Perhaps just a decade ago, we were still stopping by local convenience stores to buy city maps. That collective human habit has slowly vanished with the rising ubiquity of apps. Now, you can find apps for almost anything. Want to fine dine tonight? There’s hundreds of apps just for booking your favorite restaurant. Want to rent a car to go around the city? Just download the first thing you can find in the app store - most of them are even free!
Because most travelers travel with their phones, it’s only fitting that we recommend some ways of exploiting that technical advantage. If you’re traveling to Paris in the near future, here are top Paris apps that would indeed prove very useful not only in making things easier for a traveler like you, but most importantly, in getting the most out of your Paris experience.
Paris is home to some of the most beautiful architectures in the world, from the neoclassical stance of the Arc de Triomphe to the Romanesque-Byzantine-style of Sacré-Cœur. Paris teems with architectural grace that one day would not be enough for you to see all of them. It could be fun though - and much much easier with an app that can help you hunt these majestic treasures embedded within the cobbled rues of the city of the lights.
The Monument Tracker App lists all these architectural grandeurs in one efficient platform along with a concise description of what it is and what its history was. To make your monument hunting adventure extra fun, there’s even a quiz included, along with a possible treasure hunt which is an exciting way to get to know Paris. The app also includes bits of helpful information such as prices of events and upcoming activities.
Just make sure that the location tracking is off to minimize battery use.
Of course, you will be needing a map to come in handy. We have various picks for our Paris maps. Evaluate for yourself which would be more useful, depending on what you are looking for and how much you’re going to need it.
This app is administrated by the Régie Autonome des Transports Parisiens itself, Paris’s public transport agency. The main function of the app is to a) guide tourists and travelers who are new to the city find their way to Paris’s most visited attractions and tourist sites or b) help locals make public transport a breeze. Basically, it has a search bar that allows users to find an attraction, along with its detailed descriptions. Not only that, the app also gives you a step-guided instruction on how to get there using the various public transport means, identify the fastest routes with the fewest changes, or show you the quickest walking routes when it is more efficient than waiting for a Metro.
One of the most useful mapping apps out there, Citymapper gives you not only the city in its minutest details but also how to get to certain destinations via different public transport options. They even provide an estimate of your travel time, whether you’re walking or commuting, taking into consideration possible factors that may cause delay.
If you’re a cyclist, this app would be tremendously useful. Citymapper maps for you a cycle route by integrating Paris’s bike system on the map. It displays the distance you will be covering, even the number of calories that you will have to burn, along with a cheeky conversion of said calories into French food. Now if that does not convince you to download the app, I don’t know what will.
Now this one is quiet unique for two reasons: a) it can be accessed offline and b) it customizes your app experience based on your personal interests. When you download the app, you will be asked to highlight your interests, much like how the Pinterest algorithm works. You will then have access to a detailed map of Paris with point marks for each attraction. Along with each attraction are helpful links to the nearest hotels replete with information about the place and reviews from visitors. What’s more - the data is regularly updated so every detail is as accurate as possible. You can also access travel tips and articles straight from the app!
Paris houses the best restaurants in the world and it’s not really a secret how Parisians - or the French in general - take their food seriously. In fact, cuisine is one of the main attractions in France, aside from its beautiful monuments and rich cultural history. It’s no wonder why food here can get pretty expensive. Not to mention the beverages. So if you’re a traveler who doesn’t want to splurge, it can get pretty hard to find a laid-back place that offers good old pint.
No worries! With Mr Good Beer, your night outs are sold. The app automatically locates the cheapest bars in Paris. If you’re planning to pop a cold one with some of your French pals, this is the best app to go to.
Because Paris is a world tourist destination, the city is almost always teeming with people. Therefore, access to public transport becomes extremely important, especially during the peak season. This app makes it possible for the public to access information about the city’s public transport system in real-time so they can get to where they’re headed whenever they need to.
The app gives you information about the current public transport routes including bus and train departures and arrivals. The app also provides information about the metro plan.
If you’re looking for local nightlife or simply want to immerse in local cultures via locally-held events, then download the ParisBouge app, available both for Android and iOS - a very helpful mobile application that connects you to the latest happenings, concerts, and parties in the city. The app also lets you discover bars and clubs near you.
If you don’t know French, don’t have time to learn, or don’t have a handy French friend to make sense of all the sophisticated-sounding consonants and vowels, you’ll need a handy digital translator that can translate on the go.
Our top pick is Yandex, which translates between any pair of over 90 languages if you’re online. But even when offline, the app can still translate from French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish, or Turkish to English. You can either speak the words or phrases or simply have the app read the translations for you.
It is also equipped with a visual text recognition capacity that currently works for 12 languages including Czech, English, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Chinese and Ukrainian. You can even translate an entire site within the app!
So let’s say you’re having dinner and the menu is all in French. Simply take a picture of the dish of interest and the translation will be written over the image.
If you’re the epicurious traveler, a food app is a must. And when it comes to finding the best places to dine, Le Fooding gives you plenty of options. It features “hundreds of openings, novelties, and geo-localizable favourites around and all over France: suburbian canteens, little cafés, tapas bars, modern greasy spoon, take-aways, bistros, wine bars, diner cellars,” according to its Apple Store description and the listings are regularly updated.
This app is great for exploring Paris via recommendations from the locals. It’s designed for travelers who want to stay out of the crowded main tourist attractions and simply want to enjoy the romantic vibe of the city. This app is not free though it’s definitely worth the little investment. The articles are honestly written and you’ll have a treasure list of new places to visit.
This one’s like a version of Spotted by Locals but free. Locals provide recommendations on where to go, what to see, where and what to eat, etc. and the users can view all recommendations as a list on a map. You can also access the app even when offline. If you have friends, you can message your Cool Cousin directly. Unfortunately, Cool Cousin is only available for iPhone users.
Download the Cool Cousin app here.
These apps let you eat in a local’s home! A dream come true for many travelers who want to experience Parisian home-cooked gourmet. It’s a great way to find accommodating locals who can be your friends in the process while also tasting authentic French cooking - definitely a wonderful way to travel.
BonAppetour is only available in iOS. Download the app here.
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