Sorbonne secrets

This is from Frédéric, a native from Paris. He didn’t tell us where his AirBnb is (so please get back in touch) but at least I got to use my own favourite photo of Paris. We’ve had to translate this as best we could so any errors please shout out. Thank you.

Where is your special place?

The Sorbonne area of Paris. It’s not exactly a secret, it’s one of the most visited parts of Paris. However, it’s partly where they filmed “Le fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain” (Amelie for the English and Americans) and it holds a special place for me.

Why is this a special place to visit?

It might be one of the oldest parts of Paris but for me represents what Paris today should maintain. Stretched around the universities are cafes and bars that still share the intimate settings of a smaller place that the tourists seem to overlook and the students still mingle.

Where does a guest start?

Hidden behind the Pantheon is Contrescarpe Square containing many restaurants and cafes. This square is still relatively free of tourists and still sits in the hearts of students and Parisians to drink coffee and watch others doing the same. I recommend people watching here in the time earned tradition of Parisians.

Where is good to stop and look?

Around here are many Patisseries and it’s worth grabbing one to eat along your way through the cobbled streets. A stroll up Rue Blainville and then the adjoining L’Estrapade will take you through the back streets to the lesser travelled areas. You will arrive at Rue Fossés Saint-Jacques a cross-roads where you can stop but I would recommend continue walking down the cobbled street. You will soon get to La fromagerie du Panthéon, a favourite place to buy some food for dinner. Continuing down Malebranche you will see some beautiful apartments. Soon though you run out of cobble stones and back to the hustle of modern Paris. Turn right and you will see you’ve not been for from the Pantheon all along. Just your own, quiet bubble.

Where would you end the day?

When you get to Rue Soufflot you can turn right back up to the restaurants or left to Le Jardin du Luxembourg.

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Originally published at on May 3, 2015.