I am going to tell you a secret, except I am Whispering Out Loud Here – Stay in The 2nd Arrondissement of Paris.
Paris is comprised of arrondissements, like districts, and each has their own unique character. If you look at the map, Paris is like a snail with the arrondissements winding around.
Paris really is an escargot.
About the 2nd Arrondissement of Paris.
The 2nd arrondissement is located on the right bank of the River Seine and is one of the oldest city neighborhoods of Paris. It is an important financial district of Paris, yet it is also a residential district. It is in close proximity to the 1st arrondissement, where you find the Louvre and the Tuileries Gardens, making it an ideal location, as the 1st and 2nd arrondissements are considered to be the heart of Paris.
We like the 2nd Arrondissement because it is not as touristy as other arrondissements. We would rather be in the thick of local people working, and playing. While many tourists do come through here to go to all of the fabulous attractions both within and on the perimeters, you get to see real Parisian life. The 2nd Arrondissement is well situated to visit a lot of other arrondissements that are within easy walking distance. Others can be easily reached by the Metro, a tourist destination in itself.
There is amazing architecture all around the 2nd arrondissement, and you will be wowed by the grandeur and the history of many of these. You will see luxury shops like Tiffany’s and Cartier but also locals street markets and cafes. The 2nd arrondissement is also where one of my favourite streets is, the Rue Montorgreuil, where locals go to do their shopping at the markets and sit and have coffee and wine and to chat.
The 2nd arrondissement has a more intimate feel to it.
It is not as touristy as some of the other arrondissements, giving you space and a real experience of how Parisians work and play, with play being more of the Parisian lifestyle.
The 2nd Arrondissement is home to the financial district, the historic stock exchange, the Bourse. It is also home to Paris’ textile district, known as the Sentier. By virtue of these two things, many people see it as not being hip enough as say Saint Germaine de Pres, another arrondissement that we love. Let’s face facts, you would be hard pressed to get it wrong wherever you stay in Paris, because, well ….its Paris. However, I will stick to what I know and tell you our little secret, the 2nd Arrondissement has it all going for it.
A local feeling in the 2nd Arrondissement of Paris.
We wandered into Café Dalayrac, which we used to go to last year, and they remembered us ..in a good way. We went to the Rue Montorgreuil, the lively street market and café strip and Café du Centre that we had been to previously, and they also remembered us. It is not that they don’t get people staying here – they certainly do.
The 2nd arrondissement has some of the loveliest architecture in all of Paris. From the Vendome, which borders the 1st and the 2nd arrondissement to the Opéra Garnier, you will be amazed at this very friendly and grand arrondissement in Paris.
Start your Parisian experience by staying at Hotel Westminster Paris
Staying on the Rue de la Paix, the fashionably chic street in the 2nd, and staying at an iconic hotel like the Hotel Westminster Paris, is just so Parisian.
This hotel realizes the dream of being in Paris with its elegant charm and sophistication. The hotel has rooms with marble fireplaces, the classic artwork and beautiful antique clocks. This hotel looks and feels just how you have imagined Paris to be. It is the perfect stage and setting to experience the picture postcard perfect Paris.
Have a Michelin star meal at Le Celadon, you are in Paris, after all, the home of the Michelin star. Experience exquisite French cuisine from Chef Christophe Moisand.
How to Embrace your Inner Parisian
Stroll the streets and understand why Paris is called the City of Light…and the City of Love.
Stop at a café and have a coffee or a wine, or both, and linger while people watching. Take a stroll through the gardens. Look towards the Arc de Triomphe on the Champs Elysses, and see the Eiffel Tower in all of its glory. It is so much better in real life. From the 2nd arrondissement wander to the Louvre and marvel at The Mona Lisa, which is also better in real life. Cross the Seine and explore the boho chic Left Bank.
Easy Ways to Explore Paris
There are simple ways to see and enjoy Paris and ways that will save you money and time. Drop into the Official Paris Info and ask them questions. Buy a Paris Pass here.
Buy a Paris City Pass
Buying a Paris City Pass is a smart move. It is a cost saving way to see all of the excellent museums in Paris and to get around the city. See all the details of the Paris City Pass here.
The ‘Paris Visite’ gives you unlimited transport bus, metro, tramway and RER throughout the duration of your stay in zones 1 to 3.
The ‘Paris Museum Pass’ gives you free admission to more than 60 museums in Paris and the Paris Region. See the Louvre Museum, Versailles Estate, Panthéon, Towers of Notre-Dame, Arc de Triomphe, Tomb of Napoléon I, and more. The Paris Pass gives you priority access so that you can beat the queues and trust me you do not want to spend your time in Paris in a very long queue.
Enjoy a Bateaux Parisiens cruise of 1 hour, which comes with the pass and see Paris from the river Seine. The hop on hop off Big Bus Paris sightseeing tour is an excellent way to see the city. The commentary informs you of the history of the places you are seeing as well as giving you great anecdotes about the place. A great piece of advice is to do the entire loop, without getting off and then choose where you want to get off on the 2nd go around, or the 3rd. Use the Free Advantages & Discounts booklet to get reductions at sites entertainment, and restaurants.
I have Whispered Out Loud Here – Stay in The 2nd Arrondissement of Paris. You will thank me for this, trust me.