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Joan of Arc

Luxurious Paris Walking Tour

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Why you will love it?

Paris is all about life and luxury... This walking tour will take you through some of the most interesting upscale areas of Paris, from the Opera Garnier and Place Vendôme to the high end Vivienne Gallery next to the iconic Buren Columns of a former Royal Palace… Enjoy! Parisianist.

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About this place

Place de la Concorde, 75008 Paris
Line 1/12 - Concorde

Saturday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm
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Monday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Tuesday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Wednesday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Thursday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Friday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Saturday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm Sunday : 9:00 am - 17:00 pm

Our Insiders' Article


Take any exit of the metro station Concorde and you will come up to Paris’ biggest square: Place de la Concorde. In the 18th century it was decided level this land, between the Champs-Elysées and the Tuileries Gardens, and build what would become the Place Louis XV, with a large statue of the mounted king in its center. Since 1763, the square has seen numerous glories and tragedies. During the French Revolution in the 1790’s, the king’s statue was destroyed, and the blood soaked square welcomed the terrifying guillotine. King Louis XVI and his wife Marie-Antoinette were executed here on what became known as the Place de la Révolution. Only in 1830 did it permanently get the name Place de la Concorde.

Parisianist Fun Fact: The Egyptian obelisk at the center of the square was a gift from the vice king of Egypt in 1831 to France and is the oldest monument in Paris (approx. 3000 years old). In 1993, the association Act Up Paris covered the Obelisk with a giant condom as a symbol against AIDS.


Stand in the center of Place de la Concorde with the Champs-Elysées on your left and the Tuileries Gardens on your right. In the distance, you will see the Madeleine church, with its very particular Greek temple look. Both the architecture and the purpose of the Madeleine church were changed several times during its 85 years of construction.  Originally designed as a church, plans were changed to make it look like the Olympieion in Athens and become a monument in the glory of Napoleon’s armies in 1806, and a railway station in 1830. The monument finally opened as a church in 1845. The outside structure of the Madeleine church is already quite unique, but going inside the church is really recommended for the sheer beauty of its decorations and art.

Opera Garnier

When standing facing the front of the Madeleine, turn right and take Boulevard de la Madeleine. Walk up until you reach another iconic square: Place de l’Opéra. On the way, the Boulevard de la Madeleine becomes Boulevard des Capucines. At 28 Boulevard des Capucines is the Olympia, an iconic concert hall who has hosted artists such as Edith Piaf: check who’s playing and inquire at the ticket booth to see if there are tickets left. At 12 Boulevard des Capucines is the largest luxury watch shopping center in the world: Bucherer. Opera Garnier (10€, daily 10AM to 5PM) is an opera house built in 1875 that has inspired many opera houses around the world, although its beauty has never been equaled. Housed here is the National Opera of Paris with world-class opera and ballet performances. We cannot be more explicit: entering Opera Garnier is a must, as the decorations of the halls and famous staircase are simply majestic.  

Parisianist Fun Fact: While building the opera house, legend says an underground lake full of fish was discovered. This legend was to be maintained in Gaston Leroux’s “The Phantom of the Opera”, set in the Opera Garnier itself.

Rue de la Paix

With the front of the Opera Garnier at your back, walk towards the top right hand corner (South West corner) of Place de l’Opéra. Rue de la Paix will lead you directly to Place Vendôme, in the distance, marked by a tall column in its center. Located on what was formally a convent (the tomb of Madame de Pompadour, King Louis XV’s mistress, should still be buried in front of 3 rue de la Paix), Rue de la Paix was built to link the Opera to Place Vendôme, and gradually became the street for luxury shopping. Jewelers such as Cartier or Van Cleef, as well as palace hotels are located here. 

Place Vendôme

Place Vendôme is one of the most luxurious squares in the world. Built in 1699 in a classic architecture, there used to be a statue of King Louis XIV in its center. Destroyed during the French Revolution, it was replaced with a column made with the iron of the canons seized from the enemy. A statue of Napoleon sits on top of the column.

Parisianist Fun Fact: the first “caporal” statue of Napoleon on top of the Vendôme column was replaced by a more prestigious one of the Emperor dressed as a Roman emperor. The first statue was thrown in the river Seine in 1870. Eventually taken out of the water six years later 35 years later, the statue now lives in the Invalides.

