JUL 12,2019 - JUL 12,2019 (1 DAYS)
From Place de la Contrescarpe to Luxembourg Gardens:
Start: Cardinal Lemoine Metro station. End: Luxembourg RER station. Distance: 6 km. walk. Duration: 3/4 - 1 day. Weather: Any weather. Avoid windy day. Luxembourg Gardens is full with sandy paths. Unpleasant there when it is windy. What is special: Quaint and romantic sites and districts. Tip: Arrive to rue Mouffetard after 10.00.
Tip 1: Place de la Contrescarpe, Rue Mouffetard, Église St. Médard, Grand Mosque of Paris, Muséum national d'Histoire Naturelle / Jardin des Plantes, Marie Curie Campus of the Sorbonne University, Institut du Monde Arabe, Saint-Bernard quay, Tino-Rossi Garden, Arènes de Lutèce.
Tip 2: Arènes de Lutèce, Place Monge, the Panthéon, Luxembourg Gardens.
Our daily itinerary: From the Cardinal Lemoine Metro station we head southwest on Rue du Cardinal Lemoine toward Rue Monge, 300 m. We face the Place de la Contrescarpe. Rue Mouffetard starts in the west side of the square and runs southward. The square is located between the rue de Lacepede and rue du Cardinal-Lemoine The diameter of the square is approximately 40 meters. The square is small, has trees and a fountain in its center. Surrounded by cafes and restaurants, it is a place for night owls. Lively and calm at the same time. Numerous bars with small tables around the square, but at the same time, the square transmits a lot of tranquility and calm. There are many places (Adorino, Delmas) to eat and drink in and around the Place de la Contrescarpe. Its name "against escarp" is taken from the part that was right in front of the ditch of the old fortification of Paris under King Philippe Auguste in 1200 AD:
We continue southward along Rue Mouffetard. Another way to get there: Take Metro Line 7, exit at Censier-Daubenton Station and walk southwest along Rue Daubenton to Rue Mouffetard.
Rue Mouffetard is one of Paris's oldest and liveliest neighbourhoods. These days the area has many restaurants, shops, and cafés, and a regular open market. This pedestrianised street, which Parisians call “la Mouffe”, is one of the oldest and picturesque streets of Paris. There has been a road here since the Romans were in town, 2000 years ago and it is home to a beautiful street market. This bohemian and multicultural street has not always been called Rue Mouffetard, but had many names like Montfétard, Maufetard, Mofetard, Mouflard, Moufetard, Moftard, Mostard and also Rue Saint-Marcel, Rue du Faubourg Saint-Marceau en Rue de la Vielle Ville Saint-Marcel. Rue Mouffetard is thought to be a deviation of the original Roman name of this road, “mont Cetardus” which refers to a hill close by. Mouffet means “skunk” in the French language. The street was popular as a location for animal skinners and mofettes is related to the word meaning “odours of pestilent” referring to the horrible smells that were given out by the process of skinning. Rue Mouffetard has a medieval character and is loved by Parisians as much as by tourists. Sometimes it feels as if you have stepped back in time. Thanks to the location of this street on hill Sainte-Genevieve, it has been preserved in an older style. Luckily it escaped being included in the project for redevelopment in Paris when Baron Haussmann was planning and recreating the city’s streets and buildings. You can expect a daily market here with fresh products. The diversity of shops is a real feast for the senses. The pastries, the cheeses, the lovely smell from the restaurants, it’s easy to spend several hours here. This street was also a great inspiration for Victor Hugo when he wrote Les Miserables thanks to its atmosphere and good looks, reminiscent still of the middle ages. The market is vibrant and the street is buzzing every day but the busiest times in Rue Mouffetard are Saturday and Sunday mornings. The market and shops are closed on Sunday afternoon and Monday and re-open on Tuesday morning. You’ll find stalls brimming with breads, meat, fish, vegetables, oils, chocolates and other fresh produce and dressings alongside others serving chicken and roast potatoes, fresh oysters, cakes and all kinds of other treats... And it goes without saying that the cheeses and wines are superb.
