Perhaps the most famous garden in Paris, the Jardin des Tuileries is a lush haven offering great views of the Louvre Museum. The historic park was created by Catherine de Medici in 1564 but it didn’t take on its current French formal garden style until 1664 when it was redesigned on the orders of King Louis XIV. If you’ve never visited, it should certainly make the itinerary.
Right after perusing the wonders of the Louvre, cross over from the pyramid and go for a placid stroll among the fountains and flowers and breathe in the Parisian air. Though the highly trafficked Rue de Rivoli runs alongside the garden, you’ll find the Tuileries to offer a welcome respite from the pollution and the noise. The impressive park is stunning too, decorated with classic statues and lined with trees, blooms, and greenery where you can lie on the grass and read a book.
Pull up a chair and sit by the grand ponds while watching the ducks swim and the goats graze on weeds to keep the lawns in check. If all that relaxing makes you hungry, the park also has crêpe trucks and a pop-up restaurant where you can refuel with a spritz or warm up to chocolat chaud in the winter.
Near the end of the Tuileries, just before reaching the Place de la Concorde, you’ll pass two small buildings: on the left, the Musée de l’Orangerie – a small museum home to several murals by Monet; on the right, the Jeu de Paume – an arts center for photography and video exhibitions.
In the summer months, the garden also hosts the Fête Foraine des Tuileries – a fair complete with a ferris wheel, cotton candy, and other attractions of a typical amusement park. Ride the swings, or the ferris wheel for sweeping views of the Paris skyline. With the Place de la Concorde just next to the park, you’re in for a treat when it comes to seeing the city at night!
The Jardin des Tuileries is free and open to the public everyday.