This one-day itinerary hits 18 different points of interest across the Parisian Latin Quarter. You’ll stroll café-lined streets, take in historic and architecturally significant buildings, and explore the natural beauty of some of the best parks in Paris. To make the most of your time, go ahead and book your entry tickets for two of the major stops on your itinerary: Sainte-Chapelle (book ahead here) and the Panthéon (avoid the lines by booking ahead). The majority of the other stops are free, making this a budget-friendly itinerary. The main cost you’ll incur will be from any shopping or dining you do along the route at places that catch your eye.
Stop 1: Rue de Buci
Head to the Mabillon station on Line 10 (gold) of the Paris Metro. This will be your starting point for the itinerary. Rue de Buci begins just across from the metro exit. This compact street is bustling day and night with pedestrians walking along. Shops and restaurants line the way. Start your day off with a coffee, and pull up a streetside table to watch people go by. Or simply window shop as you make your way toward Île de la Cité.
(image via John Hansel)
Stop 4: Marché aux Oiseaux (Flower & Fish Market)
This quaint flower market makes for unique pictures. It might not be something you would go visit specifically, but it’s between Sainte-Chapelle and Notre Dame, so it’s an easy stop. There are multiple flower markets in the area, so the sights and smells are stimulating.
(image via Laurie Delobre Arts)
Stop 5: Notre Dame Cathedral
One of the most famous buildings in the world, Notre Dame is, unfortunately, closed for renovations following the devastating fire to its roof. You can’t go in right now, but you’ll want to see it anyway. For now, looking up at it from the surrounding streets will have to do.
(image via Bastien Nvs)
Stop 6: Shakespeare and Company
This incredible English language bookstore helped give birth to some of the best writing of the 20th century. Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, and many more once spent time honing their craft here. It also has great views of Notre Dame.
(image via Deniz Demirci)
Stop 8: The Abbey Bookshop
The Abbey Bookshop is much less well-known than Shakespeare & Co. This small bookshop is like something out of a dream. With books stacked floor to ceiling and a charismatic owner, it’s a stop that very few people make but that you will find yourself remembering decades from now. If you’re a book lover, this is your dream come true.
(image via Rudy Issa)
Stop 9: Musée de Cluny
The museum just recently reopened in May 2022 after an extensive renovation. This museum is dedicated to the history of Paris in the Middle Ages. You can see some ruins of a former Roman bath here, even from outside the courtyard.
(image via Paris mon amour)
Stop 10: Luxembourg Palace
This historic palace (and former home of Marie de Medici) is free to enter, but the gardens are the real draw here. It’s a bit of a walk here but pretty spectacular. Today, the French Senate meets in the building.
(image via Marie Evano)
Stop 11: Fontaine Médicis
As you are walking out of the Gardens, be sure to stop by this lovely fountain near Rue Soufflot, which is the street you will want to take to head to the Panthéon. It has recently undergone a deep cleaning, so its spiffy appearance is even new to the locals.
(image via Victor Paul Ianiczec)
Stop 14: Collège des Bernardins
This serene gothic space houses touring exhibitions. The interior space is a fantastic example of gothic arches. Through the summer of 2022, there’s an augmented reality exhibition about Notre Dame.
(image via Collège des Bernardins)
Stop 15: Square des arènes de Lutèce
A good resting spot, this park sits atop a former Roman gladiatorial arena. Have a snack, and be thankful you live in a world where you needn’t do battle to the death to proceed onward with your day.
(image via Guislaine Vol-dub)
Stop 16: The Alpine Garden at Jardin des Plantes
You could probably spend an entire day enjoying the serene beauty of the incredible botanical garden that is Jardin des Plantes. The Alpine Garden, in particular, is wild and beautiful, but there is so much to see you should walk around the space more generally.
(image via Jardin des Plantes)
Stop 18: Rue Mouffetard
End your day here with a bit of shopping and enjoy a dinner where many locals will be at nearby tables. The street is pedestrianized and feels about 10 feet wide at points. You will love it.
(image via Gilmar Barbosa)