The full Christmas list of things to do in Paris for 2015

It's time to eat, drink, shop, play and be merry
Christmas star
© Wilson Hui

Feeling overwelmed by the festive season? We've broken down the capital's essential Christmas activities into five simple categories – food and drink, shopping, events, outings and kids – in order to take the stress out of your yuletide social life.

Festive outings

Kids, Playgrounds

Carousels in Paris

Come Christmastime, Paris goes mad for merry-go-rounds, with free carousels set up in almost every arrondissement.


Food and drink

© Time Out

Gourmet Christmas shopping

Extraordinary volumes of well-fed turkeys, luxurious foie gras and fresh oysters are shifted through the French capital during the Christmas season.

Hot chocolate
© Robyn Lee
Restaurants, Cafés

Paris' top hot chocolates

Paris has woken up to the idea of hot chocolate as a serious drink, so here’s our pick of the best purveyors in the city.

© Yuichi Sakuraba
Restaurants, Tea rooms

Best patisseries

Not to indulge your sweet tooth in Paris would be a crime – here’s our pick of Parisian patisseries, bakeries and chocolatiers.



© Jean-Pierre Dalbéra
Shopping, Markets and fairs

Christmas markets in Paris

The best dedicated Christmas markets operating in Paris this Christmas. Stock up on decorations, gifts and pretty much unlimited mulled wine.

Britta Jaschinski
Shopping, Vintage shops

Vintage shopping guide

For unique Christmas style without the credit card bills, hit Paris's vintage boutiques. Rockabilly leather, '50s glamour dresses, retro sunglasses and much more will get you a slew of afforable new looks in no time.

Events and shows

Déesses Démones
Marie-Agnès Gillot © Lisa Roze


Get the most out of Christmas with our guide to the capital’s biggest and best stage events  well worth planning your festive diary around.



Big, bold, colourful, popcorn-fuelled flicks that are perfect for long winter nights and getting into the technicolour spirit of the season.

Florence Machine Paris
© Mallory Turner

Music and clubbing

Escape the never-ending tinsel and over-eating with a no-holds-barred night of clubbing, or plump for serenity with a classical concert or two.

La Paix ramenant l'Abondance
© Fuzeau Philippe
Art, Galleries

Winter exhibitions

Discover the season's glorious cultural offerings – the big rentrée exhibitions run right through, and new seasonal shows are opening up all the time. Keep track of them right here.


Kids, Playgrounds


Between December 20 and January 4 2016, the city lets children ride the many carousels for free.

Foire aux jouets, Clayes-sous-Bois (78)
Shopping, Maternity

Toy stores

The best shops for timeless toys, bonnets for babies and t-shirts for terrible teens.

Karl Blackwell / Time Out
Shopping, Chocolate and sweets

Best sweet shops

You know a country is serious about its candy when it has a national union of sweetshops and a dedicated annual Day of Guilty Pleasures.