Napoleon in Paris – Walking Tour

Take A walk in the French emperor’s footsteps, following us on our Napoleon Tour in Paris. Discover the favorite district of Lieutenant Bonaparte and how, later, the young general opened his way to power in Paris. Figure out the plans of Emperor Napoleon to make Paris a capital that suits his newly built Europe! Enjoy an extensive 4-hour genuine private tour in the footsteps of Napoleon to discover Paris under Napoleon with a passionate postgraduate fully licensed tour guide. See also our shorter 3-hour and 2.5-hour versions of the tour.

The Napoleon in Paris Walking Tour was more specifically designed for the American public:

New Orléans Foundation; Louisiana Purchase; Lafayette, the hero of two worlds; The Bonaparte and America; Louis the XVI and Marie Antoinette, 1778 Franco-American Treaty of Alliance, etc. are some of the subjects of the tour!

These America-related subjects are also included in the shorter 3-hour and 2.5-hour versions of the tour. 

American flag to illustrate how the Napoleon tour is American Oriented.
Portrait of Napoleon I to illustrate Napoleon Tour in Paris

The Emperor Napoleon I

Napoleon in Paris Tour Essentials

200 € for 1 to 2 people + 50 € per extra person

  • +/- 4-hour Guided tour in English
  • Genuine private = your party only (6 people max.)
  • +/- 6.5 km (+/- 4 miles) distance covered
  • Postgraduate local licensed guide lecturer
  • Flexible schedule

Shortened versions of the tour are available.

  • Shorter 3-hour tour 170 € for 1 to 2 people + 40 € per extra person
  • Shorter 2.5-hour tour 140 € for 1 to 2 people + 30 € per extra person

If you plan to visit Napoleon Tomb after the tour, see the “End of the Tour” section.


How to choose? 4-hour full tour or shorter 3 and 2.5-hour versions?

The 4-hour full tour is the one discribed in this page. It is a very long walk of +/- 6.5 km (+/- 4 miles). 

The shortened 3-hour version of the tour do not include the last part of the full tour (after place de la Concorde). It is also a very long walk of +/- 5.5 km (+/- 3.5 miles).

The shortened 2.5-hour tour do not include the last part of the full tour, but either the first part of it (before Bourse, Palais Brogniard). It is still quite long: 4.5 km (3.8 miles)   

The 4-hour full has to be reserved for people who like guided tour enought and have the health to handel which such a long tour. It is ideal for real Napoleon afficionados! You should avoid to book this tour during Paris low season (November to March) because of the significant risk of difficult wather. The 2.5-hour tour, includes the essential: Palais-Royal, Louvre, Place Vendôme and Concorde. This is a prudente choice during low season. The 3-hour tour is the most succesfull one, an equibrate compromise.

Even if designed for Napoleon enthousiasts the three versions of the tour are totally adequate for non-Napoleonic aficitionados including Paris first timers. It includes a lot of non-Napoleonic matters as architecture, French culture and history. The tour guide will adapt the dose of Napoleonic content in function of the audience. 


What’s in the tour?

Napoleonic Landmarks

Paris Dreamed City of Napoleon

Diplomaty Politics & Military Glory

Napoleon Life & History in Paris

The Arts under Napoleon


Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel



Assemblée Nationale

Covered Passages

Three Famous Paris Gardens

Palais Royal

Champs Elysées


Three Royal Squares

Place des Victoires

Place Vendôme

Place de la Concorde

Senic Views from River Seine Bridges & Quays

Pont des Arts


Institut de France

Musée d’Orsay

Pont Alexandre III

Why a Napoleon Tour in Paris?

Because Paris is the place where Napoleon left his most important marks. There are a lot of ways to follow in the footsteps of Napoleon in Paris for example:

  • Tracing the young officer during the French Revolution
  • Searching the remaining symbols of his military glory
  • Following the protector of the Arts and Sciences

But before all, you will discover an emperor’s dream to make Paris the capital of its newly built Europe.

Paris has changed a lot since Napoleon Bonaparte. It’s much bigger, by far the biggest metropolis of the European Union, but in some ways, the center of the city would still be recognizable to Napoleon … because he built a lot of it.

