The biggest Paris event in April is the Paris Marathon, one of the biggest in the world due to its beautiful and mostly flat route past spectacular scenery and famous monuments.

Other top April events include major art and craft expositions, a huge "fun fair" dating back to early medieval times, the Easter holiday at the beginning of the month, and the arrival of spring in Paris as every tree in the city bursts into bloom, sidewalk tables fill up in front of brasseries and cafes, and sunshine makes everyone slightly giddy.

Lots of wonderful concerts pack the April calendar, with Easter concerts in historic churches, dinner concerts at Sainte-Chapelle, and wekk-known artists performing at iconic venues such as the Bataclan, Trianon, and AccorHotels Arena.

And don't miss new and recently opened Paris art exhibits at Grande Halle de la Villette, Atelier des Lumières, Centre Pompidou, and Musée de l'Orangerie.

Find more fun things to do in Paris during April

Top photo:  Magnolia trees blooming in early April, with Saint-Augustin Church dome in the background, (c) Paris Discovery Guide

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Paris Marathon 2023

Paris Marathon - top April event - with Eiffel Tower in the background
Paris Marathon - top April event - with Eiffel Tower in the background

The Paris Marathon 2023 kicks off on Sunday, April 2 at the Arc de Triomphe as 65,000 runners from all over the world start the race course down Champs-Élysées and about a quarter of a million spectators line up along the 26.2 mile (42.2 km) route to watch.  The first group of Elite runners depart at 8:20am, with other groups following in waves until 9:50am. 

Whether you're running or watching, the Marathon's mostly-flat route gives you spectacular close-up views of iconic landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, the Louvre, plus interesting tours of Paris's two huge wooded parklands.  Thanks to the relatively flat route, the winner typically crosses the finish line in just over two hours, although you can still see plenty of runners along the route until at least mid-afternoon.

Events before the race include the 3-day Paris Marathon Expo at Porte de Versailles, where you can also pick up your bib, and an untimed 5K Breakfast Run on Saturday before the race past many of the famous sites runners will see on the full Marathon route the next day.

Tips for how to make the most of your Marathon experience

Best places to watch the race

Recommended hotels for the Paris Marathon


April Concerts in Paris - 2023

April Concerts

Palm Sunday & Easter Weekend Concerts

More Paris classical concerts, opera, & dance performances during April  

More Paris rock, pop, jazz, rap, indie, & other concerts during April 

Find Paris concerts for other months


Interesting Paris Tours for April

Reims Cathedral, a destination included on the Champagne Region Small Group Day Trip from Paris
Reims Cathedral, a destination included on the Champagne Region Small Group Day Trip from Paris

These highly-rated tours show you the best of Paris . . . and beyond!

  • Eiffel Tower Skip-the-Line and Summit Access Tour - No need to wait in a long line at Paris's most famous attraction when you're with this guided small-group tour.  With your guide, you get priority access to the Eiffel Tower's 2nd level, and will learn about some of the famous monument's unique history.  Head up to the tower's summit on your own and experience the amazing views (and perhaps a glass of Champagne).  More
  • Moulin Rouge Show with 3-Course Dinner & Champagne - Pamper yourself with a fabulous 3-course dinner and Champagne and then watch Paris's famous Moulin Rouge cabaret show.  More
  • Champagne Region Small Group Day Trip from Paris - A full-day guided visit through Champagne country, vineyard tours with free Champagne tasting, a traditional French lunch in Reims and a tour of its stunningly beautiful cathedral, a visit to the Moët and Chandon cellars, plus pickup/dropoff at your hotel . . . it's the perfect day trip from Paris!  More

Musical Fountain Shows Begin at Versailles

Fountain at Versailles spraying water during Musical Fountain Show - Photo credit: Adobe Stock
Fountain at Versailles spraying water during Musical Fountain Show - Photo credit: Adobe Stock

You will know spring has arrived in Paris when the Musical Gardens and Musical Fountains Shows start for the season in the Gardens at Palace of Versailles in early April.  These special presentations continue through late October/early November.

Getting to Versailles from Paris:  Take the RER C from Paris - about a 30-minute ride - and get off at the Versailles Château Rive Gauche station.  The Palace is about a 10-minute walk along a well-marked route.

Find more details about how to get from Paris to Versailles Palace

Hours:   The Palace is open from 9am - 5:30pm, and the Gardens are open from 8am - 6pm.  Both are open daily, except Mondays, Christmas, and New Year Day. 

Tickets to Versailles & Musical Gardens or Fountain Show

Here are two highly-rated guided tours of Versailles that include Musical Gardens or Musical Fountains (on days when they take place):

Prefer to explore on your own?  Get a Versailles Palace & Gardens "Passport" Ticket that includes the shows on days when they are available.

More Ways to See Versailles:


April in Paris - Spring Arrives!

