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20th Arrondissement Guide

Le vingtième – last but not least of the arrondissements – is still a bit of a diamond in the rough, but things are changing quickly. It is becoming relatively modern. The traditionally working-class neighborhood has been taken over by a wave of gentrification in the Belleville area, which is becoming a nightlife destination in itself.

The big draw for tourists is the Père Lachaise cemetery, a realm of melancholic and breathtaking tombstones and the last resting place of the likes of Edith Piaf, Jim Morrison, and Chopin among many others.

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Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris
Père Lachaise Cemetery

Historically, this used to be where villages and farmland were, and the same eclectic feel can be found there today. If you like to look at architecture and love to see how other people live, you can visit La Campagne a Paris. These houses are uniquely French and charming.

If you enjoy the village vibe, you can also check out the Charonne quarter. This area is one of the last villages in Paris, at least the last authentic one. You can tour this neighborhood and see dozens of historical buildings and experience the 12th century.

Charonne Village in Paris
Charonne neighborhood

Belleville is a trendy part neighborhood in Paris. In 2016, Belleville was named one of the most unique neighborhoods in the world. It flows through the 19th, 10th, and 11th arrondissements of Paris. And also in the 20th. 

This part of Paris has a Chinatown and a diverse range of occupants. You can find food from all over there too, making cuisine a unique part of the city. The mouth-watering ethnic eateries are worth the trip to this part of Paris alone! Belleville is also known for its coffee roasting and beer (read about it in my friend Lindsey’s book The New Paris)

Belleville Neighborhood in Paris
Belleville

Nightlife is a major part of Belleville, but so is the Parc de Belleville, a vast place to walk through with dozens of trees and lots of greenery. It is a great place for a picnic or to cool off when the temperatures soar.

Parc de Belleville in Paris
Parc de Belleville

Mènilmontant is another part of the 20th that is worth checking out. This village is easily walkable and has a little bit of everything. History buffs will love Saint-Martin, a stone building from the seventeenth century. I love the old factory buildings that have been converted to music venues and artist studios.

Ménilmontant neighborhood in the 20th arrondissement
Ménilmontant neighborhood, photo credit: Wikimedia

Mr. Misadventures and I stayed in the 20th for a week and this arrondissement more than any other I stayed in made me feel like I was really living a local Parisian life! It is a great arrondissement to explore if you’re looking for Paris off the beaten path.

Kebab in Paris
I ate my weight in kebab!

Great spots in the 20th arrondissement curated for you:

20eme/20th Arrondissement Restaurants

  • Amagat (23 Villa Riberolle) a cellar-to-eat restaurant offering Mediterranean cuisine.
  • Atelier Auger (5 Rue Auger) a bread workshop and store offering bread made with organically grown wheat.
  • Caché (13 Villa Riberolle) the Mediterranean-inspired cuisine with seasonal fish and seafood plates.
  • Fripon (108 Rue de Ménilmontant) elegant plates filled with Japanese flavors.
  • Guo Xin (47 rue de Belleville) excellent ravioli.
  • La Bellevilloise (19-21 Rue Boyer) well known for Sunday brunches with a live jazz band.
  • Le Baratin (3 Rue Jouye-Rouve) a classic traditional bistro with an amazing wine cellar.
  • Le Foodmarket (1 Boulevard de Belleville) a street-food event in Paris on one Thursday every month.
  • Le Grand Bain (14 Rue Denoyez) an excellent wine selection and a stylish bistro.
  • Le Jourdain (101 Rue des Couronnes) small tapas restaurant in a Mediterranean setting.
  • Le Petit Grain (7 Rue Denoyez) perfectly cooked pies, delicious fruitcakes, and brioches.
  • Les Canailles Ménilmontant (15 Rue des Panoyaux) a gastronomic bistro with a relaxed atmosphere.
  • Maison One More (50 Rue Piat) a cozy place with simple tables and dishes.
  • Moncœur Belleville (1 Rue des Envierges) a beautiful shady terrace offering brunch and small plates with views of the Eiffel Tower.
  • Mook (40 Rue de Tourtille) specialty coffee and snacks.
  • Panda Belleville (16 Rue Louis Bonnet) for when you crave a good bánh mì sandwich.
  • Rouleau de Printemps (42 Rue de Tourtille) tasty Vietnamese cuisine.

20eme/20th Arrondissement Coffee + Tea Shops

  • Belleville Brûlerie (50 Rue Belleville) coffee roaster and cafe.
  • Le Barbouquin (1 Rue Denoyez) delicious cheesecakes, lattes and teas.
  • The Dancing Goat (117 Avenue Gambetta) speciality coffee and treats.

