6th Arrondissement (St-Germain-des-Pres and Luxembourg), Paris Travel Guide
6th Arrondissement (St-Germain-des-Près and Luxembourg) Summary
- Famous cafe culture
- Literary heart of the city
- Great upscale shopping and numerous restaurants
- Lively, bustling area
- Home to Luxembourg Gardens
- Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Pres
- Expensive area
- Crowded streets
- Fewer major attractions than some other neighborhoods (although many who stay here find it hard to leave)
What It's Like
Situated on the Left Bank, the 6th Arrondissement is the literary heart of Paris. Known for its cafe culture, the 6th Arrondissement was the former haunt of writers, artists, and philosophers such as Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso. Ever see Midnight in Paris? You'll recognize many of the sights from the film while strolling along the neighborhood's streets. Perhaps the most famous cafes are the three clustered here -- Les Deux Magots, the Brasserie Lipp, and Cafe de Flore.
Like almost all neighborhoods of Paris, the 6th Arrondissement is often crowded and expensive. But though there are many upscale cafes and restaurants, there are food carts and stands serving up tasty treats as well. And some of the neighborhood's most memorable sights are free; be sure to stroll the grounds of the Luxembourg Gardens, surrounded by beautiful 19th-century architecture. Entrance to the Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Pres, one of the neighborhood's most famous sights, is also free.
Where To Stay
A major tourist spot in Paris, the 6th Arrondissement has numerous luxury hotels. Of course some deals can be found, but Paris is compact enough (and the public transportation is so good) that those on a budget can easily stay in a less expensive area and still visit the 6th Arrondissement frequently. Those staying in the 6th Arrondissement may consider staying close to the Seine, as that puts them near tourist-friendly neighborhoods such as the 1st and 4th Arrondissements.