A trip to Paris always includes the essential visits: the Eiffel Tower, Montmartre, the Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre Museum… What if, for once, you consider your stay differently? Between an unusual visit and a unique experience, we invite you to discover the most atypical places in Paris.
The Arènes de Lutèce, the Gallo-Roman vestige of Paris
Let’s start our stroll through the atypical places of Paris with the arenas of Lutèce. In just 20 minutes by metro from our hotel (direct line 7), the arenas are located in the Latin Quarter, at 49, rue Monge. Or rather should we say that it is the Latin Quarter that has settled around the arenas. Because this Gallo-Roman monument was there long before all the rest, since it is the oldest monument in Paris.
Testimony of a distant period when Paris was still called Lutèce, the arenas offer you a journey into the world of gladiators and grandiose shows. Today, there is a rather peaceful atmosphere, where bowlers like to meet for a game of petanque in the heart of Paris.
Rue des Degrés: the smallest street in Paris
If you are walking in the 2nd arrondissement of Paris, you could quickly pass by the smallest street in the capital without you even realizing it. It must be said that it is essentially composed of a staircase, and measures only 5.75 m long, for 3.30 m wide. A plaque will tell you that the rue des Degrees was dug in 1634, following the demolition of the Charles V enclosure, and that at this precise location, the Baron de Batz tried to save Louis XVI just before his execution on January 21, 1793.
Rue du Chat-qui-pêche: the narrowest street in Paris
If the rue des Degrés is surprisingly long, the Road of the cat who fishes surprises with its breadth. With a 1.80 m wide passage, this street in the 5th arrondissement is renowned for being the narrowest street in Paris. It is accompanied by a dark legend around a canon who transformed himself into a black cat to go fishing in the Seine.
Funny anecdote, rue du Chat-qui-pêche, which is photographed by thousands of tourists every year, is actually not the narrowest street in Paris. It is, in fact, the Rue des Merisiers, in the 12th arrondissement, which wins this title, with a width of only 87 cm.
Rue Dénoyez: the street of Parisian street art
Street art is everywhere in Paris, but if there is one street that particularly attracts attention, it is the Rue Denoyez. Located in the 20th arrondissement, this cobbled street in the Belleville district is a artistic fresco over 150 meters long. Area of expression for urban artists, it offers an amazing stopover and is one of the unusual places in Paris.
The Clock Tower: the oldest public clock in the capital
Until the end of the 12th century, churches were a reference for Parisians, and the clocks of these religious buildings were a safe bet for knowing the time precisely. In 1370, Charles V decided to install public clocks in the capital, in order to impose the power of the monarchy. The clock tower clock, in the 1st arrondissement, is the first public clock in Paris. Its renovation in 2012 brought it back to its original appearance.
Square René-Viviani: the shelter of the oldest tree in Paris
There are many green spaces in Paris, and while some are very recent, others have been there for centuries. This is the case of trees in René-Viviani square, in the 5th arrondissement. This space also houses the oldest tree in Paris, an old locust imported from North America, and planted in 1601 by Henri IV’s arborist. With its 15 meters in height, this old tree continues to flourish in the heart of Paris for more than 4 centuries.
The house of Nicolas Flamel: the oldest house in Paris
Go now to the Marais district, and more precisely to the number 51 rue de Montmorency, in the 3rd arrondissement. At this address, we find the house of Nicolas Flamel, a Parisian alchemist who is also, according to the author of Harry Potter, the creator of the philosopher’s stone.
But it is not really for its occupant that this house is famous, but especially for its date of construction. Built in 1407, this residence is officially the oldest house in Paris. Today, the ground floor houses the restaurant L’auberge Nicolas Flamel.
La Cadet Résidence: your aparthotel to visit the unusual places of Paris
If you have decided to walk the streets of Paris at the discovery of atypical places, you will need a base to recover from your emotions and rest. In the heart of the 9th arrondissement of Paris, the Cadet Residence welcomes you to a fully equipped apartment or studio. As soon as you arrive, you will feel at home in this aparthotel close to the major Parisian monuments. You will then enjoy quality bedding, an equipped kitchenette, a private bathroom and a lounge area, to relax after your visits.
You can, of course, take public transport nearby or walk to the best original places in the capital : rue Pajol, the basketball court in rue Duperré, the little colorful houses in rue Crémieux, the Chinese pagoda in rue de Courcelles…You are curious about visit Paris differently, and to discover atypical places? Book your room at the Cadet Residence, and follow our guide!