In the northern area of Paris there is one of the most famous hills in Europe: Montmartre. It is located out of the city centre, and because of that, there are some periods of the year when there are not many tourists, however, this does not mean it is not worth a visit!
Actually, we know at least three good reasons to do a walking tour in Montmartre:
- Its history;
- Its landscape;
- Its buildings.
Let’s see them in detail.
A walking tour in Montmartre and its monuments
During the 19th century, when Napoleon III was president of France, Montmartre hill was not part of Paris, so taxes were lower, and a lot of people established their home on the hill, where they could produce and sell their wine in the city at a competitive price, which is the reason why Montmartre is today the only area in the capital where wine is produced.
Later developments led the area to become an important artistic centre, with the opening of Moulin Rouge and Le Chat Noir, two among the most important theatres in Paris.
Montmartre is the place where you can walk in the same streets where artists like Picasso, Van Gogh, Modigliani, and Utrillo used to walk and meet at Place du Tertre. Some of them now rest in the local cemetery: Stendhal, Truffaut, Dalida, Degas, Foucault, Dumas jr.
Not only the Moulin Rouge and the buildings, the hill itself is an attraction, as it is one of the most suggestive panoramic points in Paris. We won’t lie to you: there are some stairs along the way, and going up is an experience itself, but once you get there, you won’t regret it!
The droit of the river is enchanting, and the Sacre-Cœur is majestic at any time of the day.
If you want to embrace the experience of a walking tour in Montmartre, we suggest you go on the top of the hill first, and then you see the rest of the area going downwards.
If you want to grab a bite, Rue Lepic is the place to go: there are a lot of bars and restaurants where you can eat some of the most popular delicacies of the French cuisine. You can stop at Cafè des 2 Moulins, which is also the set of the film Amélie, or at Le Petits Mitrons, an artisan patisserie where the owners master the art of making pastries and cakes. We also recommend to visit the Moulin de la Galette, we are pretty sure you will easily find it. 😉
If the weather is sunny, we suggest you go for a picnic on the hill and enjoy both the food and the view.
This beautiful building deserves a chapter of its own. Construction works started in 1875 and lasted until 1914, but it was opened in 1920, after World War I.
Initially, the church was supposed to feature a Byzantine style, however, the original architect in charge of the project, Mr. Paul Abadie, died in 1884, and others who came after him put their signature on it, change after change.
What we have today is a masterpiece made of a mix of different styles, making the whole building unique, not only on the outside, but also on the inside, where you can admire one of the biggest golden mosaics in the world.
The material of which the Sacre-Cœur is made is special, too: the calcareous stone used has a very peculiar characteristic: it does not retain smog and dust. Because of that, rain affects its appearance in a very beautiful way, as it makes the church shine of a bright, white light, even at night and with no lights!
Try to go there by the time when the sunset gently fondles the domes: it is the perfect ending of a day of walking among the streets of art, the hill, the cakes, and the Mur des Je T’Aime if you are with your partner.
Would you like to enjoy a walking tour in Montmartre? Check out our proposition!