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Le Marais picture in Paris
Le Marais cafe picture in Paris
Architecture in Le Marais picture in Paris
Le Marais picture in Paris
Le Marais cafe picture in Paris
Architecture in Le Marais picture in Paris

Key Info

Price & Hours

  • Free
  • 24/7 daily; tours at 2:30 p.m.

Details

  • Neighborhood/Area Type
  • 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.6
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    5.0
  • Food Scene
    4.5
  • Atmosphere
    4.5

Read about how we rank Things to Do.

Straddling the 3ème and 4ème arrondissements (districts), Le Marais is one of Paris' oldest and coolest districts  so cool, in fact, that French writer Victor Hugo (author of "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" and "Les Misérables") called it home. With all of its cobblestone streets, stately stone architecture and tucked away courtyards, it's easy to feel as if you're strolling through medieval Paris. Back in the day, Le Marais housed some notable French royalty. King Henry IV was the one responsible for the construction of the Place des Vosges, Paris' oldest square. And Louis XIV called this neighborhood home for a while until he decided to move his family and court to Versailles. Much of Le Marais also survived the destruction made during the French Revolution. 

Despite the Old-World French atmosphere, the neighborhood has played host to multiple cultures throughout its lifetime. Since the 13th century, Le Marais has been the city's Jewish quarter. The quarter's history can be most felt along rue des Rosiers, which feature some old-school delis and bakeries. Today, Le Marais is the epicenter of the city's gay community, with chic boutiques and vibrant nightlife options outnumbering traditional Jewish establishments. Le Marais is also known for its delectable falafel (especially at L’As du Fallafel), shopping and numerous art galleries and museums. Here you can find the Centre Pompidou, the National Archives of France, the Musée Picasso and Musée des Arts et Métiers, the oldest science museum in Europe. In addition to the neighborhood's collection of boutiques, Le Marais is known for its numerous vintage shops and specialty stores, including papeteries. Antique hunters will get a load of good finds at the Village Saint-Paul while foodies will delight in a visit to the Marché des Enfants Rouges, Paris' oldest market. 

Visitors say the best (and easiest) way to experience Le Marais is to simply walk around. Strolling through its lively streets, travelers couldn't help but fall in love with Le Marais and all its offerings. Le Marais' vast amenities, including its many delectable eateries, kept travelers entertained (and satiated) for hours on end while the neighborhood's beautiful architecture left many in awe. This, in combination with the district's overall fun atmosphere, made the neighborhood a choice place to stay for travelers while in Paris (the area is known for its swanky hotels). If you're interested in learning more about Le Marais' rich history, consider joining a walking tour. DiscoverWalks offers free walking tours around the neighborhood every day at 2:30 p.m. 

Le Marais is free to explore all hours of the day, however individual business may have their own entry fees or hours. The best starting point to explore Le Marais is from Saint-Paul, which services line 1. The Sully-Morland (line 7) and Rambuteau (line 11) metro stops also border Le Marais. 

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Hotels Nearby

  • Thing to Do
  • Hotel
Hotel Jacques de Molay

Hotel Jacques de Molay ...

  • None Miles Away
  • 3.0-star Hotel Class
La Chambre du Marais

La Chambre du Marais ...

  • None Miles Away
  • 4.0-star Hotel Class
Hotel du Vieux Saule

Hotel du Vieux Saule ...

  • 0.1 Miles Away
  • 3.0-star Hotel Class
See all hotels in Paris »

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#2 Musee du Louvre If you only had time to visit one museum in Paris, it should undoubtedly be the Musée du Louvre. That's because the Louvre is not only widely considered to ... Read more » orpheus26 / Getty Images

#3 Eiffel Tower (Tour Eiffel) Designed and constructed for the 1889 Exposition Universelle (the World's Fair), the Eiffel Tower was always meant to be a temporary structure, but it skirted demolition talks twice.  ... Read more » Eric Schaeffer / Getty Images

#4 Le Marais Straddling the 3ème and 4ème arrondissements (districts), Le Marais is one of Paris' oldest and coolest districts  so cool, in fact, that French writer Victor Hugo (author of "The Hunchback ... Read more » PicsFactory / Getty Images

#5 Sacred Heart Basilica of Montmartre (Sacre-Coeur) Rising high above Paris, the Sacré-Coeur (meaning "Sacred Heart") looks more like a white castle than a basilica  but that's what it is. Towering over the eclectic neighborhood of ... Read more » Jennifer Reedie / Getty Images

#6 Musee d'Orsay Housed in a former railway station along the Left Bank, the Musée d'Orsay is regarded for its rich collection of impressionist works. You'll see paintings by French artists ... Read more » Steve Shupe / Flickr

#7 Pere-Lachaise Cemetery (Cimetiere du Pere-Lachaise) A cemetery as a tourist attraction? If any city can pull it of, it's Paris. Covering nearly 110 acres of the 20th arrondissement (district), the Père-Lachaise Cemetery is considered one ... Read more » jacquesvandinteren / Getty Images

#8 Palais Garnier - Opera National de Paris A masterpiece of architectural opulence, the Opéra Garnier  also known as the Palais Garnier  still exudes the same enigmatic atmosphere it radiated in the late 1800s. This palpable sense of intrigue ... Read more » Joe deSousa / Flickr

#9 Luxembourg Gardens (Jardin du Luxembourg) A warm-weather oasis that offers the simplest of pleasures, the Luxembourg Gardens provide ample green space (61 acres) for sun-soaking and people-watching, plus there are plenty of activities to keep ... Read more » chrisdorney / Getty Images

#10 Arc de Triomphe Situated at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, the towering Arc de Triomphe was commissioned by Napoléon to honor the Grande Armee during the Napoleonic Wars. The arch, which is the largest of its ... Read more » AndreaAstes / Getty Images

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For a beautiful photo op of the Notre-Dame, walk along the Petit Point - Cardinal Lustiger bridge. gbarm / Getty Images

The giant glass and metal pyramid that serves as the entryway to the Louvre museum is a popular spot for photos. orpheus26 / Getty Images

The soaring Eiffel Tower is one of the most visited landmarks in the world.  Eric Schaeffer / Getty Images

The Le Marais area of Paris showcases many archietcturally impressive buildings and also boasts a burgeoning gay community with a selection of gay bars. PicsFactory / Getty Images

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This museum features works from the greats including Monet, Van Gogh and Degas. Steve Shupe / Flickr

Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde and Edith Piaf are among the famous buried here. jacquesvandinteren / Getty Images

The opulent Opera Garnier served as inspiration for "The Phantom of the Opera."  Joe deSousa / Flickr

The Luxembourg Palace, part of the Luxembourg Gardens, is home to the French Senate.  chrisdorney / Getty Images

The towering Arc de Triomphe can be found at the end of the famous Champs-Élysées. AndreaAstes / Getty Images

The Stravinsky Fountain features 16 separate fountains representing the themes and works by composer Igor Stravinsky. siraanamwong / Getty Images

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Once the residence of Auguste Rodin, Musée Rodin now showcases the artist's renowned works like The Thinker and The Kiss. bbourdages / Getty Images

haahr / Flickr

The Champs-Élysées draws shoppers in droves to its luxury storefronts. Bruno De Hogues / Getty Images

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