The 3rd arrondissement – also known as Le Marais – is by excellence the hobo-chic zone of Paris. It’s pretty, peaceful, trendy, and is known as the neighbourhood where many artists and celebrities live. If you can afford living in this district, there is no doubt that you will quickly fall in love with it because it has all the qualities of other Parisian arrondissements, without their flaws. It is trendy but not too chic, dynamic but not too chaotic, and full of animation but very safe.
One of the main characteristics of Le Marais is its strong LGBT presence : not only are you more likely to see same-sex couples than in other areas of the city, but you will also notice the various gay-themed shops, cafés and clubs. The funniest example is the bakery called Legay Choc, famous for its penis-shaped baguettes and pastries… But no need to be gay to enjoy the progressive vibes of this trendsetting neighbourhood.
Le Marais is also known for its important Jewish community – whose presence is obvious around the famous Rue des Rosiers – that gathers many Middle-Eastern and Kosher restaurants and bakeries. Among them, you will notice a couple of take-away spots where tourists and locals wait in line for what is supposed to be the best falafel in the world: a delicious kebab/sandwich that will fill you up, for around €6.
Of course, Paris offers multiples areas for fashion lovers and shopping addicts, but the 3rd arrondissement can be considered as the trendiest one. Its streets are full of hyped designer shops and new-wave fashion brands. The district is also notorious for having the finest vintage and second-hand stores in the city, which makes it the coolest neighbourhood of Paris.
One place to study: The famous Centre Pompidou and its huge library, commonly referred to as Beaubourg by Parisians, is only a few metres away from the 3rd arrondissement. If you are less conventional, L’Anticafé is a coffeeshop based on a smart and original idea : consumers only pay for the time they spend there. Everything else – coffee, beverages, snacks, cakes, wifi, printers and more – is for free.
One place to eat: L’As du Falafel, Rue des Rosiers.
One place to relax: The garden of Place des Vosges, where many young people gather with their friends to play guitar or have a beer…and it has free wifi!
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