Napoleon in Paris Private Tour Spirit

The tour’s main idea is to optimize your time with your guide. This tour then is an optimized route to discover, walking, the Paris of Napoleon.

So, unlike other Napoleon tours, we do not include in our standard tour places that you can easily visit without a guide (such as Invalides, for example).

Nevertheless, if you want to do a short visit to Napoleon Tomb by yourself after the tour, it is normally possible if you book a tour departure, not after 1 PM (13h), it is all explained in the after the tour section.

We can also for sure organize more extensive Napoleon tours, adding extensions to our route y/or visit of museums.

Your Private Tour Guide in Paris

Certified French national guide
BA, Magna Cum Laude, Heritage Developpement & Preservation from Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers
Postgraduate from Paris Dauphine-PSL University

Know more about Yves, your private tour guide in Paris

You can also check Yves’s interview about Napoleon movie by Ridley Scott on the History Movie Podcast, there are 3 episodes.

We believe that our Napoleon Private tour
is the most efficient way to discover the Paris of Napoleon!

Napoleon Tour Content

Napoleon Tour Content

The Young Officer Bonaparte in Paris

  • His adventures in the Palais Royal
  • The hotels where Bonaparte stayed in 1787 and 1792 (evocation)
  • Bonaparte witnessed the fall of the monarchy on the 10th of August 1792
  • Where was the assembly where the king and his family took refuge

Bonaparte, an Ambitious General in Paris

  • The man of Barras
  • Battle of 13 Vendémiaire (5 October 1795): Saint-Roch Church

Napoleon Bonaparte and Joséphine

  • The first husband of Joséphine, the grandfather of Napoleon III
  • Barras present future Empress Joséphine to Bonaparte
  • Place of the marriage of Napoléon and Joséphine>

Palais Royal, Paris. Crédit

Napoleon and the Economy

  • The Palais Brongniart (Paris stock exchange)
  • The “Banque de France” created by First Consul Bonaparte (January 18, 1800)
  • The “Cour des Comptes” (the State finance auditing agency) a disappeared building which was located where now is Musée d’Orsay
Photo of Banque de France to illustrate the Napoleon in Paris Walking Tour, France.

Paris – Banque de France.

Symbols of Napoleon’s Military Glory and Army

  • Colonne vendôme
  • Desaix monument (evocation)
  • Arc de Triomphe (Triumphal Arch) 
  • Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel
  • La Madeleine church (a temple to the Grande Armée)
Photo of Colonne Vendôme illustrate the Napoleon in Paris Walking Tour, France.

Paris – Colonne Vendôme

Napoleon and the Arts

  • Legendary “Musée des Monuments Français” (evocation)
  • Palais des Beaux-Arts (Fine Arts Palace, nowadays the institute)
  • The Pont des Arts (Arts Bridge), first metallic structure in Paris
  • The “Muséum Central des Arts” becomes the “Musée Napoléon” nowadays Le Louvre Museum.
Photo of an oil painting representing the Coronation of Napoleon" in Notre-Dame de Paris to illustrate the Napoleon tour in Paris, France

1810 Painting by Boilly representing in the Muséum Napoleon a public view of Jacques-Louis David masterpiece “The Coronation of Napoleon” in Notre-Dame de Paris

Mansions of Napoleon Family and Empire Dignitaries

The Hôtel Particuliers (mansions) where were staying Letizia Bonaparte (Napoleon’s mother), Lucien or Jérôme Bonaparte (Napoleon’s younger brothers), Eugène de Beauharnais (son of Empress Joséphine), Marshals Ney, Lannes, Davout, Mortier, etc.


Napoleon’s Police

  • Joseph Fouché: the unavoidable Minister of Police.
  • François Vidocq: founder of the crime-detection department “Sûreté“, who inspired Victor Hugo for his main character Jean Valjean in Les Misérables.