Square Marcel Pagnol near Saint Augustin Church (shown in top photo) in the 8th arrondissement of Paris
Square Marcel Pagnol near Saint Augustin Church (shown in top photo) in the 8th arrondissement of Paris

The beauty of April in Paris is legendary.  With Kwanzan cherry trees and other flowers blooming everywhere you look, plenty of sunny days (usually), and warm temperatures, April gives Paris visitors and residents the perfect excuse to stroll through the city's loveliest parks.  Here are several familiar and less-known Parisian Edens you won't want to miss:

  • Jardin du Luxembourg (Rue de Médicis/Rue de Vaugirard, 6th arr.) - In the heart of the Left Bank, the park's mix of formal French gardens, English-style winding paths, and over 100 statues provide the perfect setting to discover early spring flowers.  Metro:  Rennes
  • Palais Royal Garden (8 Rue de Montpensier, 1st arr.) - Almost hidden behind Daniel Buren's columns in Palais Royal's courtyard, the garden is a tranquil haven from nearby Rue de Rivoli and the Louvre.  Look for magnolias and daffodils in full bloom in early April, followed by foxgloves and roses as days grow warmer.  Metro:  Palais Royal/Musée du Louvre
  • Square Georges Cain (7 Rue Payenne, 3rd arr.) - On a quiet side street in the heart of the Marais, this small oasis captures the afternoon sun.  In April, look for small blooming bulbs amid the statues and historic artifacts.  Metro:  St Paul

Find out where to see the most beautiful cherry blossoms in Paris

Discover hidden gardens along Rue Payenne


Popular Seine River Cruises


Paris Museum Shows & Exhibitions - April 2023

Manet/Degas @ Orsay Museum

An exploration of the differences and even conflicts in their depictions of modernity in their works created between the 1860s and 1880s.
Dates:  March 28 - July 23, 2023

Musée d'Orsay Tickets:  16€ adults.  Book a reserved-access ticket for skip-the-line access, or use your Paris Museum Pass for free entry
Location: 
1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, Paris 7;  Metro: Pont de l'Alma; Invalides

The 80s:  Fashion, Design, and Graphics - Decorative Arts Museum (Musée des Arts Decoratifs)

Dive back into the the "look" of the 1980s in this show featuring 700+ pieces, including furniture, fashion, photographs, video clips, posters, album covers, and even fanzines.
Dates:  Through April 16, 2023

Tickets:  14€ adults - be sure to book a special exhibition ticket, which includes permanent collections plus exhibitions; buy online (highly recommended for weekend visits) or at the door - please note that the Paris Museum Pass includes permanent exhibits only
Location: 107 Rue de Rivoli, Paris 1;  Metro: Tuileries or Palais Royal-Musee du Louvre

Find out about more special exhibitions at Paris Museums in April


Paris Foire du Trone - Throne Fair - 2023

Fun things to do and see at the Paris Throne Fair
Fun things to do and see at the Paris Throne Fair

Visit Paris's huge Foire du Trone, and you'll become part of a tradition and cultural event stretching back to 957 when 15-year old King Lothair established the first Fun Fair, once a festive market featuring gingerbread as a top seller and acrobats and gambling to entertain the crowds.  Today, roughly 350 attractions including carnival rides, stuffed animals, fries, and beer rule as the fair attracts an estimated 5 million visitors for the shared goal of having fun during its 2-month spring season.  Especially if you're staying in the Marais, getting to the fair takes less than 10 minutes on the Metro's Line 8.

When:  March 31-May 29, noon to midnight (1pm on Saturdays, Sundays, and the eves of public holidays)
Where: Bois de Vincennes on the Reuilly Lawn (Pelouse de Reuilly), 12th arrondissement (Look for the fair on your right after you pass through the entrance near the Porte Dorée metro station)
Metro:  Porte Dorée
Admission:   Free - plus reasonable prices for food, drinks, rides, etc
More information:  Faire du Trone website


Paris Book Fair (Festival du Livre de Paris) - 2023

Paris is a city that takes books seriously, and no where is that more evident than at the massive 3-day Paris Book Fair held each spring with 150,000+ visitors from more than 50 countries.  This year, the fair honors the literature of Italy.

You can buy books, chat with some of the almost 4,000 writers at the presentations and publishers' booths (they'll also sign their books for you), and attend your choice of 2,500 events including signing sessions, readings, concerts, workshops, interviews, and debates.  If that's not enough, check out the 1,200 or so exhibits put up by major and indie publishers, themed stages, bookstores, specialty forums on genres such as detective fiction and young adult, news organizations, book sellers, digital and audio producers, and university presses. There are even four literary cafés.

