What to Do in Paris During



Summertime in Paris can be a little bit tricky because a lot of small businesses (coffee shops, grocery stores, and strangely, even some hotels) are closed. But Paris in August doesn’t mean Paris is completely empty! There’s a good chance you’ll find the city relaxing and quiet, open for exploration of all its hidden gems which may not have been quite as accessible as other times of the year. Here is a list of what to do in Paris when visiting in August.

Phoenix, AZ

What to Do in Paris During August


There are plenty of things to do outside when it’s nice out (parks, markets, events) or inside when it is too hot or at night when it cools down (museums, restaurants) This means that even if it is sweltering outside, there are plenty of things to do. There are a ton of music events and festivals and open-air cinemas. The museums and galleries are open late into the evening during summertime, so you can visit them late after a day of exploring elsewhere or walk off an early dinner.

Music Events and Festivals

Paris Jazz Festival is a large festival held June through September in the Bois de Vincennes (more precisely the Esplanade Saint-Louis in front of the Château de Vincennes) in 12th Arrondissement. Les Arènes Lyriques is an open air concert in the Jardin des Arènes-de-Montmartre (25 Rue Chappe, 18th Arrondissement) with the Arena Orchestra and its lyrical voice choir, called Les Arènes Lyriques. Rock en Seine Festival [Canceled for 2021] is a 3-day rock music festival, held at Domaine National de Saint-Cloud just west of Paris.

Other Events, Festivals, and Experiences

Liberation of Paris The Hôtel de Ville holds festivities and activities on August 25th honoring the ousting of German forces from Paris. Paris Quartier d’ete Festival. This event, also called the Paris Summer Arts Festival, begins in July and runs through August. It includes theater acts, dancing, and even circus performances. Entertainment is found all over the city. L’Été du Canal. Running July and August along the banks of Canal de l’Ourcq and Canal Saint-Denis this event is focused on family-friendly activities and gives you an opportunity to paddle on the water! Both canals are located in the 19th Arrondissement.

Other Events, Festivals, and Experiences

Parc de la Villette Open Air Cinema. You can enjoy a movie in the park from July 15 through August 16 as a part of this annual festival. There are art films, blockbusters and many films are in English. Many bring picnics to make the evening complete. – The Jardin d’été in the Musée du Quai Branly (37 Quai Branly, 7th Arrondissement) has special summer activities. Paris Plage every July and August the city of Paris creates this artificial beach along the Seine.

Other Events, Festivals, and Experiences

– Check out one of the beautiful public pools in Paris like Piscine Pontoise in the 5th arrondissement (night swimming!), Piscine Josephine Baker in the 13th arrondissement (a pool ON the Seine!). La Beach Parisienne. Try out this NEW beach club at the Chalet du Lac Orée du Bois de Vincennes in the 12th Arrondiseement. Night at Les Invalides The Les Invalides is the monument where Napolean Bonaparte’s body is laid to rest. There is a light show every Saturday night during July and August.

Other Events, Festivals, and Experiences

La Fete Foraine des Tuileries. Fete Foraine translates to “fun fair” and this one is a pop-up carnival in the Tuileries Garden that beginning at the end of June and running through the end of August. The fair includes a giant Ferris wheel, bumper cars, carousels, and rides.

What to eat in Paris in August

Eating seasonally is ingrained into the French DNA. Parisians take pride in their cuisine, and seasonal produce is a huge part of it. There are numerous markets and vendors that sell fruit and vegetables, as well as cheeses, and more throughout the city. Parisians enjoy experimenting with different types of foods from various regions. Parisians will go to extraordinary lengths in order to make sure they get the very best ingredients for their dishes, and seasonality is important as it ensures getting the freshest products available.

Fruits in Season

peaches (there are 300 varieties in France!) strawberries (Mara des bois), mirabelle plum, figs, nectarines, blackberries (mûres), blackcurrants (cassis), melons, pears, apples, apricots, and blueberries (myrtilles).

Vegetables in Season

beets (betterave), artichokes, cucumbers, broccoli, fennel (fenouil), oseille, carrots, chard (blette), onion, peas (petit pois), green beans (haricot vert), lentils, girolle and cèpe mushrooms, garlic [white (ail blanc), pink (ail rose) and new (ail nouveau)], red peppers (poivre rouge), potatoes, pumpkin, zuchinni (courgette), leek (poireau), frisée, radish, eggplant (aubergine), cauliflower, watercress, spinach, romanesco, lettuce and tomatoes.

Seafood in Season

sea bream (daurade), anchovies, mackerel, haddock (aiglefin or eglefin), pollock (goberge), sardines, langoustine, red mullet (rouget), albacore tuna, mussels, herring, hake, and crab.

Cheeses in Season

St. Nectaire AOP from the Puy-de-Dôme and Cantal; Ossau-Iraty AOP (sheep cheese) from the southwest, or Langres from the Champagne region. This is the time of year to try enjoy soft rind cheeses such as Reblochon, Chaource, Brillat Savarin, Pont l’Evêque, and of course, Camembert. Also try Banon (goat’s milk), Bûchette, Boulette, Cabecou, Crottin de Chavignol, Epoisses, Fleur du maquis (from Coscia), Fourme d’Ambert, Fontina, Livarot, Maroilles, Roquefort, Saint-Marcellin, and Saint-Pierre.

Important Tips to Remember

– Paris in August is not as crowded as other months because fewer locals are in town, but Paris still gets their share of visitors. For popular sites, you should still try to book in advance. – It is high season for hotel rooms, so you will always need to plan ahead for everything. – If you are going to be on the roads, the worst of the annual traffic jams takes place every year on the Saturday of the week when July turns to August.

Important Tips to Remember

– There is one national holiday in France, Assumption Day, so even if a store or restaurant isn’t closed for summer vacation, it will likely be closed on this day! – Some restaurants and small stores may be closed for their annual vacation. – With the good weather, you will be doing a lot of walking in Paris. Make sure to pack comfortable travel shoes. Resist the urge to bring flip-flops, they are a no-no. Plus the streets are dirty and the sidewalks aren’t any better, good luck with the dog poo and ugh dirty feet by the time you are done walking anywhere!

Important Tips to Remember

– It may be hot outside, but some of the metros are NOT air-conditioned so walking might actually be cooler. – If you are staying in an Airbnb or similar, be warned that air-conditioning is not a given. You will only find AC in major hotels, stores, etc.