Joan of Arc

Continue walking straight through Place Vendôme towards the Parc des Tuileries (whose golden tipped gates you can see in the distance), following Rue de Castiglione. Turn left on Rue de Rivoli. This part of Rue de Rivoli, and its famous arcades, was built during the reign of Napoleon, and is now a main east/west Parisian axis. You can either chose to walk under the arcades, where you will find luxury hotels, souvenir shops and cafés, or enter the Jardin des Tuileries (still turning left). Turn left on Place des Pyramides (or at the exit of the park). A golden statue of Joan of Arc, whom led the French army to several important victories in the 15th century before being burned at the stake for heresy when she was 19 years old, lies at the center of the square. Joan of Arc faces the immense Louvre, originally a royal palace that has gone through countless enlargements and is now the largest and most visited museum in the world, home to the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo among others.

Saint Roch

Walk up Rue des Pyramides and take the first street to the left (Rue Saint Honoré). All prisoners sentenced to death during the revolution took this street on their way from the Conciergerie prison to Place de la Concorde. The church seen on the left is Saint Roch church (open daily 8:30AM to 7PM). Its first stone was placed in 1653, but many structural changes have occurred as the years went by. Today, the church is still known as the “artists’ church” as many artists have been buried here. Among them are French painter Fragonard, writer Corneille and the genius behind the gardens of Versailles, Vaux le Vicomte and Tuileries, André LeNotre. LeNotre’s cenotaph is visible on the left wing of the church, in the Saint André chapel.

Palais Royal

Walk back (left) on Rue Saint Honoré until you reach the crossing with Avenue de l’Opéra. Look for the modern art metro entrance (Le Kiosque des Noctambules) on Place Colette, and if you are lucky, you might even enjoy a small classical orchestra performing on the square.  To the left, just behind Othoniel’s modern creation, is the entrance to the Gardens of the Palais Royal. Built in 1628 by Cardinal Richelieu, it was always a place where art had its place. He had his own theater, which Molière took over in 1660 and where Lully opened his opera house. Since the 1790’s, and still today, there are 2 theaters, including the famous Comédie Française. During the 17th century, it was truly the center of Paris as there were many restaurants and bars under the arcades.

Parisianist Fun Fact: Like the old Louvre with its modern pyramid, the gardens of the Palais Royal also had a modern vs. ancient battle. In the first courtyard of the Palais are the Colonnes de Buren, which are modern zebra striped columns of different sizes. Walk around the part currently under renovation and admire the quiet gardens. In the 17th century, many prostitutes used to hang out here.

Vivienne Gallery

Walk to the end of the garden to the north and exit via the Passage du Perron, but not before having checked out the beautiful shops on the sides of the garden. Walk up Rue Vivienne and almost immediately, turn right in Rue des Petits Champs. At 6 Rue des Petits Champs, you will find the Pompeii neo-style Passage Vivienne. Built in 1826, this gallery contains clothing and decoration shops as well as cozy cafés. Exit the gallery through 8 Rue Vivienne.

Parisianist Fun Fact: At 13 Galerie Vivienne is a staircase. These stairs led to the private apartment of Eugène-François Vidocq, the founder of the first detective agency in the world in the early 19th century.

Parisianist Tip: At 8 rue des Petits Champs, just before entering the Passage Vivienne, enter the Galerie Colbert, also a very beautiful and interesting area.


Turn right in Rue Vivienne and walk about 150m until you reach Place de la Bourse. On your right, you will see a big building, the Palais Brongniart, formally called the Palais de la Bourse (stock exchange palace), since it was where the Parisian stock exchange was located. The Corinthian style Palais Brongniart was built in 1807 by architect Alexandre-Théodore Brongniart and welcomed brokers until 1987, when computers ran the operations directly within the banks. Today, the building is used as a congress, seminar and conference area. The metro entrance lies right in front of the Palais Brongniart.

Parisianist Fun Fact: Paris’ stock exchange was the second oldest stock exchange after London.

Parisianist Tip: Continue the walking tour through the bohemian part of the Belly of Paris

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