Napoleon and the USA

  • Louisiana Purchase: deal history, place where was signed the treaty
  • The Bonapartes in America

Napoleon and its Diplomacy

  • Hôtel de la Vrillière which was the Private Mansion of Napoleon famous minister of foreign affairs Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord.
Portrait of Napoleon famous minister of foreign affairs Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord to illustrate the Napoleon Tour in Paris

Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord oil painting by François Gérard

Architectural Style of Napoleon in Paris

  • The Empire Style: an ostentatious form of Neoclassicism
  • Napoleon’s architects Percier and Fontaine

Paris, the Dreamed City of Napoleon

Napoleon transformed the old, still mainly medieval Paris into one of the most enlightened cities in Europe. His work is huge: establishing street numbering, Reviving the Louvre palace construction, creating the rue de Rivoli and a new district for Paris, creating markets, fountains, quays, sidewalks, sewers, etc. The ambition of Napoleon for Paris, a city he wanted to convert to the capital of Europe, was without limit.

And Much More about Napoleon in Paris

  • The communications in the great Empire
  • Former palace of Tuileries (evocation)
  • The Egyptian Expedition,
  • The former Café de Chartres were used to come to Bonaparte and most of the figures of the French Révolution.
  • The place where Marie-Louise and Napoleon got married.
  • The former shop of the hat provider of Napoleon,
  • The still existing chocolate provider of the emperor Napoleon etc. 
  • The Napoleon shop in Paris 

Two Extra Aspects of the Napoleon Tour

Napoleon III, the other French Emperor

Learn about the other French Emperor Napoleon III, the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Learn how Napoleon III, 37 years after the dramatic fall of the First French Empire, continued his uncle’s project of a newly redesigned Paris and how the Second Empire is given high credit for the rebuilding of Paris.

This is the famous haussmannien Paris with its broad boulevards, as on our route: Avenue de l’Opéra, rue de Rivoli or Boulevard Saint-Germain.

Also Learned about his wife, Eugénie de Montijo, the last French Empress who was still alive in 1919, and the sad story of their only son, the Prince Imperial who died in South-Africa during the Anglo-Zulu War under the British Flag.

Napoleon III, by painter Adolphe Yvon.

Napoleon III, by painter Adolphe Yvon.

Parisian Word Famous Luxe and Chic

Our tour route crosses one of the world’s most famous international iconic deluxe zones with rue de la Paix (part of the Napoleonic urbanistic program and formerly called rue Napoleon) and place Vendôme (formerly Royal Square Louis-le-Grand). The area is a showcase for luxury goods. Most of the world’s great jewelry brands have their most prestigious representation there: Dior, Channel, Piaget, Bvlgari, Chopard, Louis Vuitton, Boucheron, Cartier, Rolex, Van Cleef & Arpels, etc.

Our route will also cross three of the world’s most famous hotels: Le Meurice and Hôtel de Crillon, two Palace hotels, and Le Ritz, an iconic world-class luxury hotel, a symbol of high society and luxury.

End of the Tour – What to Do After

Tour End Location

It is impossible to tell you where the tour ends exactly for such long tours; it depends a lot on the customer (the number of questions asked, the walking pace, etc.) or any other contingency. In the case of the 2.5-hour tour and the 3-hour tour, we should normally end the tour around Place de la Concorde if everything goes well.

In the case of the 4-hour tour, depending on the group’s pace, we may continue after Place de la Concorde and reach the Esplanades des Invalides midway between the Invalides and the Seine River.

What to do After: Leaving the Area

From Place de la Concorde: métro lines 1, 8 & 12.
From Esplanade des Invalides: métro Line 8 & 13, RER C.

What to do After: Continue with Napoleon

If you plan to do a (short) visit to Musée de la Légion d’Honneur or Invalides (Napoleon Tomb), don’t book a tour departure after 12 A.M (4-hour tour) or 1 P.M. (3-hour tour); if you want to have a chance to reach it.

Invalides & Napoléon Tomb, if still open. +/- 1300 meters from Place de la Concorde, +/- 350 meters from the middle of esplanade des Invalides.
Musée de la Légion d’Honneur, if still open. +/- 900 meters from Place de la Concorde, +/- 950 meters from the middle of Esplanade des Invalides.

Other Napoleon Tours in Paris

Napoleon in the Louvre

A 2-hour tour based on the strong link between the Louvre and Napoléon.

Napoleon and his nephew were strongly involved in the construction of the Louvre.

The Musée du Louvre was in its beginnings called Musée Napoléon.

There are numerous paintings from the Napoleonic area in the Louvre with first of all the Coronation of Napoleon by painter Jacques-Louis David.

