30 Interesting And Fun Facts About Paris, France

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Paris, the city of light, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is such a diverse city that will capture anyone’s heart. Paris is a fascinating European city, and not just because of its rich culture, art, design, history, and beauty. Though Paris is well known worldwide, there are so many facts about Paris that add to its appeal and are worth knowing. 

Common Paris Facts

You are probably aware of some common Paris facts, such as its nickname as the city of romance, its house of the iconic Eiffel Tower, and maybe even that it is one of the most visited city in the world. Paris is famous as the fashion capital of the world. The city is world-renowned for its cuisine, interesting museums, beautiful palaces, and much more. 

But there are many more interesting facts about Paris that you’re probably unaware of that will captivate your attention. Here are 30 interesting and fun facts about Paris that you may not know and won’t forget in a hurry.

Historical Facts On Paris

Paris was formerly called Lutetia

This is one of the Paris facts that most people don’t know. In the year 52 BC, the Romans, during the time of Julius Caesar, conquered the region and built a town across the river, calling it Lutetia Parisiorum or “Lutetia of the Parisii,” which later developed into a prosperous city with Roman baths, forums, temples, and theatres. 

In the 3rd century AD, the city was Christianized and became known by its Latin name, Parisius. After the downfall of the Roman Empire, Clovis I, the king of the Franks, occupies it, making it his capital in the year 508. Paris officially became the capital of France in 987 AD. 

Paris is above 2,300 years old

This fact about Paris will probably make you wonder, how?

Bones discovered in the Paris region date back to 8000BC. The city started in the 3rd century BC when a Celtic tribe called the Parisii constructed a settlement on an island in the Seine (now called Ile de la Cite) and on the river banks.

The Construction of the Arc de Triomphe took 30 years to Complete on Napoleon’s instruction


Napoleon authorized the construction of the Arc de Triomphe in 1806 because he wanted to erect a large triumphal arch to celebrate his troops, the Grand Armee. The arch was completed in 1836 and had 50 meters in height and 45 meters in width.

The underground of the arch is the tomb of the Unknown Soldier who fought in World War I, and the names of the 558 French generals of the First French Empire are engraved on the walls of the arch. The Arc de Triomphe is one of the top landmarks in France, and if you ever visit the historical building, you will know it is worth it. 

You can even get a ticket and go up the Arc for some great city views!

The oldest standing bridge in Paris is The Pont Neuf

Paris is home to many beautiful bridges and here is a fun facts about one of them

The Pont Neuf, called the new bridge, is the oldest bridge in Paris. They call Pont Neuf the new bridge because at the time it was constructed, there were several old bridges, and it was the most recent.  

With time, all ‘the old bridges’ collapsed, and they had to construct new ones, which meant the “new bridge” was no longer the newest, but they couldn’t change the name. Though the bridge is called the new bridge, its construction started at the end of the 1500s. 

The bridge connects the 1st and 6th arrondissements, connecting Ile de la Cite to the rest of Paris. This bridge is not only a UNESCO World Heritage site but also has special French protections.  

It was Illegal for women to wear pants in Paris until 2012

One of the astonishing facts about Paris is that there was a fashion law in Paris which stated that women couldn’t wear pants in public except if they got permission from the police. The law was enforced in 1800, and the most shocking thing is that this law didn’t get formally eradicated till 2012. 

Despite this law, Parisian women have been wearing pants for decades without consequences. Many Parisian fashion houses have always included pants in their collections for decades with no regard for this rule. 

The first photograph of people was taken in Paris

There is no way you will visit Paris and not want to take many pictures of yourself and other tourists with the beautiful Parisian landmarks. But are you aware that the first photograph of people was shot in Paris?

This interesting Paris fact dates back to the year 1838. The picture taken is called Boulevard du temple and shows the street with a man getting his shoe shined in the left-hand corner.  

