Paris by Métro: République

republique-1427République at a Glance

Lines=3, 5, 8, 9, 11

Arrondissement=3rd

Tip=There is more than one exit for this metro.  Knowing the street you want to exit on can save you some time and walking.

Sights Within 1 Kilometer:

North

Canal Saint-Martin-450m

Chez Prune-600m

Hôtel du Nord-800m

Pink Flamingo-850m

Jardin Villemin-1km

East

Hôpital Saint-Louis-1km

South

Place de la République-63m

Marché des Enfants Rouge-650m

West

Porte Saint-Martin-650m

10th Arrondissement Passages (Reilhac, Brady, Marche, Prado)-1km

Sight Details

North

Canal Saint-Martin: If you look in most guidebooks, you probably won’t see much mentioned about this area, but it has become one of our favorites.  This is not the area you go to for world-class museums or breath-taking architecture.  The Canal Saint-Martin area is where you go to find trendy restaurants, discount shopping, and people.  Each night in the summer, dozens if not over a hundred people line the canal to enjoy the night.  They bring their snacks and drinks to just take in life.  The ambiance is different than most areas in Paris.

If you visited this area several years ago, you will probably see a difference.  The area has become safer and more friendly.  One area contains diverse cultures while just across the rue you will find the bobos of Paris.  Perhaps it was the scenes in Amélie where she is skipping the stones in the canal that brought attention to the area.  Whatever the reason, be sure to add it to your list of sights to see.

Chez Prune: This is the kind of restaurant you could visit each day and never have to order the same meal.  The menu is created daily to reflect what is fresh.  The prices are reasonable (12-15 Euros) for a generous portion and endless flavor.  Look below to see what kind of meals you could be savoring.

Hôtel du Nord: The name is a little misleading considering that this is no longer a hotel, but is now a restaurant.  There are about four tables out front, but once you pass the doors, you walk into instant charm.  The dimly-lit restaurant is a great place for a nice meal or a relaxing drink.  This was one of our favorite places for a nightcap.

Pink Flamingo: The hipster pizza place was on my list, but unfortunately I never made it over there.  Imagine the summer light in the late evening reflecting off the canal as you sit with your balloon, waiting for your order to arrive.  You’ve probably already opened your bottle of wine as you sit and drink with many others around you.  The delivery man kneels down to give you your pizza and you take it all in as you enjoy your evening by the canal, as so many others do.

Jardin Villemin: Parisians crave green space and this is the living room for families, couples, students, and so many others around the area.  The park is lively with a man playing guitar over by the trees and little ones being chased by their dads.  This is a place to just hang out.

East

Hôpital Saint-Louis: Hopefully you don’t have to visit the hospital on your trip, but it is worthy to know where it is located and the story behind it.  During the 17th century, this hospital was built to deal with many suffering from the plague.  Be thankful for our improved medicine.

South

Place de la République: The place has been recently renovated to provide a space used for many purposes and reduce traffic accidents.  The area now includes not only the statue symbolizing the republic but also a gathering place for people.

Marché des Enfants Rouge: The covered market is supposed to be one of the best in Paris.  Be warned that hours are somewhat flexible.  I went a couple hours after they were supposed to open to find that some were setting up while others were not even present yet.  I recommend coming around lunch time to enjoy the full potential of the market.

West

Porte Saint-Martin: Parisians seem to love their arches.  This arch was built in the 17th century to replace a medieval gate.

10th Arrondissement Passages (Reilhac, Brady, Marche, Prado): I know I’ve mentioned passages before, but these passages are a cultural experience.  While walking with a guide I was told to hold my purse tight.  I felt no danger, but the area is a collection of many ethnicities.  While walking down one passage you may think you’ve been transported to India, while another will take you to Africa.  The scene has a different feel at night, so be sure to go when you are comfortable.

Best of Canal Saint-Martin Walk

Life is Good in Canal St. Martin

“Life is good” hasRose Life been my mantra ever since last summer.  I search for treasures in each day where I can feel this saying.  Today’s was along Canal St. Martin.  People young and old (mostly young) gather in their canal living rooms to enjoy the company of others as they talk, eat, and drink.  We did this tonight.  For less than 5 Euros you can have a snack with a bottle of wine.  This is a true, “life is good” moment.Lining the Canal

Flea Markets to Parfumerie

Rooftops-of-ParisI’ve earned some sore feet today.  That seems to happen a lot when I travel.  Today’s agenda was about all new sights.  Although this is my fifth time returning to Paris, I’ve realized there is more to do than the time given in the human life.

As I sit here tonight, I’m trying to figure out what would be the best way to share what I’ve done and learned.  Rather than having a flowing essay, I think brief segments on each place would be most beneficial for all of us.  When I return home, I’ll go in more depth in case you want to know more about each place.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this idea.

Porte de Vanves Flea Market

I’ve been to Marche Aux Puces a couple times, but I think this is a simpler, friendly market for smaller antiques.  If you are looking to buy furniture, this may not be the right one for you, but if you are looking for posters, kitchen utensils, or other small items, this may be a good choice.  I didn’t purchase anything, but I was definitely tempted.  Interested?  Take metro to Porte de Vanves and follow the signs to the market a couple blocks away.

Chez Prune Restaurant

Just down the street from our apartment, is a famous restaurant called Chez Prune.  It is well known for its food and famous female chef (Book: Blood, Bones, and Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef).  If you are a picky eater, then this is probably not the place for you.  We had a list of five plat du jour menu items, and each had its own delicious twist.  I ordered the duck with mashed potatoes, mushrooms, and endive salad.  Yum.

Trinite Church

After recharging our batteries at lunch, we followed part of a “Phantom of the Opera Tour.”  We got off at the Trinite metro stop and entered the church adjacent to the metro.  We were surprised by a private practice concert as we entered the almost vacant church.  If you are in the neighborhood and enjoy visiting churches, you should stop in.

Galleries Lafayette

I’ve avoided the department stores, but after seeing so many pictures of the Galleries Lafeyatte and the view from the church, I gave in.  The views are free and impressive.  If you go in, make sure you go up to the 7th floor.

Fragonard Parfumerie

Another free sight is the Parfumerie down the street from the gallerie.  If you enjoy perfume or would like to see a nineteenth century mansion, take a quick tour upstairs.  The museum shared fun facts such as women needing small narrow bottles of perfume to carry in their cleavage (the original purse).  There was also an interactive section where you could guess the scent.  I apparently have not learned my scents yet.

We finished our evening with a tour from Paris Greeters.  I will share the pictures for now, but will share our adventure later.  I highly recommend checking out this amazing service if you are visiting Paris.  Maurice provided a very private and personal tour.  If you have any bad stereotypes about the French, meet Maurice and your perception will be altered.

Bonne nuit!

Home Sweet Home

TerraceWe arrived in Paris today around 1:00, but didn’t get to our apartment until 3:30.  The RER was taking its time, and we took a detour around Republique before finally finding our living quarters.  I thought I’d share some pictures I took of the apartment and the view outside.  I’d love to share more, but I’ve slept about 3 hours in the past 24 hours, so it is time to catch up.

Tomorrow’s agenda includes:

-Promenade de Plantes

-Perfumerie Fragonard

-Ponte Vanves Market

-and whatever else tickles our fancy