The Best Photo Locations in Paris

by | Mar 13, 2017 | Europe, France, Latest Posts, Photography

Paris is beautiful, romantic and charming and a city full to the brim of iconic scenes that need to be captured and appreciated forever. The huge variety of photo spots can be overwhelming and trying to choose the best places for photographs can prove difficult as there are simply so many. After lots of visits and hours and hours of strolling around the city we’ve put together a list of our 12 best photo locations in Paris: it’s our guide on where to take the best pictures of Paris, enjoy!

1 | Montparnasse Tower

For us, the best panoramic view of Paris is from the observation deck at the top of Montparnasse Tower with its beautiful 360 degree views of the city. We love visiting after the sun sets for the most spectacular and romantic views of Paris and, on a clear night, the views of the skyline are simply breathtaking. It’s also an amazing spot for capturing the Eiffel Tower in all its glory!

Paris photography tip: We had the place almost to ourselves about 30 minutes before the tower closed. We were able to set up our tripod on the outdoor deck at the top, which we recommend for capturing those perfect night shots. I used my trusty Manfrotto travel tripod although Elaine’s Fuji XT10 takes incredible low light shots by hand and is a great alternative.

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The View from the top of Montparnasse Tower

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View of Napoleons Tomb and the Arch de Triumph in the background

2 Pont Alexandre III

Pont Alexandre III is one of the most beautiful bridges in the world and a spectacular Paris photo location. The decorations on the bridge are simply beautiful: the gold is perfect for adding a pop of colour to an image and all with the added bonus of the backdrop of the Parisian skyline and the Eiffel Tower.

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There are some great angles on Pont Alexandre III

3 Trocadéro Gardens

The elevated area of the Trocadéro Gardens is one of the best places in Paris for postcard perfect shots of the Eiffel Tower and it is one of the most iconic of Paris’ photographs. The canons and fountains add a unique twist to any Eiffel Tower capture.

Paris photography tip: Try to visit early in the morning as the area gets very busy with tourists by mid-day!

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The view of the Eiffel Tower in front of the Trocadéro fountain

4 Carousel at the Eiffel Tower from Trocadéro

After the Trocadero Gardens don’t forget to stop by the carousel at Trocadéro. It’s an old school inspired shot of Paris and provides for some charming shots of the Eiffel Tower.

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5 Pont de Bir-Hakeim

Movie buffs among you will recognise this iconic bridge from the movie Inception and the unique design and symmetry along the walkway of this bridge make it a photographers dream. The pièce de résistance is the beautiful ‘La France renaissante’ statue commissioned to represent the iconic Joan of Arc which is perfectly positioned with the Eiffel Tower in the background.

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La France renaissante

6 Sainte Chapelle

The stained glass windows of the Sainte Chapelle Church are the backdrop for some incredible photographs and, on a sunny day, the colours in the church are a kaleidoscope of purples and red.

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7 Sacre Coeur

One of the best view of Paris is from the Sacre Coeur, a pure white church nestled on a hilltop above Paris. It’s definitely worth the trip to the top of the hill at Montmartre and the church itself is stunning with a bonus panoramic view across Paris from its dome.

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The view from the top of the Sacre Coeur roof

8 Paris Catacombs

For a different angle on Paris visit the Catacombs for the opportunity to get some shots of subterranean Paris and the mass burial chambers buried beneath the city. Read about our trip to the Catacombs here.

Paris photography tip: The difficulty with photography in the catacombs is lack of good light and tripods are not allowed. A camera with low light capability is essential to capture anything usable. I used my Nikon D7200 with a cheap, fast prime lens to get some good hand held shots.

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9 | Versailles Palace

No photography trip to Paris is complete without a visit to the Palace at Versailles. There are stunning photo opportunities everywhere, from the golden Hall of Mirrors to the manicured gardens, Versailles Palace is a photographers dream.

Tips for photographing the Palace at Versailles:

The fountains at Versailles are only turned on for a few minutes each hour so check the times with the staff.

You’ll need to be first in line to capture a good shot of the Hall of Mirrors as it gets crazy busy in there.

We hired a golf buggy for visiting the grounds which allowed us to get around quickly and easily – the gardens are huge!

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The Palace of Versailles

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The fountains at Versailles

10 | Musee D’Orsay

The disused train station setting makes the Musee D’Orsay museum a work of art in itself. While photography is not strictly allowed in the museum itself there are elevated areas at either end of the building where it’s possible to capture the stunning interior of this old train station. Once you are discreet you can capture some gorgeous shots.

Paris photography tip: Use the widest lens you have to really capture all of the building.

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the view from the top floor of the Musee D’Orsay

11 | Pont Des Arts

The original love locks bridge adjacent to the Louvre once provided some unique photo opportunities. Love or hate them, love lock bridges make for some good photos!

Paris photography tip: on our latest visit to Paris (March 2017) the love locks had been removed at Pont Des Arts. Some remained on the Pont Neuf bridge.

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12 | Père Lachaise Cemetery

A cemetery may seem like a strange recommendation for photos however Pere Lachaise in unlike any cemetery in the world. The tombs and graves of Pere Lachaise are works of art in their own right, and strolling around for a few hours is really enjoyable. The cemetery is also the resting place of some famous people, most notably Oscar Wilde, Chopin and Jim Morrisson. Read about our visit to Pere Lachaise here

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Strolling through Père Lachaise

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Oscar Wilde’s Tomb in Père Lachaise

Our Photography Gear

My main camera is currently a Nikon D7200 with the Sigma 17-50mm f2.8 and the Sigma 70-200 f2.8. Elaine uses a Fuji XT 10 for all her shots. We use Adobe Lightroom for editing all our photos and highly recommend (we pay €12.29 a month for a combination of Lightroom and Photoshop which is a fantastic deal).

Paris photography tip: Check out our photography gear page to see what else is in our bag.

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