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 Paris Travel Guide:

Best Places to Visit  in Paris  - The Marais

 

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Click to read our new Guide To The Best Places in Paris           

 

This section of our Paris Travel Guide describes the best places to visit in the  Marais.  Click the links below to go directly to a specific place or just continue reading to explore this section of Paris.

The Marais  Les Halles  Pompidou Center  Hotel de Ville      Place des Vosges   Musée Picasso   Musée Carnavalet  Place de la Bastille

We provide brief descriptions of the leading attractions and link these to detailed maps of the areas described. The blue numbered location symbolized on the maps are linked back to the descriptions of the attractions so you can click them and return to the feature's description on this page.

  • The Marais is one of the quieter areas of Paris and one that commands exploration to reveal its true character (and it is a character worth experiencing),

  • You will find a number of great places to eat in the Marais and surrounding areas, so take your time and find the one that is right for you. Don't settle for fast food.  Remember, you are in Paris and food is considered a national treasure in France.

  • In addition to our "print-style" maps of Paris, we have added a more detailed street map based on Google maps.  To examine a satellite view of  the tourist attractions in Paris, click the airplane symbols that accompany the descriptions of most attractions. 
    •  The symbol looks like this 

  • You can also view the map as a street map or as a terrain map by using the buttons at the top right of the map display.

 

In the description following the name of each attraction, the first notation is the arrondissement.  

The second notation is R for Right Bank, L for Left Bank or IC for Île De La Cité. The "map symbol number" indicates the numeric "id' of the symbol showing the location of the attraction on the map

The Marais   Top of Page
 

 

 

  

The Marais has long housed the Jewish neighborhood of Paris.  If you are looking for great delicatessens, this may be the place for you.

 

 

 

 

We suggest you consider combining a lunch in the Marais, perhaps at the Place des Vosges, with an afternoon at the Picasso Museum.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Marais is a neighborhood that invites you to walk and explore. It is not the most picturesque section of Paris, but it is one the city's most interesting neighborhoods. We think you will enjoy an afternoon wandering the areas' streets.  Of course, if you like art, the Pompidou Center and the Picasso Museum are great places to while away the hours.  If you like shopping, there are many trendy boutiques in this area and a number of stores focused on decorative  items for the home (along the Rue des Francs-Bourgeois).  See this site for more information on shopping and other aspects of the Marais.

Les Halles     (1ém) (R) -  map symbol  8

Paris’s historic district of markets is one of the most crowded areas of Paris. Although the “old markets” have been replaced by a mall, the shopping and restaurants attract attention.  This is a place to meet, eat and enjoy city life, but it offers little in the way of interesting attractions.

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Pompidou Center      (4ém) (R) - map symbol  9

Once you have tired of the Louvre, D’Orsay, the Orangerie, and the Marmottan, head for the Pompidou Center.  While the Center is a museum of modern art, the building itself is an art form that should not be missed. The area surrounding the Pompidou Center, filled with skateboarders and street entertainers, is also worth seeing.  Closed Tuesdays.

Hotel de Ville     (4 ém) (R) - map symbol 10

The City Hall of Paris was rebuilt in the 19th century after the fire of May 1871. The building's architecture is worthy of a walk-by for a picture.

 

Place des Vosges     (4 ém)(R) – map symbol 11 

One of the "must see" locations in the Marais, the Place des Vosges is a delightful square created in the 17th century. The houses surrounding the square have kept their original period look, one that appears unique to Paris.

  •  A covered arcade runs along the first floor and contains several excellent restaurants and upscale shops. These restaurants offer a delightful stop for an afternoon snack.
  • Although this is not a large square, it has the appearance and ambience of the past and implies to the observer the nuances of upper class life in historic Paris.
  • Among other notables, Cardinal Richelieu and Victor Hugo once lived in the Place Des Vosges. 

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Musée Picasso      (3 ém) (R)  - map symbol 11a

The Musée Picasso is located in the L'hôtel Salé, a historic building dating from the seventeenth century.  The museum presents Picasso's work in chronological order and includes an extensive display of Picasso's  paintings, statues (including a wonderful statue garden), ceramics, and drawings. Closed Tuesday. (Musée National Picasso , Hôtel Salé - 5, rue de Thorigny). The Musée Picasso  website, is only in French, so if you do read/speak it, try using Google to translate.

The Musée Picasso will be closed until at least until 2012 due to  major renovations.

Musée Carnavalet      (3 ém) (R)  - map symbol 11b  

The Carnavalet Museum (the Musée de L'Histoire de Paris) is a delightful place to visit.  The museum occupies two historic  mansions on Rue de Sévigné in the Marias and is named after the Hôtel de Carnavalet (the former mansion of the writer Madame de Sevigné).  The Hôtel de Carnavalet  was erected in the late 16th century and is a treasure.  The interior houses an incredible collection of art, ranging from the fine to the decorative, that chronicles the history of Paris, although its collections are focused on the Revolution and, to a lesser extent, the 19th and 20th centuries.  Closed Mondays. (Hôtel Carnavalet - 23, rue de Sévigné)

The Place de la Bastille    (intersection of 4 ém /11 ém /12 ém) (R) - map symbol 12

The Place de la Bastille was of great importance to the French Revolution but the Bastille itself was overrun and destroyed by the Parisians in 1789. The Colonne de Juillet marks this spot and commemorates the victims of the July Days in 1830, who are buried at the base of the monument. Although many tourists visit the Place de la Bastille, it is not an interesting location. If you want to visit, combine it with a walk through the Marais.


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The Best Places to Visit in Paris

Champs Elysées
Louvre

Latin Quarter -Île de la
Cité

Invalides
Eiffel Tower
Montmartre 

Or consider Daytrips to
Versailles  
Fontainebleau
Giverny
Chantilly

Or return to our Paris home page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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