Paris events in March welcome early signs of spring and longer days to the City of Lights as events move outside again.
A popular half-marathon around the city, a fair dating back to 857 (yes, almost 13 centuries ago), and the return of Musical Fountain Shows to Versailles provide great reasons to be outside.
A huge book show brings together publishers, writers, and fans for four event-packed days.
Exciting exhibits open at Musée Picasso and Musée Jacquemart-André, and plenty of concerts give you the chance to hear your favorite type of music, with special Easter concerts at the end of the month.
On sunny March days, sidewalk tables fill up outside the city's many cafes and brasseries, and you'll begin to see hints of green in the trees.
As a warm up of sorts for the Paris Marathon in April, Paris also hosts an annual half-marathon known as Semi de Paris each year in March.
This year, the Paris Half Marathon takes place on Sunday, March 4, with about 40,000 runners expected to participate.
The Half Marathon course begins in Bois de Vincennes, the giant forest and parkland on the east side of the city. After winding around the park, the route follows the Right Bank of the Seine River past Notre Dame, and then loops back to Place de la Bastille before turning back to another stretch along the Seine, this time on the Left Bank, and finishing at Parc Floral in Bois de Vincennes about half a kilometer from the starting line.
Start time for the Elite racers is 9am, with staggered start times for everyone else until 10:40am. Winners cross the Finish Line around 10am, and most runners will finish by early afternoon.
Want to find a good viewing location? You'll find the course map here.
March Concerts in Paris - 2018
- Eugene Onegin: Paris National Opera at Opéra Garnier ("Paris Opera House") - March 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 - Tickets
- Easter Concerts at La Sainte-Chapelle - March 30, 31, April 1 - Tickets
- The Killers at Zénith de Paris - March 3 - Tickets
- Ana Moura at Palais des Congrès - March 3 - Tickets
- Vivaldi's Four Seasons - La Madeleine Church - March 3, 9, 17 - Tickets
- Bach Suites for Violoncello Solo - Saint Ephrem Church - March 4, 11, 22, 31 - Tickets
- Organ Recital to celebrate 150th anniversary of the Cavaillé-Coll organ - Notre Dame Cathedral - March 6, 8, 13 - Tickets
- Shy'm - Folies Bergère - March 7 Tickets - March 8 Tickets
- Mozart's Requiem - La Madeleine Church - March 10 - Tickets
- Harry Styles at AccorHotels Arena - March 13 - Tickets
- Thirty Seconds to Mars at AccorHotels Arena - March 14 - Tickets
- Dinner and Concert - Sainte Chapelle - March 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, 30, 31 - Tickets
- Master Soloists of Notre Dame Cathedral - March 20 - Tickets
- Leonard Bernstein at 100 in Paris - Orchestre de Paris at Philharmonie de Paris - March 21, 22 - Tickets
- Benvenuto Cellini - Opera National de Paris (Opera Bastille) - March 23, 26, 29 - Tickets
- Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Pachelbel's Canon & Vitali's Chaconne - Sainte-Chapelle - March 23, 25 - Tickets
- Bach's St Matthew Passion - Théâtre des Champs-Élysées - March 24 - Tickets
- Goldberg Variations - Saint Ephrem Church - March 25 - Tickets
- The Game - L'Olympia - March 26 - Tickets
- Orphée et Eurydice: Ballet of the Paris National Opera at Opéra Garnier ("Paris Opera House") - March 26, 27, 30 - Tickets
- Yes at L'Olympia - March 30 - Tickets
Special Easter Concert Schedule for 2018
Paris is a city that takes books seriously, and no where is that more apparent than at the massive 4-day Paris Book Fair held each spring.
You can buy books, chat with some of the 3,000 writers giving presentations (they'll also sign their books for you), and choose from 800 events to attend. If that's not enough, check out the 1,200 or so exhibits put up by major and indie publishers, bookstores, news organizations, book sellers (for example, Amazon), digital and audio producers, and university presses.
When: March 16-19
Where: Porte de Versailles Exhibition Center, 15th arrondissement
Metro: Porte de Versaille (Line 12) or Balard (Line 8)
More information: Livre Paris website
You can be sure that spring has arrived in Paris when the Musical Fountain Shows start for the season in the Gardens at Palace of Versailles, which falls on March 31 this year. Shows continue through October.
Getting to Versailles from Paris: Take the RER C from Paris - about a 40-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.
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. Check the Versailles website for the Musical Fountain Show schedule.
Tickets to Versailles & Musical Fountain Show
You will save time by buying tickets online in advance. They are available on the Versailles website (Euros), and are also included in some of these Versailles special tours and ticket packages:
Mary Cassatt: An American in Paris
@ Musée Jacquemart-André, March 9 - July 23, 2018 - This Mary Cassatt retrospective brings together works from top American and French museums. Tickets 13.50€
Location: 158 Boulevard Haussmann, 8th arr. Nearest Metro : Saint Philippe du Roule
@ Musée Picasso, March 27 - July 29, 2018 - A major exhibit about Guernica to mark the 80th anniversary of this major work. Tickets 12.50€
Location: 5 Rue de Thorigny, 3rd arr. Nearest Metro: Filles du Calvaire
Caesar, the Retrospective
@ Centre Pompidou (Rue Saint-Martin, 4e), through March 26 - A retrospective exhibit of the work of Parisian sculptor Caesar. Exhibit included with museum admission of 14€.
Location: Rue Saint-Martin, 4e. Nearest Metros: Rambuteau, Hôtel de Ville, Châtelet. RER: Châtelet les Halles, lines A, B, D
Visit Paris's huge Foire du Trone, and you'll become part of a tradition stretching back to 857 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, carnival rides, stuffed animals, fries, and beer rule as the fair attracts an estimated 5 million visitors during its 2-month spring season.
When: March 30-May 27, noon to midnight (1pm on Saturdays and the eves of public holidays)
Where: Bois de Vincennes, 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
Coveted premier tickets go on sale on March 7 for the French Open Tennis Tournament, second Grand Slam of the season held this year from May 27 - June 10.
If you want to attend a match, you need to move fast once sales open as the tickets always sell out quickly.
Find French Open schedule and ticket information on TennisEventGuide.com