A buzzing, exciting hub for French food, fashion, and the arts, the Marais is a Parisian neighborhood often overlooked by those just passing through. During your next trip to Paris, be sure to spend time in this lovely district. Just hop off the Metro at St. Paul or Hôtel de Ville to explore.
Eat: L’As du Fallafel
Grab lunch at the most famous falafel stand in all of Paris, L’As du Fallafel. Although there might be a short wait for a table, the time spent is well worth it and the falafel is always fresh. On your way out, stroll down Rue des Rosiers to window shop and maybe even duck in the many Jewish boulangeries and elegant designer shops.
Think: Centre Pompidou
Engage in one of Paris’s great debates when you visit the Centre Pompidou. As the building is government run and a symbol of France, many turn their noses at the multi-cultural group of architects behind the design and the use of German factories left over from WWII. Love it or hate it, the multicolored building is absolutely striking. It houses some of the greatest works of modern art worldwide as well as Paris’s first public library.
See: Hôtel de Sens
Imagine yourself as French royalty when you step inside the grandiose former home of Queen Margot. While the arts library inside is intriguing, it’s no must-see. The beautiful building is better treated as a fun sight on a walking tour than location to camp out. On a sunny day don’t miss the Renaissance gardens, which are open to the public.
L’Ebouillante is my top pick for a cup of coffee or warm place to dry off on a rainy day in Paris. While the staff may be more likely found chatting with friends than eagerly waiting your table, locals keep coming back for the low prices, good food, and warm, friendly atmosphere.