Dror's Paris


First, I think that you should go to any Mairie of Paris, for example, the 5th in front of the Pantheon, and ask at the Renseignements/Reception/Accueil, a list of Paris' public libraries. You could also go to a public library if you know one and ask for the same thing. I know you don't care about this list but... turn it over and... oh, miracle, there is a (free) beautiful and very convenient map of Paris on the back...
Alternatively, a funny Metro map of the Parisian night clubber...

Some links:


Expensive french restaurants: for very special occasions. I haven't necessarly tested them and it's a new very uncomplete list that comes from suggestions I got:

- Brasserie Bofinger, 3 rue Bastille 4eme

- Le Train Bleu, 20 bd Diderot 12eme

- Les Grandes Marches, 6 place de la Bastille 12eme

- La Régalade, 49 av Jean Moulin 14 eme

- La Coupole, 102 Bd du Montparnasse, 14eme

- Chez Julien, 16 rue du Faubourg-Saint-Denis, 10ème

- Le Terminus Nord, 23 Rue de Dunkerque, 10eme

French restaurants: good food that is hard to find for a cheap price. I have some very good addresses, though, followed by adresses for Moules, Crepes, Bread and other parisian specialties...:

-Monsieur: 80 bd. Richard-Lenoir. 11eme. Richard-Lenoir or Saint-Ambroise. Not the best restaurant, but the closest to my house! Good looking and nice atmosphere. French food. Very expensive for what it is.

-La Cave de l'Insolite, 30 rue de la Folie Méricourt. 11ème. M° Oberkampf. 01 53 36 08 33. Very good organic wine bar and restaurant

-American Bistrot, 74 rue de la Folie Méricourt. 11ème. Oberkampf. American food and brunch.

-Pierre Sang, 55 rue Oberkampf. 11ème. Oberkampf. Very creative food. Pretends to be laid back but classy and expensive.

-Bozart Bistro : 9 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud. 11eme. Oberkampf. A young team tries to capture the old french simple restaurant style. A little expensive.

-Astier: 44 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud. 11eme. Parmentier or Oberkampf. Typically french. Used to be expensive but great. It is now expensive and worthless. Only the cheese platter and the wine selection has remained good.

-Les P'tites Indécises, 2 rue Trois Bornes, 11ème, M° Parmentier, 01 43 57 26 00. Nice terrasse, especially when it's sunny. New team. Very good food and very good brunches at a decent price.

-Le Charbon, 109 rue Oberkampf, 11ème M° Parmentier. The bar that started all the trend of rue Oberkampf. Still a high place for a cafe, a drink, a brunch, a lunch, a dinner, and even a club in the back (Le Nouveau Casino).

-Le Mecano, 99 rue Oberkampf, 11ème M° Parmentier. Another one of those bars/restaurant/brunch places.

-Le Plein Soleil, 90 avenue Parmentier, 11ème M° Parmentier. One of the most beautiful terraces of Paris, it's worthwile on a sunny day. The food is average and the pricing is correct.

-La Gouttière, 96 avenue Parmentier, 11ème M° Parmentier, 01 43 55 46 42. Cheap restaurant and bar with a very nice student atmosphere. Sometimes there is live music.

-L'Ave Maria: rue Jacquard. Parmentier. 11ème. A little street that comes off rue Oberkampf. The last restaurant that had kept the atmosphere of the best years of rue Oberkampf (nice, young, good and cheap, laid back, good music a little too loud, diverse people, diverse food (african, brasilian, south american, indian, french...)), is finally losing it too. Too many tourists and rich customers ruin the atmosphere, most nights...

-L'Estaminet. 116 Rue Oberkampf. 11eme. Parmentier. Cheap and good. In the new trendy area of Paris, until it's not trendy anymore...

-La Caravane, 35 rue de la Fontaine au Roi, 11ème, M° Goncourt, 01 49 23 01 86. Trendy place that serves as a bar, a café, a brunch place, a hang out place and a restaurant. Decent prices, nice atmosphere.

-Ma Pomme, 107 rue de Ménilmontant, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant, 01 40 33 10 40. A little too expensive for what it is but above average for this generally cheap area. Also a nice bar open late where you might run into Rachid Taha...

-Le Cannibale, 93 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 20ème, M° Couronnes, where you can also have a brunch.

-Place Ste Marthe, a cute square between Belleville and the Canal (Metros: Goncourt, Colonel Fabien, Belleville...). Three cafés/restaurants.

-Le Clown Bar: 114 Rue Amelot. 11eme. Filles du Calvaire. Next to the Cirque d'Hiver. Originally a "bar a vin", that means they have a good wine collection and serve you only wine if you want to. But also a little bit of food to go with it if you ask. And it ends up that they have an excellent menu and you can get a great dinner in a great atmosphere (the decor is beautiful and the bartender is very nice). A little pricy...

-L'Ami Pierre. 5 Rue de la Main d'Or. 11eme. Ledru-Rollin. A "bar à vin". The food is typical, simple, very good and cheap. Good wine of course. Very crowded: get there early, make reservations or expect a long wait. Open late...

-Le Bistrot du Peintre, 116 avenue Ledru Rollin, 11ème, M° Ledru-Rollin, 01 47 00 34 39. Classic french food, reasonable prices.

-Au 20ème Art. 46 rue des Vignoles. 20ème. Buzenval. Excellent modern french cuisine in a remote area of Paris.

-Chez Paul. 34 Rue de Lappe. 11eme. Bastille. Good traditional food in a good loking place but a little pricy. Very busy.

-Café de l'Industrie. Several places around the 16 Rue St Sabin. 11ème. Bastille. Beautiful convenient place. Not too expensive. Food OK. Also serves brunch.

-Chez Valentin, 64 rue Rébeval, 19eme, M° Pyrénées, 01 42 08 12 34. Very good hidden restaurant with specialties from all over the world. Decent prices.

-MK2 Quai de Seine. 14 quai de Seine. 19eme. Jaures ou Stalingrad. It's a good movie theater, in an area that used to be gloomy, but that is now renovated and beautiful, along the Canal de la Villette. It also has a cafe and a restaurant. It's OK if you are not too hungry. But mostly, what I like, is to have dinner along the canal.

-L'Atmosphère, 49 rue Lucien Sempaix. 10eme. Gare de l'Est. Used to be the most authentic bar. It's still nice but the neighborhood is gentrifying, prices go up and l'Atmo has turned into a restaurant...

-Le Valmy, 145 quai de Valmy, 10ème, Gare de l'Est. Another option if you want to eat on the canal.

-Le Chaland, 2 passage Delessert (on the quai de Valmy), 10ème, M° Louis Blanc, 01 40 05 18 68. Another option if you want to eat on the canal.

-Le Verre Volé, 67 rue de Lancry (off the canal also), 10ème, M° Jacques Bonsergent, 01 48 03 17 34. Very good organic wine bar and small restaurant (reservation advised)

-Chez Prune, 36 rue Beaurepaire. 10eme. Jacques Bonsergent (very trendy)

-La Marine, 55 quai de Valmy. 10eme. Jacques Bonsergent. On the canal. Nice atmosphere, good food, lots of fish stuff. More and more expensive though.

-Café Panique, 12 rue des Messageries. 10ème. Poissonnière. 01 47 70 06 84. Excellent upper scale restaurant. Good looking and original. Small portions, but it allows you to taste more dishes! Good wine. Expensive, but it's worth it.

-Le Relais de la Butte, 12 rue de Ravignan, 18ème, M° Abbesses, 01 42 23 94 64. Expensive but good and safe in this tourist trap area (I don't mean you risk getting mugged, I mean you risk being served crappy expensive food pretending to be genuine...).

