The Paris Olympics, the biggest event in France and Europe this year, runs from July 26 to Aug 11. The Paris Paralympics runs from Aug 8 to Sep 11. These massive events will take over the capital. The Paris Olympics have been 10 years in the planning, with vital cooperation from the 2012 London Olympics.

Official Paris Olympics 2024 website

Arc de Triomphe lit up with Paris Olympics colours 2024
Arc de Triomphe lit up for the Paris Olympics 2024 © Paris 2024

History of Paris and the Olympics

Paris hosted the Summer Games in 1924, so 100 years later is a fitting follow-up. Paris also hosted the 1900 Games, joining London as the only cities to host three Games (London’s Olympics were in 1908, 1948 and 2012). In 2028, Los Angeles will join the band of three-time cities, hosting the Summer Games.

The Paris Olympic 2024 Olympic Torch Journey

Map of Olympics Paris 2024 torch showing journey all around France
Olympic Torch Route Map ©Paris2024

The Olympic torch journey begins, as always, in Greece, on May 8, reaching Marseille on May 9. It will take in 65 towns and cities, plus more than 100 French tourist or cultural sites, before arriving in Paris in time for the final day, ending with the lighting of the Olympic flame during the opening ceremony on the Seine River on July 26th, 2024.
The Paris Olympics 2024 Journey

Venues for the Paris Olympics

Unlike many Olympic cities, Paris is mostly using its already existing venues and iconic buildings (95% existing or temporary). And the city has been very careful to make the games as sustainable as possible.

Architects concept of the new Porte de la Chapelle arena with huge building behind and people in front
Porte de la Chapelle Arena ©Paris2024

The new venues are La Chapelle sports centre in the north part of Paris which is designed to be eco-friendly with 80% covered with greenery, a front clad with recyclable aluminium and most of the building constructed with wood. It’s due to be opened on July 11. After the Olympics La Chapelle will be home to the Paris basketball team as well as providing space for sports and cultural events. 

Long view of new Aquacentre for Paris Olympics 2024 with lots of sky and curving roof of centre in middle
New Aquacentre for Paris Olympics 2024 © Paris 2024

The Aquatic Centre, an original building opposite the Stade de France, will host synchronised swimming and diving.

80% of the competition venues are within a 10-im radius of the Olympic and Paralympic Village.

Olympic Village on rivers of Seine with new buildings on opposite bank and trees on near
Olympic Village Paris 2024 ©Paris2024

The Olympic Village, a 51-hectare site on three sites in the north of the capital, will house 14,500 athletes and be used for social housing after the Games. It’s 7km north of the centre of Paris and less than 2km from the Stade de France.

The Opening Ceremony

River Seine at Night showing conciergerie on left hand side on island and buildings on other bank lit up
River Seine at night © Wikimedia Commons/Rama

Unlike other cities which have built spectacular new buildings to host the opening ceremony, Paris will use the Seine river. Barges carrying the athletes will travel almost four miles from the Austerlitz bridge in the east to near the Trocadéro in the west. It begins at 7.30 pm CET (10.30 am in Los Angeles, 2.30 pm in Rio de Janeiro, 6.30 pm in London and 8.30 pm in Athens). As it will take place outdoors at dusk, the setting sun over the great Paris landmarks, including Notre-Dame de Paris, the Louvre, the Pont des Arts, and the Musée d’Orsay, will be spectacular.

The French had hoped to make this accessible to 600,000 people, but security concerns (this is one of the most open of Olympic Games) mean that only around 104,000 people in stands will line Paris’ Seine river, and 220,000 will stand on raised roadways along the river. Tickets will be decided by quotas and will be open to those who live and work in towns hosting Olympic events. But the tv coverage will be spectacular. And there will be huge screens further along the river showing the ceremony.

Getting Tickets

Ten million tickets are on sale. One million of them start at €24 but the most popular events and dates are going fast and many are sold out. Almost half the tickets are prices at €50 or less. The site is easy to use and they are issuing tickets in batches. Some of the football matches still (at the time of writing) have tickets from €24 for instance.
Check out the prices and availability here.

