Buttes Chaumont Park Paris

Buttes-Chaumont Park – One of Paris’ Hidden Gems

The Buttes-Chaumont is one of the biggest parks in Paris and for me, one of the most underrated spots to discover in the city. Way off the beaten tourist track, you’ll find a green haven to escape the hustle and bustle of Parisian life. The park’s origins go way back to France’s most turbulent eras where the park was host to some very sinister scenes. Nowadays it’s one of the largest, most beautiful parks in the city where you’ll discover beautiful view points, bridges, a lake, and large areas to picnic. It’s one of my favourite spots in the summer to walk, have a picnic and relax.

Read on to discover more about the Buttes-Chaumont park, what you can see there and more about the awesome bars within the park!

buttes Chaumont park Paris inside

The Fascinating History of the Buttes-Chaumont Park

The park’s beginnings date back to the 13th century where the area was the site of the Gibbet of Montfaucon. This was the place where the Kings of France would execute enemies, traitors and criminals and leave their bodies on display to warn others not to follow in their footsteps! This grim site was in place until 1760 and was eventually removed after the French Revolution of 1789. After this it became a rubbish dump for the city’s waste.

In the early 1800’s the park became a quarry for gypsum and limestone (two of the rocks that were used to construct Haussmann’s Paris). Around the early 1860’s the quarry was exhausted and the area was a barren wasteland. Barron Haussman decided to build a park for rapidly expanding population of the 19th and 20th arrondissements. The park took around 3 years to construct and landscape opening in 1867 in time for the World Expo.

What To See & Do In the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont

For me, the park is well worth a visit and it’s one of my go-to recommendations to visitors who have already been to Paris but want to see something new. In this section you’ll find out what you can expect to see and do in the park.

Tip: the park is on the larger side covering around 61 hectares. You can expect to spend around at least 1 hour walking around the entire park.

Walk Around the Lake and the Île du Belvédère

Note: Maintenance work is currently being carried out to clean the lake. It’s currently empty but will be refilled by March 2024.

In the very centre of the park and at the very bottom, you’ll find a man-made lake with a central island. This idyllic lower level gives you fantastic views up to the green hills above. You’ll find a variety of local wildlife including swans and fish in the lake.

buttes Chaumont park Paris lake

Take a View from the Temple de la Sibylle

High above the central lake, you’ll find a huge rocky outcrop that towers around 50m above the park. This manmade, central hill was carved out using explosives during the construction of the park. You’ll see that the rocky sides are craggy and appear particularly un-organic.

The Temple de la Sibyl is a small Roman inspired grotto (a sort of round bandstand) at the very top of the hill giving incredible views across park and city. It was designed by the designer of the Eiffel Tower – Gustave Eiffel!

Walk Across the Suspension Bridge

Note: unfortunately the bridges and central island are currently closed due to unstable ground. Work to reinforce the cliff edges should be completed by end of 2025 which will allow access back to the central hill and the Temple de la Sibyl.

buttes Chaumont bridge

So you might be wondering, how does one get to the central island? Well if you go back up the hills to the inner edges of the park, you’ll find two small suspension bridges leading to the central hill!

These small bridges are fun to walk across and you’ll feel it sway as you walk!

Discover the Idyllic Stream Leading to the Lake

To the western edge of the park, you’ll find a man made stream that winds its way down to the central lake. It’s an idyllic spot with man made rocks and gullies leading to an open section where, in the summer, you’ll find local children playing and bathing.

buttes Chaumont stream

Relax on the Hillside

If you come to the park during the summer, you’ll find the hillsides awash with locals enjoying picnics and apéro on the grassy hillsides. Bring some cheese, charcuterie and wine and watch the sunset – it’s incredible!.

sunset Paris

Information for Visiting the Buttes-Chaumont Park

How to Get There

The Buttes-Chaumont park is accessible via metro and bus and is located just above the Belleville area of Paris.

The closest metro station is the Buttes-Chaumont stop on Line 7B, however this line is very small and is only useful if you’re in the north of Paris.

I’d recommend taking Line 11 if you’re in central Paris and getting off at the Pyrénées stop. You’ll only then have to walk around 5 minutes to get to the southern entrance.

Tip: There are 5 entrances to the park:

  • 1-7 rue Botzaris
  • 2-6b, rue Manin
  • 55 rue de Crimée
  • 42 avenue Simon-Bolivar (closest entrance from Line 11)

Opening Hours

The park is open daily and during the colder months it’s open from 7am-8pm.

During the summer the park is open from 7am-10pm. You can still access the park’s bars after 10pm although you will need to tell the park security at the entrances.

Bars in the Buttes-Chaumont Park

There are three fantastic seasonal bars in the Buttes-Chaumont. All with a different vibe – these are perfect spots to get a refreshing drink after exploring the park!

  • Pavillon Puebla: My personal favourite bar in the park. Open during the warmer months, their outside terrace is a really beautiful place to grab a drink. They’ve got cocktails, natural wine and craft beer on tap. They also serve pizzas and tacos.

  • Rosa Bonheur: A colourful LGBT friendly bar located in the eastern side of the park. It’s open all year round from Thursdays to Sundays. They’ve got a reasonable drinks menu and tapas on offer.

  • Le Pavillon Du Lac: A great restaurant serving up French seasonal dishes in a beautiful setting. There’s also a nice outdoor terrace where you can just grab a beer or glass of wine with a stunning view over the lake!
Pavillon Puebla‘s beautiful terrace

Where to Eat Nearby

Outside of the the park you’ll find the Buttes Snackbar which is an awesome small plate sharing restaurant with some amazing small-producer wine on offer.

About a 10 minutes walk from the centre of the park, to the east, you’ll come across a really lovely authentic French bistro – Le Bar Fleuri. What’s so special? Well they serve poulet frites (roast chicken and fries) for only €6.86! Find out more in our best rotisserie chicken in Paris guide.

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