-La Butte aux Cailles is a cute neighborhood of the 13th, M° Place d'Italie, very lively at night. A good place to go out, hang out, have a drink. You can also have dinner there, in a nice atmosphere though maybe not the best food on earth: try Chez Gladines (30 rue des Cinq Diamants) or Le Temps des Cerises (18 rue de la Butte aux Cailles)...

-Comptoir Tempero, 124 boulevard Vincent Auriol, 13ème, M° Nationale. Inventive and high quality french food with a slight asian influence, for a reasonable price.

-Chez Prosper, 7 avenue du Trône, 12ème, Nation. A typical french brasserie with a nice atmosphere, simple dishes but generous and good quality.

-L'Ebauchoir. 43 rue Citeaux. 12eme. Faidherbe-Chaligny or Ledru-Rollin. Good typical french food in a tiny typical restaurant of a non touristy area of Paris. Open late. Has become very trendy and expensive.

-Le Reservoir. 16 rue de la Forge Royale. 12ème. Faidherbe-Chaligny or Ledru-Rollin. Used to be the best brunch in town. Buffet. Beautiful place. Dark. Closed on saturday and no brunch in the summer.

-Le Baron Rouge. 1 rue Theophile Roussel. 12eme. Ledru-Rollin. Next to the Marche d'Aligre. A "bar a vin" (see Clown Bar). Mostly cold platters with cheeses and charcuterie. And oysters. Good wine of course. Nice old looking atmosphere.

-Viaduc Cafe: 43 Av Daumesnil, 12eme, Bastille or Gare de Lyon. Very nice atmosphere, pretty good food, pretty decent price. It reminds me of a New-York cafe that would pretend to be french, but the food is really french! It's located under the Viaduc, the new area built in Paris, between Bastille and Nation, that is very nice to walk around (otherwise, a totally dead area!).

-Baribal. 186 rue de Vaugirard. 15eme. Volontaires. Best Quality/Price in town. Open (and full!) 365 days a year for lunch and dinner until 2am. Quite cheap (not as cheap since it's bigger and they have redone the decoration). Huge portions of excellent typical french food. The place doesn't look very nice but trust me: the action is IN the plate! Don't even bother taking an apetizer, you are not hungry enough! Among the great meats, I think their Magret de Canard is one of the best in Paris. They also have a good Pave au Roquefort. You pick the vegetables: you can have either rice, green peas, potatoes, noodles etc... but you HAVE to pick the "Pommes de Terre Sarladaise", delicious potatoes with garlic, mushrooms, herbs...The Brouilly is their best wine. Good Tarte Tatin for a desert, but it's so big, you have to share it!

-Le Cafe du Commerce. 51 Rue du commerce, 15eme. Another one of these restaurants that imitate the traditional family style french restaurant. Good looking, good food and not too expensive.

-L'Entrepot. 7 Rue Francis de Pressense. 14eme. Pernety. It's a cinema. A good one by the way, alternative movies, festivals... They also have a little restaurant, nice and cheap. They used to do brunches on holidays...

-Chartier. 7 Rue du Faubourg Montmartre. 9eme. Metro Grands Boulevards. In a little alley in front of what used to be the club "Le Palace". It's a huge and beautiful place. It closes early. The food is NOT excellent but it is a "must see". It is very very cheap. It is a place where popular workers used to go for lunch and it basically stayed the same. It is very typical, a last of its kind.

-Le Tambour. 41 rue Montmartre. 2eme. Etienne-Marcel or Sentier. Good typical french restaurant, open late. Typical old looking nice atmosphere.

-Le Bistrot de Beaubourg. 25 Rue Quicampoix. 1er. Beaubourg. Not to be confused with Le Cafe beaubourg which is a very expensive cafe. le Bistrot is, again, a nice restaurant with french food, cheap prices and a young crowd. If too much crowd, the bartenders get angry...

-Le Hangar. 12 impasse Berthaud, in a little street near Beaubourg. 3eme. A very nice little french restaurant with excellent food and wine, but a little pricy...

-Le Marché des Enfants Rouges. It is a covered market, open tuesday to saturday, and sunday morning. So you can buy your own food but there are also some very nice cheap restaurants inside the market: Italian, Maroccan, Greak, Japanese, Lebanese, African, French... And the neighborhood is also very nice.

-Excellent brunch at Le Loir Dans la Theiere. 3 Rue des Rosiers. 4eme. St Paul.

-Le Jean Bart, 86 rue Saint Antoine, 4ème, M° Saint-Paul. One of the cheapest restaurants in Paris! Which is why the landlord tries to kick them out and replace it by a more expensive one. Of course, not the best food in the world but decent and large portions of typical food, including excellent moules.

-Galerie 88: 88 quai Hôtel de Ville. 4eme. A very nice looking café on a side of the Seine where few people walk (maybe because there are too many cars) near the Hotel de Ville. Good simple and cheap food.

-Dame Tartine. Place Stravinsky or 2 rue Brisemiche. 4eme. Beaubourg. If you are not too hungry. Not as good and not as cheap as it used to be. Young atmosphere, nice place to hang out. Small meals, hot or cold.

-Le Bouillon-Racine, 3 rue Racine, 6eme. St Michel. Mostly a beautiful place "Art Nouveau" with beautiful walls and windows, protected by law. Good food and expensive. The overpricing is compensated by the beauty of the place.

-Le Cafe Viennois: rue de l'Ecole de Medecine, 6eme, Luxembourg, Odeon, Saint Michel. A little cafe for students but also good cheap food.

-Le Pré Verre, 8 rue Thénard, 5ème, M° Luxembourg Saint Michel. Classical french food with an original touch for each dish. Reasonable prices for lunch, a little more expensive for dinner.

-La Petite Périgourdine, 39 Rue des Écoles, 5ème. M° Maubert Mutualité. Excellent traditionnal french restaurant. Simple dishes but excellent products. Expensive, but it's worth it.

-Cosi, 9 rue Cujas, 5ème, M° Luxembourg. Corsican restaurant. Good and simple food and wine, nice looking restaurant. Reasonable menu for lunch, a litttle more expensive for dinner.

-Café Léa, 5 rue Claude Bernard, 5ème, M° Censier Daubenton, 01 43 31 46 30. Very nice atmosphere. Mix of students, journalists, neighbours...

-The restaurant inside the Jardin du Luxembourg is ideally located, even though the food is not excellent...

-Le Rostand: a family favourite in Luxembourg (6eme), 01 43 54 61 58, conveniently located. Good food. Incredibly expensive, but has this neo-colonial chic style that suits some people...

-Le Cafe de la Nouvelle Mairie: 19 Rue des Fosses St Jacques. 5eme. Luxembourg. 01 44 07 04 41. A cafe that became specialised in organic wines and organic food. Not a lot of choice and a little bit expensive, but really an excellent food and wine experience.

-Perraudin. 157 Rue St Jacques. 5eme. Luxembourg. 01 46 33 15 75. Good french food in a nice place for a reasonable price. The bartenders are not very nice, especially to tourists

-Le Comptoir du Panthéon, 5 rue Soufflot, 5eme, M° Luxembourg, 01 43 54 75 36. A simple and typical french restaurant full of students, with good food, large portions and decent prices

-Pains Salades et Fantaisies, 22 rue Gay Lussac, 5ème, M° Luxembourg, 01 44 07 07 91. Just a sandwich place but the best in the area.

-Chez Polidor, 41 rue Monsieur Le Prince, 6ème, M° Luxembourg, 01 43 26 95 34. Typical old-looking tacky french restaurant.

