Explore Montmartre: Discover Our Best Secret Places
Situated in in the 18th arrondissement of the northeast of Paris, lies the charming and artistic neighborhood of Montmartre. Adorned with winding cobblestone streets, vintage shops and quaint eateries, this neighborhood remains a favorite for tourists and locals alike.
Montmartre is most easily recognized in the city skyline by La Basilique du Sacré Cœur—a roman catholic church majestically situated on top of a large hill. This beautiful church serves as one of the several icons of Paris, although a rather young one, given its construction in 1914.
This site is sure to be on the must-see list of any landmark-driven tourist, however there is even more beauty tucked away in this neighborhood (if you know where to find it).
Discover Walks organises free tours every day, rain or shine, to bring you face to face with Montmartre’s hidden gems.
Below you may discover our best secret places in Montmartre.
Best Secret Photo Opportunities of Montmartre
I know you’re probably thinking “…a vineyard in Paris?” but sure enough, Montmartre is home to a vineyard known as Vinges Clos Montmartre—the only one in Paris! This unusual site is located on the corner of Rue Des Saules and Rue Saint-Vincent and has been there since the 1930s.
The Sinking House
Watch out Leaning Tower of Pisa—Paris has its own quirky photo-op! If you’ve ever been on Instagram, you might recognize The Sinking House. Located beyond a grassy hill on the right side of the steps to the Sacré Coeur, find the orange building and simply tilt your phone to take a photo. Bring on the likes!
Villa Léandre / Avenue Junot
One of my favorite features of the area are its stunning residential homes! There’s something about Montmartre that makes people dream, and it’s architecture is certainly no exception. The historic street of Avenue Junot was built in 1926 and strangely enough is full of British charm, street lamps and quirky color choices.
Although there are many little streets you can find awe-inspiring residences, perhaps the most exceptional is the Villa Léandre at #25 Avenue Junot.
This old cinema is sure to make you feel as if you’ve stepped into a different time period. Established in February of 1928, you can find this charming relic at 10 Rue Tholozé. Not only does it still run films, but it also features a garden created by none other than the french artist Jean Cocteau himself.
Of course the Sacré Coeur is not the only church in town! Head over to 2 Rue Mont-Cénis to catch a glimpse of the only standing feature of the Benedictine Abbey which was eradicated during the French Revolution.
Another special feature of Montmartre are its two surviving windmills. When I first saw them, I felt as if I had stepped into another time period, a very common feeling when walking the streets of Montmartre. Known as the ‘Moulin de la Galette,’ you can find the two windmills on Rue Lepic. Although there are only two remaining, they used to be among 30 windmills in Montmartre! If you’re an art fan, you might just recognize these mills in the backgrounds of some very famous artists work—including Renoir!
Best Secret Museums of Montmartre
Speaking of Renoir, another stop on your Montmartre tour must be the Museé de Montmartre located at 12 Rue Cortot. This museum was founded in 1960 and located in the oldest building of Montmartre.
Historically, the building is known as a local gathering spot for some of the most celebrated artists in France, including Renoir himself! Discover the colorful history of Montmartre through the artworks of Steinlen, Utrillo, Kupka and more.
After checking out the many art pieces the museum offers, head back to the Renoir Gardens. Behind the museum, garden-lovers will find themselves a small slice of heaven. Even more, if you weren’t lucky enough to find the vineyard, fear not: there is a view from the garden!
Another hidden gem of the Montmartre district is the Dalí museum, located at 11 Rue Poulbot. This museum serves as a permanent exhibit to the surrealist artist Salvador Dalí, and most particularly hosts many of his sculptures and engravings—not to mention over 300 of his paintings! If surrealism isn’t your thing, don’t worry—the museum also hosts the work of plenty of contemporary artists as well.
This 19th century covered market is definitely a site you don’t want to miss. Covered in glass and iron, Hall Saint-Pierre is another great showcase of the variety of architecture you can find in Paris. Located at 2 Rue Ronsard, this former marketplace is now a hub of art exhibitions, galleries, and even home to its own library.
Best Secret Restaurants of Montmartre
La Maison Rose
Feeling peckish after all of that sightseeing and dreaming? In Montmartre, you’re in good hands. If you’re feeling a bit fancy, head over to La Maison Rose at 2 Rue d’lAbreuvoir, one of the most iconic restaurants in the Montmartre neighborhood.
Living up to its name with its rosy exterior, La Maison Rose offers a menu that changes with products that are only in season—the hallmark of any great french restaurant. Not only is the environment beautiful, but it also has its own artistic history.
Established in 1905, La Maison Rose served as a meeting point for some of the most talented names in history, including Pablo Picasso, Gertrude Stein, and even Camus. Perhaps you’ll even have your own artistic breakthrough while lunching here.
Most appetizers here will set you back 5-11 euros, with meat and fish plates around 9-18 euros. It’s also a good idea to make a reservation!
Café Deux Moulins
Are you a film buff? Well, certainly you have seen the eccentric french film Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie Poulain, which was filmed in none other than Montmartre itself. The famous cafe seen in the movie can be found at 15 Rue Lepic, a short walk from the Montmartre center.
If you haven’t had the bravery to try snails, or as the french call it, ‘escargots,’ now is the time! If you stop here during the day, be sure to take our their afternoon menu which comes with an appetizer, entree and/or dessert for just 21 euros.
And while you’re over there, why not check out the Moulin-Rouge for even more windmill action?
Miroir Restaurant – 94 Rue des Martyrs
If you’re craving something a little bit more contemporary, I suggest heading over to the Restaurant Miroir at 94 Rue des Martyrs. Located on a road downhill from Montmartre famous for its shopping and eateries, this restaurant is a great choice for people watching and a taste of authentic French cuisine. Reviews say the octopus ravioli is a must-try!
Not only does Montmartre contain all of these secret gems, but offers so much more to each person that passes through it. Don’t forget to leave time to mindlessly wander the streets, take in the architecture, and discover all of the art hidden throughout the neighborhood. Bon voyage!