If you are headed to Paris in any Season, expect to find rain in the forecast. I learned the hard way that May is the rainiest month of the year. I was caught in downpours more than once and was soaked down to my shoes. This post is designed to help you come up with ideas on what to do in Paris when it rains.
It is essential to always carry an umbrella even when there is no rain in the forecast. A trench coat is versatile in the Parisian weather and highly recommended for your Paris packing list.
The Parisians do still look stylish even in the rain. Make sure you pack the essentials if rain is in the forecast.
Walk the Paris Passages
The covered passages of Paris make for my favorite rainy day activity. This is one of my favorite memories from living in Montmartre. You can easily walk from the 9th at the end of Rue des Martyrs through Galerie Vivienne by only taking a few steps outside. The covered passages in Paris are filled with shops and restaurants to help pass the time on a rainy day.
Start at Passage Verdeau and walk towards the seine river. You will then go through Passage Jouffroy, and then Passage des Panoramas. This is a great place to stop for a glass of wine or lunch. Book a reservation at Racines Paris for a lovely meal with a mix of French and Italian. We had a great dinner here in May, the inside is adorable but the exterior provides great people-watching.
Gallerie Vivienne is one of my all-time favorite passages and leads you straight to Palais Royal. Enjoy a glass of wine at Bistro Vivienne or have lunch or dinner at Daroco, which is available to book online. I can never decide between pasta or pizza, and it’s best to bring a friend to split them both.
This should take up an afternoon or evening of rainy weather in Paris.
What to do in Paris When it Rains: High Tea
High Tea is a real treat in Paris. A rainy day is a perfect time to spend an afternoon over tea in a beautiful hotel or one of the tea rooms in Paris. Some of my favorite hotels that have High Tea include The Bristol, George V Four Seasons, Le Meurice, and The Ritz. The tea will come with sweets, scones, and finger sandwiches. I spent a rainy day at The Bristol for high tea and ended up taking a box back to my hotel with sweets I couldn’t finish. Definitely arrive hungry to a high tea.
What to do in Paris When it Rains: See A Movie
Try one of the historical theaters in Paris such as the Cinema de Pantheon. There are theaters close to the Odeon metro stop. Some of the movies offer English subtitles. It is the perfect excuse to enjoy the guilty pleasure of watching a movie in the middle of the day. I saw Midnight in Paris in Nice at a theater by myself and it is still one of my favorite solo travel memories.
Wait out the Rain on a Covered Terrace
The good thing about the Paris weather is that it eventually passes. Grab a glass of wine or tea/coffee and wait out the rain. You will still be able to people-watch for a bit while the storm clears. Crack open a good book and enjoy it from a covered terrace. Don’t let a little rain ruin a trip to Paris.
Visit a Museum
When it comes to visiting museums in Paris, I like to leave them for a rainy afternoon. You can visit the Louvre museum and see Mona Lisa. The Musée D’Orsay is filled with French impressionist paintings. One of my favorite museums is Musée Nissim de Camondo which is close to Parc Monceau.
Purchase tickets for the Palais Garnier which is absolutely stunning and worth visiting. A guided tour is also available for an additional fee. The Palais Garnier is very close to many of the shops if you want to do some souvenir shopping or clothes shopping afterward.
In the winter months, visit Angelina for their famous hot chocolate. It is decadent but a must-do at least once in Paris. They also have a cart outside on some days if the line is long to get inside, you can do takeaway and stroll around the arcades under Rue de Rivoli to wait out the bad weather.
Shop for Souvenirs
Some of my best-selling photographs in The Print Shopare from moments in the rain. I know I will get wet but exploring Paris in the rain is part of the fun. Grab an umbrella and go for a walk. The streets will glisten as the sun hits the cobblestones.
Enjoy a wine tasting at one of the many wine bars located in Paris. Some of them offer a covered outdoor terrace which is a great way to escape the weather or a quick shower. Some of my favorites include Septime La Cave, ô Chateau, Chez Georges, and Willi’s Wine Bar. You can do a quick google search on your phone if you need a good option. There is no better way to learn about French wines than a guided wine tasting.
Do you have a favorite rainy day activity? Comment below and share!
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