June, July, and August are the hottest months of the year in the French capital, with temperatures ranging on average between the low 60s and the high 70s. However, in recent years, France has been dealing with heat waves when temperatures reach the 90s for days on end.
It may not seem like much if you are used to the brutal heat of the Southern states, but remember that buildings in Europe are older and not necessarily built to deal with such high temperatures. Forget the air conditioning running on full blast everywhere! Some newer buildings and chain hotels have A/C, but it is still an oddity in most of the city, which relies on opening the windows at night and closing the shutters to keep inside temperatures down during the day.
Besides, although rain is not as frequent from May to September as it is the rest of the year, you should still expect freak thunderstorms that can drench you within minutes and disappear as quickly as they appear. Paris really just has unpredictable weather year-round.
Here are tips for staying cool in Paris should you find yourself there during a heat wave!
4 Tips for Packing for Paris in Summer
So how to pack for summer in Paris? As in any season, you will want to bring clothes that are both comfortable and stylish enough not to stand out in the crowd of well-dressed locals. My five tips for how to pack for Paris still apply. Besides, here is what you will find in my suitcase when I travel to Paris between May and September!
Bring the right shoes!
This has continually been my mantra for my fall, winter, and spring packing lists as well, but it bears repeating! The right pair of shoes will make or break your trip to Paris. You will most likely spend hours on your feet exploring the streets of Paris (or waiting in line to get into the Louvre), so make sure that you are bringing comfortable walking shoes. With that in mind, don’t reach for your favorite flip-flops or trusted running shoes just yet.
Just because it is hot doesn’t mean that Parisians do sloppy: if you can wear it at the beach (or the gym), it will look out of place in the city. You’ll never see Parisian women in short shorts and flip-flops or gym wear.
Instead, find a pair of leather flat sandals that can take you from day to night. You can also bring a pair of lightweight canvas fashion sneakers (think Converse or Keds) that will be comfortable for long days of exploring. Another popular option is espadrilles, which originated in Spain and the South of France but will not look out of place in Paris. They are comfortable and versatile, making them a great traveling shoe.
No matter which type of shoes you end upbringing on your summer trip to Paris, make sure that they are waterproof enough to withstand a rain shower. You can spray them ahead of time if needed. They should also be broken in ahead of time: you don’t want to spend your entire vacation nursing a blister or two!
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Don’t skip on accessories
Accessories are an easy way to spruce up your outfit – a great asset when you are dealing with a limited wardrobe while traveling. I have talked at length about my lifelong passion for scarves. Just because the temperatures warm up doesn’t mean that you should leave them at home!
They are probably the most useful accessory you could bring on a trip to Paris. Is it a bit chilly one morning? Do you need to cover up your shoulders to visit one of the beautiful churches on a hot afternoon? Your scarf can save the day. Find a lightweight one, in silk, cotton, or linen, and you are all set.
Besides scarves, a hat and sunglasses, and sunscreen should also be on your summer packing list for Paris. Shade can be limited, especially if you are waiting in line to enter one of the major monuments. Avoid a painful sunburn or insolation, which would put a damper on the rest of your day.
Again, anything too sporty will scream tourist. Leave your favorite baseball hat at home, and instead, bring a more elegant straw hat with wide brims, like a Panama. Some of them are packable, so you can shove them in your suitcase for traveling if you don’t feel like wearing them on the plane.
If you wear a purse, a fashionable crossbody bag is a great idea. Here are the best bags for walking around Paris.
Finally, it is a good idea to bring a refillable water bottle. You will find heftily priced up water bottles in most touristy places. However, Paris is also home to over 700 public water fountains (including some distributing sparkling water!) where you can refill your own.
Dress it up
Just because it’s hot doesn’t mean that French women are letting go of their legendary sense of style. The same rules they follow the rest of the year still apply during the summer months. Anything too short, sporty, or beachy will look out of place and will be frowned upon in the French capital.
Leave technical fabrics and sportswear in loud colors at home. Instead, find outfits that are tailored, in natural fabrics like cotton or linen, and neutral tones such as beige, white, navy, or black.
Summer dresses are the outfit of choice for Parisiennes. If you want a touch of fantasy in your life with flower prints and colors, that’s the way to go. Remember that Parisians tend to dress conservatively, even in the summer.
Avoid anything too short – knee-length is best, although midi and maxi dresses are also trendy these days – or low cut. I love cotton t-shirt dresses that are comfortable and travel well.
You will also see a lot of skirts that follow the same rules. (And if you plan on going out at night, you can never go wrong with a little black dress!)
Shorts are acceptable, but the ones you will find in Paris are a far cry from the cut-off jeans you may find in the United States. Instead, they are closer to the shorter version of tailored pants. You can also go with well-cut linen pants in neutral colors, which can be very chic. Pair them with a cotton blouse, a button-down shirt, or a linen t-shirt.
What To Pack For Paris In July
If your summer plans include a trip to Paris in July and you are wondering what to pack, I have you covered in today’s post.
Summer in Paris is magical and July is no exception, with mild weather, and longer days, you will have plenty of nice days to explore and wander the city of light.
Knowing what to pack for your summer trip to Paris will help you feel relaxed, chic, and comfortable.
Weather In Paris In July
Weather in Paris can always be unpredictable but usually during the month of July, it’s a bit mild with temperatures ranging from the 60s in the early mornings to the high 70s or 80s by the end of the month.
It’s a good idea to always pack layers for Paris because one day it can be cool and cloudy. By the next day, it can be warm and sunny, and you end up hot by the middle of the day.
There are few rainy days this month although it’s always a good idea to pack an umbrella and maybe a rain jacket with you to Paris. Normally, a trench is always a great idea for Paris but you can probably leave it at home during July.
Is July A Good Time To Visit Paris
July is a great time to visit Paris as the summer days are longer and the sun doesn’t set until almost 10 PM. This means you have long sunny days, and more time to sit at a café and linger or picnic on the lawn of the Eiffel Tower as the lights start to sparkle.
However, July is also one of the busiest times to visit Paris, as this is peak tourist season. Just keep in mind, you will have longer lines, busier restaurants, and prices will be higher in general.
What To Pack For Paris
Knowing how to pack for Paris in July can be a bit tricky sometimes, but follow these tips to help on your trip.
When I pack for Paris, I prefer to blend in and look more like a local. I tend to stick with a neutral color palette but also pack versatile items which you can easily mix and match to look chic and classic during the summer season and July.
Pack a mix of trousers, dresses, skirts, and maybe a pair of jeans or two. Parisians don’t necessarily wear a lot of shorts however on days when the weather is unbearable hot, you might see them in shorts.
However, keep the short shorts at home and instead go for a longer pair of Bermuda shorts in cotton or linen.
Also, keep your athleisurewear at home as this is not acceptable to walk around Paris if you want to look more like a local.
Neutral Outfits To Wear In Paris
Packing a neutral color palette and basics will help to make packing for Paris easier for several reasons. You can easily mix and match pieces to provide maximum versatility. This way you can plan out more outfits as well.
Clothing Fabrics To Pack For Paris
Since it will be the summer season and still warm, you want to consider the types of fabrics you are packing for Paris.
Choose lightweight fabrics such as linen or poplin cotton for tops and bottoms. You don’t want to pack anything too heavy. It’s also a good idea to always pack layers when visiting Paris.