-La Ferrandaise, 8 rue Vaugirard, 6ème, M° Luxembourg, 01 43 26 36 36. Very good but expensive french restaurant.

-Le Tournon, 18 rue de Tournon, 6ème, M° Odéon, 01 43 26 16 16. Very good simple french restaurant. A little bit expensive.

-La Méthode: 2 rue Descartes, 5eme, Cardinal Lemoine, near the Pantheon. 01 43 54 22 43. A very nice old looking, cosy atmosphere and a nice neighborhood. Good but not as good as it used to be and the bartender is not very nice. A little pricy.

-La Truffière, 4 rue Blainville, 5ème, M° Cardinal Lemoine. Excellent french food in a classy and expensive restaurant.

-Le Mauzac. 7 rue de l'Abbé de l'Epée. 5eme. Luxembourg. 01 46 33 75 22. A "bar a vin". Good but expensive.


* The chain "Leon" is not very good. (3,bd Beaumarchais 4ème, Bastille; 63, av des Champs-Elysées 8ème, Champs s; 120, rue Rambuteau 1er, Les Halles; 30, bd des Italiens 9ème, Opera; 55, bd du Montparnasse 6ème, Montparnasse; 1, place Pigalle 9ème, Pigalle; 8, place de la République 11ème, Republique; 131, bd St Germain 6ème, St Germain des pres; 8, place de Clichy 9ème, Place de Clichy; 95, bd Gouvion St Cyr 17ème, Porte Maillot; 349, rue de Vaugirard 15ème, Convention; 64, avenue des Gobelins 13ème, Gobelins...)

* Better though, try La Gueuze, 19 rue Soufflot, 5eme, Luxembourg. 01 43 54 63 00.


* Near Montparnasse, tons of them. Typically bretonish or normandish. Cheap. For example rue d'Odessa, 14eme.

* Accross the street from Jussieu University, at the corner of rue des Boulangers, Jussieu 5eme. Standing up (to go), the traditional crepe (Oeuf/Jambon/Fromage) but it is cooked fresh, right in front of you, and it's big...

* Rue Mouffetard, 5eme, Monge. You can either eat them standing up or sitting down. More and more, the owners are greeks so instead of the usual Oeuf/Jambon/Fromage, you can now have Feta cheese, chicken, tomatoes etc...

*Chez Imogène, 25 rue JP Timbaud, 11eme, Oberkampf. A nice one (for sitting) in this area.

-Boulangeries: "french bread is good". Well, yes, but sometimes it's excellent. Same for croissants and pains au chocolat. So here are some outstanding addresses:

* 69 bd. Voltaire. 11eme. St Ambroise

* 41 rue Oberkampf. 11eme. Oberkampf

* 20 rue Jean Pierre Timbaud. 11eme. Oberkampf

* 7 rue Sedaine. 11eme. Bastille

* 32 Rue de Turenne. 4eme. St Paul.

* 16 Rue des Fosses St Jacques. 5eme. Luxembourg.

* 42 Rue Dauphine. 6eme. Odeon.

* 212 rue de Vaugirard. 15eme. Volontaires.

-Other Parisian Specialties:

* Tea: Mariage Freres. There are two shops: 30 rue du Bourg Tibourg. 4eme. St Paul. And 13 rue des Grands Augustins. 6eme. St Michel. It's incredibly beautiful and they take everything very seriously. They have a huge selection of teas from all over the world and flavoured ones as well. Ask for suggestions or advice, they will help. You can also smell the tea before buying it. Among the flavoured ones, the most famous ones are the Christmas tea and the Marco Polo...

* Ice creams: Berthillon, Ile St Louis. 4eme. Cité. There is one Berthillon shop (that closes in August, as strange as it may sound) but there are many shops that sell Berthillon ice-creams, with more or less choice. A good one is in the rue des deux ponts and is called Pomme- Cannelle. You can either sit or take away. If you like chocolate, you MUST try their chocolate ice-cream. They actually have two, one ice-cream and one sherbet (called "cacao amer") but it's so rich that you think it's ice- cream. You also have white chocolate. The sherbets are also delicious (I usually don't like them very much but Pear or Mango, for example, are great). Great simple tastes like Vanilla or Coconut. Or more complicated like Pain d'Epices (ginger bread)...

* La Grande Epicerie du Bon Marché, 38 rue de Sèvres, 7eme, Sèvres Babylone. A gourmet supermarket. If you buy things, it will be good but expensive but if you just visit, it's like a free food museum! French culture includes devotion to good food and drinks from France and other parts of the world.

Other restaurants:

-Vegetarian, but good!!!

* Il Picolo Teatro. 6 Rue des Ecouffes. 4eme. St Paul.


* L'Enoteca, 25 rue Charles V, 4eme, Saint Paul 1 42 78 91 44. Very good. A little expensive. Real italian, very imaginative, very nice. Everything is above average... except the antipasti

* Cucina Napoletana, 6 rue Castex, 4ème, M° Bastille, 01 44 54 06 61. Very good but expensive place. Mostly pasta and sea food. Not a lot of choice but you can trust the waiters. Also a store.

* Le Bucheron, rue St Antoine or 9 rue du Roi de Sicile, 4eme, St Paul. Very nice trattoria. You can either just get a hot chocolate, or a croque monsieur, or a Tiramisu, or a real italian dish. Everything is perfect, but a little pricy.

*Terra Nera, 18 rue des Fossés Saint-Jacques, 5ème, M° Luxembourg. A little expensive, but yet another good italian with good products.

* Chez Bartholo. rue des Canettes, 6eme, St Sulpice or Mabillon. A pizzeria way above average, and a good italian restaurant.

* L'Osteria dell'Anima, 37 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, Oberkampf. The smallest italien restaurant in the world! A brother and a sister from Emilia Romagna, famous for its fresh pasta that they prepare in front of you. Elaborated pasta dishes. Not a lot of choice, a little bit pricy but very good.

* Very classy, you can have lunch at Armani's, the clothe designer. 149 bd St Germain. 6eme. St Germain des Pres. Or just eat a Tiramisu.

* Caffe Toscano, 34 rue des Saint Pères, 7ème, St Germain des Près. Good. A little pricy. They have good Panna Cotta for dessert, which is rare...

* Pizzeria Amici Miei, 44 rue Saint Sabin, 11eme, Chemin Vert. Good pizzas are not that common in Paris. This is a pretty good one with good italian meats and some pizza bianca with rucola. It's small and quickly crowded, and the waiters are not very patient...

* Angelo et Jacqueline, 19 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, Oberkampf. Delicious sicilian dishes, pasta and pizze, but unfortunately much more expensive than the restaurant they took the place of...

* Gustibus, 33 rue Saint-Sebastien, 11ème, Oberkampf. Good and original northern italian food, a little pricy.

* Casa Vigata, 44 rue Léon Frot, 11ème, M° Charonne, 01 43 56 38 66. Sicilian place. OK but overpriced in my opinion.

* Cacio e Peppe, 18 rue Vulpian, 13ème, M° Glacière, 01 45 87 37 00. Excellent little italian place, quite original (try the spaghetti Caccio e Peppe) but, again, quite expensive (the only cheap italian places in Paris are bad pizza places).

-Greek: there are many cheap greek restaurants around Paris. One that I like is "L'ile de Crete" on rue Mouffetard (place de la Contrescarpe), Cardinal-Lemoine. 01 43 26 31 37.


*Hokkaido. 14 rue Chabanais. 2ème. Bourse. A japanese restaurant that is NOT a Sushi bar. They have these huge soups with everything in it (noodles, meat, vegetables...)

