A Saturday Walk through Le Marais - Paris - September, 2016
A highlight of our brief stay in Paris was a guided walking tour of the southern portion of The Marais. We left our hotel on the Ile Saint Louis, crossed the Pont Sully, and passed the Rimbaud monument at Place du Père-Teilhard-de-Chardin. We headed up Boulevard Henri IV past the Garde Republicain to the Place de la Bastille and found the Promenade des Plantes (we returned to it the following morning - see separate album).
We then made our way to the Saint Paul Metro station, where we met our excellent tour guide, Brigitte, of the Paris Walks company:
For the next two hours, Brigitte led us down streets, into churches, through gates, doors and alleys and into numerous places we never would have found on our own, keeping up an extremely informed and entertaining commentary the entire way. We would highly recommend any of these walks and plan to take as many as we can on future visits to Paris. After a restful lunch at a typical cafe, we explored more of the area and visited the Musee Picasso and the Pompidou Center (see separate albums). If you click on the album and run the SLIDESHOW in FullScreen Mode,, you can follow us through the day in a roughly chronological sequence:
"Le Marais ("The Marsh") is a historic district in Paris, France. Long the aristocratic district of Paris, it hosts many outstanding buildings of historic and architectural importance. It spreads across parts of the 3rd and 4th arrondissements in Paris (on the Rive Droite, or Right Bank, of the Seine).
Following its rehabilitation, the Marais has become a fashionable district, home to many trendy restaurants, fashion houses, and hip galleries. By the 1950s, the district had become a working-class area and most of its architectural masterpieces were in a bad state of repair. In 1964, General de Gaulle's Culture Minister Andre Malraux made the Marais the first secteur sauvegardé (literally safeguarded sector). These were meant to protect and conserve places of special cultural significance. In the following decades the government and the Parisian municipality have led an active restoration and Rehabilitation Policy.
The main Hôtels particuliers have been restored and turned into museums: the Hôtel Salé hosts the Picasso Museum, the Hôtel Carnavalet hosts the Paris Historical Museum, the Hôtel Donon hosts the Cognacq-Jay Museum, etc. The site of Beaubourg, the western part of Marais, was chosen for the Centre Georges Pompidou, France's national Museum of Modern Art and one of the world's most important cultural institutions. The building was completed in 1977 with revolutionary architecture by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers."