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How to visit Paris during the 2024 Olympic Games

destinations tips

2024 is Paris’s year as the biggest sporting event in the world comes to the city: the Olympic Games. What a thrill! Over 15 million visitors are expected to descend on the French capital during the Games, with the opening ceremony on July 26th. Security, transport, access… with so much going on, how do you make the most of your time in Paris? Vacances Actives Linguistiques has brought you a helpful guide to help you enjoy your trip to Paris during the Olympics.

How to plan your stay in Paris during the Olympics

Be prepared! Plan everything in advance from your trip and travel to any bookings or tickets you need. As a travel agency, we understand the importance of forward planning and how it can make or break a trip. Here are some websites to visit, key figures and top tips to help you plan your time in Paris during the Olympics.

2024 Olympic Games schedule

The Paris Olympics will take place between July 26th and August 11th 2024 with over 300 events and 10,500 athletes at 35 Olympic venues. View the full schedule here: https://olympics.com/fr/paris-2024/calendrier.

Getting around Paris during the Olympics

Avoid taking your car !

Traffic is always tricky in Paris, so the Olympics aren’t going to help! With crowds, road and subway line closures, whether you drive or use public transport, traffic is going to be heavy. 

What’s the best way to get around Paris? A good walk to stretch the legs and get up close to the capital’s wonders. 

What’s the second-best option? Hire a bike or scooter (you’ll have to hire one from a shop because there are no self-service scooters in central Paris anymore). That means you can zip through the security areas without aggravating the traffic.

Prefer public transport

Last but not least: public transport. The Métro, RER, buses and trams are the best alternative to cars but some subway stations will be closed.  

  • Métro and RER: more services to meet demand. View live travel information for times and disruption.
  • Bus and Tram: more services available but some bus routes will be diverted subject to events.
  • Pick up a special pass like the “Pass JO 2024” for unlimited travel in Paris and Île-de-France. Book early: the price of tickets and passes is going up on July 20th! You can view ticket/pass prices here!

Use the interactive map to get around

A must-have interactive transport map covering all transport methods is available so you can plan how you get around Ile de France. Bookmark the website during your trip to Paris!

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s a flying taxi! 

We’re not joking: there will be taxis flying over Paris during the Olympics to trial a new form of transport! Air taxis or VTOLs (vertical take-off and landing aircrafts) are a hybrid between a helicopter and drone which can transport a driver and passenger. Is this the future of Parisian taxis? 

Security and crowd control

The Paris police force has established several security perimeters around the Olympic sites with traffic restrictions. There are several levels of security with red, blue and grey zones. Traffic and crowd control applies to these zones and you need a pass to get in.

Black perimeter – SILT (anti-terrorism)

This perimeter covers the competition venues and opening ceremony. Only people with tickets or approved by Paris 2024 can enter this perimeter. You can only attend the opening ceremony on July 26th if you have a ticket or invitation.

Red perimeter: no vehicles allowed

No cars, buses or motor vehicles are allowed in this perimeter. It covers the area around competition venues, the Olympic and Paralympic marathon route, cycling events and along the Seine during the opening ceremony (and several days beforehand). It comes into force 2.5 hours before the first event begins and ends when the last event finishes. No restrictions apply to pedestrians or cyclists, so visit on foot or by bike! 

Blue perimeter: traffic control

The blue perimeter covers the area outside the red perimeter with the same traffic and enforcement requirements as the red perimeter.  

Find out all the information you need about passes, proof of ID, QR codes and how to access the security perimeters here: https://www.pass-jeux.gouv.fr/ 

Beat the crowd

Now here’s a handy website for visiting Paris without battling the crowds during the Olympics!! Affluences.com provides real-time or estimated information about attendance at all the cultural and visitor attractions during the milestone event. Some of the biggest landmarks in Paris are going to be packed with tourists. It’s best to explore lesser-known but equally fascinating places in Paris to avoid the crowds. You’ll enjoy your time in Paris far more if you visit the city’s quieter museums, little-known parks and pretty neighbourhoods!

 

Museums and cultural sites

New exhibitions for the Olympics

Paris’s museums and landmarks are open during the Olympics… just with higher prices and bigger queues. 

Exhibitions exploring the Olympics, art and sport are on show throughout the capital all summer. 

  • The Louvre: the Richelieu Gallery at the Louvre is hosting an exhibition called “Olympism: Modern Invention, Ancient Legacy” until September 16th to celebrate the Olympic Games. 
  • There are Olympic art installations at several visitor attractions in Paris, including sculptures by Laurent Perbos in front of the Assemblée Nationale and the 4 Cardinals of Sport by Gad Weil and Alexandra Castaing at Belvédère Claude-Gérard Marcus on Canal Saint-Martin. 

Emblematic locations welcome medal winners

How about the Eiffel Tower? 

The Iron Lady is open during the Olympics! Admission costs a little extra… 

Otherwise, it’s just as amazing to see it from the ground or one of the Olympic sites: Champ-de-Mars. The pop-up stadium is hosting the beach volleyball and blind football events. Visitors can congratulate the previous day’s medallists at Parc des Champions, at the bottom of the Eiffel Tower on Place du Trocadéro

The Jardin des Tuileries

It plays host to the Olympic torch throughout the event. The park is an idyllic place for a walk in the shade of its paths, fountains and sculptures. Take some time out to unwind on one of the iconic green chairs and soak up the Olympic atmosphere as you feast your eyes on the capital’s historical beauty.

The Parc de la Villette

It is where it’s all happening: its Grande Halle is hosting Club France and French sporting federations. The Olympic Village is on the Seine riverbanks, between Saint-Denis, Saint-Ouen-Sur-Seine and Île-Saint-Denis.

It’s best to get off the beaten track. That way your trip to Paris won’t turn into an Olympic battle with crowds and soaring costs. Paris is as beautiful and spellbinding as ever, the buzzing atmosphere of the event is the cherry on the cake!

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