I am occasionally asked where exactly I took my Paris photographs and I am always happy to share my picks for the best places in Paris to take pictures.

I have to say, these locations are a bit clichéd, but for good reason. They provide a wonderful opportunity to capture fantastic memories of the City of Light, whether via a mobile device, point-and-shoot or a DSLR camera.

See the Paris, France map below for a location overview. I’ve tried to provide some details on cameras, lenses, and tools used for these images, but please comment below if you have any questions about these photos or just to drop a note to let me about your favorite Paris photography spots.

Thanks!

-Darwin

1. The Louvre

When I arrived at the Louvre in the summer of 2014, I was surprised to see this red lightning bolt striking down from the tip of the pyramid to the base. This incandescent bolt of light is a contemporary art exhibit by Claude Lévêque and was on display from April 2, 2014, to January 2, 2015.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Louvre At Night. Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Darwin “Louvre at Night”
Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Louvre - Neon and Glass. Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Darwin “Louvre – Neon and Glass”
Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image

 

2. Arc-de-Triomphe

Although the view from the roof of the Arc-de-Triomphe has its own merits including wonderful vistas of the La Défense district as well as the Champs-Élysées, you are unable to capture the essence of the world’s largest triumphal arch from the top. The juxtaposition of modern vehicles entering from 12 radiating avenues and circulating around this nearly 200-year-old structure is truly a sight worth capturing. Don’t bother taking out your tripod on the roof. Tripods are not allowed, and they are fairly vigilant about policing the rule. Use the underpasses to reach the arch from outside its surrounding roundabout, otherwise, you and your camera may not survive to get that perfect image.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Circulation-de-l'arc-de-triomphe. Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 24mm f/1.4 Darwin
Canon 6D and Rokinon 24mm f/1.4. Click to view a larger image

 

3. Tour Montparnasse

It is said that the view from the top of the Tour Montparnasse is the most beautiful in Paris because it is the only place from which the Tour Montparnasse cannot be seen. The following shots were taken from the Panoramic 56th floor. I strongly recommend a Lens Skirt or your own makeshift device to eliminate reflection off of the windows when photographing from this floor.  The terrace on the roof of the building also offers great views, but lightning rods unfortunately interfere with wide angle shots. Tickets to the top can be purchases on the 1st floor for around €15.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Paris Sunset in the Rain. Taken from the Tour Montparnasee with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8

Taken with a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Rainy Paris Afternoon. Taken from the Tour Montparnasee with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8

Taken with a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image.

Paris at Night by Darwin. Taken from the Tour Montparnasee with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 24mm f/1.4

Taken with a Rokinon 24mm f/1.4. Click to view a larger image.

4. Ponte Alexander III bridge

The views across the most ornate bridge in Paris are spectacular. In one frame you can capture the Sienne river, iconic Art Nouveau winged horses, and the Eiffel Tower.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Evening in Paris by Darwin. Taken with a Canon 6D and Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens

Evening in Paris by Darwin. 90-second exposure. Taken with a Canon 6D and Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens.

5. Notre-Dame Cathedral

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Le Gardien De Notre-Dame by Darwin. Taken with a Canon 6D and Tamron SP 24-70mm Di VC lens.

Taken with a Tamron SP 24-70mm Di VC. Click to view a larger image.

6. Palais de Chaillot

One of my favorite areas in Paris, with architectural, naval and ethnographic museums, and fountains and gardens with fantastic Eiffel Tower views.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - La Tour Eiffel la Nuit by darwin. Eiffel Tower, Paris. Taken with a Canon 6D and Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens.

Taken with a Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM. Click to view a larger image.

7. Sacré-Coeur

I found the inside of the Sacré-Coeur (Sacred Heart) Cathedral to be more beautiful than the Notre Dame Cathedral, but unfortunately, photography is forbidden inside. Views from the cathedral roof are however spectacular given the vantage of the butte Montmartre, the highest point in the city. The upper walkways are generally less crowded than at Notre Dame, providing just a little more arm and leg room to compose that perfect shot.

Best places to take pictures in Paris - Sacre Coeur Basilica, Paris by Darwin. Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 lens.

Taken with a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image.

8. Pont des Arts Bridge

Best places to take pictures in Paris - I love you to the point of total destruction. Pont des Arts Bridge, Paris. Taken with a Canon 6D and Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens.

I love you to the point of total destruction by Darwin. Taken with a Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM. Click to view a larger image.

9. La Défense

Best places to take pictures in Paris - La Grande Arche de la Défense, Paris by Darwin. Taken with a Canon 6D and Rokinon 14mm f/2.8L IS USM lens.

Taken with a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. Click to view a larger image.

Hover over a pin to see the location number and title: