette Maison & Gourmet grocery shop for a meal with a good taste of the local produce, accompanied by a wine found during a visit to the Caves du Louvre. In the Grande Épicerie de Paris, at the Bon Marché, the shelves are packed with surprises. You're sure to find the perfect Christmas gifts, from gourmet delights to local favourites.
For gourmets, the choice is rich: taste Alain Ducasse's homemade chocolate, taste the delicious praline brioche from the master chocolate maker Pralus. The Christmas logs, eagerly awaited each year, compete in originality! The pastry chefs of the Parisian palaces including the Ritz, the Peninsula, the Shangri-La and George V, the great houses such as Lenôtre, Angelina and Ladurée as well as the Café de la Paix sign refined creations full of flavour. Genuine works of art inspired by nature, childhood memories and traditions and customs from here and elsewhere.
Avoid the crowds by ordering gourmandises online
© Galeries Lafayette
For fashion and lifestyle, the big department stores have everything : Galeries Lafayette, Printemps Haussmann, the BHV... Some of the most decorated brands and spaces in the capital. For more shopping, go to Vallée Village or Beaugrenelle.
© Catherine Mennad
The Fabriqué à Paris label promotes, rewards and labels 100% Parisian craftsmen and products. This is the case of the Eva Koshkafashion boutique, ideally located between Saint-Lazare, the department stores and the Trinité church. Behind the pretty Art Nouveau window, in a quiet courtyard, you will find clothes and accessories - bibs, cushions, dummy clips - for babies and children from 3 months to 8 years old and some items for mothers. Ideal for a useful and responsible Christmas gift.
Lastly, enjoy a stroll through Paris’s charming side-streets while seeking out independent shops such as Laulhere, famous for their French berets, or l'Habit Français, which sells exclusively French brands. Amazing Christmas decorations and special events all make Christmas shopping in Paris a fabulous festive experience. And you are certain to find gifts to delight everyone in the family.
The French Address online shop allows you to do your Christmas shopping from the comfort of your own home. French Address is dedicated to the French art of living (decoration, tableware, fashion...) and offers a whole range of typically French gifts. French Address is a responsible, sustainable and local brand: all products - and packaging - are made in France, in limited editions, without overproduction.
And to offer beauty products as gifts, go along to major brand stores like Sephora, Nocibé or Marionnaud, which have some great offers for Christmas, in pretty local perfume shops or in more independent shops like Officine Universelle Buly, the shops Oh my cream, the beauty salons La Sultane de Saba and Charme d'Orient, organic shops like Aroma-Zone or shops of major brands like Guerlain, Chanel …
For a wider choice of gifts, check out the websites of the department stores and other shops, where you can click to buy from the comfort of your own home!
© Markus Spiske
What could be better than finding the latest playground fad or the perfect board game to bring the whole family together for a fun-filled game this winter? Children always take the time to write a long list to Father Christmas and there is nothing more heart-warming than seeing their joy and amazement when they open their presents. To be sure to find something to delight the kids, head for La Grande Récré or their websites. The Nain Bleu, Paris’s most famous toy store, still going strong since it was founded in 1836, is THE place to go for beautifully-made dolls, wooden toys, early learning games and more – children and adults alike will be wowed! Many local stores in different districts have a great selection of toys for children of all ages. Manga fans should head to Rue Voltaire.
© Paris je t'aime
For followers of trends and new concepts, there is nothing better than concept stores for finding an original present. The latest fashion trends, all kinds of decorative items or other innovative products. Find the latest fashions, all kinds of home decorations, other innovative products and gift ideas at Merci, Fleux, Les Fleurs, La Trésorerie or Bonton children’s shop. Visit the stores or check out their websites for online purchases. The choice is vast!
For an eco-responsible Christmas, go to Second Lieu at 58 rue du Château d'Eau in the 10th arrondissement, near the Gare de l'Est or at Halle Pajol. In this shop committed to responsible consumption and zero waste, nothing new, only second hand! You can find gifts for the home, for your wardrobe, for your hobbies, for babies... and cosmetics.
There are also lots of original gift ideas made in France in the official Elysée shop: Cocorico charentaises from Chausse Mouton, a men's jumper embroidered "French Republic" from Saint James, pétanque balls from Obut with a jack in the colours of the French flag and many other surprises!
There are some presents that will always be welcome, and none more so than a good book to read by the fire, while listening to the latest must-have album. Choosing one is always a nice experience in one of Paris’s many bookshops, thanks to the atmosphere and the sound advice of the staff. Get to know Paris with a book – Paris’s independent bookshops present their top recommendations. Among the musts: the bookshop Péniche L’Eau et les Rêves, Delamain for collector’s books, museum bookshops for coffee-table books (Musée d’Orsay, Palais de Tokyo …), Chantelivre for children, Album Comics for comic books or Shakespeare & Co for a selection of books in English …
Fans of Harry Potter and the world of Hogwarts in general will gather in the Marais district at the Wizard's Shop. This temporary shop - open until 27 December 2023 - 100% dedicated to J.K. Rowling's saga is located at 3 Rue des Blancs Manteaux (Paris 4th arrondissement). More than 900 items. Open Tuesday to Saturday from 11am to 7pm and Sunday from noon to 6pm.
And you can’t go far wrong with digital technology, Internet devices and other similar gifts that can be found at the Fnac and other multimedia shops.