Look up as well as down. Several of the buildings have incredible frescoes and sculptures. At the junction of Rue du Pot, you will find a water well dated 1624.
Further south, almost in the southern end of rue Mouffetrad you can admire Église St. Médard ,# 141 rue Mouffetard, dating to the 9th century. It is dedicated to Saint Médard de Noyon (456-545), Bishop of Noyon. Built from the 15th to the 18th century, it is the parish church of the faithful of part of the 5th arrondissement , district of Jardin-des-Plantes and part of the Val-de-Grâce district , as well as part of the 13th arrondissement , parts of Croulebarbe and Salpêtrière districts . Since the separation of the Church and the State , it is the property of the City of Paris and is affected (right of exclusive and free use) to Catholic worship. Sunday afternoons in the Mouffe district are especially lively as locals and visitors dance and join in the singing by the Chapel of Saint-Médard in Saint-Médard Square, next to a lovely park. The plan of the church reflects its history with three homogeneous ensembles dated respectively from the mid-fifteenth century, from the period 1562-1620 and the eighteenth century. Saint-Medard Church was enlarged in the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries. The last major additions were the Chapelle de la Vierge and presbytery in the 18th century. Saint-Medard Church escaped destruction during the French Revolution as it was converted into a Temple of Work! The public garden Square Saint-Médard, on its southern side, was developed in the 19th century over the largest of its two cemeteries. The Chapel of the Catechism was erected in 1901 on the site of the older and smaller cemetery (northern side). Additional improvement work took place in the 20th century. A modern stone altar was indeed installed in the chancel. The archbishop of Paris, Cardinal Vingt-Trois, consecrated it on September 11, 2011.
The oldest parts being located at the level of the western facade and adjacent spans and the most recent parts at the bedside. On the south-east facade of the church there is a sundial.
The Interiors: Saint-Medard Church is little known to tourists, despite being situated at the bottom of the lively Rue Mouffetard. It contains a wealth of architectural and artistic features. You'll indeed find murals, paintings on wood and canvas produced by renown painters. Among these you'll recognize works by Champaigne and Watteau. This church combines a variety of major architectural styles, including Flamboyant Gothic (nave), and the Renaissance (the extended choir and pillars transformed into fluted Doric columns). Canvases from the French School are also on display: a Christ in the Tomb (17C), and Jesus casting the money-lenders out of the Temple by Natoire.
Mariage de la Vierge by Alexandre-François Caminade:
From Paroisse Saint Médard - head southwest on Rue Daubenton toward rue Mouffetard, 60 m. Turn left onto Rue Mouffetard and walk 80 further south to arrive to Place Georges-Moustaki. Place Georges-Moustaki is a roundabout at the intersection of rue Censier, rue Mouffetard, rue de Bazeilles, and rue Pascal. On May 23, 2016, la place Georges-Moustaki was officially inaugurated in honor of Georges Moustaki, an Egyptian-French singer-songwriter of Jewish origin, best known for the poetic rhythm and simplicity of the romantic songs he composed. Moustaki gave France some of its best-loved music by writing about 300 songs for some of the most popular singers in that country, such as Édith Piaf, Dalida, Françoise Hardy, Yves Montand, Barbara, Brigitte Fontaine, Herbert Pagani, France Gall, Cindy Daniel, Juliette Greco, Pia Colombo, and Tino Rossi, as well as for himself. Still poular in France, Israel and the Arab countries. The French president, François Hollande, called Moustaki a "hugely talented artist whose popular and committed songs have marked generations of French people".
