Shopping in Paris is one of the city's great highlights, which is no surprise when you consider that Paris is one of the world's leading capitals of fashion, luxury, and good food. The City of Light exudes a unique atmosphere which invites you to experience its pleasures and delights. When meandering through the streets, it's almost impossible to avoid being tempted by a spot of window shopping, to raid the pâtisseries or to fall for the pretty knick-knacks of times gone by.

Whether you’re shopping for decorations, high-end clothes, sweet treats, or cultural items, we're willing to bet your bags will be bursting at the seams, thanks to the irresistible lure of the small boutiques and large retailers found in Paris. So long, magnets and keyrings! Here are some original souvenir ideas that will ensure your memories of Paris last long after you've left.

  • 1

    Pastries

    The taste of Paris

    Pastries
    • Food

    Fresh pastries from bakers and cake shops are an essential part of Parisian life. You’ll find a tempting gourmet array wherever you go. Pastries you can find in Paris include butter croissants (flaky crescent-shaped pastries), pains au chocolat (flaky square-shaped pastries with a chocolate center), viennoises (breakfast pastries), and éclairs (a long pastry filled with pastry cream and glazed in chocolate).

    Other varieties include Saint-Honoré (a cake topped with a ring of cream puffs and pastry cream), Parie Brest (a cake shaped like a wheel, filled with hazelnut and almond cream), religieuses (cream puffs filled with cream and topped with chocolate glaze and whipped cream), mille-feuilles (a cake with pastry cream between three thin layers of puff pastry), and macarons (a crispy bite-sized meringue confection with a soft center).

    Open: Varies by business

  • 2

    Designer clothes

    Examples of creative talent

    Designer clothes
    • Shoppers

    Designer clothes from Paris make a great gift, and there are many up-and-coming labels to choose from as well as the major fashion brands. Enjoy your trip in the capital and secure one of their pieces for yourself or for your loved ones back home. Bespoke skirts at Petites Jupes de Prune, Japanese-style tunics at Hazar and Co., colorful, reversible undershirts at Bleu tango, sixties-inspired dresses at Héroïne, wacky pumps at Pring — it's a tough decision. 

    Some of the boutiques, such as like Pop Market and French Touche, bring several designers under one roof. Le Maris neighbourhood and Les Abbesses in the 13th district are both particularly favorable for discovering small designers.

    Open: Varies by business

  • 3

    A portrait from La Place du Tertre

    Original personalized artwork

    A portrait from La Place du Tertre
    • Couples
    • Families
    • Photo

    A portrait from La Place du Tertre is a fantastic way to remember your visit to Montmartre. The historic square is surrounded by bistro and restaurant terraces, as well as numerous painters, silhouette artists, and portrait painters with concentrated expressions and cheerful smiles, working with charcoal or paintbrush in hand.

    With its cobblestone streets, colorful awnings, and stream of easels, the area retains undeniable charm despite being popular with tourists. Why not join in and pose for one of the artists so you can remember this moment forever? Depending on the resemblance, you could leave with a caricature that will have you smiling upon a closer look or with a delicate family portrait to display in your home.

    Location: Place du Tertre, 75018 Paris, France

    Open: Morning until sunset

    Map
  • 4

    Exhibition catalogs

    Reminders of captivating museums

    Exhibition catalogs
    • Shoppers

    Exhibition catalogs are a wonderful way to capture your visit to one of Paris’s many museums and galleries. Whether you visit the The Louvre, Grand Palais and Petit Palais, Musée de l'Orangerie, Palais de Tokyo, Pompidou Centre, Musée Marmottan Monet, Musée du Quai Branly, or Fondation Cartier, year-round, you’ll always find fascinating exhibitions which are intrinsically linked to the city's cultural reputation.

    The Tourist Office compiles the calendar, which you can consult online or on-site. At the end of your enchanted strolls through whichever museum you choose, don't forget to visit the gift shop and buy postcards of your famous works of art and, of course, an exhibition catalog, so that you can relive your adventure once you return home.

    Open: Hours vary by museum

  • 5

    Antiques

    Vintage gems

    Antiques
    • Photo
    • Shoppers

    If you're looking for antiques in Paris, Saint-Ouen flea market is the first one that comes to mind. With thousands of merchants and an out-of-the-ordinary location, it's worth strolling around. But it isn't the only flea market that offers a little something to satisfy a bargain hunter's taste for knick-knacks and curiosities.  

    Les Puces de Vanves in the 14th arrondissement offers 400 stalls each weekend with everything from antique luggage and books to clothes, games, and art. If you're keen on vintage furniture, don't miss the annual spring or autumn edition of Puces du Design which showcases furniture and homewares from the 1950s to 2000s. If second-hand clothes and vinyl are your thing, visit the Marché aux Puces de Montreuil.

    Open: Varies depending on the market

  • 6

    Hermès silk

    Parisian chic scarves

    Hermès silk
    • Luxury
    • Shoppers

    Though the Hermès silk twill square can be bought around the world, and even on the web, procuring one directly from the original shop, rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, has a particular appeal. Hermès squares are more than a fashion accessory — they're works of art and a family treasure to be passed down from mother to daughter, grandmother to granddaughter. 

