On the Left Bank of Paris is one of the liveliest areas of the city: the 6th arrondissement. In the 20th century, it became home to many artists and writers, and it hosts some famous institutions such as the Académie Française, the 6th arrondissement is a cultural center, and represents the epitome of Parisian life. Today, we will introduce you to what makes this essential part of the capital so unique.
What to do ?
The 6th arrondissement of Paris is full of things to see. At the edge of the Seine, near the famous Pont des Arts, (now dubbed the Lovers’ Bridge) and all its padlocks, the Place Saint Michel, home of the magnificent Saint-Michel fountain, is the perfect place to begin your journey in the 6th arrondissement.
From this intersection, several choices are available to you to discover all the best parts of this arrondissement, the heart of Parisian sophistication.
By heading toward the Boulevard Saint Germain, surrounded by all kinds of shops, you’ll be able to check out the must-see Abbey of Saint-Germain and its lovely frescoes; this is the oldest church in Paris. Not far away, in this upscale neighborhood, you will see the Saint-Sulpice church, which is the second largest church in Paris after Notre Dame. You may recognize it from its star turn in the film “The Da Vinci Code”.
If you head further south, you will find yourself in the Odeon neighborhood, a very nice area, where you can get to the famous Odeon theater via cobblestone streets, like the Cour du Commerce Saint-André. It instantly takes you back to another era.
From there, you’re quite close to the Luxembourg Gardens. You are obligated to take a walk in the gardens surrounding the Luxembourg Palace, aka the French Senate. Here, you can check out a museum, a bandstand, and playground. These beautifully-maintained gardens constitute the second largest park in Paris, and welcome over 4 million visitors per year!
The Latin Quarter
If you decide to head to the east from the square, you will find yourself in a part of the Latin Quarter, which overlaps the 6th and the 5th arrondissements. This is one of the liveliest areas of Paris, and is still frequented by many students.
Of course, there are many other things to do; throughout the neighborhood you will find, for example, the most elitist of the city’s art galleries.
Where to shop ?
The 6th arrondissement is filled with great places to shop. But beware, although it contains the classic chains like H&M and Zara, the stores found in the area are mostly for the well-stocked wallet.
Take a tour around the Boulevard St. Germain, to revel before such boutiques as Gérard Darel or Sonia Rykiel. The Rue de Rennes, the street perpendicular to the Boulevard St. Germain, also offers attractive designer shops such as The Kooples, and many more.
For smaller budgets, go to the Rue Saint-Placide where the outlet stores are.
In addition to fashion boutiques, one unique aspect of the 6th arrondissement is its many specialty bookstores and shops. You can’t miss the famous Gilbert and Young bookstore, that wraps around the Place Saint Michel. Also, although it’s officially outside the 6th arrondissement, we recommend you take a stroll over to the well-known Shakespeare & Co, a must-visit due to its originality : there are books in English only here.
Tip: We recommend you make a little stop at the shop of famous pastry chef Pierre Hermé, to taste one of his famous French macaroons.
Where to eat or drink ?
The 6th arrondissement is full of small brasseries and restaurants. You can find yourself among the finest restaurants in Paris !
This little trattoria is located near the Saint-Germain-des-Prés market. All the Italian specialties are offered in a variety of forms, to our great delight, all in an atmosphere typical of the region.9, rue de Guisarde, 75006 Paris
Located on the Rue Gregoire Le Tour, this crepe restaurant is probably one of the best in town. Enjoy one for lunch or dinner. Don’t arrive too late or be prepared to stand in line.11 Rue Grégoire de Tours, 75006 Paris
Ph : + 33 (0) 1 43 54 60 74
Brasseries / Cafés
This brasserie is a veritable institution in the 6th arrondissement; it is has been here for 130 years now. La Brasserie offers traditional dishes in a casual atmosphere. Open your eyes—you will come across many celebrities!
Les Deux Magots
Les deux Magots was the famous brasserie of the literary elite in the early 20th century. Although these days, you can no longer enjoy a good hot chocolate alongside Sartre or Hemingway, the café, with its rather steep prices, is worth a stop!
Café de Flore
The Café de Flore is quite similar to Les Deux Magots in its history. What’s more, both place are quite similar in terms of prices and geographically speaking. Soak up the history in this café, decorated with flowers.
Every evening, this bar welcomes an international clientele. Come taste their delicious cocktails in a friendly atmosphere, and if you’re feeling peckish, the bar offers typically Canadian dishes and good brunches.
16 rue des 4 Vents 75006 Paris
Phone : + 33 (0) 1 46 33 77 00
Experience the authentic atmosphere of this wine bar, known to Parisian bobos and Parisian celebrities. Go down the stairs to fully immerse yourself in the atmosphere of this bar and discover the some well-known DJs on occasion. Note, in summer the place fills up fast
Don’t hesitate to squeeze your way down the neighborhood’s narrow streets to discover the wonderful secret little courtyards, in buildings with their impressive architecture.
Did you know ?
Squeeze your way down the neighborhood’s narrow streets to discover the wonderful secret little courtyards, in buildings with their impressive architecture.