From Place Georges-Moustaki we change direction. After walking southward - we head, now, north-east. We head east on La Place Georges-Moustaki toward Rue Censier, 15 m. Exit the roundabout onto Rue Censier, 65 m. Slight right to stay on Rue Censier, 30 m. Turn left onto Rue Monge, 130 m. Turn right onto Rue de Mirbel, 15 m. Turn left onto Rue Daubenton, 210 m. We pass through the Metro station of Censier-Daubenton on our left (west). Hotel Maxim will be on our right, opposite the Metro station. Turn left onto Rue Georges Desplas, 100 m. Continue north onto Rue de Quatrefages, 30 m. On our left the small park of Place Robert Montagne and on our right the Grand Mosque of Paris, 2 Rue de Quatrefages. The complex of the mosque and its adjacent buildings is very extensive. The formal entrance is on the eastern side of the building where Rue de Quatrefages turns into Rue Georges Desplas or vice versa. The mosque, the largest in France, was built in 1926 in honor of the Muslims that fought in World War I. It is modeled in the mudéjar style in homage to the Mosque of Fez in Morocco. The mosque or Muslim centre has multiple indoor and outdoor courtyards, with birds flying freely between. The mosque contains a religious library, a Hammam (Turkish bath) and Muslim Institute. This road pays tribute to the biologist and zoologist Jean Louis Armand of Quatrefages de Bréau (1810-1892) who worked at the nearby National Museum of Natural History. The Mosque is North African style design one. Very beautiful and stunning decor and is free entry. The Mosque can be visited by anyone and you have to dress modestly. The garden is picturesque and is STUNNING. On Fridays they may be closed because of prayers. The building has a coffee shop next door for refreshments. VERY GOOD and delicious food inside. Saturday is the only day during the week when the Mosque is open to women.
Head north on Rue de Quatrefages toward Rue Lacépède, 130 m. Turn right onto Rue Lacépède, 55 m. Turn left onto Rue Linné, 25 m. Turn right onto Rue Cuvier, 120 m.
and turn right onto the Muséum national d'Histoire Naturelle, 57 Rue Cuvier. A huge complex that includes (several units are NOT in this complex entered from rue Cuvier): Garden of Plants, Great Gallery of Evolution, Virtual Reality Cabinet, Children's Gallery, Gallery of Mineralogy and Geology, Gallery of Paleontology and Comparative Anatomy, Botanical Gallery Greenhouses of the Jardin des Plantes, Menagerie, the zoo of the Jardin des Plantes, Libraries, Museum of Mankind, Paris Zoological Park, Arboretum of Versailles-Chèvreloup, Marinarium of Concarneau, Haute-Touche Animal Reserve, Pataud shelter, Jean-Henri Fabre Museum, La Jaÿsinia" alpine garden, Botanical Garden Val Rahmeh-Mento. EACH GALLERY, GARDEN OR ZOO HAS ITS OWN INFORMATION, OPENING TIMES, HOW TO GET THERE AND SO ON. Public Transport: Bus: Lines 24, 57, 61, 63, 67, 89 and 91, Batobus: Jardin des Plantes stop, Metro and RER: Line 5 Austerlitz Station, Line 7 Censier Daubenton, Line 10 Jussieu or Gare d'Austerlitz, RER C Gare d'Austerlitz. Garden of Plants is open every day - from 7.30 to 19.30 until 22 September 2019. Garden is cleared 15 minutes before closing time. The Greenhouses of the Jardin des Plantes are open everyday, except Tuesdays, January 1st, May 1st, December 25th, until Sunday 13 October 2019 from 10.00 to 18.00 - last admission 45 minutes before closing. THe Menagerie - the historical Zoo of the City is open everyday from 9 .00 - 17.30. Last admission 45 minutes before closing. If you want to enter the interiors of the museums - allow, at least, 2-3 hours. This large museum of natural history combines three museums into one, including a four-story taxonomy wing, a building of skeletons and fossils and a separate structure devoted entirely to geology. Mainly, for children. All wordings in French!!!. Entrance: 9 euros. 1st floor: skeletons (including Dinosaurs. 2nd floo.r: Fossils. 3rd floor - closed. NO AC - very hot in summer days.
