Le Marais

Though gentrification has made this one of the city’s most fashionable quarters, it is still heavily Jewish and has been for nearly one hundred years.

TravelCurious Tip

Inkeeping with its bohemian feel, this is one of Paris’ best districts for vintage clothes shopping.

Spread out over the 3rd and 4th Arrondissements on the Right Bank of the Seine, Le Marais is an endlessly charming labyrinth of small crooked alleyways where you can easily wander for a day. It is arguably the most historic district in Paris, with more pre-revolutionary buildings left intact than anywhere else in the city. As well as imbuing the area with a strong sense of history, the age of the place gives Le Marais a completely different feel. While Paris is famed for its wide open squares and avenues (think Place de la Concorde and the Champs-Élysées), these were actually only constructed during the rule of Napoleon after the French Revolution. The architecture and haphazard layout of Le Marais is what all of Paris would once have looked like, and so it offers an intriguing insight into the Paris of old.

The Spirit of the Revolution

Nevertheless, the lack of major world attractions often means that Le Marais is overlooked by visitors to Paris. But what it lacks on this front it more than makes up for in charm, and you can immediately see how its unmistakably Bohemian vibe brought Robespierre, Victor Hugo and Jim Morrison to live here. Particularly worth visiting is the Place des Vosges, one of Paris’ most beautiful parks, built by Henry IV and considered by Napoleon himself to be the jewel of Paris.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Paris
Memorial of the Shoah
The Shoah Memorial and the Holocaust Centre form a single entity whose mission is “understanding the past to illuminate the future.”
Agoudas Hakehilos Synagogue
Only 5 meters wide by 23 meters from front to back, Art Nouveau genius Hector Guimard used the motif of the Ten Commandments to inspire this building's book-like shape and interior.
Centre Pompidou
Home to the National Museum of Modern Art is a 20th-century building usually recognized by its exterior escalators and enormous coloured tubing.
Prison de la Force
'La Force Prison' was a French prison used for political prisoners during the French Revolution.
Saint-Gervais Church
This Church is a blend of varied architectural styles. The building and its impressive façade are a must-seen in Paris 4th arrondissement.
Rue des Archives
This emblematic Marais street is perfect for a pleasant walk to explore the rich history and architecture of the neighbourhood.

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