How To Enjoy a Full Day in Les Halles (with a map)


 

Les Halles is a small district that sits just to the east of the Louvre Museum on the edge of the Seine.

Les Halles might not hold any distinctly important monuments in terms of Parisian history, but travelers love spending time in this neighborhood as there is a lot to do, especially on a rainy day when one needs to be indoors.

les Halles – by Guilhem Vellut – Wikimedia Commons

Morning

Breakfast At Marcelle in les Halles

Because this is the center of Paris, the days stick to the very European tradition of a late start. No one really ventures to the streets of les Halles before 9am, with most of the shopping facilities only opening up after 10am.

Marcelle is a charming breakfast spot with granola bowls, pancakes, eggy breads and blueberry oats. The plating of each dish has most customers posting their meals to Instagram before taking a bite.

Try get here at 9am on the dot if you’re dining breakfast, after 10:30 the queues for brunch start.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION
Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday — 9am to 5:30pm
ADDRESS: 22 Rue Montmartre, 75001 Paris, France
Metro STATION: Étienne Marcel

Marcelle – by Marcelle – Sourced from their Facebook

Shopping at Westfield Forum des Halles

Les Halles is a shopping district through and through. There are many complexes in the streets that offer a range of global brands from fashion to home decor.

The Westfield Forum is the multistory shopping complex on the eastern end of les Halles. People come from all over the world to shop here, so getting yours done before the midday crowds arrive is highly recommended.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION
Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday — 10am to 8:30pm
ADDRESS: 101 Porte, Rue Berger, 75001 Paris, France
Metro STATION: Étienne Marcel

Westfield Forum des Halles – by Westfield Forum des Halles – Uploaded by them

Afternoon

Stroll to the Quartier des Halles

A short walk west from the mall will bring you to the very center of the les Halles district, known as the Quartier des Halles. This is the public square for the neighborhood; a small garden with a water feature and some statues.

From here, you have a vantage point over most of the district.

Lunch at Au Pied de Cochon in les Halles

Au Pied de Cochon is an institution to Paris, and it calls les Halles home.

It’s one of the city’s most renowned 24 hour bistros. Known for it’s pastel pink facade, Au Pied de Cochon is a double story eatery with traditional French food perpetually at the ready.

This is your lunch spot while in les Halles.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION
Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday — 24 Hours
ADDRESS: 6 Rue Coquillière, 75001 Paris, France
Metro STATION: Les Halles

Au Pied de Cochon – by GFreihalter – Wikimedia Commons

Visit 59 RIVOLI in les Halles

59 Rivoli is another important attraction in les Halles. This was formerly an abandoned building once inhabited by squatters. It was taken over by optimistic artists, who transformed the 30 rooms into studios and now use it to exhibit work.

Entry is free and you can spend a good hour or so making your way through each of the displays.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday — 1pm to 8pm
ADDRESS: 59 Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France
Metro STATION: Châtelet

59 Rivoli – by Jami430 – Wikimedia Commons

Walk down the Rue de Rivoli

A visit to the Rue de Rivoli is a must for any fashion lovers visiting Paris. This strip runs directly through les Halles, and features the biggest fashion houses in the world.

In addition to this, the street is now hosting more and more local designers & concept shops. As I said, les Halles is a shopping district!

Rue de Rivoli – by Paris 16 – Wikimedia Commons

Visit the Église Saint-Eustache in les Halles

The Église Saint-Eustache is one of the most visited churches in Paris, and it too calls les Halles home.

This church’s grand size makes it more of a cathedral. The external facade is distinctly gothic, but the interior adopts a more classical, Renaissance style. There are usually free concerts at the church on Sunday afternoons.

Église Saint-Eustache – by Gerd Eichmann – Wikimedia Commons

Evening

Sunset on the bank of the Seine in les Halles

The Seine is easy to get to from wherever you are in les Halles. Walk directly south and you’ll be on the banks within minutes.

The banks of the Seine remain the best place to be during sunset in Paris (aside from on a rooftop, of course).

Settle down wherever you can find a spot and watch the light change over the city.

Seine – by Dietmar Rabich – Wikimedia Commons

Dinner at a bistro of your choice in les Halles

Les Halles really comes to life at night. The bistros, brasseries and cafes will bring out their street-side tables and prepare for the evening ahead.

As people flock into the neighborhood from the Louvre and surrounding areas, you’ll see how everyone meanders the streets in search of where they want to settle down for dinner.

I’ll leave your dinner choice up to you. Guaranteed within a few minutes of strolling at least one spot will call to your fancy.

Drinks at Le Mona Lisa in les Halles

The nightlife in les Halles is classy and sophisticated. You won’t find any dive bars in these streets, but rather establishments that take you right back to the 1920s in Paris.

Le Mona Lisa is a les Halles hot spot. This is a beautiful whiskey lounge with great cocktails and even better music, open four nights a week until six in the morning.

Your day in les Halles will come to an end here. If you do get restless and want to experience something more laid back, make the short walk from les Halles into the 4th arrondissement where you’ll find more casual bars and dance spots.

Mona Lisa – by Mona Lisa – Sourced from their Facebook

PRACTICAL INFORMATION
Opening Hours: Wednesday to Saturday — 8pm to 6am
ADDRESS: 47 Rue Berger, 75001 Paris, France
Metro STATION: Les Halles

A day in les Halles holds ample time for a free guided walking tour through the district as well. These need to be pre-booked and are available daily!

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