Napoleon Palace “Les Tuileries,” now destroyed, was standing in the Middle of the Louvre area just in front of the Tuileries Garden.

    Photo of the Entablement and the quadriga of the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel to illustrate the Napoleon in the Louvre Tour ; Paris, France.

    Napoleon in the Louvre

    2-hour Private Tour from 130 € per party

    Really private tour
    From 130 € for 2, 175 € for 3 etc.
    +/- 2-hour tour
    Postgraduate (M.phil) fully licensed guide


    Napoleon in Paris Full-Day Tour

    The route of the 4-hour Napoleon private tour in Paris has been designed to concentrate on a maximum of Napoleon-related places.

    But the tour has also been designed to authorize extensions easily. Extensions of the route as a museum visit. Following this principle, we have designed a Napoleon in Paris full-day tour with:

    • The 3-hour Napoleon in Paris Tour
    • + A Napoleon Oriented Louvre Tour
    • + A Pont-des-arts & rue Bonaparte Walk
    • + the Napoleon Tomb in the Invalides.
    Sculpture of the face of Napoleon to illustrate the Napoleon in Paris Full Day Guided Tour ; Paris, France.

    Napoleon in Paris Full Day Tour

    7-hour Private Tour from 380 € per party

    Really private tour
    From 380 € for 2, 430 € for 3 etc.
    +/- 7-hour tour
    Postgraduate (M.phil) fully licensed guide


    Invalides – Napoleon Tomb & Army Museum

    In the Invalides is not only Napoleon’s tomb but also the one of his elder brother, Joseph Bonaparte, former king of Naples and former king of Spain, who stayed in the USA from 1815 to 1832.

    Also, there are the tombs of the beloved Grand Maréchal Duroc and Grand Maréchal Bertrand, who went with Napoléon to Saint-Helena. Also there an urn with the remains of General Leclerc, Stepbrother of Napoleon, Pauline Bonaparte’s Husband, who died in 1802 in Saint-Domingue (nowadays Haiti) when he was in charge of the disastrous Napoleonic expedition there.

    Last but not least, there is also the tomb of Napoleon II, the son of Napoléon and Empress Marie-Louise.

    The Invalides also house the Musée de l’Armée (Army Museum), with many galleries dedicated to the Napoleonic era.

    Soon available.


    Napoleon Tomb in the Invalides ; Paris, France.

    Invalides : Napoleon Tomb & Army Museum

    Soon available

    The Invalides : includes Napoleon tomb and Napoleonic part of the museum of the army

    Soon available

    Possible Tour Extensions in Other Napoleon Sites in Paris

    On-Demand Extended Napoleon in Paris Guided Tour

    The way we have extended our Napoleon 4-hour tour to create our Napoleon full-day tour is far from being the only possible one. There are many possibilities; route extensions can be made in all directions.

    • WEST: Palais de l’Elysée former palace of Murat & Caroline Bonaparte, where Napoleon spent his last days in Paris after Waterloo.
    • NORTH: Rue de la Victoire, where was the only house Napoleon owned as a private citizen. It was his residence till 1799. Passage des Panoramas etc.,
    • EASTNotre-Dame, the place of Napoleon’s coronation.
    • SOUTH-WESTEcole Militaire, where young Bonaparte got the privilege to be a student,
    • SOUTH: Palais du Petit Luxembourg, the residence of the First Consul, rue Bonaparte, still existing shop of the chocolate provider of Napoleon and the last French kings, place where Marshall Ney was shot, etc.

    These extensions can also be visits to monuments and museums:

    • At Le Louvre Museum: the great collection of masterpieces painted by First Empire artists as famous as Jacques-Louis David, Antoine-Jean Gros, or François Gérard.
    • Légion d’Honneur Museum: founded by Napoleon, the highest French order has its own museum in hôtel de Salm.
    • Les Invalides: Napoleon Tomb.
    • Les invalides: Musée de l’Armée with plenty of Napoleon-related objets from uniforms to marshals’ batons.
    • Panthéon: Tombs of many Napoleonic period dignitaries (for example Marshal Lannes).

    Contact us if you need a customized extended tour. 

