Which Is It: London or Paris?

By: John Miller
Image: shutterstock

About This Quiz

In this metropolitan deathmatch, we’ve paired two titans of the world stage for your trivia pleasure. At the end of this cosmopolitan contest, only one will remain standing – Paris, or London. And it all depends on your European acumen, so are you up for the challenge?

Both cities are renowned for their roots in ancient times. Can you match some of the historical highlights to the appropriate towns? One city is known for its artsy vibe; the other is an economic powerhouse that’s on par with superpowers around the world. Do you know which is which?

With their long histories, these famous cities are brimming with tourist destinations of all kinds. Do you know where you’d see a fascinating site called “Big Ben”? How about the Eiffel Tower?

As with all cities, London and Paris are shaped by the local geography. Both have major rivers within city limits, but do you know which body of water goes where?

The people make these places special, and the land does, too. But which city is bigger in terms of population? Which city sprawls over a larger area?

If you’ve ever visited London or Paris, our city comparison should be an absolute snap. Or will you find yourself floundering in the wild facts of these fascinating hubs of humankind? There’s only one way to find out – take our London vs. Paris quiz now!

From a geographical perspective, which city is larger?

At about 40 square miles, Paris really isn't all that big. London, on the other hand, is a sprawling metro area of about 600 square miles.

Which city is often called "The City of Light"?

In the 1700s, Paris was a hub of the Age of Enlightenment, an era in which many modern intellectual ideas arose. It was also one of the first European cities to install gas street lights. Both factors contribute to the "City of Light" nickname.

Which city will be home to the 2024 Summer Olympic Games?

In 2024, Paris will make a triumphant return to the Olympics after a very long hiatus. It will be the third time that the city has hosted the Games.

Which city has hosted more Olympic Games?

In 2012, London hosted the Summer Games, making it the first city to host the Olympics three times. Paris has hosted twice, but none since 1924.

Where would you find the seat of Government of the United Kingdom?

London is the seat of power in the U.K., the capital of this four-country region. It's the home of Her Majesty's Government, headed by the Prime Minister.

The River Thames runs through which city?

The River Thames is more than 200 miles long and runs through London. For centuries, it's played a huge role in the political and economic development of Britain.

Which city proper has a larger population?

London is pushing around 9 million inhabitants these days. The central area of Paris has about 2.3 million citizens.

Where did the Great Smog of 1952 occur?

In December 1952, terrible air pollution settled in London, and the windless, cold conditions made things even worse. Some historians say that more than 12,000 people died directly due to the catastrophic event.

Which city surrendered to the Germans during World War II?

France and the Allies did their best to fend off the German advance, but to no avail. In June 1940, France declared Paris an open city so that the Germans wouldn't decimate the area.

The Eiffel Tower is located in which metro area?

Each year, more people pay to see the Eiffel Tower in Paris than any other attraction on Earth. At 986 feet, the iconic wrought iron structure is one of the most famous places in the world.

Where would you find the large public area called Trafalgar Square?

In Central London, you'll find Trafalgar Square, a major English landmark. The site commemorates a British naval victory over, you know, France back in 1805.

Where would you see the Notre-Dame Cathedral?

The Notre-Dame de Paris is a medieval Catholic cathedral in Paris. It is perhaps the most famous Catholic church in the world, with two towers soaring to nearly 230 feet in height.

Which city was subject to the Blitz, a massive Nazi attack, during World War II?

Beginning in September 1940, Germany began attacking London in a massive bombardment that lasted until May 1941. Tens of thousands of Londoners died in the attacks, but still, Britain fought on.

The West End is a famous part of which city?

The West End of London is a major tourist attraction, brimming with entertainment of all kinds. It is something like the Times Square of London.

During the 1790s, a Reign of Terror shook which area?

During the French Revolution, the Reign of Terror horrified much of France and especially Paris. Revolutionaries around the country opted for terror as a weapon of politics, executing people left and right.

You can visit an iconic museum called the Louvre in which city?

The Louvre isn't just an art museum -- it's the largest art museum in the world. It has more than 780,000 square feet of space dedicated to tens of thousands of works of art.

A catastrophic fire struck which city in 1666?

In 1666, the Great Fire of London destroyed more than 10,000 structures. What started as a small bakery fire soon bloomed into a conflagration that left tens of thousands of people homeless.

You'd find The Shard in which metro area?

It sounds like an artifact from a sci-fi movie, but The Shard is actually a distinctive 1,016-foot skyscraper in London. It's the tallest building in the entire United Kingdom.

The Seine is a river that flows through which city?

The Seine is a 480-mile long river that flows through Paris. It was a relatively shallow river until the 1800s, when a series of locks helped to maintain the river to a depth that's navigable for boats and smaller ships.

Under which city would you find the Catacombs, which contain the remains of more than six million people?

In the 1700s, the overflowing cemeteries of Paris required a new solution. So official began carting the dead to the Catacombs, a series of limestone tunnels and mines under the city.

In which city would you find the Palace of Versailles?

Just south of Paris is the Palace of Versailles, a royal chateau that was once the seat of power in France, particularly in the 1700 and 1800s. It is one of the lasting symbols of ancient royalty.

Where would you find a famous avenue called the Champs-Élysées?

The Avenue des Champs-Élysées is one of the most memorable streets in the world. It is a wide, well-manicured area, renowned for its many theaters, cafes and attractions.

Which city is home to a football club called Chelsea?

Chelsea Football Club is headquartered in London. They are one of the most recognizable soccer teams in the world, raking in hundreds of millions of dollars per year from adoring fans.

Where could you visit the exceedingly popular Natural History Museum?

Established back in 1881, London's Natural History Museum is one of the most popular museums on the planet. More than 5 million people visit each year.

In which city would you find the legendary Arc de Triomphe?

In Paris, the Arc de Triomphe is a 164-foot tall monument to troops who died in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. It was inaugurated in 1836.

In 2015, terrorists orchestrated a series of attacks, killing 130 people. Where did the attacks occur?

In November 2015, in Paris, terrorists orchestrated gun and bomb attacks, killing 130 people, with hundreds more wounded. Eighty-nine people were killed during a rock concert at the Bataclan theater. It was the worst attack on France since WWII.

A huge clocktower nicknamed Big Ben is found in which city?

Completed in 1859, Big Ben is the 320-foot clocktower found in the Palace of Westminster in London. This Gothic structure is an icon of Britain and the Western world.

Where would you find a large church called Westminster Abbey?

The church called Westminster Abbey was founded nearly 1,000 years ago in London, under King Edward. Henry III chose the location to be the site of his burial and commenced construction in 1245.

Which city became violently entangled in the Algerian War in the 1950s and '60s?

In 1954, Algeria began a violent campaign to win its independence from France. For seven years, both sides resorted to bloodshed, some of which occurred within Paris. Algeria eventually won the fight.

"Tossed by the waves but never sunk" is the motto of which city?

"Fluctuat nec mergitur," or "tossed by the waves but never sunk," is the motto of Paris. It's very appropriate for a city that's survived countless ordeals over the centuries.

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