When I think of Paris, I think of cobblestone streets, a man serenading you with La vie en rose on his accordion, all while you sit at one of the many cute local café’s drinking a glass of red. In Montmartre, that really happens.
Hidden In the hills of the 18th arrondissement overlooking both old and new Paris, this district stole my heart, as it does everyone. Wandering these streets, It was easy to imagine myself as a Parisian roaming the streets in 1920. It felt frozen in time.
At one point, it was its own village outside of Paris. Traditionally, a slower pace near the city known for artists, writers, and creatives and that still holds true today. Over the years, the charm of Montmartre has stayed the same, except with the faster pace brought on my tourists.
Today there are local café’s, boutiques, vintage stores, galleries with artists showing off their work, family owned restaurants… dare I say one of my favorite places in Europe?
Here are some places in Montmartre you should see.
Monuments & Sight Seeing
Le sacré-cour, the sacred heart, is probably the first thing to pop into your head when you think of Montmartre. That's the mascot for Montmatre. This Basilica is propped up on the hill towering over all of Paris.
With the inside being beautifully designed with stain glass, and different sections allocated and designated to specific saints, it’s worth the free-entry. During my few visits inside, I was fortunate to witness a mass service. As I admired the inside, the nuns were singing their religious hymns… it was quite the experience.
Steps of Montmartre/ Louise Michel Square
After your visit to the Sacré-Cour, walk straight out and head to the steps of Montmartre. I spent quite a bit of time sitting on these steps, taking in the best views you can in and of Paris. Of course this was accompanies by my toffee covered nuts from the local venders.
*If you smell something of a warm toffee, chocolatey, nutty smell, go towards it! These were my favorite little dessert snacks to munch on while exploring Montmartre. I also could only find them in this area*
If you walk a bit further down from the first two sets of stairs, you will find that there is a beautiful little park, with a lovely fountain to sit and enjoy your time.
Place du Tertre
A cobblestone square located in the heart of Montmartre. This spot almost feels like an outside art festival. There are artists set up left and right all showcasing their beautiful work, musicians serenading you with their talents and the square is lined with café’s and crêpe stands, so you can sit, enjoy coffee, and watch as Artists get carried away by a new muse.
Musee du Montmartre
Located in the oldest building in Montmartre and also home to many familiar artists, like Auguste Renoir, this ‘tres petite musee’ gives you the charming history of ‘La Butte’ through a unique collection of paintings.
After visiting the collection on the inside, you can enjoy a walk through the Renoir Gardens. These gardens have such a unique character along with a gorgeous view of a nearby vineyard. In the gardens, you can take a mid-day coffee refuel in Café Renoir, a classic glasshouse tea-room inspired café.
Shopping + Food
Around Montmartre you will find some of the coolest vintage shops and little boutiques. By Flowers and Chinemachine are two of the best vintage shops I came across in this area.
Must-Eats in Montmartre include…
Pain Pain is a local boulangerie where they take classics french goodies and add a new flare. After a day of exploring Montmartre some friends and I happened to pop into this bakery and I’m so happy we did. I tried their Croque Monsieur as well as a chocolate éclair, and the next time around there I got a chocolate-pistachio roll…. I would recommend them all!
Refuge des Fondue
A fun and cozy place to go indulge in a pot of melted cheese, as well as drink cheap wine that’s served out of baby bottles. Besides the good food and fun wine… it’s truly the atmosphere that makes this place amazing. Filled with energetic workers, walls filled with signatures, money from around the world and pictures of visitors, I wouldn’t want to get fondue anywhere else.
Au Clair De La Lune
I may be biased for including this into this post, but I visited Au Clair De La Lune because my mom took us here when I was 3 years old. This restaurant serves such a memory for my mom and I and ever since I was little i've wanted to come back and really experience its full glory.
Coming back 17 years later... this place has remained almost exactly the same. The inside was adorable, the staff was very welcoming, and the food was delicious.
Montmartre you have my heart,