*Matsuri, 36 rue de Richelieu, 01 42 61 05 73, (1er, Palais Royal). They have the sushis displayed in front of you and you just pick the one you want. They are all the same price so at the end they count the number of empty plates and charge you. But it is expensive. And the people are not very nice.

*Alternatively, rue Monsieur le Prince (6eme, Luxembourg) the sushis are cheap and you can also have, in the same restaurants, the yakitori (japanese shish kebab), but these are not real japanese restaurants...

-Chinese/Vietnamese: you can find tons of very cheap and very good vietnamese restaurants all over Paris. Here is a selection:

* Le Foyer Vietnamien, on the corner of rue Pestalozzi and 80 rue Monge, 5eme, Monge. 01 45 35 32 54. Not really a restaurant, it's the cafeteria of a vietnamese center. Full of vietnamese people. Excellent soups or crispy noodles. A must!

* Le restaurant d'Indochine, 5 rue Dante, 5eme, Saint-Michel. One of the best vietnamese.

* Mirama, 17 rue Saint Jacques, 5eme, Saint Michel. One of the best chinese.

*There is a vietnamese/chinese neighborhood in the 13eme arrondissement, Tolbiac. Try Vietnamese: Le Bambou (70 rue Baudricourt); Pho 99 (119 avenue de Choisy); Pho Banh Cuon 14 (129 avenue de Choisy); Hawai (87 avenue d'Ivry). Lao/Thai: Lao Lane Xang (102 avenue d'Ivry); Sukothai (12 rue du Père Guérin). Chinese: Sinorama (23 rue du Dr Magnan); Délices de Confucius (68 Boulevard de l'Hôpital); Traiteur Shandong (88 Boulevard de l'Hôpital).

* There is another big vietnamese comunity in Belleville, 11eme/20ème, where the best Pho soups are rue Louis Bonnet, especially at the number 14. A funny little cantine is "Rouleau de Printemps", 42 rue des Tourtilles

*Deux Fois Plus de Piment, 33 rue Saint Sebastien, 11th, M° Richard-Lenoir, 01 58 30 99 35. Most "chinese" restaurants in Paris are actually vietnamese (check out the History of France...), but this one is a real chinese restaurant. It's called "twice as much hot pepper", and it deserves its name. Most dishes are hot and will make your eyes cry. But if you can stand it, they are also excellent...


*Doi Southep, 36 rue Saint Sebastien, 11eme, Richard-Lenoir , Saint Ambroise, Oberkampf or Saint Sebastien Froissart. Very good, very original food, very nice people serving, very nice atmosphere, cheap and... close to my house!

*Sukothai, 12 rue du Père Guérin, 13ème, M° Place d'Italie, 01 45 81 55 88. Very good but also very nice setting...


* Sabraj, 175 rue St Jacques, 6ème, Luxembourg, 01 43 26 70 03. Good looking and very good food. Cheap only at lunch time during the week. Otherwise, quite expensive.

* Two very good and decently priced ones Place Gustave Toudouze, 9eme, Saint George. On a very nice little square, including what is supposed to be the first Indian restaurant in Paris.

* The indian/sri lanka area is around Metro La Chapelle, 18eme.

-Jewish: (Of course, closed Friday night and Saturday, but open Sunday.)

* Falafel is a Palestinian/Lebanese specialty, but jewish falafel is a slightly modified recipe that you can find in the jewish neighborhood, rue des Rosiers (4eme, St Paul).

- Arabic (couscous mainly):

* Le Taghit, 63 rue de l'ouest, 14eme, it is very close to the "Place de Catalogne", behind the Tour Montparnasse, a place that I recomand to see, by the way (fountain designed by the great architect Ricardo Bofil). My favourite couscous in Paris. It is, unusual for a couscous place, a place decorated with much taste, warm cosy lights, and cool jazz music playing in the back. For each couscous, you have a choice of 3 different "grain" but usually the guy brings a sample of each. One is "raw", one is flavoured with herbs and one is a little bit sweet with rose blossom water (if I remember well)...

* Le Souk. 1 rue Keller. 11ème. Ledru Rollin. 01 49 29 05 08. Beautiful and Expensive, but very good.

* Similar: "Le 404". 69 rue des Gravilliers. 3eme. Arts et Metiers, Reaumur Sebastopol or Rambuteau. It is beautiful. It is owned by Smain, a famous algerian stand up comedian and actor. Very good couscous but you can also go there for a brunch. Expensive.

* Chez Omar, 47 rue de Bretagne, 3eme, Temple. Good couscous in a nice atmosphere, open late in an unusual neighborhood. Not too expensive.

* Of course, you can have couscous at La Mosquee de Paris, 39 rue Geoffroy St Hilaire, 5eme, Jussieu or Censier or Monge. 01 43 31 18 14. They have a big selection of various couscous and tagines.

* Not the best couscous, but genuine and ultra cheap can be found in arab areas of Paris (Belleville, la Goutte d'Or...)

* Incredible as it may seem, the one on place de la Contrescarpe, 5eme, Cardinal Lemoine, 01 46 33 07 32, is not too bad! Same comment for some of those that you can find on rue Boutebrie, near the Boulevard St Germain. 5eme. Cluny La Sorbonne.

* The restaurant at the Institut du Monde Arabe (1 rue des Fossés Saint-Bernard, 5ème, M° Jussieu, 01 55 42 55 42) is very good but outrageously expensive

* Good lebanese falafel: Babylon 21 rue Daval, 11eme, Bastille. Also Al Diwan, 30 rue George V, 8eme, George V or Alma Marceau.

  -South American:

-Brasilian: La Favela Chic. 18 rue Faubourg du Temple, 11eme, Republique. Big trendy restaurant and bar. Started rue Oberkampf, in the new trendy area of Paris, and moved here for more space...

-Cuban: El Paladar. 26 bis, Rue de la Fontaine au Roi, 11eme, Goncourt. 01 82 09 94 91. There are so many pseudo cuban restaurants. This one is way above average. The owner and cook is genuinly cuban. He's very nice and also a very imaginative cook. The atmosphere is nice too. Of course, the word gets spread and the prices are rising...

-Argentinian : El Palenque, rue de la Montagne Ste Genevieve, 5eme, Maubert-Mutualite. 01 43 54 08 99. Good meat, good enchiladas, good corn stuff, good desert with dulce de leche...

-Peruvian: Machu Pichu, 9 rue Royer-Collard, 5eme, Luxembourg. 01 43 26 13 13. Good and cheap if you take the menu for lunch. Crowded.

-Mexican: a decent and cheap one is "La Perla", corner between rue du Pont Louis Philippe and the 26 Rue Francois Miron, 4eme, St Paul.


Cafes and bars (Those that I can think of and that are a little bit above average. For music, see below. Paris is full of cafes and I usually like hanging out there. But most often they are not that nice (esthetically and neither is the service). There are some exceptions or places that worth going to anyway...) :

-La Palette: 43 Rue de Seine. 6eme. Odeon. One of the nicest looking cafe, the tables are wooden. The waiters are assholes but that's also typically Parisian...

-News Cafe 78 rue d'Assas. 6eme. Notre Dame des Champs. Nice simple cafe in this area. OK brunchs on Sundays.

-Le Fontaine: my favourite around Jussieu... (rue Linne/rue Cuvier, 5eme, Jussieu)

-L'Inévitable, 22 rue Linné, 5ème, M° Jussieu, 01 47 07 39 99. Another nice one around Jussieu.

