Le Marais Paris

The Ultimate Guide to Le Marais in Paris

Le Marais in Paris is an historic quarter of Paris and is undoubtably one of the most popular districts of the city with an exciting mix of new and old. Dating back to Medieval times, it’s been mainly untouched from the turbulent years of change in the city’s history. Known for being home to the Jewish community in the city, it’s a vibrant, cosmopolitan district with gay bars, high fashion boutiques and some amazing restaurants.

place des vosges

Our guide has an in-depth look at what to see and where to stay at during your stay. We’ve also got more on shopping, restaurants, bars & cafés and an FAQ to help you plan your trip.

History of Le Marais

Le Marais translates to ‘the Marsh’ as it used to be a swamp outside of the city in the 1300s. During this period, the city used to be defined by the original walls of Paris built by Phillipe Auguste. Numerous feudal religious orders use the Marais including the Order of the Knights Templar and the Abbey of Saint-Martin-des-Champs. During the 14th century, the original city walls were replaced by those of Charles V which enlarged the inner city. These new walls brought the Marais into Paris and set limits of the area to the North and North East.

le marais medieval

In the 16th century, nobles of Paris built their mansions of which many remain today such as the Hôtel de Jaucourt. During the French Revolution, the wealthy owners fled leaving their mansions which were eventually seized by the revolutionists. Afterwards, the area transformed into a hub of artists and skilled artisans who used the huge hôtels for their workshops.

The Marais was untouched by the major remodelling work by Baron Haussmann in the 19th century. As a result, the Marais is one of the few areas to retain its Medieval charm and narrow streets. Towards the 18th and 19th centuries, the Marais saw an influx of Jewish and Chinese immigrants with rue des Rosiers being the centre for the Jewish community in Paris. Nowadays Le Marais is the centre for the LGBT community in the city.

What to See in the Le Marais

The Marais is a beautiful part of Paris and is absolutely filled with incredible museums and ancient buildings. It’s small, narrow, Medieval streets are charming and you’ll see so much by just walking around the area. The famous Place des Vosges is a fantastic ancient square to start your tour of the Marais if you’re coming from the Bastille direction. The beautiful planned square dates back to 1605 and was home to many notable French historical figures.

place des vosges from above

Walking to the west through rue des Francs Bourgeois will bring you to the Musée Carnavalet and past the Jardin des Rosiers Joseph Migneret. From there you can walk north wards the Temple area and discover the Marché des Enfants Rouges. If you want to plan a visit in more detail check our guide on what to see in the Marais below:

What to See and Do in Le Marais in Paris

The Best Hotels in the area

Looking for where to stay during your trip to Paris? Le Marais is a great area to stay at with cultural, historical & culinary attractions everywhere. The area is relatively small so I’d recommend staying in-between the Saint Paul and Filles du Calvaire metro stations. There are plenty of incredible hotels in Le Marais and we’ve put together a list of our favourite spots to stay at below:

The Best Hotels in Le Marais in Paris

Shopping in Le Marais

Le Marais is well known for its shopping and there are some amazing streets to check out with a great selection of boutiques. Unlike other parts of Paris, you’ll find shops open on Sunday in Le Marais. Why? France is very strict on opening hours and you’ll typically find it hard to find either grocery stores or shops open on Sundays. However as the Jewish Sabbath is on Saturday and Le Marais has a strong Jewish community, the city has exempted the area from this rule. The result is all weekend long shopping in the area! The main shopping street is rue Vielle-du-Temple although there are fashion & concept boutiques all around the Marais.

shopping le marais Paris

There are plenty of well known French premium luxury brands in le Marais including APC, Sandro, Maje and Zadig & Voltaire. For sneaker heads there’s also Veja and Axel Arigato boutiques. If you’re looking for a pair of new sunglasses and want to try something different, check out the Jimmy Fairly boutique. Finally, if you’re on the hunt for global brands you’ll find Supreme, Uniqlo, COS, Adidas and Jil Sander boutiques in the Marais.

veja paris

Where to Eat in the District

If you’re here to enjoy great food in Paris, I’ve got good news. The Marais is home to so many great restaurants! If you’re around the North of the Marais then I’d recommend checking out the Marché des Enfants Rouges during the day as there’s plenty of superb restaurants inside the covered market. Fan of Mexican food? Check out the taqueria of the Candelaria tacos served non-stop. If you’re around the centre of the Marais then go to rue des Rosiers to try one of the best falafel restaurants in Paris. Click below to discover our favourite restaurants in the Marais:

The Best Hotels in Le Marais in Paris

Best Bars & Cafés in Le Marais

Bars in le marais

As well as great restaurants there’s a vibrant night life scene in the Marais with some great bars serving up natural wine and craft cocktails. Check our the Candelaria’s speakeasy for cocktails & sharing plates and the Mary Celeste for some late night natural wine. If you’re into speciality coffee then try Fringe which is located in the North side of the Marais. Click below to read our in-depth guide on the best bars in the Marais:

The Best Bars in Le Marais in Paris

Famous Streets in Le Marais

rue des rosiers paris

There are plenty of beautiful, historical streets in the Marais that worth visiting. But if you’re wanting to know which are the must visit streets then I’d recommend rue de Bretagne in the North of the Marais and rue des Rosiers in the centre. Click below to read our in-depth guides on the rue de Bretagne:

Guide to rue de Bretagne

We’ve also got a guide on the famous rue des Rosiers. Known as the centre of the Jewish community and the home to the city’s amazing falafel restaurants:

Guide to rue des Rosiers
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

6 Unique Hotels in Le Marais in Paris
Best hotels in le marais paris

6 Unique Hotels in Le Marais in Paris

Travelling to Paris and looking for a hotel in Le Marais district?

Guide to the Best Vegetarian & Vegan Restaurants in Paris
vegan vegetarian restaurants Paris

Guide to the Best Vegetarian & Vegan Restaurants in Paris

Are you Vegan or Vegetarian and looking for great restaurants to eat at during

You May Also Like