3 Dreamy Neighborhoods to Wander in Paris

Sometimes I read guides to Paris that claim there’s nothing much to see in the 19th and 20th (except for Père Lachaise) and it drives me absolutely batty. I adore this part of Paris. True, the outer arrondissements are large, so they’re not uniformly lovely and interesting, but that makes stumbling upon beautiful fairytale streets all the more delightful.

Paris is all about new discoveries for me. I lived there for a year before I moved to Lyon and I’ve been back countless times, but I still discover new pockets of the city every time I’m there. I visited all three of these neighborhoods for the first time on my last trip to Paris, and I think they’re some of the most enchanting streets in the whole city.

La Mouzaïa

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La Mouzaïa is not far from Parc aux Buttes Chaumont — it’s an old working-class neighborhood that is now terribly charming and artist-chic. I thought it would be one small street, but it’s actually lots of little side streets covered with trellises hiding gated villas. I was confronted by numerous cats who questioned my presence in their oasis (but permitted it for a limited amount of time).

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Find it:

Rue Mouzaïa, 19th arrondissement                 
Metro: Botzaris

More via French Girl in Seattle and Un Jour de Plus à Paris 

La Campagne à Paris

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I think La Campagne à Paris may be the most picturesque neighborhood in all of Paris. It’s hidden away up the stairs, and each little house is more Instagrammable than the last. The cat committee was much more welcoming than in Mouzaïa. (Is there some sort of rule that all of these little neighborhoods must have cats?)

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Find it:

Rue Irénée-Blanc & Rue Jules-Siegfried, 20th arrondissement                 
Metro: Porte de Bagnolet

More about La Campagne à Paris here.

La Butte Bergeyre

IMG_3613We happened on this quiet, ivy-adorned neighborhood purely by chance. I didn’t find out that it had a name until much later when I saw it on Instagram. This quiet neighborhood has a community garden and a view of Sacre Coeur. It’s not far from Parc des Buttes Chaumont — that’s where we were headed when we decided to take a detour up some tall stairs. (Mouzaïa is on the other side of the park.)

IMG_4483Find it:

Rue Georges Lardennois, 19th arrondissement                
Metro: Colonel Fabien

More via Un Jour de Plus à Paris, Paris Info, and Paris ZigZag (in French).

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There are so many other beautiful places like this in Paris — I love wandering through the back streets of Montmartre, even it’s a bit of a cliché, and I’m dying to visit Square de Montsouris. I saw it on Instagram (of course I did) and it looks impossibly beautiful. (More on Square de Montsouris from Lil & Destinations and Paris La Douce (in French).)

So tell me — where is your favorite place to wander in Paris?

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35 thoughts on “3 Dreamy Neighborhoods to Wander in Paris

  1. If you’ve never been, Parc André Citroën in the 15th is a pretty funky garden built on the site of a former car manufacturing plant. There are some interesting greenhouses, fountains, and a series of gardens to explore as well as my personal favorite: a giant helium balloon you can ride up to 300m if it’s not too windy! One of the most beautiful and unique views over the Parisian skyline I’ve ever experienced!

    1. I haven’t ever been there and it sounds amazing!!! It was on my list to visit the summer I lived in the 7th but I didn’t make it there. I will have to go next time I’m in Paris, thanks for the tip!!

  2. Ooh these neighbourhoods look so picturesque and atmospheric! I have a soft spot for cats, especially tabbies and ginger toms 🙂 I’m heading up to Paris in a month or so and haven’t planned much for the day I arrive, so I may well venture out to a couple of these. I don’t know Paris that well – and have to confess it isn’t my favourite French city – but I particularly liked Île Saint-Louis when I was last there.

    1. Ile Saint-Louis is so lovely! It really has a lot of charm. If you’re taking the train in and you’re in the mood for pastels, I recommend taking a little detour down Rue Crémieux if you’ve never been there — it’s not far from Gare de Lyon. I don’t remember seeing a cat committee there, but there is a cat painted on one of the walls!

      1. Thank you for the recommendation, I’d never heard of that street. I will be catching the train up to Paris (as I managed to find cheap Prem’s tickets for once) so I’ll venture over and take a look 🙂

  3. Love these photos! I recently went to Paris for the first time a few days ago and now absolutely in love. I stayed in an Airbnb in the 14th and I’ve now caught the Paris bug!!

    1. Thank you!! Paris is a lovely city for sure – I know that not everyone in the rest of France loves it, but I still do! I used to live quite near the 14th but I never explored much south of Montparnasse – regrets! I’m glad you loved Paris and I hope you’ll get to go back and explore many times!

  4. I am so not familiar with any of these neighborhoods, so thanks for the suggestions next time I’m in Paris. The last couple of times I was there, it was just to catch a plane or train so no time to walk around and see stuff. Sharing on FB 😉

    1. Thanks Diane! Wandering around Paris is one of my favorite things ever. I wish I had started blogging when I lived there. Let me know if you visit these or discover any cool neighborhoods the next time you’re in Paris with some time to spare. 🙂

  5. Thanks for helping me discover new places to visit in Paris, especially those off the beaten path. Never been to those arrondissements (closest out for me would have to be Père Lachaise), so I’ll have to look into those places the next time I’m in town…which should be very soon!

  6. Ivy covered walls are the most refreshing sight. Such calm and revitalisation in all that greenery. Thanks for the post and especially your accompanying photos. Annette

  7. Thank you! My husband and I combined two of your posts today: a walk through the lovely La Mouzaia streets and tacos at El Napo by Canal St. Martin. A beautiful spring outing! (And those tacos are authentic and delicious! We plan to check out their Sunday brunch chilaquiles at their other restaurant.)

    1. Wow, I’m so happy to hear that!! It sounds like the perfect day to me 🙂 I’ve never been to their other restaurant, but it sounds like they have a mean brunch. Thanks for reading!

  8. I think I visited the Buttes Bergeyre last May! I have to check with my friend who lives there if that was the location. He took me off the beaten path and that one photo looks familiar.

    I am in Paris again next week and will look up the others, too.

      1. I checked and it was indeed. I’m going to check out the other places you mentioned next week! btw if you are interested in seeing photos I am on instagram with the same social media handle, my poor blog is so neglected. I love your blog, lots of interesting stuff to see!

  9. That looks like a village in the countryside and absolutely not like a part of Paris – love it! That’s the kind of neighbourhood I’d like to live in, quiet but still central! Thanks for the little tour 🙂

    1. La Campagne à Paris in the 20th is particularly idyllic – you feel like you’re far away from the city! These little areas are my favorite part of Paris 🙂 Thanks for visiting!

    1. Thanks Erin! I have had such a busy semester that I haven’t been able to post as much as I would like, so I was glad to link up with #FarawayFiles this week. I agree – I’ll take wandering a charming neighborhood over monuments any day 🙂 Thanks for reading!

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