-Of course, you can have an excellent mint tea or a sirop d'orgeat (in the summer) with an arab pastry at the Mosquee de Paris, 39 rue Geoffroy St Hilaire, 5eme, Jussieu or Censier or Monge...

-Le Mazet: Rue Saint Andre des Arts, 6eme, Odeon. Nothing special except it is well located and it used to be full of musicians who played in the Metro, they would go there and jam. Unfortunately I've heard there are almost no more musicians in the Metro so I don't know if they still go and play there. Check it out...

-Le Cafe Viennois: rue de l'Ecole de Medecine, 6eme, Luxembourg, Odeon, Saint Michel. A little cafe for students. Good pastries and excellent hot chocolate (Austrian/German style). Specialty: chocolate or coffe with whipped cream.

-Le Rostand: a family favourite in Luxembourg (6eme), 01 43 54 61 58, conveniently located, nice, and the coffee is good: if you ask a "creme" they serve you the milk on the side so you can adjust to taste... Neocolonial style of service, and it became incredibly expensive...

-Le Cafe de la Nouvelle Mairie: 19 Rue des Fosses St Jacques. 5eme. Luxembourg. 01 44 07 04 41. Nice little cafe off of the Pantheon.

-You also have a cafe inside the jardin du Luxembourg. It is not very good but it is cheap, especially considering it's probably one of the best location you can get in Paris!

-Le Piano Vache: a student bar open late, around Luxembourg (6eme), rue Laplace, cheap, alternative crowd and music.

-Le Café Universel, 267 rue Saint Jacques, 5ème, M° Luxembourg. Nothing special but sometimes nice and cheap amateur music bands.

-Cafe des Arts: on the place de la Contrescarpe, at the top of rue Mouffetard. 5eme. Cardinal-Lemoine. There are three cafes on this square. This one is the less touristy...

-Le Cafe de la Mairie, place Saint Sulpice, 6eme. Two floors, student atmosphere.

-Chez George. Rue des canettes. 6eme. St Sulpice. Old looking, typical, small...

-Rue Saint Jacques: 6eme, Cluny La Sorbonne. A couple of bars: "Polly Magoo", "Le Cloître" for example. Good beer.

-Galerie 88: 88 quai Hôtel de Ville. 4eme. A very nice looking café on a side of the Seine where few people walk (maybe because there are too many cars) near the Hotel de Ville. The waiters are not in a rush but they serve very good hot chocolate or mint tea as well as light food.

-Le Temps des Cerises: a nice cafe in le Marais, old-looking (wood) rue du Petit Musc, 4eme.

-Le Progrès, 1 rue de Bretagne. 3ème. Filles du Calvaire. Next to the market des Enfants Rouges, a nice area.

-Le Frog and Rosbeef. 116 rue St Denis. 2eme. Etienne Marcel. A brittish pub. Beers...

-Cafe Marly. At the Louvre (93 rue de Rivoli). 1er. Palais Royal. Under the columns, next to the entrance (pyramid). Very classy, beautiful cafe, impeccable service. Expensive to eat there (but it's worth it) so you can just have a drink or even breakfast.

-Same as the Jardin du Luxembourg: You can have a drink at the cafe inside the jardin des Tuileries...

-Le Sancerre, 35 rue des Abbesses, 18eme. Abbesses. Nice student atmosphere in the area of Montmartre. Open late for drinks and salads or tartines with Pain Poilane.

-In Bastille, rue de Lappe and rue de la Roquette: many bars, restaurants, night-clubs and cafes, most are following the trend of the day. Some exceptions: Le Bar Sans Nom, rue de Lappe, Le Café de l'Industrie (where you can also eat, brunch, lunch, dinner...), rue St Sabin, Le Lèche Vin, rue Daval, Le Fontaine, 1 rue Charonne... It's becoming more and more touristy, more and more crowded, more and more violent, more and more... uninteresting.

-Rue Oberkampf, between metros Menilmontant and Parmentier. The trendy area of Paris between 1994 and 2004, that is following the same trend as Bastille, not as young, not as cheap, not as nice, not as interesting... Anyway, you can still try La Mercerie, le Charbon (also brunch), le Mecano (also brunch). Check also Les Couleurs on rue Saint-Maur, Le Plein Soleil (also restaurant) at 90 avenue Parmentier, L'Ave Maria, rue Jacquard (go down 2 blocks). For music, see below.

-In Belleville-Menilmontant: Le Cannibale, 93 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud where you can also have a brunch and Le Café Chéri, 44 boulevard de La Villette (Belleville), Le Soleil, 136 bd de Menilmontant and Lou Pascalou, 14 rue Panoyaux (Menilmontant). But you can also have good and cheap mint tea in about every cafe that looks arabic...

-Place Ste Marthe, a cute square between Belleville and the Canal (Metros: Goncourt, Colonel Fabien, Belleville...). 3 cafés

-Along the canal Saint Martin: many bars and, when the weather is good, many people drink sitting directly along the canal. Try those: Chez Prune, 36 rue Beaurepaire. 10eme. Jacques Bonsergent (very trendy), Le Jemmapes, 82 quai de Jemmapes 10eme. Jacques Bonsergent (take your glass and drink ON the canal), Le Valmy, 145 quai de Valmy, 10ème, Gare de l'Est (also a restaurant), L'Atmosphère, 49 rue Lucien Sempaix. 10eme. Gare de l'Est (more authentic) or Le Point Ephemere, 186 quai de Valmy (ON the canal), 10ème, Stalingrad, which is also a concert place.



I like African art...

-Musee Dapper, moved from avenue Victor Hugo to 35 rue Paul Valery, Metro Kleber, 16eme. Bigger and beautiful museum but not in a beautiful little house with a nice garden in a very fancy place of Paris anymore. They have temporary exhibitions changing every 6 months. No permanent collection. They also have great books. A must!

-Nice private galeries: around rue de Seine, rue Calot, rue Mazarine (6eme, Odeon). And one on Boulevard Raspail, near Vavin, 14eme.

I like modern art...

-Centre George Pompidou (Beaubourg) 1er. Of course. Great permanent collection and, very often, great temporary exhibition. Nice library too.

-Musee d'Art Moderne. Avenue du President Wilson. Trocadero. 16eme. Not as good, but sometimes has good temporary exhibitions.

-Musee Picasso. 5 rue Thorigny. In le Marais, 3eme. St Paul. Beautiful little house and the art is very well displayed. Contains stuff from different periods. I love it.

-Fondation Cartier. 261 bd. Raspail. 6eme. Raspail. Temporary exhibitions of high quality in this new building inside Paris (there is also a Fondation Cartier outside Paris, in Jouy en Josas). Usually contemporary art.

-Musee Maillol. 59 rue de Grenelle. 7eme. Rue du Bac. Beautiful house renovated into a museum by Dina Vierny. Contains nice Maillol sculptures of course, but also paintings by Matisse and other pieces of Vierny's collection. She used to be Maillol's model and then met other artists and became her friend, and started collecting. She also has temporary exhibitions of very high quality...

More classical:

-Le Musee Rodin. Rue de Varenne. 7eme. Beautiful house with a garden. Some of the sculptures are displayed in the garden. The back garden also has a cafeteria. In fact it is a must to go there in the summer, enjoy the sculptures for a while, and then spend the rest of the day in the garden, reading, drinking and sun-bathing! I like his sculptures too, and some of Camille Claudel's work is there also.

-Le Musee d'Orsay. Quai Anatole France. 7eme. 19th century's arts. Has one of the most beautiful collection of impressionist paintings. Has some other nice stuff (I like the statues by Maillol). But, in my opinion, has also a lot of junk! Terrible huge paintings of Napoleon's wars...