The exterior of the Grande galerie de l'Évolution:
If we leave the the Jardin des Plantes and/or the Museum of Natural History from its west entrance in rue Cuvier - we walk 350 m. to our next destination. Head northeast on Rue Cuvier (turn right from the main entrance), 30 m. Turn left toward Rue des Licences, 45 m. Continue right along Rue des Licences, 110 m. Turn left for 165 m. to see the Pierre and Marie Curie Campus of the Sorbonne University. The huge and impressive campus you see - is, actually, a merger between the Paris-Sorbonne and the Pierre and Marie Curie Universities. The Sorbonne university is located, mainly, in the Jussieu Campus in the Latin Quarter of the 5th arrondissement of Paris. Pierre and Marie Curie University (Université Pierre-et-Marie-Curie (UPMC) operated independetly from 2007–2017 and was also known as Paris. In 2018, UPMC, considered the best university in France in medicine and health, merged with Paris-Sorbonne University into a new combined Sorbonne University. UPMC merged with Paris-Sorbonne University into a combined Sorbonne University on 1 January 2018. In 1974, the University of Paris VI adopted the name Université Pierre et Marie Curie, after physicists Pierre and Marie Curie. In 2006, Pierre and Marie Curie University entered into a partnership with the government of the United Arab Emirates to create Paris-Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi, a spinoff in Abu Dhabi. In 2007, the university shortened its name to UPMC. In 2008 the university joined the association Paris Universitas changing its logo accordingly and adding the name of the association after its own. UPMC was a large scientific and medical complex in France, active in many fields of research with scope and achievements at a high level. Several university rankings regularly put UPMC at the 1st place in France, and it has been ranked as one of the top universities in the world. The ARWU in 2014 ranked UPMC as the 1st in France, 6th in Europe and 35th in the world and also 4th in field of mathematics, 25th in field of physics, 14th in field of natural sciences and 32nd in field of engineering, technology and computer science.
From Sorbonne University Pierre and Marie Curie Campus, 4 Place Jussieu, we head nortwest 250 m. We turn right onto Rue des Fossés Saint-Bernard, 10 m. We slight right and left (75 m.) to enter the Institut du Monde Arabe / Arab World Institute, 1 Rue des Fossés Saint-Bernard. The main highlight of this building is the magnificent View of Notre-Dame Cathedral from the institute's roof (9th floor) terrace. A cultural bridge between France and the Arab world. The Arab World Institute was founded in 1987 by France and the states of the Arab League with the aim of promoting all the facets of Arab culture. A place where people can meet and exchange ideas with others, the Institute has for the last 30 years contributed to the consolidation of the cultural, political, economic, and social links between France and the Arab world. As a tourist - you can browse a richly diverse programme of exhibitions and events displayed in this world-famed building. Comprising a museum, temporary exhibition areas, an auditorium for hosting live performances, cinema screenings, and conferences, a multimedia library (‘médiathèque’), a language and culture centre (‘centre de langues et civilisations’), a bookshop, and prestigious reception areas, the AWI building was designed by Jean Nouvel and Architecture Studio. Apart from providing an ambitious programme of artistic events, the Arab World Institute has strengthened its role as a ‘think tank’ on the contemporary Arab world and as a place where France and the Arab world can meet and exchange ideas. Do not miss the restaurant in the roof floor (budgetly priced, good quality of limited selection of oriental portions). The food in the top-floor restaurant is top class ! The main highlight is its roof top terrace which offers nice view of Seine and the city. FREE. Take the elevator to floor #9. Walk to a terrace that offers nice views of the Seine River, the bridges of Paris, the Notre Dame Cathedral, and even the La Defénse area. It is splendid, not crowded, and breezy.
