What to pack for paris in the spring

What to Pack for Paris in Spring

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Springtime in Paris is a magical experience as the city bursts into life with blossoming flowers and more moderate temperatures. If you’re planning a visit during this enchanting season, mastering the art of Parisian style is a must. From strolling along the Seine to sipping coffee at a sidewalk cafe, here’s your ultimate guide to what to pack for a trip to Paris in the spring.

Paris in the Spring

Paris in the spring is a beautiful time to visit. The weather tends to be moderate, although it can change around from chilly (and almost winter-like) to very pleasant and sunny.

The trees and flowers begin to bloom, and the city comes alive with energy and excitement. One of the main highlights of visiting Paris in the spring is the abundance of outdoor activities and events.

Parks and gardens, such as the Luxembourg Gardens and Tuileries Garden (two of my absolute favorites!), are filled with people enjoying picnics and strolls.

paris park in the spring image

The city’s many cafes and restaurants also set up outdoor seating, giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy a coffee or a meal outside and enjoy people-watching.

Because of the fluctuating weather, however, it can be tricky to figure out what to pack for Paris in spring. I remember living in Paris, experiencing beautiful 68°F degree weather one spring week only to find the temperatures dip the following week with surprise snowfall!

This kind of fluctuating weather can make packing ahead of time a bit tricky, so it’s best to check the weather app prior to your trip for the most accurate weather estimations.

The Spring Essentials

Of course in every packed suitcase, you’ve got to have your basics like go-to cosmetics, skincare, dental care, undergarments, socks, and pajamas.

I won’t get into these as they’re not items that you really need inspiration or ideas for, but what I will say is to always pack a pair of pajamas, underwear, and necessary cosmetics (this cosmetic bag is wonderful!) in your carry-on, in case you ever have a delayed flight or delayed baggage.

I will say that in the spring, it’s also highly recommended to throw in a pair of nylon tights in addition to your selection of socks. Some days can be cooler, and it’s nice to be able to have those on hand when you’re wearing a dress or skirt.

packing essentials for spring

I will also say that I never travel or spend time in Paris without hand sanitizer; this is especially important when you’re using public transportation. In the spring, it’s also particularly essential to bring some eye drops and your sunglasses because pollen and all sorts of stuff are flying around in the air like crazy.

I will also share that these Klorane eye patches have become a travel essential for me as they really help fight the puffy, tired eyes look from jet lag.

Also in my bag, you’ll find a small bottle of Tums (you can’t get these in France) because food in France can be heavy at times, as well as Advil (also difficult to get in France). If you’re prone to allergies, you’ll want to make sure you also pack some allergy medicine.

I’ve also recently started to pack all of my items in packing cubes to help keep things really organized and save room; they’ve been a total game-changer!

What to Pack for Paris in Spring

Because of the unpredictable weather, it’s best to bring plenty of layers when you’re trip planning and deciding what to pack for Paris in the spring.

I also always pack neutrals to make my selection feel versatile and keep the clothing items as minimal as I can. I like to have options, but I also don’t want to lug around more than one checked-in suitcase.

Here’s a sample collection of the type of items I might pack in a spring trip to Paris. Note that temperatures can vary greatly in the spring. You could have one day where it’s 50°F and another where it’s 64°F. The latter would allow you to get away with a trench coat where as the former would call for a thicker, wool coat.

What to Pack for Paris in the Spring collage portait size

You’ll notice a few trends in this collection of items:

  1. Varying materials: You’ve got some cashmere, some denim, silk, wool, tweed…I like to intentionally mix these up because not only can the weather be pretty mixed up, but so can the types of outings and experiences you have in the city.
  2. Comfortable Shoes: Paris is a city best explored on foot, so bring comfortable shoes that you can walk in for hours. Stylish sneakers or ballet flats are both great options. I also included a pair of booties with a thicker heel. These are great for evening dinners or special outings during the day (think high tea), where I’d like to wear a heel but still want to be somewhat practical about walking in a city with cobblestone streets.
  3. Outerwear options: There’s a trench for those cool days, a wool coat for the chilly ones, and a blazer when it’s just one of those perfect spring days in Paris.
  4. Neutral-colored clothing: Parisians are known for their classic, understated style. You can adhere to this neutral-colored palette while incorporating spring fashion by packing pastels (think light pinks, light yellows, baby blues, lilac, etc.) and plenty of navy!
  5. Dresses: Pack a couple of dresses that can be dressed up or down. I love a knit sweater dress for the spring, as well as a floral midi dress. They’re chic and great day-to-night outfits.
  6. Cross-body bag: A cross-body bag is very useful for Paris as it keeps your hands free for taking photos and exploring the city. It’s also a great way to keep your valuables safe, as you can keep the bag positioned in front of you (unlike backpacks or gaping tote bags which are ripe for pickpocketing).
  7. Lightweight scarf: A Parisian staple (as well as a capsule wardrobe staple!), a lightweight scarf can add a pop of color to your outfit and help protect against a spring chill on cooler days or mornings.
  8. Jeans: A pair of classic blue jeans is a must-have for any trip to Paris. Choose a pair that is comfortable and easy to move in, but be sure to avoid any with large holes and tears. You can learn more about creating that perfect French girl casual chic style with jeans in this post here.
travel day outfit for spring

This is an outfit I’d wear on a travel day because it’s so comfortable, but still polished enough that you could go straight from the airport to a local cafe for a bite to eat.