Facts About Paris For Tourists

Many tourists experience Paris Syndrome

This is a weird but actual fact about Paris. Because of the descriptions of Paris in the media that aren’t 100% true, many tourists suffer from Paris syndrome. They are disappointed when they get to the city because it doesn’t live up to the unrealistic expectation portrayed by the media. 

People who suffer from Paris syndrome don’t just experience disappointment; they may suffer from hallucination, dizziness, sweating, and more. Though Japanese tourists are said to undergo this more, tourists from all over the world suffer from the syndrome yearly.

The largest art museum in the world is in Paris


One of the interesting facts about Paris is that it is home to the largest art museum in the world, the Louvre Museum. The museum was constructed in the 12th century is on an area of about 72,735 square meters.

The Louvre houses over 38,000 art objects, including the world-renowned painting, the Mona Lisa, and other exceptional arts, making it one of the best in Paris and the world.

The Louvre is located close to the Seine River, making it a prime location perfect for visiting other attractions next to it. It is an extremely popular attraction and you should book your tickets in advance if you plan on visiting.

It will take you almost 200 days to see everything in the Louvre museum

If you want to see all the art in the Louvre museum, you will need at least 200 days. This time will not even be enough because that means you only get to stay in front of each object for just seconds, and you will agree with me that it is impossible given how beautiful the objects in the Louvre are.

This is certainly one of the many things that Paris is famous for.

Notre Dame Cathedral was the most visited attraction in Paris


You might find this Paris fact a little surprising since most people already think the Eiffel tower is the most visited attraction in Paris. According to data, the Notre cathedral received almost 13 million visitors, while the Eiffel tower received nearly 7 million visitors in 2019. This shows that the cathedral gets almost twice the number of people that visit the Eiffel tower.

It will take 2 hours to walk from the South Point to the North Point of Paris

Paris is one of the most uncomplicated cities to navigate, so walking is one of the top ways to see all the famous landmarks in Paris. The city might be considered big, but it’s not as big as other popular cities in Europe.

You can easily walk the north and south parts of the city in 2 hours. Even if you have just two days to spend in Paris, you can get to see the city with ease. You can try this out to test this fact about Paris. 

Paris has 6100 streets


One of the interesting facts about Paris is that the city has approximately 6,100 streets. So when visiting Paris, ensure you have an excellent map because you can easily get lost in the numerous streets.

Some of these streets are short while others are long. The shortest is the Rue des Degree in the 2nd arrondissement, just less than 6 meters, while the longest is rue Vaugirard in the 15th arrondissement at 4.3 km. 

There are no “STOP” signs on Paris Roads

Despite having many cars on its road, you will be surprised to know that there are no stop signs in Paris. If you’re from a country where there are stop signs at every turn, you will find this very shocking. This is one of the Paris facts that blow people’s minds.

There was a stop sign at the exit of a construction company in the 16th arrondissement, which magically disappeared in 2012, and since then, Paris has been ‘stop’ sign free. This makes Paris the only city in the world with no stop sign. 


Paris Facts – Demographics And People

Paris is divided into 20 arrondissements (wards)

The city of Paris has 20 arrondissements, and each has its unique character. Central Paris is made up of the first eight arrondissements. These arrondissements in central Paris have most of the city’s significant historical and cultural sites. The remaining 12 make up the environs. 

However, if you are looking for a beach vacation, there are several beaches near Paris that you can visit as well!

Paris is divided by the Seine River


The Seine River, which drains west to the Atlantic Ocean, divide Paris. The Seine River is used for transportation and tourism. Tour boats called “bateaux mooches,” give tours of the city by circling the Ile de la Cite. 

One of the facts about Paris people found surprising is that Paris has two remaining natural islands because of the Seine River, of which the island of Ile de la Cite is the biggest and is also renowned for having the Notre Dame cathedral. The Lile Saint Louis is the second. Aside from these two natural islands, Paris also has a man-made island called Lile aux Cygnes. 