-Le Musee Cluny: 6 place Paul Paineleve. 5eme. Cluny La Sorbonne. Dedicated to the Middle-Ages. Not as boring at it sounds, though!!!

-Le Louvre. 1er. No comment...

-Le Musee des Arts Decoratifs, Next to it.


-Le Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle. Jardin des plantes. 5eme. Jussieu. Recently renovated. Good looking.

-L'Institut du Monde Arabe. Jussieu. 5eme. A nice building. The exhibitions are usually small and expensive. But occasionally they are nice. Alternatively, just go on the roof, enjoy the view and have a drink at the cafeteria...

I like photography too...

- "La Maison Europeenne de la Photographie" 82 rue Francois Miron, 4eme, St Paul, le Marais.

- "Hotel de Sully", 62 rue St Antoine, 4eme, St Paul. Beautiful house in a beautiful garden in le Marais.

- "Le Centre National de la Photographie", 11 rue Berryer, 8eme, George V.


You can either check in the program (Entre Les Oreilles, Lylo) or at the FNAC who plays where, or you can just wonder around in nice neighborhoods and hope to stumble upon a nice show, with good live music, tasty beer and friendly people... or not. For this, here are suggested strolls by neigbourhoods (and you can always check what's playing since most places have a web site)...

Suggested strolls:

Canal St Martin:

-Le Bizz'Art, 167 quai de Valmy, 10eme, M° Louis Blanc. Soul-club place where people come from all over the greater Paris area to hang out, dance, eat, drink...
-Le Point Ephemere, 186 quai de Valmy, 10ème, M° Chateau Landon, 01 40 34 02 48. It's a nice place to hang out (with bar and restaurant) that also has a place for concerts, usually small alternative bands.
-L'Espace Jemmapes, 116 quai de Jemmapes, 10ème, M° Gare de l'Est. A cultural center with plays and sometimes concerts.
-Le Baron Samedi, 12 rue des Goncourt, 11ème, M° Goncourt. 01 43 57 31 58. A bar and disco place specialised in "black" musics, soul, funk, reggae etc... Tuesday night is soul night...
-Le Gibus, 18 rue du Faubourg du Temple, 11eme, M° Republique. It used to be classical and alternative rock, it's turning to the more fashionable techno, without being too selective to let you in...

Parmentier, Oberkampf, Jean-Pierre Timbaud and Ménilmontant:

-La Gouttière, 96 avenue Parmentier, 11ème, M° Parmentier, 01 43 55 46 42. A cheap bar and restaurant for students, with sometimes live music
-Le Quartier Général, 103 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, M° Parmentier. One of many bars on rue Oberkampf that sometimes has live music.
-Le Nouveau Casino, 109 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, M° Parmentier. The only real remaining club on rue Oberkampf, behind the famous bar Le Charbon, small enough that if you like the band, you will enjoy being right next to them...
-Le Styx, 126 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, M° Parmentier. One of many bars on rue Oberkampf that sometimes has live music.
-La Locandiera, 145 rue Oberkampf, 11ème, M° Ménilmontant. Ordinary restaurant, but nice place for cheap live music.
-L'Antirouille, 5 rue Moret, 11ème, M° Ménilmontant. A bar with mostly DJs in a little street between Oberkampf and Timbaud.
-Le Miz Miz, 6 rue Moret, 11ème, M° Ménilmontant. A bar with free concerts and food, in a little street between Oberkampf and Timbaud.
-L'International, 7 rue Moret, 11ème, M° Ménilmontant. A bar with live shows in a little street between Oberkampf and Timbaud.
-Le Downtown Café, 46 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11ème, M° Parmentier. One of many bars on rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud that sometimes has live music.
-L'Alimentation Générale, 64 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11ème, M° Parmentier. The room is not very nice but the music is usually good and the crowd is very nice.
-Le Chat Noir, 76 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11ème, M° Parmentier. One of many bars on rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud that sometimes has live music.
-Le Cannibale, 93 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11ème, M° Couronnes. Mostly a bar and restaurant, but sometimes live music.
-La Maison des Métallos, 94 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11ème, M° Couronnes. A cultural center with plays, exhibitions and, sometimes, live music.
-Le Babel Café, 109 bd de Ménilmontant, 11ème, M° Ménilmontant, 01 49 23 00 63. A nice and cheap café with a mix of "local people from all over the world", young students and musicians.

Above Ménilmontant:

-La Flèche d'Or, 102bis rue de Bagnolet, 20ème, M° Alexandre Dumas or Porte de Bagnolet. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. A beautiful place, a train station on what used to be a train track going all around Paris. Also a bar and a restaurant.
-Le Piston Pélican, 15 rue de Bagnolet, 20ème, M° Alexandre Dumas. Nice bar off the most trendy neighborhood, very nice atmosphere and sometimes live music.
-Lou Pascalou, 14 rue des Panoyaux, 20ème, M° Menilmontant. Very nice café on a nice little quiet square off the busy boulevard de Ménilmontant. Sometimes good live music.
-La Miroiterie, 88 rue de Ménilmontant, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant. A squat with mostly punk music.
-Le Studio de l'Ermitage, 8 rue de l'Ermitage, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. A lot of world and jazz music.
-La Bellevilloise, 21 rue Boyer, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. Also a place for dinner and brunch. A lot of world and reggae music.
-La Maroquinerie, 23 rue Boyer, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. Also a place for dinner. Concerts and showcases.
-Les Trois Arts, 21 rue des Rigoles, 20ème. Jourdain. A small café with live music.
-La Mer à Boire, 1 rue des Envierges, 20ème. Pyrenées. A café that also wants to be a cultural center with exhibitions, concerts, debates, drinks and light food. Also one of the nicest views of Paris from the top of Belleville...
-Le Vieux Belleville, 12 rue des Envierges, 20ème. Pyrenées. A restaurant specialised in old typical french food... and music!

Bastille - Faidherbe Chaligny:

-Le Zero Zero, 89 Rue Amelot, 11eme, M° St Sebastien Froissart. A little trendy bar off of the crowded places.
-Le Pop In, 105 rue Amelot, 11ème, M° St Sebastien Froissart. Mostly DJS, but sometimes live music.
-Le Satellit, 44 Rue de la Folie Mericourt, 11eme, M° Saint Ambroise. Basically the only club in Paris that is not racist! So, of course, very diverse and very crowd and music from all over the world, either live or with good DJs. There is an entrance fee.
-L'Angora, 3 bd Richard-Lenoir, 11ème, M° Bastille. Mostly a restaurant, but live music sometimes.
-Le Balajo, 9 rue de Lappe, 11ème, M° Bastille. The oldest club in what used to be the hippest of Parisian streets, a long time ago...
-Le Sanz Sans, 49 Faubourg Saint Antoine, 11ème, M° Bastille. Mostly a bar, with live music sometimes.
-L'OPA, 9 rue Biscornet, 12ème, M° Bastille. A new place for young live bands to play...
-La Scène Bastille, 2 rue des Taillandiers, 11ème, M° Ledru Rollin. Another new place for young live bands to play...
-Les Disquaires, 6 rue des Taillandiers, 11ème, M° Ledru Rollin. Mostly DJs, but sometimes live music. Often free, and a very nice atmosphere.
-L'Atelier Charonne, 21 rue de Charonne, 11ème, M° Ledru Rollin. Expensive club almost entirely devoted to gypsy musics. Also a restaurant.
-Le Café de la Plage, 59 rue de Charonne, 11ème, M° Ledru Rollin. Nice small bar with live music. Brasilian music on Fridays!
-Le Réservoir, 16 rue de la Forge Royale, 11ème, M° Ledru Rollin. A concert place but also one of the best brunches in Paris, with live jazz music.
-Le China, 50 rue de Charenton, 12ème, M° Ledru Rollin. An old fashioned classy music club, bar and restaurant.
-La Liberté, 196 rue du Fg St-Antoine, 12ème, M° Faidherbe-Chaligny, 01 43 72 11 18. Very nice cheap place, open late. La Lib' is open to people of all ages and looks and everybody communicates very openly. It's also an artists' bar and sometimes they host live music.

