Everyone knows that the Paris, France food scene is second-to-none. But, traveling in France can be a little intimidating, even for well-traveled foodies. To really understand what Paris gourmet food is like, it’s a good idea to take one of the many Paris food tours. But there are loads of Paris walking tours available, many of them involving food and wine tours. So how is a food traveler supposed to know what kind of Paris tours are right for them? We walk through the best tours in Paris for foodies and gourmets.
In this Paris food blog post, we offer recommendations on some interesting and unique Paris food tours. Some of the tours involve market visits, others involve cooking classes. We really do love taking food tours and cooking classes when we travel. It’s a gret way to learn about the local foods. I also recommend if you plan to take a food tour to do so at the start of your trip, to take what you’ve learned to make the rest of your stay run smoothly.
Learn the secrets of Parisian Gastronomy in this Eiffel Tour Neighborhood Paris Food Tour – From €95
Paris Market Food Tours
One of the best ways to tour Paris is to explore some of the many local food markets. We’ve visited some amazing food markets, like Santa Catarina in Barcelona, Mercato Albinelli in Modena, and Chau Long Market in Hanoi. Each experience is unique and leaves us learning so much about the local food culture.
This is where the locals shop, and it’s where you can find some of the best food in Paris. An expert can help dissect a Paris food market. This can help to identify some of the foods that you are unfamiliar with. When we visit a market on our own, often I am left pointing and wondering about a unique fruit, or a different type of cheese. Because I don’t speak French, this can leave me feeling a little out of sorts.
Most of the great Paris food tours start or end with a visit to a local market. Some of the great markets available for travelers to visit include President Wilson Market and Canal Saint Martin. A Paris food tour through a local market will most likely include tastings as well, including French pastries, wine, produce, and charcuterie. This can be both fun and helpful, particularly if you don’t speak French (like me!)
Check out this Eiffel Tour Paris Food Tour – From €85
Paris Wine Tours
Of course, there is more to France than Paris food. But, like French food in general, French wine is also complicated to understand. It’s possible to just do a little wine tasting around Paris, by looking at a list of the top Paris wine bars. But, taking one of the many wine tours near Paris, or even within Paris, can be a great way to learn more about French wine. Some of these tours are wine and cheese tours within Paris, and other’s explore local wine regions, where it’s possible to explore the Loire Valley or even Champagne on wine tasting tours from Paris.
Paris Chocolate Tours and Pastry Tastings
What are two of the items that Paris is most known for? Chocolate and croissants. A Paris food tour doesn’t have to be limited to market tours and savory items. For travelers with a sweet tooth, a chocolate and pastry tour in Paris could be just the ticket. There are pure chocolate tours, which focus on how they make quality chocolate and how to taste chocolate. This kind of Paris chocolate tour and tasting can be really interesting. When I took my first chocolate tasting class I learned so much. I didn’t realize what kind of garbage chocolate I had been eating before, with chocolates loaded with oils and preservatives. It was like a whole new world opened up to me. There are also pure bakery tours, that offer a glimpse into the world of French pastries. But, put those two together, and it’s pure magic.
Check out this Saint Germain des Prés Food Tour for the best chocolates and pastries – From €75
“Secret” Paris Food Tours
For a true Parisian insider tour, check out one of the few secret food tours Paris offers. A true Parisian leads secret Paris tours that include hidden passages, and tucked-away gardens and fountains. And, they know where to find the best macaron in Paris, the best local fromagerie, or cheese shop, and often, the lesser-known food markets. These are great Paris culinary food tours for travelers who are exploring Paris for the second, or third, time. I find that no matter how many times I visit a city that I love, I always continue to learn more. And a “secret” tour is perfect for this type of food traveler.
Book this Secret Paris Food Tour – From €59
Take a French Cooking Class in Paris
We took a pastry class when traveling in Lyon, France a few years ago, and I simply loved it. There’s just something so romantic about a French bakery, or a boulangerie. And even though we only learned how to make a single bakery item, I felt like I had an inside look into a secret society – a world where people eat amazing pastries each and every day – perhaps even taking them for granted. A cooking class in Paris can do this and more. Whether it’s a pastry baking class, or something more complex, perhaps learning to cook traditional French cuisine or even how to make macarons, it’s a great experience for a food traveler. Often times these cooking classes incorporate a local Paris market tour as well.
Book this Paris Baking Class – From €114
What to Look for in a Paris Food Tour
When looking to take a Paris food tour, it’s important to follow some of these tips. We’ve taken food tours and cooking classes all over the world. Most of them are great. Occasionally they sort of bomb. Here’s what to do to try to book the best Paris food tour:
- Book the tour ahead of time. This is important to make sure you get the tour that you want and that it doesn’t book up. It also means that you are not spending your holiday trying to organize a tour locally, and instead can spend your holiday enjoying it.
- Confirm where the tour meets. This is important so you know where to meet your Paris food guide, and how far it is from your hotel or apartment rental.
- Book with a reliable company. The best Paris tours are hosted by reliable companies, that offer secure booking and guarantees, as well as Paris food tour reviews to help you make your decision. In this post, we recommend Paris City Vision tours because they are Paris travel experts.
- Plan a culinary-focused trip. Perhaps plan to take two or more food tours in a single trip to learn more about the cuisine. Or, take a food tour while visiting during a top gastronomy festival, like Goût de France, pronounced “Good France,” which happens every fall in Paris.
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Amber Hoffman, food and travel writer behind With Husband In Tow, is a recovering attorney and professional eater, with a passion for finding new food and drink destinations. She lives with her husband, Eric, in Girona, Catalonia, Spain. Together over the last 20 years, they have traveled to over 70 countries. Amber is the author of the Food Traveler’s Guide to Emilia Romagna.