What the Public can See

The Champions Park

From Jul 29 to Aug 10 (4.30-11.30pm), the public can visit the Champions Park (except between Friday Aug 2 and Sunday Aug 4). It’s the place to celebrate the previous day’s medal winners who you can see during their parade. There are live screenings of that day’s main finals in an open-air arena.

There will be performances by different artists and a variety of other activities.

Champions Park for Paris Olympics 2024 at night with huge crowds on either side of large long track with athletes
Champions Park Paris Olympics 2024 ©Paris2024/Florient Helleu

The 2024 Paris Olympic Sports

This year there are 32 sports. There’s one new sport: Breaking or breakdancing, and before anybody doubts, or scoffs at the sport, I’ve seen two members of the French and British teams performing and it’s impressive. The sport is technically difficult, potentially dangerous and very very skilled with moves judged on performance and aesthetics. The men’s and women’s team have 20 competitors each.
New sports from the 2021 Tokyo Olympics include climbing, skateboarding and surfing.
In 2028 at the Los Angeles Summer Games, cricket, flag football, lacrosse and squash will be added.

Main Locations of the Paris Olympics 2024

Map of sites for Paris Olympics 2024 throughout France
Map of Olympics Sites for Paris 2024 ©Paris2024

Paris has chosen to keep the events close to the Olympic and Paralympic villages, a short 7km north of central Paris and just 2km from the Stade de France. 85% of the athletes will be less than 30 minutes from their respective venues.

Stade de France for Paris Olympics with big green pitch surrounded by red area and seats on all sides
Stade de France ©Paris 2024

Two main zones host the games, connected by the Seine river. The inner zone is in the heart of Paris showcasing those iconic sites of the capital. The second Paris/Grand Paris zone is part of an urban development plan, and includes new buildings and the Olympic villages.

Events at the Paris Olympics 2024

Here are some of the 15 Olympic and 11 Paralympic sites where the Paris Olympics will take place. The Olympic and Paralympic Village, the Media Village and six sports are at Seine-Saint-Denise. 21 Olympic sports (out of 32) and 14 Paralympic sports (out of 22) are within 10kms of the Village.

Architects' view from aboveof Pont Alexandre III
Pont Alexandre III ©Paris2024

Alexandre III Bridge: Marathon swimming (Aug 8-9), Triathlon (Jul 30-Aug 5).
Alexandre III Bridge is also the finish line for the individual cycling time trials, swimming marathon, and the triathlons (both Games).  
Arena Bercy: Basketball (Jul 27-Aug 11), Artistic gymnastics (Jul 27-Aug 5), Trampoline (Aug 2)
Arena Paris Nord: Boxing (Jul 27-Aug 10), Modern Pentathlon (Aug 8-11)
Arena Paris Sud: Table tennis (Jul 27-Aug 10), Volleyball (Jul 27-Aug 11), Weightlifting Aug 7-11), Handball (Jul 25-Aug 11)
Arena Porte de la Chapelle: Badminton (Jul 27 to Aug 5) and the rhythmic gymnastics events (from 8 to 10 August) 
BMX Stadium, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines: BMX race (Aug 1-2)
Centre Aquatic: Diving (Jul 27-Aug 10), Water Polo (Jul 27-Aug 11), Artistic swimming (Aug 5-10)
Champs de Mars Arena: Judo (Jul 27-Aug 3), Wrestling (Aug 5-11)

Versailles Chateau used for Paris Olympics 2024 equestrian with long view down very long sandy arena with gardens on both sides then two large tiers of stands with people watching horse in middle
Château de Versailles Paris Olympics 2024 ©Paris2024