Goutte d'Or - Moulin Rouge:

-L'Olympic Café, 20 rue Léon, 18ème, M° Chateau Rouge. A restaurant, a café, a bar and also a concert hall with a very nice atmosphere.
-Le Lavoir Moderne Parisien, 35 rue Léon, 18ème, M° Chateau Rouge. A theater with sometimes live music as well.
-Le Centre Fleury Goutte d'Or, 1 rue Fleury, 18ème, M° Barbès. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. Mostly young artists.
-Le Saraaba, 19 rue de la Goutte d'Or, 18ème, M° Barbès. A cultural center that aims at representing the cultural diversity of this neighborhood, including a concert place.
-Le Divan du Monde, 75 rue des Martyrs, 18ème, M° Pigalle. A concert place that is worth checking out even if you haven't made a reservation. Mostly world music.
-La Machine du Moulin Rouge, 90 bd de Clichy, 18ème, M° Blanche. A concert place next to the famous Moulin Rouge.
-Le Bab Ilo, 9 rue du Baigneur, 18ème, M°Jules Joffrin. A bar, away from the previous stroll, that sometimes has live music.

On the Seine, next to the Bibliothèque Nationale de France:

-La Dame de Canton 13eme, M° Quai de la Gare. This chinese boat is dedicated to concerts. Alternative french or world music usually. But you can also have a drink there and sometimes even eat...
-Le Batofar 13eme, M° Quai de la Gare. Other drinks, other concerts (more alternative and techno)
-La Péniche El Alamein 13eme, M° Quai de la Gare. Other drinks, other concerts (more french folk music)

Classic places for concerts (if you still haven't found anything!):

-New Morning, 7 rue des petites ecuries, 10eme, Chateau d'Eau. Always good jazz but the prices are rising. It is a concert hall more than a bar.
-Petit Journal Saint Michel (71 Bd St Michel, 5eme, Luxembourg) and Petit Journal Montparnasse (13 rue du Commandant Mouchotte, 14eme, Montparnasse). Sometimes good jazz, Sometimes a little bit too traditional for my taste...
-Rue des Lombards (1er, Chatelet - Les Halles): some good jazz clubs: Le Sunset / Sunside 60 rue des Lombards, Le Baiser Salé 58 rue des Lombards, Le Duc des Lombards 42 rue des Lombards.
-Le Méridien (81 bd Gouvion St Cyr, 17ème, M° Porte Maillot). The noisy lobby of a very classy hotel where clients are sometimes there for lack of a better thing to do. BUT they have good music.
-Rue Saint Benoit: the craddle of Jazz in Paris, Saint Germain des pres, 5eme, where the first famous american jazzmen used to come and play in Paris, after WW2. A couple of clubs are still there. The style is pretty traditional and it is expensive. But you can get good jazz (Montana, Club Saint-Germain, Lattitudes Saint-Germain, Bilboquet...)

-La Coupole, 102 Bd du Montparnasse, 14eme, Vavin
-Le Monte Cristo, on the Champs-Elysees
-Le Balajo, 9 Rue de Lappe, 11eme, Bastille
-La Java, 105 Rue du Faubourg du Temple, 10eme, Belleville or Goncourt
-Les Etoiles, rue du Chateau d'Eau, 10eme, Chateau d'Eau.

Other concert halls:
-L'Olympia (Historic place, 28 Bd des Capucines, 9eme, M° Opera)
-Le Café de la danse (5 passage Louis Philippe, 11ème, M° Bastille)
-Le Bataclan (50 Boulevard Voltaire, 11eme, M° Oberkampf)
-Le Zèbre de Belleville (61 bd de Belleville, 11ème, M° Couronnes)
-Le Studio de l'Ermitage (8 rue de l'Ermitage, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant)
-La Bellevilloise (21 rue Boyer, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant)
-La Maroquinerie (23 rue Boyer, 20ème, M° Ménilmontant)
-Le Centre Fleury Goutte d'Or (1 rue Fleury, 18ème, M° Barbès)
-L'Elysée Montmartre (72 Bd de Rochechouart, 18ème, M° Anvers)
-Le Trianon (80 bd. de Rochechouart, M° Anvers)
-La Cigale (120 bd de Rochechouart, 18ème, M° Pigalle)
-Le Divan du Monde (75 rue des Martyrs, 18ème, M° Pigalle)
-La Machine du Moulin Rouge (90 bd de Clichy, 18ème, M° Blanche)
-L'Européen (5 rue Biot, 17ème, M° Place de Clichy)
-Le Cabaret Sauvage (La Villette: 211 avenue Jean Jaurès, 19ème, M° Porte de Pantin)
-Le Trabendo (La Villette: 211 avenue Jean Jaurès, 19ème, M° Porte de Pantin)
-Le Zenith (La Villette: 211 avenue Jean Jaurès, 19ème, M° Porte de Pantin)
-Le Glazart (7 avenue de la Porte de la Villette, 19ème, M° Porte de la Villette)
-Le Palais Omnisport de Paris Bercy (Indoor stadium, 8 Bd de Bery, 12eme, M° Bercy)...

Night-Clubs: I don't know the night-clubs of Paris very well. You should ask somebody else. I know they are expensive, I know it's hard to get in (dress code) and I know most of them play dance and techno...


The Islands: you can start by my favourite place of Paris. To discover it, the best is to come from the Pont-Neuf. To some people it is the most beautiful bridge of Paris. You come from Odeon towards the Seine and then you cross the bridge. When you're half way through, instead of going to the right bank, you turn right, towards the Island (L'ile de la cite). You have two sets of buildings and you could go along the Seine on the left or on the right. But you can also decide to go in between the two sets of buildings where there is a little street that becomes broader and brings you to the Place Dauphine. It's a very quiet place in the heart of Paris, protected by these nice buildings. The trees give a lot of shade but in the summer, at some moments of the day, you can also enjoy the sun there. The big building at one end is Le Palais de Justice. That's why, at lunch time, you see mostly lawyers and judges at the (expensive) restaurants there... If you go on the other side of Le Palais, you can actually go inside and visit "La Sainte Chapelle". It is probably one of the most beautiful chapels I've ever seen. The king used to live there and had it made up just for him because going to Notre Dame (accross the road) was just too much! Breathtaking. Then, you can also go and see Notre Dame which is beatifull from the outside but, as far as inside, I like the chapel better. Then you can cross the second bridge (pont Saint Louis) that goes between the two Island and get to the ile Saint Louis. On the Ile Saint Louis there is ONE thing that you absolutely can't miss: the Berthillon ice-creams, the best in the world...

