A green wall in the heart of the Montorgueil district, an unusual garden near the Château de Vincennes, a planted walk along an old railroad line… there are so many stunning parks in Paris that are worthy of a visit. Here are 5 places to fill up on oxygen in the heart of the City of Light, including a few that are completely free to visit.
The most impressive: Parc des Buttes Chaumont
In the heart of the 19th district lies the most extraordinary park in Paris, the Parc des Buttes Chaumont. This green lung overlooking all of Paris was once a gypsum quarry known as “La colline du Mont Chauve” in the Middle Ages. It is now a peaceful oasis. Waterfalls, small paths, centuries-old trees… It’s the ideal place to bathe in nature, to breathe fresh air. Moreover, it’s one of the few parks in Paris where you can read, sunbathe or picnic on the grass. Don’t forget to visit the Temple de la Sibylle. Built in 1869 as a tribute to the Temple of Vesta in Tivoli, Italy, it dominates the park. It’s magical!
The most vertical: a green wall in the 2nd arrondissement
The Montorgueil district has retained its charm and authenticity, with la rue des Petits-Carreaux at its epicenter. Strolling down this pedestrianized street is well worth the detour to be transported back to historic Paris filled with listed facades, including the Rocher de Cancale. Every bit of greenery is worth its weight in gold in this densely populated neighborhood of lively narrow streets. Walk a little further out, cross the rue Réaumur and you will discover a 25 meter high wall of plants on the corner of the rue Aboukir!
This work of art by Patrick Blanc is a true tribute to biodiversity. 7,600 plants from over 237 different species live in harmony with each other. Admire… breathe!
The most aerial: the Coulée verte
The Coulée verte, a magnificent walk along the old railway line, is located on the heights of the Viaduc des Arts in the heart of the 12th arrondissement. The park stretches for 4.5 kilometers and is 7 meters above the street level. Everything is calm and quiet. Flowers, roses and luxuriant vegetation cover the area in summer. Relax and admire the Haussmann buildings from one of the benches.
Cross the footbridge over the Jardin de Reuilly on rue Montgallet. The ideal place for a jog or romantic kisses.
The most unusual: the Jardin insolite at the Parc Floral de Vincennes
At the very end of line 1 of the Paris Metro, you’ll be transported to a medieval village. This is Vincennes and its magnificent castle. Here you’ll find the Parc Floral and its immense forest of gardens, lakes and streams. Enjoy the beauty of the setting and know that at the far end of the Parc Floral is the Jardin Insolite, where you’ll find a vegetable garden (open from the middle of March to the middle of October), a scented garden and an ornamental garden.
Good to know: The Bois de Vincennes is also home to a zoological park, the Maison de la Nature, a school of horticulture, and much, much more!
The most alpine: the Jardin des Plantes in the 5th arrondissement
Located in the 5th arrondissement of Paris, the Jardin des Plantes is a place of priceless botanical wealth that has been open to the public for 400 years. In its magnificent alleys, you’ll find infinite treasures, a rose garden, and four large greenhouses…
The site is a museum, a botanical garden, a zoological garden, a research center and a university all in one. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit its hidden garden: The Alpine Garden, with its 2,000 species of mountain plants. It artificially recreates a true alpine microclimate.