A Guide to Montmartre, Paris: What to Do & Where to Eat and Drink

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Montmartre. You have probably heard of it as a place of the artists, where Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gogh had studios and where the infamous whimsical movie Amélie was set.

The 18th arrondissement is one of the most diverse in Paris, with some of the most beautiful sights in the city located in 'the village' (the area that I will be focusing on here), and with some more ethnically diverse areas such as Château Rouge.

Historically, Montmartre was simply a quiet village on the outskirts of Paris - it only became part of the city in 1860 and apartments here are generally larger and cheaper than other areas of the city (or at least they used to be). This is why so many artists lived and breathed here, because it was cheaper, and probably because the winding little cobblestone streets and the beautiful view of Paris were sources of inspiration for them.

When I first moved to Paris I lived in the cutest flat in Montmartre. During my time there I got to spend quite a lot of time wandering the streets and soaking in the atmosphere. You get a real village feel here and although it's now very touristy, it's definitely worth visiting to see a bit of the 'classic' Paris that is always portrayed in films.

Things to Do and See in Montmartre

Visit the Sacré-Coeur 

Finished in 1914, the Sacré-Coeur is a Roman Catholic church which is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It's a popular landmark which is on butte Montmartre, the highest point in Paris which you can see clearly from some parts of the city - particularly when you climb to the top of the Arc de Triomphe.

Entrance to the church is free, unless you want to climb up to the very top and into the dome in which case it's under 10 euros.

Sit on the Steps and Watch the Sunset 

The view from the Sacré-Coeur is absolutely incredible. It's a little hard to spot the Eiffel Tower from here, but if you go all the way to the right (if your back is to the church), you should be able to spot it over Paris' rooftops.

Watch the artists at Place du Tertre

This whole square is full of colourful artists sat at their stalls on the cobblestone streets. This open-air art gallery is full of locals and (mostly) tourists, surrounded by buildings straight out of the 1900s: restaurants, crêperies and cafés. If you want a real souvenir from Paris, have your portrait drawn.

Stumble across la Maison Rose

This is probably the cutest little house in the whole of Montmartre, if not Paris. The romantic rose coloured walls and the cobblestone streets on either side of it make for the most picturesque scene, apparently Picasso spent quite a lot of time here!

It's a café and a restaurant but I have never been inside - every time I walked past it was shut. According to google it's 'permanently closed'(???) but according to a couple of people it was overpriced, mediocre/bad food anyway so stick to admiring it from the outside.

Location: 2 rue de l'Abreuvoir

Visit the Musée de Montmartre

Now a museum, 12 rue Cortot was where many artists lived including August Renoir, Suzanne Valadon and Émile Bernard. The permanent collection includes paintings, posters and drawings which show Montmartre's history. You can also take a look into an artistic studio-apartment and there is even a whole room dedicated to the can can in the museum. Full price entry is under 11 euros. For opening times please visit their website (here) as this varies seasonally.

Location: 12 rue Cortot

Go take a look at le mur des je t'aime 

The love wall! "I love you" is written 311 times in 250 languages. Apparently, the red bits on the wall represent a heart that's been broken, all the pieces together form a perfectly shaped heart - how sweet!

Location: Square Jehan-Rictus

Where to Eat and Drink

I don't have that many recommendations for traditional French food, for that you'll have to stroll the streets and you'll stumble across something for sure - Montmartre is full of traditional French cafés and restaurants, how cute and quintessential is the restaurant in the picture below?! Here are some places that are a little bit different that you are less likely to stumble upon.

Brunch & Lunch: Hardware Société 

The Hardware Société is, in my opinion, hands down the best brunch place in Paris. In fact, it only serves brunch - a restaurant dedicated to brunch. The restaurant was originally opened in Melbourne, Australia and made its way to Paris earlier last year, incorporating both Australian and French breakfast favourites into their menu.

They have it all: eggs, croissants (which come with incredible jam from la chambre aux confitures), bircher muesli, pain perdu, duck, salmon - you name it. The dishes are indulgent and should be savoured with every bite - the pain perdu that I had was raspberry and passion fruit flavoured and was honestly the best french toast I have ever had. If you would like to read more on the restaurant please click here. A lovely place to eat if you are not set on eating something traditionally French - although I'm sure that pain perdu counts?!

10 rue Lamarck, 75018 Paris
Monday, Thursday & Friday: 9am - 4pm; Saturday & Sunday: 9.30am - 4.30pm (closed Tuesday & Wednesday)

Rooftop bar: Terrass-Hotel

This is a great rooftop bar if you want to have a spectacular view of Paris, including a view of the Eiffel Tower. Drinks are somewhat on the expensive side, but that is to be expected due to the location, view and vibe up there! During summer it is very, very popular so try to get there early-ish to avoid queueing. They also have a restaurant if you would prefer to dine up there.

12-14 rue Joseph de Maistre, 75018
The bar is open every day from 3.30pm until 1am

Secret bar & restaurant: Hotel Particulier Montmartre 

Perhaps not a traditional 'secret bar', this establishment is a whole secret hotel with both a bar and a restaurant which is probably one of my favourite places in Paris. Walk up to the gates and press the intercom, stating that you're there for the bar. Walk down the little passageway and on your left you should see a beautiful private courtyard adorned with greenery, but make sure to spot a view of the Eiffel Tower before you go in. Then proceed to spend hours in the serene garden, drinking copious amounts of wine.

23 avenue Junot, 75018 Paris
Every day, 6pm - 2am

How to Get to Montmartre

The metro is very easy to use in Paris and you can buy tickets at any station by using one of their kiosks. They usually take both credit card and cash so you should be okay. Tickets are 1,90 for a single or 1,45 each if you buy 10 of them. Note: please be careful on the metro (and around Montmartre) as pickpockets target tourists.
  • Metro line 12: Abbesses
  • Metro line 2: Anvers


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  1. Those pictures are amazing! Thank you for sharing this post lovely x


  2. Oooh man, a brunch restaurant? Yes please!! I visited Montmartre for the first time this year, it was a bit of a whirlwind tour (we took the little white train from the Moulin Rouge and had about an hour up at the top!) as we were only in Paris for the day but it was so gorgeous. Very jealous that you lived here!! xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Life, Travel, Italy

  3. Wandering the streets and soaking up the atmosphere near your flat when you first moved to Paris sounds SO dreamy and literally like something from a film! Hotel Particulier Montmartre truly does look like a hidden gem. Beautiful!

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice | Worldwide Giveaway: Hotel Chocolat Halloween Hamper! x

  4. Such a beautiful place with tons of breathtaking sceneries and photogenic structures. You make really good photos dear.

    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

  5. This is such a cute little Parisian neighborhood! When I visited Paris a few years ago, we packed lunches every day and ate them in whichever area of the city we were in. I have very fond memories of eating a baguette on a bench in front of Sacré-Coeur!

    XO, Emily
    Epicurean Emily

  6. Your guide just made me want to travel and explore!! So good! xx


  7. Montmartre is my favourite spot in Paris... I haven't been since I was 18 though! La Maison Rose and Le Mur des Je T'aime look so cute! I’ll be visiting them next time. xx

  8. So many amazing pictures and views of Paris! I would love to go to the Place du Tertre and watch the artists paint. :)


  9. Such a wonderful place and huge numbers of astonishing pictures and perspectives of Paris! Much obliged to you for sharing this post!