From the Arab World Institute - we continue south-east ALONG the SEINE river. Head northwest toward Boulevard Saint-Germain and slight right, 50 m. Slight right onto Quai Saint-Bernard, 50 m. Pont de Sully is on our left (north). Slight left toward Quai Saint-Bernard another 50 m. Turn right toward Quai Saint-Bernard, 145 m. The SEINE river is always on your left. Slight left onto Quai Saint-Bernard 150 m. further. The Tino-Rossi Garden is on your right. The Saint-Bernard quay is a waterfront promenade. The most marvelous part of it starts at Pont de Sully and extends eastward - but, it stretches from the Institut du Monde Arabe to the Jardin des Plantes. Tino Rossi Garden resides in its last (South-east) part. During a walk on the quay, be sure to discover the outdoor sculpture museum. On summer evenings, the quay turns into a dance floor where both enthusiasts and beginners are dancing. Tino Rossi Garden is, actually, a museum of outdoor sculpture. The promenade owes its name to the proximity of the former Bernardin convent and the Saint Bernard gate, formerly , located at the end of the Sully bridge.
The Tino-Rossi Garden , which hosts some thirty sculptures by artists from the second half of the twentieth century, constituting the Museum of Open Air Sculpture , managed by the City of Paris. There is also the stop Jardin des Plantes Batobus network. Works by the biggest names in contemporary sculpture are displayed in the open-air sculpture museum: Brancusi, César, Ipoustéguy, Rougemont, Zadkine, Schoffer, Stahly and many others.
We leave the Seine river and head westward BACK to Jussieu district. Head southeast on Quai Saint-Bernard toward Rue Cuvier, 70 m. Turn right onto Rue Cuvier, 550 m. The Menagerie and the Zoo of the Jardin des Plantes and Natural History Museum walls - are on your left. Fontaine Cuvier is waiting in the south-west end of rue Cuvier. Turn left onto Rue Linné, 25 m. Turn right onto Rue Lacépède, 95 m. Turn right onto Rue de Navarre, 80 m. Turn left to stay on Rue de Navarre, 20 m. Place Emile Male is on your right. Climb right, 80 m. and slight left to see the unexpected, stunning Arènes de Lutèce, 49 Rue Monge on your right.
Go to Tip 2 below.
Tip 2: Arènes de Lutèce, Place Monge, the Panthéon, Luxembourg Gardens.
Arènes de Lutèce is the most important ancient Roman remain from the era in Paris (known in antiquity as Lutetia, or Lutèce in French), together with the Thermes de Cluny. Constructed in the 1st century AD, this theatre could once seat 15,000 people and was used also as an amphi-theatre to show gladiatorial combats. The terraced seating surrounded more than half of the arena's circumference, more typical of an ancient Greek theatre rather than a Roman one which was semi-circular. Originally, they were 132 m long by 100 m wide. Slaves, the poor, and women were relegated to the higher tiers — while the lower seating areas were reserved for Roman male citizens. For comfort, a linen cover sheltered spectators from the hot sun. From its vantage point, the theatre also afforded views of the Seine river. When Lutèce was sacked during the barbarian raids of 275 AD, some of the structure's stone work was used to reinforce the city's defences around the Île de la Cité. However, Chilperic I had it repaired in 577 and gave performances there. Later, the theatre became a cemetery, and was filled in completely following the construction of wall of Philippe Auguste (ca. 1210). Centuries later, even though the surrounding neighbourhood (quartier) had retained the name les Arènes, the exact location was lost. It was discovered by Théodore Vaquer during the building of the Rue Monge between 1860–1869, when the Compagnie Générale des Omnibus sought to build a tramway depot on the site. Spearheaded by the author Victor Hugo (1802–1885) and a few other intellectuals, a preservation committee called la Société des Amis des Arènes undertook to save the archaeological treasure. After the demolition of the Couvent des Filles de Jésus-Christ in 1883, one-third of the arena was uncovered. The Municipal Council dedicated funds to restoring the arena and establishing it as a public square, which was opened in 1896. After the tramway lines and depot were dismantled in 1916 and line 10 of the Paris Métro was constructed, the doctor and anthropologist Jean-Louis Capitan (1854–1929) continued with additional excavation and restoration of the arena toward the end of World War I. The neighbouring Square Capitan, built on the site of the old Saint-Victor reservoir, is dedicated to his memory. However, a portion of the original arena — opposite the stage — was lost to buildings which were built along rue Monge. Standing in the centre of the arena one can still observe significant remnants of the stage and its nine niches, as well as the grilled cages in the wall. Visitors can still see the site where the actors stood, the stage platform and lapidary parts. It is located in, rather, isolated place - but it is 5-10 minutes walk to Place Monge Metro station. Today it’s a playground for people with just some of the seats and arena which remain original.