The top looks like a nice button-down, but it’s made with a cotton-modal fabric, making it feel soft and comfy. The pants are part of Banana Republic’s bi-stretch collection, which means they look like a flared pair of slacks, but they’ve got incredible stretch to them and no tight buttons or zipper in the front like a typical pair of slacks.

Of course the trainers are easy to understand and a given for a travel day, but these ones in particular are the stylish kind that would be trendy and cool to wear around the city too. No gym shoes here!

You’ll notice I also paired the outfit with a trench coat and stylish baseball cap. This is mostly to save room in your suitcase but they also help pull the entire look together and give it a more styled appearance.

I also want to say that for a trench coat, you have a lot of options these days even though I’ve linked to a Burberry one here. It’s an item that I consider an investment piece worth splurging on, but if that’s not in your budget, you can easily find one at Quince, H&M, J.Crew, Mango, and more.

blue jeans and a silk top outfit

This outfit is a great example of casual chic. I’ve mixed a classic pair of blue jeans with a silk top that has a front button and loop style fastening (those kind of details just add extra sophistication to your look).

I’ve then added a gorgeous silk scarf from Dior that has a pattern of delicate butterflies, perfect for spring. Assuming this is a cooler spring day, I’ve paired this outfit with a navy wool coat and some cream-toned booties.

I’ve also styled the outfit with this beige crossbody bag, which features a popular trend of woven leather in a neutral color scheme that makes it suitable to be worn with all the different outfits during the week.

striped cardigan with navy slacks outfit

Every Francophile needs a striped top, and this cardigan fits the bill with its fabulously chic gold buttons too. I’ve paired them with J.Crew’s four season stretch, wide leg navy slacks.

I have these slacks in navy and black; they’re so comfortable! They’re also meant to hit you at the ankle, which means you can easily wear them with a pair of ballet flats and not worry about the hem dragging on the ground at all.

These flats in particular are the Sam Edelman ‘Felicia’ flats, which are the best! Note: They do need a little bit of breaking into, so buy them ahead of time. Once you do, however, they are an absolute dream!

ivory blazer with cashmere sweater and slacks

This outfit is a great example of how I’d wear a blazer, and how to put together a comfortable but elevated look for your trip. The ivory blazer is in a tweed fabric, giving it ultra chic, Chanel-type vibes, instantly elevating the whole outfit.

Because it’s not as warm as other types of outerwear, I’ve paired it with a light cashmere sweater. The brand Quince, which is where I’ve selected the sweater from, is fantastic for quality clothing at fair pricing (I’ve bought cashmere and linen from them and the pieces have held up well).

This outfit is also a good example of how to mix color into your neutral options. When you stick to pastels, they’re easy to coordinate with the other pieces in your packed wardrobe.

cashmere sweater with silk skirt and trench coat

One of the most French girl things you can do is wear a skirt during the spring (and summer!). I love a silk skirt like this washable one from Quince because I feel like it’s a year-round piece.

On cold winter days, pair them with tights and boots and on pleasant spring days, just throw on a light cashmere sweater and some flats!

floral midi dress with trench coat and trainers

This is one of those ultimate day-to-night looks that’s chic, comfortable, and effortless to put together in the morning. Whether you choose to wear a floral midi dress like the one shared here, or a knit sweater dress (showcased in the entire wardrobe collage higher up), this is an outfit that you could wear walking around the city all day, and then appropriately wear to a cozy bistro in the evening for dinner.

Note that the dresses I’ve shared in this post have a couple of elements I really love. The first being that the dresses offer flattering silhouettes. They accentuate the smallest part of your waist without being entirely form-fitting, meaning they look good on a variety of body types.

The other feature that I love about them is that they’re perfectly suited for spring. The knit dress has the warmer fabric, while the floral dress offers a longer length, which can make a difference on cooler days too.

blue jeans and a striped button down

Last, but not least, this outfit is another example of how to keep things casual and easy, but still offer a styled perspective that shows you cared about your outfit and want to look put together.

There’s nothing more classic and polished than a button down, and this vertically-striped, blue poplin one is fabulous for the spring. You could pair this with blue jeans as displayed here to keep things really relaxed and casual, or you could easily pair these with either of the navy pants I’ve showcased in this post.

Other items you’ll want to pack:

  1. Umbrella: Spring in Paris can bring some rain, so it’s always a good idea to pack an umbrella or raincoat. I highly recommend a compact, virtually “flip proof” umbrella like this one.
  2. Sunscreen: Even though it’s not summer yet, the sun can still be strong in the spring. Don’t forget to pack sunscreen to protect your skin.
  3. Camera: Paris is one of the most photogenic cities in the world. Don’t forget to pack a camera to capture all the beautiful sights.
  4. Adapter: Make sure to bring an adapter if you’re coming from a country with different electrical outlets.
  5. Travel-sized toiletries: Save space in your luggage by packing travel-sized toiletries such as shampoo, conditioner, and toothpaste.
  6. Apple air tags: A must for traveling these days, the Apple air tags can help you track your luggage in case the airline loses it, delays it, or in case of theft. This set from Amazon offers the best deal.

Overall, pack light and versatile pieces that you can mix and match throughout your trip. And don’t forget, Paris is a fashion haven, so don’t be afraid to dress up a bit!

Remember to check the weather forecast before you leave and adjust your packing list accordingly. Most importantly, have fun exploring the City of Light!

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