Le Marais: then you cross the bridge again (Pont Marie) and you get to Le Marais. It is a very old neighbourhood of Paris that has very nice old streets and buildings. Walk down the Rue des Francs Bourgeois, don't miss the little Place du Marche Sainte Catherine or, of course, the big Place des Vosges. From the place des Vosges you can have access to the Hotel de Sully through a beautiful garden. You can also visit the public library rue du Figuier (near a nice free and anonymous HIV test center, Pont Marie), or the Musee Picasso. At the Metro Saint Paul, rue Francois Miron, there is a little shop that I would recommand for you to visit: It is called "Izrael" and contains the most amazing collection of random things from all over the world! Mostly food but also random stuff. You don't have to buy, just look, smell... There, on the rue des Rosiers, starts also one of the two Jewish Quarters of Paris. Worth a walk, maybe on Sunday since everything is open (but closed on Saturday). At the end of the rue des Rosiers, in the Rue Vieille du Temple and Rue Sainte Croix de la Bretonnerie, starts another "gettho", the Gay Gettho, with bars, shops and... people. That's also where you find the greatest Tea shop of Paris (Mariage Freres, rue du Bourg Tibourg).

Belleville: It doesn't really connect with the others. It actually connects with nothing! And there is no particular reason for going there. But it's a nice place, one of the last parts of Paris that kept a village aspect to it, and a popular life that goes with it. Of course, it has become an "ethnic" place and you can probably find better mint-tea and couscous than at the Mosquee, and for much cheaper. Also a lot of chinese/vietnamese restaurants and stores. But there is also a growing population of students/artists/alternative scene. Shops, of course, are cheap there, with second hand clothes stores for example. Basically, everything happens between the Metro stations of Belleville and Menilmontant, along the Boulevard de Belleville but also on little parallel and perpendicular streets, and on rue Oberkampf, between the Metro stations of Menilmontant and Parmentier, towards Place Ste Marthe and even up to the Cimetière du Père Lachaise or to the parcs (Buttes-Chaumont or Belleville)... You can eat there, brunch, lunch, dinner or have a drink during the day or at night, check the various sections. There is one night-club on rue Oberkampf, "Le Nouveau Casino". It's very nice at night but I also like to hang out there on summer week-end days when old people and children are in the streets. Another great moment is the Ramaddan, when Muslims can't eat or drink all day and therefore, at night, they go crazy and Belleville goes crazy with them, bars are open much later than usual and are filled with young people having fun and drinking, but in a very cool atmosphere.

Other random ideas:

* You can walk on the "Viaduc". It goes from Bastille to Nation, along the rue de Lyon. It has been decorated with plants and trees and it's beautiful on a sunny day.

* You can take a boat on the Seine but it's cheesy, touristy and expensive. Instead, I would recommend you take the Peniche on the canal at La Villette. It then connects to the Seine for a little while and it's much nicer...

* Flea markets: Place d'Aligre, Porte de Vanves, Porte de Montreuil, Porte de Clignancourt


There are some ethnic neighbourhoods inside Paris: the main asian one around Place d'Italie (P13), the jewish neighbourhoods (one is around Saint Paul, P4, and one is around Cadet, P9), and the mix of arab, african and asian immigration in the northern and north-eastern part of Paris, between Barbès and Stalingrad, and then between Stalingrad and Ménilmontant (P18, P19 and P20)... Then there is the rich ghetto, where you never go to and never have to go, the 16th arrondissement and around, that some people say should not even be called part of Paris...  

La Commune

Appel à la destruction du Sacré Coeur de Alain Bachellier It all started on March 18, 1871 on the top of Montmartre (M° Anvers, P18). It's important to know because it makes the ugly church you see on top as a landmark of hate. It used to be a field (le Champ des Polonais) in a very popular area where the people started to rebel against the army. Years later when the conservative governemnt took over, they decided that they needed to ask god for forgiveness for all of the sins of the communard. They raised a mandatory tax to pay for the church, and built this ugly "Sacré Coeur" that some people call the ugly whipped cream. In addition to an ugly history, it is also one of the most conservative (fascist) church in France, hosting some cults that do 24/7/365 prayers (only 2 such churches exist in France). Many reasons to ask for its destruction... Vive la Commune!

It all ended on May 25, 1871, around the cemetery Le Père Lachaise (P20), which is one of the nicest cemeteries to visit (if you like cemeteries or some famous people there, including Jim Morison, Honoré de Balzac, Guillaume Apollinaire, Frédéric Chopin, Colette, Jean-François Champollion, Jean de La Fontaine, Molière, Yves Montand, Simone Signoret, Alfred de Musset, Edith Piaf, Camille Pissarro, Oscar Wilde or Richard Wright, but it's also very green, full of trees...). This area has also always been (and still is but all is relative) the poorest of Paris, and the last fights of Communards against Versaillais took place there in small streets and the support of the local population. The last barricade was on rue de la Fontaine au Roi, M° Goncourt, P11. Then the last Communards escaped and took refuge in the cemetery. They were followed by the soldiers who trapped them and gathered them against a wall (le mur des fédérés), to shoot them. 147 were killed. You can still see the place.

The Commune government took place at the Hotel de Ville (city hall, P4) which, during the fights, was burned down. Therefore the one you see is a copy. Another landmark for the Commune is La Butte aux Cailles (Place d'Italie, P13). At the time, most churches were turned into "clubs" for either women, the elderly, kids... The artist Gustave Courbet was heading a Communard artists comity which decided that the Colonne Vendôme was the Bastille of the rich, and that it should be toppled. Which they did. After the commune, Courbet was tried and had to pay back the restoration of this monument with his own money. He couldn't so he went to exile in Switzerland. You can see the colonne Vendôme (P1) which is STILL the Bastille of the rich...

CICP is a center for many alternative groups to meet, 21 ter rue Voltaire, P11, M° Rue des Boulets. Next to it there  is a nice anarchist bookstore called Quilombo.
Another anarchist bookstore is Publico, on 145 rue Amelot, P11, M° Oberkampf.
And another, small one, is La Rue, 10 rue Robert Planquette, P18, M° Blanche.
Another political bookstore is Librairie Résistance, 4 Impasse Compoint, P17, M° Guy Môquet.
The anarchist union CNT has often stuff going on at their little place off of 33 rue des Vignoles, P20, M° Buzenval.
If you want to know what's up politically in Paris these days, you can check out the Demosphere web site...
A web site in French tries to gather all the political landmarks of Paris: Paris Révolutionnaire


Milly la Foret. It's a nice little village not too far from Paris. It has kept its middle-ages appearance thanks to the financial help of rich people around but, like a miracle, it has also kept the rural people and hasn't completely (yet!) been replaced by these rich people coming from Paris. The main square has a beautifull old woden market place and washing place. It's also in the middle of the Foret de Fontainebleau which makes the surroundings pretty nice too. Milly has, at least, two things that worth the visit: one is the chapel where Jean Cocteau was buried. Before he died, he decorated the inside and it is pretty. The chapel itself is located in a pretty garden full of medicinal plants. The second thing that worth the visit is "Le Cyclope". It isn't open all year round, you'd better check. It is in the middle of the forest. It is a huge statue (like a 4 floors house) of a cyclop head. You can go inside and visit it. The idea is from Jean Tinguely, a swiss artist (dead) very fond of art made of iron and moving mechanical parts. He and his wife, the american artist Niki de Saint Phalle, made the fountain on the Place Stravinski at Beaubourg. She also decorated the face of the Cyclop (including a huge tongue, covered with glass, that spits water!). But many artists collaborated in making the Cyclop during 25 years, and when you go inside, up the floors, you see contributions of all of them, either by decorations of the walls or sculptures, sometimes animated. To give you an idea of the size, the last floor includes a train wagon. And you can climb on the roof too. I loved it!

(updated in 2012 by Dror but it's not updated regularly enough since I can't go to all these restaurants all the time to check if they're still there, still as good etc... Send me a message if you have an info that you think should be here. Original copyright in 1996 by Dror and Gina)