Mar 1st, 2023, 09:00 AM

How To: Planning a Birthday Weekend in Paris

By Sara Crawford
Image credit: Unsplash / Sergei Solo
Need help planning an extravagant birthday weekend?

Whether you are a first year, returning or study abroad student, having a birthday so far away from your family and friends at home is always a little weird, especially if it is your first time. The idea of having an entire birthday weekend may sound ludicrous to some, however I believe that birthdays only come once a year so you might as well celebrate!

Everyone knows that the weekend truly starts on Thursday, and that makes it a perfect day to kick off your birthday weekend as well! It is my personal belief that everyone deserves to take up time and space to celebrate and what better time than your birthday. Here is guide for a Thursday through Sunday celebration with ideas from all different price points!


To launch the weekend you need an activity to just sit, hangout and laugh with your friends. One of my favorite things to do to spice up a random Thursday night is to go to an English Comedy Show. Here's one that I have had a blast at recently:

Jardin Sauvage (75006): The comedians at Jardin Sauvage are hilarious and excellent in their standup performances. When I went there, there were four different comedians that did a 10 to 15 minute set each, and each of them was just as funny as the last. Not to mention—English Comedy shows are quite hard to come by in a French speaking country. The show area is situated on the floor above a restaurant and bar where you can buy bottles of wine, cocktails and beer to enjoy during the show. This is a FREE show, however a tip basket is situated downstairs after the final act.

Sometimes all you want to do is grab a couple drinks or a bite to eat with your friends, and when better to do it than for a birthday celebration:

Cafe du Marche (75007): Located on Rue Cler, Cafe du Marche is the perfect place to go after class on Thursday. Sit in the aesthetically pleasing French cafe and enjoy a nice limoncello spritz avec votre amis! 

Libertino (75010): In the mood for food? What better way to start of a celebration with a great plate of truffle pasta. Libertino is an Italian restaurant part of the Big Mamma Restaurant Group. Grab a couple friend and indulge in a delicious plate of pasta and a yummy cocktail.


What better night than Friday to hit the club?! Part of the art of planning a birthday weekend includes diversifying the activities. Personally, I think that Friday is the best day go out dancing in order to prevent "Sunday scaries". These clubs are great to go dancing with friends, whether you want to buy a table or not!

Pachamama (75012): If you are in the mood to dance with a ton of 18 through 22-year-olds, Pachamama is a great place to go. The club is 5 stories tall with Instagram worthy architecture and decorations. There is a 20 euro entrance fee, however it comes with 1 free drink. Make sure to dress up and look nice, but heels and dresses are definitely not required. Pro tip: Get in line a little before 12 to beat the queue.

Wanderlust (75013): Looking for popular hip-hop, pop and rap music? Wanderlust is an indoor/outdoor club with different concerts and DJs every night. There is usually a 20 euro entry fee, but it is definitely better to err on the side of caution and buy tickets in advance. It is extremely nice in the spring to hangout here and listen to good music!

If going clubbing is not your speed or does not sound appealing to you, there are still tons of activities to do that do not include alcohol!

Atelier Des Lumières (75011): This museum is one of my favorites, with it’s interactive light expositions. Sit back and watch the show on the ground or up against the wall. Walk around and see the artwork through LED lights and enjoy the show!


Saturdays in Paris are unmatched. Hopefully if you are not too hungover you can indulge in a wholesome day of good food, museums and a lot of culture. 

Esplanade des Invalides is a popular picnic location in central Paris. Image credit: Unsplash / Cliodile

Picnic in the Park: What could be better than a picnic basking in the sun and enjoying the view of the Eiffel Tower at Champs Des Mars? Grab a couple baguettes, some prosciutto and brie, a bottle of wine and enjoy good company!

Visit the Louvre, Musee D’Orsay, or Musee L’Orangerie: What better to do than experience culture through hundred of years of sculptures and paintings? This is such an inexpensive (free for students) idea to do for a birthday. I would recommend reserving tickets online before!

Apero on the Seine: Spring birthday? Look into Peniche Marcounet along the Seine in the 4th arrondissement. There is nothing better than sitting in the sun, grabbing a couple of cocktails and listening to live music with the locals to celebrate a new year of you! They open their terrace in April, and they usually have a lot of reservations so definitely call ahead!


After a full weekend of activities you are sure to be tired, which is why Sunday gets to be the perfect relaxation day. Grab a coffee, reminisce on the birthday weekend and relax! I love to end the weekend with a family style home-cooked meal accompanied with singing happy birthday and eating cake. Below are a few recommendations of pastry shops to grab a yummy dessert.

Le Grande Epicerie (75007): Cakes, cupcakes, tartes and more! The large grocery store connected to Le Bon Marche has everything you could ever need for a birthday treat.

Clove Bakery (75002): Looking for an authentic American birthday cake? Stoney Clove creates beautiful and delicious cakes. If you choose to grab your sweet treat from here, definitely go in and order in advance! 

Cedric Grolet Opera (75002): If you are feeling boujee, grab the Saint Honoré cake from Cedric Grolet! Their personalized number cakes are big enough to feed everyone at dinner!

Remember this is YOUR birthday and you deserve to celebrate! You competed another trip around the sun and that is something to be proud of! I know It is hard being away from family and hometown friends on your special day, but hopefully with these tips it will be filled with laugh, love and friendship.