Description: The highest point (130m) in Paris, Montmartre is crowned by the white Sacré-Coeur Catholic Basilica. The area is known for its nightlife with destinations such as the Moulin Rouge giving it worldwide fame. During the day it is fascinating to wander around – the excellent views and street artists draw over 5 million visitors annually.
Location: Located inside the Périphérique to the north of central Paris. The Basilica is on the Parvis du Sacré Coeur.
General Info: The Basilica is open 6am to 11pm (free entry), the dome and the crypt 9am to 5.30pm in the summer. There is a €6* charge for entry to the dome and crypt.
Our recommendations: As the area can be very crowded it is worth visiting in the morning or during the week.
If travelling with children try to arrive by metro at ‘Les Abbesses’ as the southern approach along the Boulevard de Clichy is somewhat sleazy, although the world famous Moulin Rouge is sited along this road. Les Abbesses itself is also worth noting in order to see the splendour of the Art Nouveau signage at the stations entrance – one of only two station entrances designed by Hector Guimard that still retain their original wrought iron canopies.
Nearby at Jehan Rictus, Place des Abbesses there is the large ‘Le Mur des Je t’aime’ (I love You Wall) – a tiled wall covered in the words ‘I love You’ in more than 300 languages.
It is then very pleasant to wind your way up and around the mound of Montmartre through the back streets and stairways towards the more touristy Place du Tertre – the haunt of artists and street artists alike.
Just like the Ile St Louis, the area of Montmartre seems to have kept the charm of the village it once was. If you wish to climb the 516 steps (counted by our children for the benefit of research!) up to Sacré Coeur then the tackier areas can’t really be avoided. Alternatively take the funicular railway.
For the children: They will enjoy looking around this area and watching the artists at work. Also there is very nice ice cream sold in the bistros!
*please note that prices are subject to change, so check the providers’ official website for latest information
Here’s more information to make the most of your visit to Paris:
- Attractions in Paris:
- Paris Chateaux:
- Museums and Monuments in Paris:
- Best Restaurants in Paris
- Shopping in Paris