    Other Napoleonic Sites Outside Paris

    Other Napoleon Sites in the Paris Area

    The Malmaison

    The house of Empress Joséphine and Napoleon. The castle is fully furnished in the Empire style. This is a must-see for any real fan of Napoléon.

    Other places

    Château de Rambouillet, where Napoleon spent his last night in the Paris area from 29 to 30 June 1815 before leaving to meet his final fate.

    Château de Compiègne, where Napoléon Received and first met Archduchess Marie Louise of Austria, the future empress.

    Parc de Saint-Cloud: The château de Saint-Cloud (destroyed) was the residence of Bonaparte when he was First Consul of the French Republic.

    Grand Trianon (Versailles) was fully refurnished by Napoleon, who stayed there on various occasions. Most of the rooms are still furnished in the Empire Style.

    Château de Maisons-Laffitte, a former property of Marshal Lannes.

    Reuil Malmaison, Saint-Pierre-Saint-Paul church: Tomb of Empress Joséphine.

    Saint-Leu-la-Forêt, Saint-Leu-Saint-Gilles church: Tomb of Louis Bonaparte (Napoleon’s brother, king of Holland).

    Napoleon Sites Outside Paris Area

    Château de Fontainebleau

    Fontainebleau castle, apart from being a jewel of the French Renaissance with its famous mannerist frescos, paintings, and sculptures, is also an Imperial Palace. It is the place where Napoleon’s farewell to its old guard on four April 1814, before leaving France for his first exile to the island of Elba. The Château de Fontainebleau also houses one of the most important Napoleon Museums, including a gallery of portraits of all the imperial families. Napoleon’s apartment with the salon of the first abdication is also part of the normal visit to the castle.

    Château d’Orléans-la-Source

    : Napoleon never went there, but at only +/- 120 km from Paris, the place is fascinating for a real fan of the First Empire. It is where Marshal Davout gave the submission of the rest of Napoleon’s forces (standing along the Loire River) after Waterloo. It was the 14th of July 1815, the final end of the Grande Armée. The following day, at first light, Napoleon embarked on board the Bellerophon and made himself a prisoner of the English. The Château can’t be visited, but we propose a tour of the park of the Château, one of France’s most beautiful gardens (35 hectares).

    Napoleon in Paris Guided Tour Reviews

    Walking Tour of Paris through Napoleon and it’s History

    My teenage son and I had a great walking tour with Yves while we were in Paris. The tour was billed as a walking tour of Napoleon in Paris but covered so much more, it includes history, architecture, art, theater and just a great overview of how Paris changed from the Empire to today. Yves was incredibly knowledgeable and really tailored the tour so my son enjoyed as much as I did. It includes a lot of walking so be prepared (comfortable shoes and Water) but is the best experience I’ve had of seeing Paris as locals see it. Highly Recommend!

    Nick H

    Tripadvisor, May 2023

    Amazing tour!

    What an amazing tour !
    My boyfriend and me went on the 3 hours Napoleon tour in Paris. It was a present I gave my boyfriend for christmas since he’s a big Napoleon fan. But it turned out it was so much more than “just” a Napoleon tour – our guide showed us so many hidden gems and told us so many interesting stories about the city that history really came alive and you walked through the streets with a completely different view!
    I was a bit concerned beforehand that I wouldn’t know enough about Napoleon for the tour and also that my boyfriend might would know already everything – but we both got surprised and had such a good time!
    A big recommendation for everybody who comes to Paris! A must!

    Sarah T

    Tripadvisor, March 2023

    Excellent Private Tour on the Life and Times of Napoleon Bonaparte

    We had a terrific tour of the many sites in Paris related to the life and times of Napoleon Bonaparte by our tour guide Yves. He was knowledgeable, friendly, and really tailored the tour to our interest. Being that we are from the US, he also pointed out many sites related to early American events such as visits by Ben Franklin and places such as the signing of the Louisiana Purchase and armistice between the US and Great Britain. The tour was packed with information and be prepared to see a lot of sites. The highlight for us was the visit to Les Invalides where Napoleon is buried.