You get a different view and experience of Paris from the waters. It is no surprise that taking a cruise on the Seine River is one of the most popular activities for visitors.

The people of Paris are diverse

Another interesting fact of Paris is that the people are pretty diverse. This is why Paris is considered the most diverse city in Europe. The immigration level in Paris is very high, given that about 23% of the population migrated to Paris sometime after birth and about 20% of the Parisian population consists of first-generation immigrants. 

Most inhabitants of Paris are between the ages of 15 and 44

People between the age of 15 and 44 are the most numerous in the city of Paris. They represent almost half of the Parisian population. 

Paris has more dogs than children


Parisians are wildly smitten with pet dogs. You can see dogs everywhere in Paris, even in fancy restaurants. More than 300,000 dogs are living in Paris. Parisians care so much about the dogs that they spend nearly half a million dollars to give them the best treatments. 


Uncover more interesting facts about Paris on your visit

Fun Facts About Paris – The Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel tower isn’t supposed to be there 

Though the Eiffel Tower is the icon of Paris and one of the most famous landmarks in Europe, it was only intended to stand for 20 years. No one anticipated it would be one of the most visited attractions in the Country and the world. 

The Eiffel tower was originally constructed to serve as the entrance to the Paris World’s Fair, which marked the centenary anniversary of the French Revolution in 1889. The tower wasn’t destroyed after 20 years because of how people accepted it and the number of people traveling worldwide to see it.

Now the tower is considered an international symbol and a bucket list item for most travelers. There are often long queues to access this world-famous landmark. Definitely get a ticket in advance if you plan to go up the Effiel Tower.

There are 1,665 steps from the base to the top of the Eiffel Tower


If you plan to climb the Eiffel tower when you visit Paris, keep in mind that you will have to climb 1,665 steps to get to the top of the Eiffel tower. Well, not to worry, you won’t have to climb all the steps because the stairs from the second to the third floor are closed to the public.

The fact is you only get to climb 674 stairs from the esplanade to the second floor, which will take you almost 30-45 minutes, depending on how fit you are. Climbing the Eiffel tower should be part of your Paris bucket list because you get to see stunning views of Paris from the top of the Eiffel tower. 

Distributing images of the Eiffel tower is prohibited

I am sure this is one of Paris facts that people find shocking. Most people often overlook this fact. It’s considered illegal to distribute images of the Eiffel tower at night because the 20,000 light bulbs that light up the tower at night are considered a work of art with the copyright owned by the artist. 

Distributing doesn’t include posting the picture on your social media because that is legal. What the Paris law considered illegal is printing the images and selling them. 

Repainting the Eiffel tower is done by hand

Another of the many interesting facts about Paris and the Eiffel tower is that any time the tower needs repainting, it’s done by hand. It takes 60 tons of paints to repaint the tower. It has been repainted 19 times since its initial construction, at an average of once every seven years.

Different paint colors ranging from red to yellow-brown to chestnut brown were used before settling for the current, especially mixed Eiffel tower brown in 1968. 

Cultural Fun Facts On Paris

The most significant celebration in Paris is Bastille Day

Though Paris holds many events, festivals, and celebrations, the largest, undoubtedly, is the Bastille which holds July 14 every year.

Bastille Day marks the date Parisians revolted and stormed the Bastille prison. This was the beginning of a series of critical actions the Parisian people took during the French revolution. The revolution is one of the most significant events and things that France is famous for.

Bastille Day is one of the biggest holidays in France, and it celebrates the French revolution. The events include a military parade along the Champs-Elysees, from the Arc de Triomphe to Place de la Concorde. Then there is Patrouille de France and a display of colorful fireworks in the evening, the most outstanding is the one at the La Tour Eiffel.

Place de la Concorde is one of the biggest Sundials in the world

Place de la Concorde is one of the main squares in Paris

The 23-meter-high Obelisk in the Place de la Concorde square is not just a visual phenomenon. It serves as a sundial complete with Roman numerals on the nearby pavements.