    They are available in a vast number of patterns and colors and manufactured with unsurpassed care. Whether wrapped around the neck, or worn as a bandana or a belt, this perfectly proportioned 90 x 90 cm square adds style to all your outfits and never fails to make an impression. If you've been waiting for a good reason to buy one, your trip to Paris is just the occasion for it.

    Location: 24 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, 75008 Paris, France

    Open: Monday—Saturday from 10.30 am to 6.30 pm

    Map
  • 7

    Old postcards

    Treasure on the riverbanks

    Old postcards
    • Photo
    • Shoppers

    The booksellers along the banks of the Seine sell old postcards that make great gifts. These sellers are registered in the French Inventory of the Intangible Cultural Heritage and add charm to the place. Their “boxes,” as they are called, sit on parapets of the Parisian riverbanks, from Pont du Marie to Quai du Louvre (right bank) and Quai de la Tournelle to Quai Voltaire (left bank).

    These historic Parisian sellers offer tourists and locals alike an impressive selection of second-hand publications, old yellow maps, vintage show posters, and old postcards showing the Paris of the past. This is the occasion to find unique souvenirs while immersing yourself in literary heritage.

    Open: Morning until sunset

  • 8

    Luxury beauty products

    Exquisite treatments for your skin

    Luxury beauty products
    • Luxury
    • Shoppers

    Chanel, Dior, Lancôme, Guerlain — we can't count all the cosmetic brands founded in Paris, each producing luxury beauty products. It's delightful to wander around under the dome at Galeries Lafayette, a real temple of beauty, and look for just the thing to give you a Parisian look: more than 180 brands, from prestigious to exclusive to more accessible, are spread out over 27,000 sq ft.

    You can receive an expert consultation and depart with precious items in hand, whether in the form of a hydrating serum, sublimating cream, brightening elixir, a sparkly eyeshadow or a timeless tube of lipstick. If you prefer even more personalised service, go to Huygens, in Le Marias, and receive a custom-made natural product, or Laboté, a shop selling botanical products at 11, rue Madame in the 6th district.

    Location: Galeries Lafayette: 40 Boulevard Haussmann, 75 009, Paris, France; Huygens: 24 Rue du Temple, 75004 Paris, France; Laboté: 11 Rue Madame, 75006 Paris, France

    Open: Galeries Lafayette: Monday–Saturday from 9.30 am to 9.30 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 8 pm; Huygens: Tuesday–Friday from 10.30 am to 7.30 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 8 pm, Sunday from 10.30 am to 6 pm; Laboté: Wednesday–Saturday from 11 am to 7 pm

  • 9

    Homeware

    Essential and beautiful items for your home

    Homeware
    • Luxury
    • Shoppers

    If you love beautiful homeware, consider exploring Merci and Le Bon Marché on your Paris trip. The first is a real oasis focused on the home, located on boulevard Beaumarchais (20th district). From designer colanders to fine linen hand towels to original lamps, it has everything you need to add chic style to your interiors and is a unique experience within its vast and beautiful laid-out space. Past the left bank, in the 7th district, Le Bon Marché dominates the rue de Sèvre.

    This department store, a pioneer of the concept, is dedicated to the art of living and is the standard for tableware and contemporary furniture. You'll also find fashion items and a luxury supermarket. You won't be able to leave empty handed.

    Location: Merci: 111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, 75003 Paris, France ; Le Bon Marché : 24 Rue de Sèvres, 75007 Paris, France

    Open: Merci: Monday–Thursday from 10.30 am to 7.30 pm, Friday—Saturday from 10.30 am to 8 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 7.30 pm; Le Bon Marché: Monday–Saturday from 10 am to 7.45 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 7.45 pm

    photo by hiro449944 (CC BY 3.0) modified

  • 10

    A book

    Stories and memories

    A book
    • Shoppers

    Buying a book in Paris is a delightful experience. The soul of the city of Paris is intimately connected to the life of its neighborhoods, which are like little villages, each with several bookshops. If you asked a local, they'd undoubtedly tell you that they always go to the same one.

    You'll easily find your own neighborhood bookshop close to your hotel. But if you want to discover a few of our favorites, be sure to head to Monte-en-l’Air (10th district), Page 189 (11th district), or Shakespeare and Company (5th) for books in English. Reading is not exclusively for Parisians. Still, a book chosen in the French capital has a particular appeal.

    Location: Le Monte-en-l’Air: 2 Rue de la Mare, 75020 Paris, France ; Page 189 : 189 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine, 75011 Paris, France; Shakespeare and Company; 37 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005 Paris, France

    Open: Le Monte-en-l’Air: Monday–Saturday from 10.30 am to 8 pm, Sunday from 1 pm to 8 pm; Page 189: Tuesday–Saturday from 10 am to 7.30 pm, Sunday from 10 am to 2 pm and 3.30 pm to 7 pm; Shakespeare and Company: Monday–Saturday from 10 am to 8 pm, Sunday from 12 pm to 7 pm