20eme/20th Arrondissement Bars

  • Aux Folies (8 Rue de Belleville) go to this young, vibrant bar for an evening of madness.
  • L’Abribus (56 Rue de Bagnolet) pub-style bar.
  • La Flèche d’Or (102 Bis Rue de Bagnolet) an inclusive space housed in a former station along the Petite Ceinture, often hosting live concerts.
  • La Maroquinerie (23 Rue Boyer) live indie music with an open-air terrace and gourmet food.
  • Les Apaches (99 Rue de Ménilmontant) bar with events like films and karaoke.
  • Les Triplettes (102 Bd de Belleville) creative cuisine and affordable drinks in an antique setting.
  • Mama Shelter Rooftop Bar East (109 rue de Bagnolet) homemade dishes and flavors of old-school Paris.

20eme/20th Arrondissement Parks, Museums & Things to Do

  • Belvedere de Belleville (27 Rue Piat) an open-air spot offering breathtaking views of Paris.
  • Birthplace of Edith Piaf (72 Rue de Belleville) the French singer’s birthplace.
  • Cimetière du Père-Lachaise (16 Rue du Repos) largest cemetery in Paris with tombs of Oscar Wilde and Jim Morrison.
  • Cité Leroy, a historic little street retaining its old-world charm from the 19th century.
  • Jardin Naturel Pierre-Emmanuel (120 Rue de la Réunion) a small green space harboring native plants with organic gardening.
  • Le Jardin Cité Aubrey (2 Cité Aubrey) a shared community garden to meet new people and grow plants together.
  • Le quartier de “la Campagne à Paris” (210 Rue des Pyrenees) a peaceful neighborhood with charming cobbled streets, and quaint brick houses.
  • Parc de Belleville (47 Rue des Couronnes) offers a panoramic viewpoint to admire the Parisian landscape.
  • Passage des Soupirs, a charming country passage for calm walks in a romantic setting. (See all the Paris Passages here.)
  • Quartier de Belleville, an edgy neighborhood with monthly street food markets, urban street art, and contemporary galleries.
  • Quartier de Ménilmontant (Rue de Ménilmontant) a pleasant strolling spot of cobblestoned streets lined by old houses, artists’ studios, bistros, and restaurants.
  • Rue Jules Siegfried, resembles the countryside right in the city lined entirely with small townhouses.
  • Rue Saint-Blaise, a quaint provincial strolling street depicting the rural Paris of the 19th century.
  • Square Chauré, a flowery pleasant alley lined with townhouses and a couple of villas.
  • Square des Grès (57 Rue Vitruve) go here for a taste of the countryside right in the heart of Paris.
  • Street Art (Rue Denoyez) The municipality left the walls to the artists to be covered with an explosion of colors and creativity.
  • Villa de l’Ermitage, a private bohemian alley lined with artists’ studios, townhouses, and wrought-iron gates.

20eme/20th Arrondissement Shopping

  • L Fabric (16 Rue Vitruve 14) gift shop offering everything from ceramics to jewelry.
  • Le Coffre Vintage (26 rue de Ménilmontant) great deals on vintage clothing.
  • Le Monte en l’Air (2 Rue de la Mare) a lively bookstore with a variety of books and a terrace offering coffee and drinks.
  • La toute petite Librairie (2 Rue Etienne Marey) small book store which I visited several times.

20eme/20th Arrondissement Lodging

  • Hôtel Comète (14 Bis Rue des Maraichers) trendy rooms inspired by the 50s and the themes of space and planets.
  • Hôtel Scarlett (1 Rue Jouye-Rouve) a chic, modern hotel with atlas-themed rooms featuring funky maplike artworks.
  • Mama Shelter Paris East (109 Rue de Bagnolet) a hip hotel designed by Philippe Starck with funky decor, a lively bar, and a seasonal rooftop terrace.

How about you? Do you have any 20th arrondissement additions? Have you been to this area of Paris? Did you find this post helpful for a future trip?

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11 Comments

  1. I got a little bit nostalgic for Paris from this post. It makes me want to watch a little bit of Emily in Paris (for the backgrounds, not the banter)

  2. You make me want to sell everything I own and go live there right now, such a beautiful place full of culture.

  3. Belleville sounds great. It would be lovely to go and walk along it. I’d also like to see China Town as that would be interesting.

  4. Looking at the posts of yours that I’ve seen so far I’ve been able to gather that Paris… or just France in general, has a LOT of really beautiful buildings and parks and I love that you cover so much because it makes it feel as if I’m getting to know Paris the best that I can second hand, too!

  5. Wow! What a really beautiful and wonderful place! I really love to see all of these attractions!

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