Position yourself in the north-west end of the arena. Head northwest toward Rue Monge, take the stairs, 50 m. Turn left onto Rue Monge and walk southward approx. 250 m.to arrive to Place Monge. We loved this square. DO NOT MISS the square on three days: Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. The 3 days market in Monge Square is a must: fresh fish (mussels, cod), vegs, olives, nuts, spices, clothing, hats, sauerkraut, paella, and above all, cheese. Oh, the cheeses -- so hard to choose, but the sampling is heaven. Other days it might be noisy due the municipal cleaning machinery... Market days generally get fully under way around 8 a.m. and end in early afternoon. At other times, a visitor would likely wonder why this square is listed as an attraction.
We continue to te Pantheon of Paris. From Place Monge continue NORTH on Rue Monge toward Rue Larrey, 120 m. Turn left onto Rue Lacépède, 210 m. At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit BACK onto Rue Mouffetard, 90 m. Continue onto Rue Descartes, 130 m. Turn left onto Rue Clovis, 140 m. Turn left onto Rue Clotilde, 10 m and, finally, turn right 40 m. to see the Panthéon, Place du Panthéon. It is not a church. It is a civic structure commemorating the french national heroes, especially those of the revolution. We arrived to the Panthéon when it was under emergency or severe protest. Perhaps 100 citizens or emmigrants (most of them were black and looked North-Africans) raided onto the Panthéon, marching in and screaming and laughing. Staff members were running out in a panic. The demonstrators locked the doors and did not let the tens of, still in, visitors to run out. The demonstrators used them like hostages. As far as we understood, the demonstrators claimed rights of citizens in France - stating that they are residents in Paris for years, paying taxes, working hard and fulfilling all their civilian duties. A staff person explained it was a demonstration and it has happened previously. Outside, people around us were very upset as some had family members still inside. We could see the delayed police arrival. Hundreds of them. After a "siege" of 15-20 minutes the demonstrators stormed out, smashing easily the policemen and running out. Hardly 5-10 demonstrators were arrested. The lion's ahre of the black demonstrators ran out and disappeared. In summary, the “security” was a joke and not effective. We have been in the Panthéon several times. It is a quiet place and looks grandiose from the outside. Open everyday - Summer: 10.00 - 18.30, Winter 10.00 - 18.00. Full price: 9€, reduced price: Under 26 years for not a national of a Member State of the European Union: 7€.
Patterned after the original, much older Pantheon in Rome, the Pantheon in Paris was originally called the Église Sainte-Geneviève; it was a church built to honor Genevieve, the patron saint of Paris. Though construction on the church began in 1758, the architect died before it could be completed and it was his protégé who saw the project to fruition in 1790. Against the backdrop of the French Revolution, France’s newly formed National Assembly ordered the church to be converted to a mausoleum, laying to rest its first two prestigious members the following year. Over the next century, the building twice reverted back to use for religious purposes before being officially declared a secular necropolis with the death of Victor Hugo in 1885. A true literary genius, he wrote The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Toilers of the Sea, and his most famous work, Les Misérables. Professing a belief in God but no affinity for religion, Victor Hugo was interred in the Panthéon following a funeral procession of two million mourners.
There's a lot of history within the Panthéon walls. But it is more into architecture. The building alone will impress. Unlike the Roman Pantheon, there is no oculus, but it has the same coffered dome. The Parisian Panthéon has several additional,smaller domes in a radius around the central dome, and the effect is mesmerizing. It is really beautiful.
