What to Do in Paris When it Rains

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. It is important 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. 

When it comes to what shoes to wear when it is raining. I LOVE my Blondos. If you haven’t heard about these shoes, they are just the best. Super comfortable, stylish and they are waterproof. I have owned mine for years and they have been through many rainstorms in Paris.

Walk the Paris Passages 

This is one of my favorite memories from living in Montmartre. You can easily walk from the 9th at the end of Rue des Martrys through Galerie Vivienne with only taking a few steps outside. This is a perfect rainy day activity. Last Spring, I found myself at a café for a glass of wine and it suddenly started to rain. I was just at the beginning of the passages in the 9th so it was great to walk through them again. You can dine inside or grab a drink and some of them have great shops.  

what to do in paris when it rains

what to do in paris when it rains

High Tea

High Tea is a real treat in Paris. A rainy day is the perfect time to spend an afternoon over tea in a beautiful hotel. Some of my favorite hotels that have High Tea include: The Bristol, George V Four Seasons, Le Meurice, and The Ritz.

The Bristol

The Bristol

what to do in paris when it rains everyday parisian

See A Movie 

Try one of the historical theaters in Paris such as Cinema de Pantheon or explore the basement of Sèzane which has a film screening room. 

what to do in paris when it rains

what to do in paris when it rains

Wait out the Rain on a Covered Terrace 

The good thing about the rain in Paris 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. 

what to do in paris when it rains

Visit a Museum

I say skip the classic Louvre and visit one that is a little less known. One of my favorites is Musée Nissim de Camondo

For 5 Museums that aren’t the Louvre, read this post.

Shop for Souvenirs

I always love stopping in Galleries Lafayette for gifts. You can spend an entire afternoon here between the restaurants and shopping. If you find yourself with a rainy day in the forecast while you are in Paris, take a little time to visit Les Grands Magasins (The famous departments stores). Printempts and Galleries Lafayette are right next to each other. If the rain clears, head to the roof for the beautiful view of the city. 

Embrace It

Some of my best selling photographs are from moments in the rain. See above. 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.

Do you have a favorite rainy day activity? Comment below and share! 


This post does include affiliate links which helps contribute to my coffee and croissant research. Merci!

Photos of me by Jennifer Claire Watkins

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    • Cathy,

      That is a great idea! Do you mind if I add it to the list? I always forget about bus 69. I usually take the metro.

      Thank you!

  1. I agree about photographing in rainy weather – it adds another texture, reflections and mood.

    Walking les passages is on my list for the next trip. As a lover of film cameras, I recall there used to be a vintage camera/photo shop in one of the passages, but I can’t remember which one. Do you happen to know?

    • Hi Earl,

      Yes! I am so happy you agree about the rain.

      I do remember the little shop in the passages but I can’t remember which one. I am going back in November, if I see it or find out from someone, I am happy to let you know. I wish the film wasn’t so expensive to develop. I stopped using it years ago and relearned on digital.


  2. We did the covered passages too. Also had lunch at La Jacobine in Cours Saint Andre. Can also do the bateau mouche! Once actually did the Hop On Hop Off and my daughters got soaked as they still wanted to stay on top and take photos – got some lovely shots in fact! Many times waited it out at a cafe.

    • Yes, we highly recommend La Jacobine (make reservations, though, for dinner). Have been for dinner our past two trips to Paris, and it’s always excellent.

    • Hi Natalie,

      I am so happy you enjoyed the covered passages in Paris. They are one of my favorite walks. Bateau Mouche is a great idea! Thank you. I hope you make your way back to Paris soon.


  3. Hi Rebecca,
    My daughter and I enjoyed the Musee Grevin Wax Museum in Montmartre, as well as the BHV Marais department store on a rainy day.