Chateau de Versailles: Equestrian sports (Jul 27-Aug 6), Modern Pentathlon (Aug 8-11)
Colline d’Elancourt: Mountain biking (Jul 28-29)
Eiffel Tower: The park at the foot of the Eiffel Tower becomes the place to watch beach volleyball and blind football
Golf National: Golf (Aug 1-10)
Grand Palais, built for the 1900 Universal Exhibition and last renovated in 2023: Fencing (Jul 27-Aug 4), Taekwondo (Aug 7-10), Wheelchair fencing (Sep 3-7)
Invalides: Road cycling (Jul 27-Aug 4)
La Concorde Place: BMX freestyle (Jul 30-31), Breaking (Aug 9-10), Skateboarding (Jul 27-Aug 7), Basketball 3×3 (Jul 30-Aug 5)
Le Bourget Climbing Site: Sport climbing (Aug 5-10)
Paris La Défense Arena: Water polo (Jul 27-Aug 11); Swimming (Jul 27-Aug 4)
Parc des Princes: Soccer (Jul 27-Aug 10). Also see other stadiums below for soccer
Pont d’Iena: road cycling (Jul 27-Aug 4)
Roland-Garros Stadium: Boxing (Jul 27-Aug 10); Tennis (Jul 27-Aug 4)
Vélodrome National, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Yvelines: Track cycling (Aug 5-11)
The Seine River hosts the swimming marathon, triathlon, para triathlon, and cycling time trials
Stade de France: Athletics (Aug 1-11); Rugby (Jul 24-30)

Olympic Venues outside Central Paris

Marina de Marseille Paris Olympics 2024 withlong aerial view showing the whole marina and buildings on land surrounding
Marina de Marseille Paris Olympics 2024 ©Paris2024

Ile de France: Vaires-sur-Marne Nautical Stadium: Rowing (Jul 27-Aug 3); Sprint canoeing (Aug 6-10)
Hautes-de-Seine: Yves-du-Manoir Stadium: Field hockey (Jul 27-Aug 9)
National Shooting Centre, Châteauxroux, Centre-Val-de-Loire: shooting (Jul 27-Aug 5)
Marina de Marseille, Bouche-de-Rhone, PACA: Sailing (Jul 28-Aug 8)
Stade Nautique de Vaires-sur-Marne, Seine-et-Marne: Canoe slalom (Jul 27-Aug 5); Spring Canoeing (Aug 6-10)
Lille: Stade Pierre Mauroy: Handball (Jul 25-Aug 11)
AND: Tahiti, Teahupo’0: Surfing (Jul 27-30)

Timings of the Paris Olympics 2024

Paris time (Central European Summer Time):
CEST 2 hours ahead of UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) which is used to set all time zones around the world.
CEST is 1 hour ahead of British Summer Time, 6 hours ahead of North American Eastern Daylight Time, and 9 hours ahead of North American Pacific Daylight Time.
CEST is 3 hours 30 minute behind Indian Standard Time, 8 hours behind Australian Eastern Standard Time and 10 hours behind New Zealand Standard Time.

The Cultural Olympiad

This being France, culture is included in the Olympics, emphasising the common values of sport and art. Events and performances will take place throughout the country until September 8, 2024. Details here.

Getting around Paris

It’s going to be expensive to travel around Paris, with some significant price hikes. A single ticket from Roissy or CDG airports increases from €11 to €16 from Jul 20-Sep 8.
A single metro ticket goes from €2.15 to €4; carnet from €17.30 to €32. 
The usual day and week passes are suspended during the Olympics, so consider buying a Paris2024 Pass: 1 day €16; 2 days €32, 3 days €42 and a week is €79.
Consider buying single tickets before the games start or fill up a Navigo Easy card on android but not on iPhone

A Few Facts about the Paris Olympics 2024

Most countries won’t officially name their Olympic gymnastics team until late June or early July, after the Olympic trials,

Future Olympics:
2026 Winter Games in Milan–Cortina d’Ampezzo
2028 Summer Games in Los Angeles
2030 Winter Games in the French Alps
2032 Summer Games in Brisbane
2034 Winter Games in Salt Lake City
The 2030 French Alps and 2034 Salt Lake City games will be officially confirmed this summer (2024).

Quick Guide to Paris
Events in France in July 2024

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