We stepped off the Metro at Lamrack-Caulaincourt to be met directly opposite with a typically authentic Parisian bar/bistro. Of course we headed in for a drink. We always try to head to some place with a local vibe and Le Refuge did not disappoint. Sure, it was a little rough around the edges but we got free popcorn and we highly rate places who give you a snack to accompany your alcoholic beverage! We stayed for a couple and watched the world go by until the short walk back to our hotel.
We couldn’t visit Paris and not visit one of the many scrumptious bakeries, and we were lucky enough to have this place on our doorstep. It was so good in fact that we got zero photos of the building or food as we were so focused on what we were going to eat and then stuffing our faces full. We highly recommend the chocolate pastries.
We’d seen this quaint little English inspired street on Instagram so we headed there early in the morning and were lucky enough to be the only ones there. We whispered the entire time as it’s a residential street, but we couldn’t believe we were in Paris. It felt like stepping into a storybook land. Sadly, it’s one of the most sought after and expensive places to live so we don’t think we’ll be purchasing here any time soon!
La Maison Rose, Rue de L’Abrevoir
Did you even go to Paris if you didn’t snap a selfie with La Maison Rose?
We continued strolling the streets which hadn’t quite woken up yet due to it being a sleepy Sunday morning in February and then skipped (literally) up one of the most picture perfect spots in Montmartre, home to La Maison Rose – the super instagrammable ‘pink house’ restaurant. In the summer, they have chairs and tables outside and we imagine it to be a great ‘people watching’ viewpoint.
To the left of La Maison Rose, we continued until we spotted an empty park for some all important lunges, and just a little further we snuck a peek through some gates to see a private vineyard. If we had had more mornings in Montmartre, I’m sure we would have found so many more secret spots.
No visit to the area is complete without taking in the beauty of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, more commonly known as the Sacré-Cœur.
Again, definitely worth arriving here before 9am to beat the crowds so you can enjoy the building and its surroundings. The famous ‘sinking house’ was also here but you weren’t allowed on the grass when we went, although apparently at certain times of the year it opens up.
At the bottom of the many steps to the Sacré-Cœur was a cute carousel which we found to be a common sight in Paris – and this one was my waiting spot when we realised we’d left the tripod bag at the top of the steps – doh!
The Wall of Love
Another favourite spot of ours in the area was “the wall of love”, just a short 5-10 minute walk from the Sacré-Cœur. It’s just off a main square and we’re aware it can get super busy, but it’s definitely worth a quick snap of all the different languages expressing love.
The Moulin Rouge
Whilst we decided against watching a show at the Moulin Rouge, the building is so quirky and iconic, you can’t miss a quick photo stop, especially as it’s right by a metro station. There’s also a Marilyn Monroe blower contraption just across the road if you’re feeling creative!
All in all, we highly recommend choosing Montmartre as your base for exploring Paris as the Metro connects you to all the main tourist sites, whilst still being in walking distance of some really quaint and quirky spots to enjoy a pastry or aperitivo. Happy Parisian travels!