Paris Guide

If you’re going soon to Paris and you’ve always wanted to experience Paris like a Parisian, here is your city guide to life in Paris! There’s so much more to Paris than the Champs-Elysées and the Eiffel Tower. Since I moved back to Paris, I wanted to create a page where I could list all of my current favorite places to stay, to eat and drink. It’s the perfect Paris guide to explore the city like a local 🙂

This Paris guide page will be periodically updated due to new discoveries, openings, and closings.

Paris Guide Summary

Paris Travel Tips By A Local

  1. Paris is a place best explored on foot, so make sure to bring a comfortable pair of shoes (like trainers for example).
  2. The metro in Paris is another great way to explore the city. It’s not too expensive (10 tickets for less than 15 euros) and you’re never more than a five-minute walk from a metro station.
  3. Beware of pickpockets in the metro and around the touristic areas, and say no to people asking you to sign fake petitions in the streets.
  4. Expect things to be closed on Sundays like supermarkets, shops and some of the restaurants/bars. However, major museums, as well as touristic attractions remain open on Sundays.
  5. August is probably not the best time to visit Paris unless you want quiet. Indeed, most Parisians go on holiday during this period so the entire city shuts down.
  6. The most popular places tend to get booked up fast, so I’ll recommend booking your table well in advance. Check out below the best places to eat and drink in Paris.
  7. Most Parisians do speak a little English but it’s always best to learn at least the basics. Even if you’re not speaking perfect French, it shows you’re making an effort to adopt the French culture.
  8. If you can pay by card at most cafes, restaurants, and shops in Paris, there are always a few places which are cash only. So, make sure to always carry some cash with you.

Where To Stay In Paris

Best Boutique Hotels In Paris

If you’re wondering where to stay in Paris, check out my –very Parisian– selection of the best boutique hotels in Paris. When I was living in London, I used to come back to Paris very often, and I’ve always had amazing stays in Paris. I really prefer Boutique Hotels over any other type of hotels, as boutique hotels offer an original experience that’s a miles away from the standard chain offering.

Best Neighborhoods In Paris

Here is a map of Paris with the twenty arrondissements. To learn more about each arrondissement you can click on the map to discover the main sights, and the best things to see and to do. Each neighborhood offers a unique flavor of the city. See below a guide on three of my favorites neighborhoods of Paris, if you want to explore Paris like a local.

Le Haut Marais (The Upper Marais)

Le Haut Marais is the neighborhood located at the north of Rue Rambuteau, South-East of République, Square du Temple, and Rue de Bretagne. It’s an up-and-coming neighborhood, that successfully kept through the years a village-like feel. It’s a neighborhood full of history as well. Indeed, the Upper Marais is one of the oldest parts of the city, with many 17th-century stone mansions, such as the Hôtel Salé housing the Musée Picasso.

Montorgueil

I really love this neighborhood and actually I used to work in this area. Go to the famous white-cobblestoned pedestrian of Rue Montorgueil to enjoy all of the best food shops. Go to Stohrer (the oldest patisserie of Paris) for a pastry, to La Fermette for cheeses, or to Mariage Freres for French tea. And after your shopping, you can enjoy a coffee or aperitif at one of the best terraces of the street (I used to go to La Grappe d’Or).

South of Pigalle (SoPi)

This district used to be home to sex shops, cabarets and hostess clubs, but now it’s one the most happening neighborhood in Paris. SoPi is located from Blanche/Anvers metro station to the Notre-Dame-de-Lorette and Trinité-d’Estienne-d’Orves stations. I’ll recommend going to Rue des Martyrs if you’re looking to shop for authentic French foods (bakeries, cheeses). On Avenue Trudaine, the Marché d’Anvers outdoor food market is open on Friday afternoons from 3 pm to 8.30 pm. SoPi is currently the trendiest spot of Paris to go on for a drink in the evening. Lulu White, Glass or the Dirty Dick are among my favorite places.

Where To Eat And Drink In Paris

Best Brunch In Paris

  • Brasserie Thoumieux
  • Holybelly 5
  • La Fontaine de Belleville
  • Fragments
  • Papille
  • Marcel
  • Salon de thé Sébastien Gaudard
  • Gramme

Lunch And Dinner

  • Chez Gladines
  • Bouillon Pigalle
  • La Gare
  • Au petit fer à cheval
  • La belle Hortense
  • Les Philosophes
  • L’étoile manquante
  • La chaise au plafond
  • Le Grand Café Capucines
  • Chez Toye
  • SUMiBi KAZ
  • Kodawari Ramen
  • Caminito
  • Roberta

Cocktails & Drinks

  • Dirty Dick
  • Experimental Cocktail Club
  • Le Syndicat
  • Lulu White
  • Rosa Bonheur
  • Little Red door
  • Le Perchoir
  • Le 1905
  • Hotel Grand Amour
  • La Recyclerie
  • Le Marie Celeste

Best Coffee Shops In Paris

  • Fragments Cafe
  • Le Peloton
  • KB Cafe
  • Ten Belles
  • Mokonuts
  • Terres de Café Blancs Manteaux
  • Fringe
  • Le Coutume Café

Best Boulangeries In Paris

  • Circus Bakery
  • La boulangerie Thierry Marx
  • Du Pain et des idées
  • Mamiche
  • Bo&Mie
  • Le Boulanger de la Tour
  • Le Petit Grain

Best Pastries In Paris

  • Cédric Grolet
  • Sébastien Gaudard
  • Bontemps
  • Cyril Lignac
  • Philippe Conticini
  • Pierre Hermé
  • Des gâteaux et du pain (Claire Damon)
  • Christophe Michalak

Best Places For Shopping In Paris

Vintage Shops

  • Kiliwatch
  • Nice Piece

Concept Stores

  • Fleux
  • Archives 18-20
  • Nous
  • Vos
  • Merci
  • O/hp/e
  • The Frankie Shop

Department Stores

  • BHV – Marais
  • Galerie Lafayette
  • Printemps
  • Le Bon Marche

French Fashion Brands

  • Sandro
  • A.P.C
  • Amelie Pichard
  • Sezane
  • Jour/Né
  • Claudie Pierlot
  • Faith Connection
  • Maje
  • Zadig & Voltaire
  • Jacquemus
  • Elleme

French Beauty Stores

  • Caudalie
  • Diptyque
  • Nose
  • Biologique Recherche
  • Huygens
  • Buly 1803

French Home Decor Stores

  • Trudon
  • La Trésorerie
  • Epices Roellinger
  • Astier de Villatte
  • Le Creuset
  • Compagnie de Provence
  • Demode
  • Slow Galerie
  • Empreintes
  • Maison Plisson

Best Markets In Paris

  • Le Marché des Batignolles, an organic food market opens every Saturday between 9 am – 2 pm
  • Le Marché d’Aligre opens every day (except Monday) 7 am – 2 pm
  • Le Marché des Enfants Rouges, the oldest market of Paris since 1615
  • Le Marché Saxe-Breteuil opens every Thursday, Saturday 7 am – 2:30 pm
  • Le Marché President-Wilson opens Wednesday, Saturday 7 am – 2:30 pm
  • Le Marché Saint-Germain-des-Pres opens every day (except Monday) 8 am – 8 pm
  • Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen is the best flea market of Paris and opens Saturday, Sunday and Monday from 10 am to 7 pm
  • Le marché aux fleurs Reine-Elizabeth-II is the best flower market of Paris and opens Saturday and Sunday from 8 am to 7 pm

Best Parks And Gardens In Paris

  • Jardin des Tuileries
  • Parc Monceau
  • Jardin des Plantes
  • Square des Batignolles
  • Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
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