Walking Route in Saint-Germain Paris
Endless strolls along couture window stores, sipping coffees (or champagnes) on a sidewalk café, and tasting the French pastries from a corner patisserie, are typical activities in the Saint-Germain neighborhood in Paris. This central Paris area is known for its ivy-covered galleries and effortless aristocratic elegance. Saint-Germain is located on the Left Bank of Paris, the south side of the Seine river. For Parisians, there’s a significant difference between living on the Rive Droit, the right bank, or the Rive Gauche, the left bank of the Seine. The right bank is the place for trade, the fast money, and commerce, while the left bank is the place for the rich intellectuals and artists. This walking route through Saint-Germain, in the 6th arrondissement, is perfect for those who visited Paris before and are looking for a relaxing and non-touristy day in the city.
- Route name: Walking Route in Saint-Germain Paris
- Duration: 1 day
- Best by walking
- Highlights: Boulevard Saint-Germain, Jardin du Luxembourg, cozy streets full of boutiques and Musée Rodin
Find an extensive and interactive version of this walking route in the travel guide De Linkeroever van Parijs, featuring two walking routes on the Left Bank of Paris. Download the travel guide, written in Dutch, by Sarah Breimer for €4,99 to get the interactive spots, maps, pictures and local tips.
Walking Route in Saint-Germain Paris
Start your walking route at Place Saint-Sulpice. This square is defined by the beautiful church Saint Sulpice, also known from the Da Vinci Code movie and has lovely small streets around to wander through in the morning. The neighborhood's streets are filled with high fashion and low-key independent book stores. Make your way towards Café de la Mairie for a breakfast on one of the most loved terraces by Parisians in the area. The area of Saint-German became a popular place for politicians, writers, poets, and artists to gather in cafes for passionate discussions and heated debates after WWII and into the 1960s. Locals still honor these traditions as they come to the cafes to read the daily newspaper or complain about the weather.
Continue your stroll to the Jardin du Luxembourg, a place to spend some time relaxing and enjoying the quietness of the city. The park still breathes an aristocratic atmosphere that was present in the past with rich gardens and green spaces. Summer crowds and locals find their place on benches or grass areas to enjoy activities such as playing cards, reading books, or enjoying their coffee. Children play with the wooden boats in the pond and in the gardens, as this place is both for the young and old. A good place to go for coffee in the park is Boulangerie Paul.
In the afternoon, wander around the cozy streets of Boulevard Saint-Germain to find the small and unique boutiques for home decor, shoes, clothing, or vintage wear. The side streets that sneak away from Boulevard Saint-Germain lead to a cinematic backdrop of century old architecture. Make sure to step by the French shop Patisserie des Reve, which sells beautiful French pastries displayed elegantly, or visit Mamie Gâteaux for delicious cakes and scones on Rue de Cherche Midi.
After these lavish treats, it’s time to continue your stroll towards Musée Rodin and see the beautiful garden full of Rodin sculptures. This garden is stunning all through the year, changing from different color schemes as each season passes. In the museum and the garden, you’ll find the famous sculptures like the Thinker and the Kiss.
Make your way to the Seine, wandering around the cozy streets of Saint-Germain hopping into one gallery after another, and browsing the boutique stores lining the streets. It’s always busy here, but it never feels too rushed. After walking along the romantic Seine, it’s time to taste Paris’ best entrecote at Relais de l’Entrecote, a restaurant where only this dish is being served.
While walking the Boulevard Saint-German at night, you can hear the calm waters of the Seine and see the festively lit Eiffel Tower, not too far from where you are. This day has been relaxing, yet satisfying, full of strolls at a leisurely pace and sit-downs to taste the true French cuisine.