When:  April 21-23
Where: Grand Palais Ephémère on Champ de Mars, 7th arrondissement
Metro:  Ecole Militaire
Livre Paris website for more information:  www.festivaldulivredeparis.fr


"Art Paris" Art Fair 2023

Statue on the front facade of the Grand Palais exhibition hall in Paris
Statue on the front facade of the Grand Palais exhibition hall in Paris, where Art Paris normally takes place

If modern or contemporary art fuels your passion, put the massive Art Paris Art Show at the top of your "must-see" list for April and head over to the Grand Palais Éphémère to immerse yourself in the works of over 900 artists from 133 galleries from over 25 countries exhibited under the huge temporary "Palais" (in case you're wondering, the actual Grand Palais is getting much-need renovations/updating and will reopen in time for the 2024 Olympics in Paris). 

Special shows to seek out:  Natural Histories, a curated selection of 20 artists who focus on the natural world, plants, and animals; Art & Environment, a show of 17 artists who express their relationship to the world through ecology; Promises, a look at emerging galleries; plus solo exhibits for numerous artists as well as other special exhibitions. 

When: March 30 - April 2
Tickets:  25-30€ per day, 30-35€ for 2-day passes, cheaper rates for students; buy in advance on the event's website
Where:  Grand Palais Éphémère, Champs de Mars, 7th arrondissement; enter on the Ave de la Motte-Picquet end on the side near the Ecole Militaire metro station
Metro: Ecole Militaire


La Folle Friperie Vintage Clothing Pop-Up Store

Visit to the costume creation studio at the Opéra National de Paris
Vintage shop on Rue de Rivoli in the Marais neighborhood

If you're a fan of shopping for vintage/recycled/repurposed clothing, which is super-trendy in Paris right now, then you'll want to check out a huge vintage/thrift pop-up in the Bastille Design Center (74 boulevard Richard Lenoir, 11th arrondissement) on April 22, 23, and 24 featuring literally tons of vintage, thrift, and second hand clothes from the 1970s to the present day.  

Best of all, everything is priced at 30€ per kilo, and if you bring in your own clothes (clean and in good condition), you'll get a 10% discount (up to 10€) on your purchase.  You can find event and admission (free, but you do need to reserve a ticket) details on the organizer's Facebook page.

More places to shop for vintage clothing in Paris:  Marais, especially along Rue de Rivoli; Rue de Martyrs neighborhood in 9th arrondissement - don't miss the shops on Rue Clauzel

Paris's biggest flea market at Saint Ouen:  Let an expert guide show you the best vintage sellers

More Paris flea markets with vintage treasures


European Craft Days in Paris 2023

Visit to the costume creation studio at the Opéra National de Paris
Visit to see tapestry weavers at Manufacture des Gobelins in Paris's 13th arrondissement - Photo credit: Sébastien Bertrand

The European Days of Crafts (Journées Européennes des Métiers d'Art) takes place all over Europe and showcases contemporary expressions of traditional crafts by opening the doors of professional artisans to the public for a week each spring. 

This is your chance to get a behind-the-scenes look at bookbinders, costume makers, jewelry designers, leather toolers, bicycle makers, stone carvers, tapestry weavers, furniture restorers, and much more, many of them at the city's top cultural institutions such as the Louvre and the Paris Opera.  Go to the JAMA website to see what's on offer.  Use the map to search; you'll have to click about 10 times to drill down to Paris events, but it's worth the effort.  With over 200 open studios in Paris, you'll have a wealth of choices.

When: March 27 - April 2
Admission:  Free, but many venues are small and limit participants, so advance registration is usually required and some fill up very quickly
Where:  All over Paris (and France as well as the rest of Europe)


Easter in Paris - 2023

Easter chocolates displayed in Foucher chocolatier Foucher in Paris
Easter candy on display at famous Parisian chocolatier, Foucher

Displays of chocolate bunnies and brightly colored eggs in the windows of chocolate makers announce Easter in Paris a couple of weeks before the actual holiday. 

In 2023, Easter takes place on Sunday, April 9, and the following Monday, April 10 is also a holiday for many Parisians - so be sure to buy your chocolate Easter treats a few days in advance, as many stores and restaurants will be closed on these days.

Popular Easter activities in Paris include attending religious services, strolling through the city's lovely parks to see spring flowers, enjoying a picnic (many restaurants will be closed), and attending an Easter concert.  If you're visiting with children, don't miss city's largest Easter egg hunt in Parc André Citroen sponsored by Secours Populaire Français.

Find out more about Easter events and activities in Paris

Concerts on Palm Sunday and Easter Weekends





More Fun Things to Do & See in Paris in April



Need a Paris Hotel or Apartment for Your Visit?

Planning a trip to Paris?  Use this hotel booking map to find hotels and apartments during your travel dates: 

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Magnolias blooming near Saint Augustin Church in Paris in April
Magnolias blooming near Saint Augustin Church in Paris in April
Soaking up sun in the courtyard garden at Petit Palais in Paris in April
Soaking up sun in the courtyard garden at Petit Palais in Paris in April