The Obelisk used to stand by the Luxor temple in Egypt, but Egypt gifted it to France during the 19th century. The shadow of the obelisk functions to provide time throughout the day. 

There is a baguette law in Paris


To sell baguettes in Paris, you must meet the Decret Pain created in 1993. For the bread to be an official Parisian baguette, it must have a specific dough consistency and be of a particular size. 

The law also states bakers must sell the baguette where it is made, meaning that the bakery cannot ship it elsewhere. A baguette can only contain four ingredients; wheat flour, water, salt, and yeast. It cannot contain preservatives or be frozen. If the baguette doesn’t adopt this rule, it’s not a Parisian baguette. 

The baguette is versatile and also a common food item for breakfasts in France.

Interesting Facts About Paris You Should Know

Paris Has Statues of Liberty

This is one of the Paris facts that people find surprising as most people think that Only New York has the statue. Paris also has some smaller replicas of statues of liberty. The exciting thing is that France gave the United States the Statue of Liberty as a gift. There are five statues of liberty in Paris.

The most popular of the five statues is located on the Seine near the Pont de L’Alma. You can see it from the river banks or when taking a Seine River Cruise.

The First Bloody Mary was made in Paris in 1921 


One of the fun facts about Paris is that the classic cocktail of tomato juice, vodka, Worcester sauce, lemon juice, and the seasoning was invented in Paris in the 1920s. French bartender created the cocktail at the New York bar in Paris. 

Legend has it that this famous drink was first made for the famous novelist Ernest Hemingway when he requested a drink that didn’t smell like alcohol. He was served vodka mixed with tomato juice. After tasting the drink, he exclaimed, “bloody Mary,” and that is where the name was gotten. 

You can measure all the distances in Paris from the Notre Dame 

If you visit Notre Dame, you will see a small compass in front of the church. This compass is called “point zero,” marking the center of Paris. You can measure any distance to and from Paris from this compass.

A tradition comes with this compass as the people of Paris believe it brings good luck if you spin around it or drop a coin. Couples also kiss next to it and hope for eternal love.  

Paris has an underground city

This is one of the creepy facts about Paris that people hardly talk about. No doubt Paris is a beautiful and fascinating city, but it has darkness beneath its wall. A whole city of darkness called the underground city. This city is called ‘The catacombs.’ The catacombs are less spoken about, but that doesn’t change how fascinating they are. 

Though today the Catacombs are one the places you need to visit in Paris to know more about the city’s history, it’s still a very mysterious place that holds over 6 million remains of Parisians. The general belief is that people that died from disease and plague in the late 1700s were buried there. Many people died during that period, and the cemeteries couldn’t contain everyone.

Visiting the Catacombs is both a unique and thrilling experience, yet certainly one of the must-dos when in Paris.

There are over 40,000 restaurants in Paris


You shouldn’t find this Paris fact surprising because the city is popular for a wide range of cuisine. These restaurants include cafes, bars, fine dining, bistro, and open terrace restaurants. You will find almost 12,000 dining options in central Paris, of which 94 have one Michelin Star, with 12 having two and 10 having three stars. 

Paris is the second city after Tokyo japan with the most Michelin Star restaurants. You are definitely in for a treat when you visit the city. There are also many delicious French snacks you can enjoy in Paris.

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Finding More Fun Facts About Paris

These are some interesting and fun facts about Paris, although the list barely scratches the surface. There are still so many things to do and discover about this city full of culture, history, art, and incredible French cuisine

Hopefully, these interesting facts about Paris ignite your curiosity and help you add more items to your list of things to do in Paris. So when next you’re planning a trip to Europe, remember to visit Paris so that you can experience these facts yourself and uncover more Paris facts personally. 

If you want to learn more about Paris’ history and culture, consider taking a city tour with guides, they can usually give you hyper-local information to discover some hidden gems!





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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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