    Katieelder62 - New-York, USA

    Tripadvisor, October 2021

    Napoleon Tour in Paris

    Myself and my partner took part in a Napoleon tour organised by Broaden Horizons and conducted by the wonderful Yves. It really was a fantastic 4 hours walking through the streets of Paris with someone who was both passionate and knowledgable about his topic. Yves was also fun to be with and actually continued the tour beyond its finish time to be sure every topic was covered. A genuinely fantastic time and one we will both remember for a long time. Thank you Yves.

    Ruaraidh M - Taunton, UK

    Tripadvisor, December 2021

    Prepare your Napoleon Guided Tour

    Few Milestones of the Napoleon Epic

    • August 15, 1769, birth of Napoleon in Ajaccio
    • On October 17, 1797, General Bonaparte signed the Treaty of Campo Formio with Austria after his victorious campaign in Italy.
    • November 9, 1799 (“18th Brumaire”): coup d’état Napoleon became First Consul of the French Republic.
    • December 2, 1804: Napoleon became Emperor of the French
    • December 2, 1805: Battle of Austerlitz
    • June 14, 1807, Battle of Friedland
    • June 18, 1815: Battle of Waterloo
    • May 5, 1821: Napoleon died at Saint Helena
    • December 15, 1840, Napoleon reburial in Invalides
    Battle of Friedland to illustrate the Napoleon Walking tour in Paris

    1807 Battle of Friedland, was one of Napoleon Bonaparte’s most significant victories. An apex milestone of the First French Empire.

    Napoleon Tour Historical Figures

    • Lucien Bonaparte, as president of the Council of Five Hundred this brother of Napoleon was part of the Coup of 18 Brumaire.
    • General Desaix, hero of the decisive battle of Marengo 
    • Hortense and Eugène de Beauharnais (children of Empress Joséphine)
    • Marshal Lannes, Napoleon’s comrade in arms
    • Marshal Ney, nicknamed the bravest of the bravest by Napoleon
    • Marshal Davout, a military legend, the only Napoleon’s Marshal undefeated in battle
    • Marshal Mortier, many times in command of the Imperial Guard
    • Jérome Bonaparte, King of Westphalia, Napoleon’s youngest brother, was still active during the Second French Empire of Napoleon III.
    Hortense de Beauharnais portrait to illustrate Napoleon private tour in Paris
    Louis bonaparte portrait to illustrate Napoleon walking tour in Paris

    Portraits of Hortense de Beauharnais and Louis Bonaparte. This emperor’s brother was married to Empress Joséphine’s daughter. They were king & queen of Holland, but Hortense preferred to stay in Paris than in her kingdom. Her brother Eugène de Beauharnais was Vice King of Italia. She is a central figure of the two French Empires as her son Charles-Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte became Emperor Napoleon III.

    Things to know before Booking

    Meeting Point 4h & 3h Tours

    Next to the exit of the metro station “Grands Boulevards” in the 2nd arrondissement (district) of Paris. 

    Access: Metro station “Grands Boulevards”, line 8 or line 9.


    Napoleon in Paris Private Tour Attention Points

    • WARNING – The Napoleon Tours are long walks. The full 4-hour tour covers +/- 6.5 km, 3-hour tour is +/- 5.5 km, 2.5-hour tour is +/- 4.5 km. So good health and comfortable shoes are highly recommended.
    • Prices do not include transportation, food, drinks, or any other extra services.
    • We don’t enter monuments or museums, more specifically we don’t enter Invalides.
    • Some monuments can be presented from afar: for example, Arc de Triomphe.
    • Tour duration, distance covered & content are purely indicative, they may vary due to contingencies.

    Book your Napoleon in Paris Private Tour

    Choose below your tour: You will then be  asked : -> choose the number of people, date & hours of visit -> after our validation-> pay on line.

    Portait of Emperor Napoleon I in coronation robes to illustrate Napoleon Tour in Paris

    Emperor Napoleon I in Coronation Robes. The portrait was painted in 1806 by François Gérard, a pupil of Jacques-Louis David. Gérard became an official painter of Napoleon as of Louis XVIII and Charles X.

    Empire silhouette of Madame Talleyrand to illustrate Napoleon Tour in Paris

    Empire silhouette of Madame Talleyrand. You can notice in this painting also by Gérard the similitude with the portrait of Napoleon in terms of style of the furniture as in the extensive use of the famous Green Empire color.