Inside, when you first enter the complex - you are taken by the mighty dimensions of the building. On the ground floor is the pendulum of Foucault, not the original one but reconstruction.
One could almost think of the Panthéon as two separate attractions. The first/ground level has also some impressive sculptures.
À Diderot et aux encyclopédistes:
The second is the crypt, which is located below ground and extends in a dizzying network of halls and rooms beneath the main building. The crypt beneath the Pantheon is a confusing network of tunnels and tombs, rooms and statues. Both of the floors are magnificent and absolutely worth exploring. If you got down to the crypts - you can see the graves of Voltaire, Victor Hugo, Marie Curie, Émile Zola and Alexander Dumas.
Émile Zola tomb:
Victor Hugo’s tomb:
Marie Curie tomb:
You can climb to the top of the Pantheon easily to see 360 degrees of Paris from above and it’s on 12 Euro total to see the Beautiful Pantheon and go to the top! Well worth the visit. You are at the same elevation as the first tier of the Eiffel Tower and can see the Eiffel Tower, The Invalides, Saint-Sulpice Church and the Sacre Coeur easily. There was no wait time but be mindful that they only take small groups up to the Dome a time so you may want to plan ahead to secure the time slot you want.
Our last destination today - is the Luxembourg Gardens, 550 m. from the Panthéon. From the Place du Panthéon - head north and turn left onto Place du Panthéon, 190 m. Turn right onto Rue Soufflot, 280 m. At Place Edmond Rostand, take the 1st exit onto Boulevard Saint-Michel, 70 m. Take the crosswalk and turn left onto Luxembourg Gardens. Situated on the border between Saint-Germain-des-Prés and the Latin Quarter, the Luxembourg Gardens, inspired by the Boboli Gardens in Florence, were created upon the initiative of Queen Marie de Medici in 1612. The gardens, which cover 25 hectares of land, are split into French gardens and English gardens. Between the two, lies a geometric forest and a large pond. There is also an orchard with a variety of old and forgotten apples, an apiary for you to learn about bee-keeping and greenhouses with a collection of breathtaking orchids and a rose garden. The garden has 106 statues spread throughout the park, the monumental Medici fountain, the Orangerie and the Pavillon Davioud. There are many activities and facilities for children such as puppets, rides and slides. Adults, whether they are Parisians or tourists, can play chess, tennis, and bridge or remote control boats. The cultural programme is characterized by free photography exhibitions on the garden railings and by concerts in the bandstand. Opens between 7.30 and 08.15, and closes between 16.30 and 21.30 according to season. FREE. Guided tours led by one of the park’s gardeners are generally available on the first Wednesday of the month from April to October. See the Jardin du Luxembourg website for details. Meeting point: in front of the Observatoire gate giving in Place André Honnorat at 9.30. Accessible from boulevard Saint-Michel, rue du Vuagiraud, rue Guyenemer, rue Auguste-Comte and rue Médicis.
There are two accessible toilets at the Auguste-Comte entrance (11.00 to 13.00, and 13.45 to 19.00) and next to the Sénat (9.00 to 19.00). There are avenues of gigantic trees, there are small, intimate gardens. There are numerous sculptures, and there are chairs set about so that people can sit anywhere they want to enjoy the gardens. The trees and flowers are traded out with each season, and kept in a greenhouse until it’s time to replant! There are tennis and bocce ball courts, ponds with rental vintage sailboats, and a museum that is hosting a temporary art exhibit that is free to the public. Allow for more than an hour before covering all of the gardens. This is ae place you want to stay the whole day there and just relax. There are numerous chairs scattered around the garden including the more secluded Medici Fountain. A fantastic site to escape the hustle and bustle of Paris. A nice place to finish a busy day of touring the city. Note: there is no shade around the pond/lake. Avoid midday hottest hours.